Thursday, 29 September 2011

It's only a metaphor

I like to think I have a pretty good sense of humour. Maybe saying that is like when someone says they’re ‘laid back.’ Anyone who says they’re laid back definitely isn’t.

Anyway, I always try to laugh at myself.  I laugh and smile often. My face regularly hurts from the above.

And just in case, the fella certainly keeps me on my toes with regard to whether or not I am taking myself too seriously...

Many people have messaged me to say that they loved the ‘s**t my boyfriend says’  post. So I’d been making a note of some of the more ‘amusing’ things he’d said with the view to compiling a second list.

They included the hypothetical

“Do you think our daughter would get your fat arse?”

And, after looking at some recent photographs,

“You probably shouldn’t wear that dress that makes you look pregnant again love.”

Yes. I think I can still laugh at myself. Thanks my darling.

But then last night he was out on the pop. When he came home we had the following exchange:

Him: “You know us; do you ever think that we’re only together because no-one else would have us?”
Me: “ Umm no. And that’s not a very nice thing to say.”
Him: “I’m joking.”
Me:  “What?”
Him: “Ok then, it was a metaphor.”
If you missed the first post in this series, you can catch up with it here

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

a highland fling

I am sitting overlooking a loch. It would be pretty spectacular if it stopped raining for long enough for me to see the water. Really, this is the kind of rain that they have in the Bible.

In light of the rain, we took a ride out to the tourist information to enquire what we might do on a rainy day in this beautiful spot. The tourist information woman – Carol – had one suggestion. ‘Have you tried the wildlife hide?’ We had.

Actually it had been pretty magnificent. We turned up, with none of the correct outdoor activity gear, just at the right time to see a group of otters playing on the island and a couple of seals coming into shore. And then we left. It was cold and damp – I’m sure you’ll understand.

Well, what a success. How very efficient of us. The people who were waterproofed up to the nines in the hide had likely been sitting there for several hours. Then, these two imposters turn up in jeans, (jeans are useless in rain) and get all the action in twenty minutes.  I wouldn’t have liked us very much either.

When we had first arrived at our accommodation, Val (the cottage owner) showed us around. She handed us the key, which had a wind up torch as a key-ring. ‘City types don’t tend to have a torch to hand’ she’d said. I wanted to tell her that I had an app that served as a pretty bright torch, but as a city type, I just keep quiet.

This place is unspoilt, uncrowned and often shut.

Mo’s fish and chip shop, which proudly displayed a sign claiming it was the ‘best fish and chip shop in Scotland’ had run out of fish. On a Saturday night, at 7pm. Oh - and curry sauce. And chips. Actually, turned out that Mo hadn’t run out of any of the above, but she wanted to get home to see the X-Factor, and our custom was set to get in the way of the opening credits.

Obviously no establishment takes card. Obviously we hadn’t thought this through, and as such have a limited supply of money. There is one petrol station with limited opening hours. We did however have enough spare change to buy raspberries from an honestly box at the side of the road. Yum. Actually, I hope the petrol station accepts Visa. If I could get signal I’d phone ahead to check.

There is little scope here for the 24-7 facilities of the modern world most of us inhabit. You might wonder how people survive without Tesco Metro, but it seems they’re surviving just fine.

Tomorrow we’ll show up at Ardnamurchan Point just in time to catch a pod of whales, capture the moment in high-res on our smart phones -and annoy another bunch of waterproofed professionals.

You should visit; it really is a chance to enjoy a gentler pace of life in the most beautiful spot. Just don’t expect to get fish and chips for your supper; seems people have got better things to do.

Monday, 19 September 2011

A revolution: One chord at a time

I have a red ukulele. My new ukulele and I are getting on swimmingly. The boyfriend claims that the sound of me tuning it is driving him demented. I reckon he doesn’t know talent when he hears it.

Frankly, it’s a four-stringed marvel.

And there is even a Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain. Who knew? Perhaps I could turn my hand to busking?

I can almost play 3 songs.

I wanna be like you (the Jungle book)
       Hey Ya (Outkast)
       Back for Good (Take That)

Back for Good on the uke is perhaps not exactly how Gary intended it to sound, but I’m giving it my best.  Maybe I’m not quite ready for busking.

