toxicsoup

Well, not toxic, exactly... maybe just a little bit rank. But in a nice way. With a garnish.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

blue tree

I was driving home from work tonight and noticed that there was a blue tree in the middle of a field.
Oh yes, and it had red branches.

Rewind.

Blue tree, or pale blue, to be precise.
Ends of branches, red.

Weird.

Imp came over and I whisked her along my route-to-work-and-back so that she could see it. I wasn't mistaken, someone REALLY HAD painted an entire tree!

She had heard about it on the radio this morning - something to do with an artist... apparently the whole of South Wales had been wondering about it all day and I hadn't even noticed.
There you go then.

Paint a tree.
Whatever.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

I am a twisted firestarter...

One of the worst things I ever did as a child was set fire to a field. Accidently.

There was a playing field just across the road from my house but the field behind it was loads more fun...

  • you had to scale a chain-link fence to get to it
  • it was full of gorse bushes
  • it was on a massive slope that led to the river
  • there were the ruins of some old sewerage works to climb and explore
  • the farmer chased you with a stick if ever he saw you
  • if you were lucky you would find the rotting carcass of a very dead sheep

All the ingredients for an adventure.

It's worth mentioning that due to my literary diet of the Famous Five, the Hardy Boys, Wilbur Smith, Biggles (my Dad's old books) and any other adventure book within reading distance, I was a budding investigator.
I was convinced that life should at some point pan out to be one big plot, and if I memorised every car numberplate I saw, then I would soon become a valuable source to the police.
Obviously.

So in the meantime, while waiting for the chance to outwit a dastardly criminal, I roamed the local landscape with my mates and climbed trees, built dens, fell in stinging nettles.
The gorse bushes were our territory because we could crawl almost the entire length of the field without being spotted by the farmer. Fantastic!

And so one particular summer we decided to stay out there all day, build a camp fire and be Undercover.

Thing is, building a fire undercover isn't to be recommended.
We completely underestimated the heat of the summer and the dryness of the gorse. Oh, and the breeze and the flames and the general fire-ness of fire.

Which raged. While we, the sheep and the angry farmer ran for our lives.

Four fire-engines and a village-full of excited onlookers later, the fire was put out and my oh-so-innocent mates and I still didn't know how it had started. Honest.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Ugly Cars

I saw the Fantastic Four on Sunday night.

What can I say? If you want grown up sensible plots that give you the opportunity to grow as a person then don't watch it.
If, however, like me you want to become the new Spiderman when the post becomes available, then hurry on down to the Odeon and take notes.

Actually I've decided that I would now like to become Dr Von Doom.

I'd better get into my lovely car and hurry on down the Careers office then.











*note to Honda... don't try it, it doesn't work. No, really.

Monday, July 25, 2005

gourmet minefield

Just to add to the list of freakish qualities I have (and to make life just that little bit more difficult) I'm vegetarian.

So there you have it, I'm a vegetarian dyke.
But not black.
Bit hairy though.
A hirsute vegetarian dyke :-)

As a veggie, I'm a professional label-reader.
Seriously, you wouldn't believe the things that are riddled with animal products... and I don't mean ham sandwiches.

  • Crisps
  • Painkillers
  • Sweets
  • Condiments
  • Wine
  • Clothes
  • Puddings
  • Prescription drugs

I recently had to give up Extra Strong Mints, Feminax period pain tablets and Muller yoghurts.

Damn them.

Guess I'll have to stop daubing fresh steak over my black eyes and bacon strips over my grazes, now....


Sunday, July 24, 2005

quake

This is a superb website.


This online seismic monitor tells you exactly where the most recent earthquakes have hit in the last day, 2 days, 2 weeks and 2 years... how powerful it was and the exact location of the quake. Not only that, but you can check out the position of any of the seismograph stations, see who crews it, and check out a photo of what it looks like.

After boxing day last year we can't pretend none of this affects us.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Pulling straight chicks. Not.

I bought a copy of Diva mag today.