The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain’s first album was called ‘Anarchy in the Ukulele.’ Is the ukulele really anarchistic?

The Punk movement, which was all about the anarchy, was about putting creativity back in the hands of the people. They said that anyone could make music, and to prove it claimed that any song could be written with just handful of chords. (E, A and B7 in case you wondered.) They printed  diagrams of finger positions on a guitar for these chords with the caption ‘Here’s three chords. Now form a band.’

Well you only need three chords to play most uke songs. And will a guitar fit in my handbag? No it will not. But my little uke...

Well look at that, I think I’m part of a revolution.

“Whatever I said, whatever I did, I didn’t mean it....”

Monday, 12 September 2011

On getting pickier

This weekend I caught up with a couple of old girl friends. Not ‘old’ in age you understand, but in years of knowing. Although perhaps those things are intertwined nowadays. Jees, are they? We do all use eyecream after all.

Anyway, Friday night was a chance to catch up. We have known each other since 1995, when we started senior school. In 1995 I considered it ‘the fashion’ to hair-spray my fringe into individual strands, wear an Adidas drill top, and had my first kiss (with a runty boy named James) at the Grammar School Disco. I was, I recall, wearing a classic two-piece from Tammy Girl and lipstick from Miss Selfridge.

So, out came the old photo albums. We laughed so much that red wine was spilt all over the sofa. Luckily, because we are now grown ups we knew exactly how to deal with this situation and chucked the best part of a bottle of pinot grigio on after it.

After the spill, conversation turned to the old boyfriends. Luckily James from the Grammar School Disco did not come up. We’d only had one date anyway, on the 510 bus the following Monday morning. He went to the boys school, me to the girls. It was never going to work.

We remembered the days when one kiss consummated your relationship. Boyfriend and girlfriend you became. Criteria for the accolade of ‘boyfriend’ was limited at best. Two boys, two girls, and one question. ‘Which one do you want?’

Over the years we’ve really kissed an unfair share of frogs.

But at some point we developed an idea of what our boyfriend should be -  a list of criteria that our dream man must measure up to. This never quite panned out of course, most likely because our lists were utter nonsense.

Worryingly I have watched my friends dismiss lovely men because they didn’t match up to the romantic ideal that they had developed. On the other hand I have witnessed people dating absolute cretins because they apparently ticked all the boxes.

But on Friday, as we finished off the bottle, we all agreed that real relationships are bloody hard work. They are not one continual dream of romance, fluffy animals and mini-breaks. Love is not a big ring, or a box of thorntons chocolates.

 A man who sorts the rubbish and puts it in the right sacks for collection – well there is one that’s worth sticking with.

Of course, if he could also pick his towels off the floor, not make crumbs in the bed and know how to rustle up a risotto – well that would be super.  There are some criteria worth holding onto.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

S**t my boyfriend says

There are a few things a lady prefers to keep to herself. Exactly what percentage of her clothes no longer fit her, for example, how many times she really wears a pair of jeans before putting them in the wash, how late she is in paying her credit card bill, or how knowledgably she knows the plot of Emmerdale.

But today (mainly because I threatened to do it and then he dared me) I am sharing the ‘top 3 ridiculous things’ my other half has uttered in the last few days.

1. Are you just going out with me for blog material?

2. Isn’t it funny how you’d rather I insult your intelligence than your weight?

3. Women’s magazines are worse than Mein Kampf.

I should add the third comment was accompanied by him reading passages from Zest Magazine aloud to me, at full volume, whilst on a plane, yelling words like ‘propaganda’ and ‘Nazis.’ Apparently he did not believe that the ‘Zest tips for a healthy lifestyle’ had any founding whatsoever in science, and that it was thus an insult to womankind.

When he is not yelling from a soapbox about the fate of womankind he’s rather lovely.

But if he could just leave me in peace to learn exactly how many minutes of squats it’ll take me to burn off this cake - I’d be delighted. Turns out I’ve got a high percentage of clothes that no longer fit me.