The weird thing about being a gay woman is that people you meet tend to fit into one of three categories:
  • either they have militant feelings against you - that is those who are homophobic, those with strong religious convictions or those who just plain don't understand and don't want to...
  • or they have militant feelings towards you - other gays, people who think it's a good thing to have 'gay' friends, people who've seen you getting gay-bashed and feel sorry for you.
  • you get the odd person somewhere in the middle who feels vaguely uncomfortable about the whole thing but on the whole wants a quiet life and doesn't want to get either a) sued b) challenged or c) chatted up.

Sadly a few people who in the past that I thought of as friends (in the 'towards you' group) turned out to be there because they wanted to be seen to have 'gay' friends. Great street cred, apparently.

"Yes, I'm seeing one of my lesbian friends tonight, we've been ever so close since she broke down in my kitchen and confessed her sexuality to me, I'm sure I can cure her eventually..... I expect she finds me attractive but doesn't want to admit it...".

Inevitably they ditch you once they find out your life is as mundane as the next person's.

So anyway, back to Diva mag.

This August's edition has an article called 'guide to pulling straight chicks'. Before you run scared, I think it's supposed to be funny. Except it isn't, it's creepy.

I tell you, I've spent the last few years fighting my cause, assuring straight women that I don't want to chat them up and trick them into going to bed with me... that I want a relationship with someone who is attracted to me, not scared of me... that wants to give back in a relationship, not someone who's going to lie there stiff as a board and then disappear never to be heard of again.

Get it? Normal stuff, same as you. But with a different person. Someone who I like, not who everyone else thinks I should like.

So ignore this article if you happen to stumble across it, it's a waste of space. Gay women are not predators; we're loving, caring women who love other women who love us.

End of story.

Diva, you've let us down this month.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Flip out

If you need to switch your brain off and flip out, this is the game for you.
It's like Othello on speed........


Thursday, July 21, 2005

Bombs

Is it happening again?
Reports of more bombs on London's Underground.
Shite.

mural dilemma

Luckily all the doors I've walked through today have been real ones. If you live anywhere near John Pugh, you can't take that forgranted.


Meanwhile, here in Wales, any holes in walls are genuine holes... we earn those falling-down walls through sheer laziness, apathy and loads and loads of no hard graft. In addition, if you're spotted setting paintbrush to exterior wall you'll be hauled off down the station. There's a certain security in police brutality; we know where we stand, bless 'em.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

a court, a dog and a homphobic bully

Imp had a crap day today.

After being summoned to court to shake a fist at her ex-husband's solicitor and pay a cool fee for the privelege of being forced to do so, she was attacked by a Rottweiler.

This huge brute chomped his way in one swipe through her skirt, narrowly missing any arteries or important pieces of flesh, and then was hurried away by his stoned/pissed owners. Was there a whiff of responsibility or remorse? My arse!

Then on our way back from town in the evening we were hassled by a bloke who decided to have a go at us for being 'f***ing dickhead lesbians'. All we were doing was talking and minding our own business.
As well as not understanding the fundamental principles of genitalia, I suspect it was he that was the dickhead. Ugly bastard nob.

I'll go and wash my mouth out now.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

painful..

Fnnarrr!

















It can't be... can it?

Check out Superdickery.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Cardiff Bay - nice day out or discreet nervous breakdown?

Today was Outing Day.
Disabled minibus hurtles towards Cardiff with a very excited crew of students (adults with specific learning difficulties) and a Red Bull-fueled driver. Me, obviously.

The thing is, the closer we got to Cardiff, the greyer the sky became.
Over the weekend the weather had been so hot that it was like walking into an invisible wall of scorching weight the second you plucked up the courage to go outside.......
Not today.
Someone upstairs had decided that no matter how much planning you do, there was a point to be made regarding the weather.

Point made, we struggled out of the minibus at Cardiff Bay and slithered, wheelchair ahoy, into the nearest establishment selling coffee to wait for the weather to approximate something conducive to boat trips.

We eventually went on the boat trip and after docking at the Cardiff Bay Barrage safely made it back to land, food, and home.

5 things I learned on this trip:

1. Someone always wants the toilet 5 minutes after saying they don't and 4 minutes after striking out onto a toilet-barren activity.

2. If you put your hands into the running water of the sculpture outside the Millennium Centre, they become freakily smooth. I'm thinking of bottling some of it and selling it on ebay.

3. The hydraulic ramp on a disabled minibus always jams when you need it the most.

4. Never wear a white t-shirt while eating anything. Or watching anyone else eating anything.

5. If you don't lose at least one person, it's not a proper trip.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Nun too sexy

As a woman with a bit of a thing about nuns
*honestly.. I once drove to work - an hours commute - dressed in a habit and a wimple
this made me smile with glee...

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Just do it. Not.

Design your own shoes. Get a tiny little 12 year old girl to make them for you.
Oh, and pay her a pittance.

Fairtrade?

Or lovely caring politically correct sportswear manufacturers?

Without meaning to jump on any bandwagons, I really think it's about time we got our act together and started spending intelligently. The Americans might be too selfish to even admit that the way they behave affects the rest of the world, but we can do something about it.

And I don't mean hold another concert.

How about buying Fairtrade and making sure that huge international companies have to toe the line in order for us to buy their products?

Friday, July 15, 2005

Toby

And on a lighter note.

My car's called Toby. He's blue, gutsy and obviously a boy.

My first car was called Walter. He was old (X reg. That was old, even then) and Swedish or something.

I've also had a car called Pat. She was white and small. A Peugeot 309. If she had worn jewelry they would have been massive dangly earrings. Like Pat from Eastenders.

I once had half a van called Daffodil. (Yellow, with a flashing light). My then-partner had the other half.

Back in my landscaping days I drove a tipper truck called Arabella, and a Vauxhall Combo called Peter.

I used to have a Peugeut racer (push-bike) called Liam.

Oh, and an acoustic drum-kit called Marvin. Marvin the paranoid drum-kit, obviously.

I've got a pointing trowel (from my landscaping days, again) called Eugene.


Got a problem with that?

music festivals left, right and centre

Was just wondering...
Does anyone else ever think about what it must be like to live in Palastine etc., where bombs are part of daily life?

It's just that we had 4 explosions and 53 deaths to date..... and they have the equivalent practically everyday.
But we don't have a two-minute silence for them.

Officials in Pakistan and other middle eastern countries are being snowed under with requests from our security forces to track down the bombers' sect and their movements before the bombing... but don't they have enough to deal with?
Why don't we put that much energy into helping them when they get blown up?

I hear we're having ANOTHER music festival this weekend. Seems a bit weird to me. Are people going to cheer and look like they're enjoying the acts?

Looks like we're having music festivals all over the place.

I went to the Tsunami concert in the Millennium Stadium back in January, and that felt a bit odd. You don't feel like you should be enjoying yourself.

So this is my question for today:
Are concerts really appropriate? Is it really the only way we can get people in this country to show support for anyone else?

Thursday, July 14, 2005

London stands

In view of the 2 minute silence just over half an hour ago. Don't want to talk about London, but here's a link to a site that does.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Beware!

Attention all drivers! You really need to keep an eye out for these little horrors. You really never can tell ..........................


Squirrels typing

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

crap reception

Someone nicked my car aerial last night.
Bastards.

I only realised after 30 minutes of adjusting my car radio while careering from lane to lane on the M4 and still only being able to listen to static FM.

Have you noticed that my life seems to be a whole catalogue of misfortunes recently? Is it me, or am I unlucky?

Monday, July 11, 2005

Chill

"Hate something, change something, make something betterrrrr!"
Hip psychedelic weirdy game!


I don't understand it, but it's gotta be one acid-fuelled game, if ever I saw one. Step aside, Dougal, Dylan and Ermintrude...

Sunday, July 10, 2005

bumpy pavements could seriously damage your health

So!
This blog seems to be turning more into "the mishaps of...". But I'm sure by about next Wednesday it'll be about my triumphs. Honest.
Yeah of course.

One of my best friends flew down from Newcastle today on her way to somewhere that isn't here. But we decided that en route, she would call in and then I would drop her off afterwards to Bristol Temple Meads Station and send her on her happy way.

So we did.

After a day of much hilarity, we packed ourselves into my car and trundled across the bridge to Bristol.

While unpacking her luggage from my boot, she spotted my skateboard.
Now that makes me sound very hip and funky and suggests another skill to my already funpacked life.

Skill in the most tenuous sense of the word.
This kind of skill* encompasses my natural ability to get on said skateboard and launch myself in a forwards kind of direction.... and if I'm lucky, slow to a lurching halt while still above the board.
This is much preferable to ending up underneath the board**.

The former is what I like to call skateboarding.

*Can I just point out that I only got a skateboard just over a year ago and so I consider myself to be fairly new to the sport.

**This is due to my Mum's flawed logic when I was a nipper.
I wasn't allowed to have a skateboard because she considered it far too dangerous. I instead saved up and bought some rollerboots (Inline skates didn't exist back then, although we had at that point invented gravity). Rollerbooting involved tying your feet into something that you couldn't get out of and then rolling in absolute fill-yer-pants terror downhill towards blind corners - of course - at about a mere 60 mph.
The reason I made it to adulthood was because I got good at throwing myself into hedges in order to cheat death at the hands (or wheels) of any oncoming vehicles.

As usual I digress.
She asked me to demonstrate my skateboarding prowess.

Not one to turn down a challenge I rolled safely along the bumpy cobbled pavement to the entrance to the station. She was very impressed, I could tell.

(Americans, take note: pavements in Britain are what you call sidewalks. What you call pavements are what we call roads. I put it to you that you are deliberately being awkward and that life would be much easier if you just admitted that you just don't make sense. Glad that's sorted.
Further note: Pants are what you call knickers. Knickers in this country are GIRLS pants. What you call pants, are, in fact trousers. Sheesh.)

I waved her off, and then, not wanting to look like a person carrying a mode of transport that they could be using and hence a Total Muppet, I again mounted my skateboard.
Casually, like a nonchalant habitual-skateboard-user.
Sunglasses on, I looked cool.

That is, until about 18 inches further on my wheels clunked into a ridge and next thing I knew my face was zooming towards the pavement.
I elegantly landed on my face, closely followed by my hands and knees, while my skateboard shot off backwards into the crowds of onlooking travellers.

I could have died.

I'll tell you now, it is impossible to look cool whilst using your face as another foot.
And (would I lie to you?) there must have been about 2 million people watching me.

I quickly jumped up, so badly wounded that death was snapping at my heels. Retrieved my skateboard and still attempting to look casual; limped, board in hand, knees stinging, grazed face burning, to the car and made quick my exit.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

danish bacon rocks

I don't eat meat, but I like to watch it dance........








So that's my day. Get up, eat breakfast, listen to the news, watch some bacon dance. Whatever.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Phone limbo

Had a phone call at 5:40 this morning.

There's nothing worse than getting a call in the middle of the night.. you think someone must be dead.

To make matters worse, I can't get my phone to ring more than 4 times before it kicks into NTL Voicemail. It works pretty much the same as BT 1571... the person who's ringing you is merrily leaving their message, while you have to wait helplessly at the other end of the phone listening to a dailing tone.

Meanwhile, you've just sprinted across the house, leaped the pile of ironing and crash-landed on the arm of the sofa, simultaneously snatching the phone from the wall-mounting, slamming it in the vague vicinity of your ear and gouging part of your face off while still in midair.
At this point you then wait for them to finish recording the message so that NTL will then agree that there is a message for you to listen to. Phone limbo.

So anyhow. By the time it had entered my tired sleeping mind that it was a phone and not a dream-related ring, I only got as far as hurling myself from the bed and onto the floor by the time voicemail kicked in.

Needless to say, the next 8 1/2 seconds it took me to get up and reach the front room, felt like roughly 4 1/2 hours. In that time I'd already planned a couple of funerals and wondered how appropriate it would be to burst into tears before I picked the phone up.
Can you mourn for in response to something that hasn't happened?
Yep.

Turned out that Imp was ill (she was away.. about 1 1/2 hours drive away, in fact) and was puking her guts up. So would I come and pick her up?
Of course!
Fantastic, she's still alive!

I tell you, I've never been so happy to hear that someone is blowing chunks in my life.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

London

London got bombed.

Like everyone, I went through all the people I know in my head and worried a bit about whether they had, for some reason, gone to London for the day.

Hope not.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

relax

Woke up at 5:23 this morning, visited the bathroom and realised to my horror that I'd lost my tampon.
Apologies to all you tender not-so-new-age men out there who can't quite handle this... see you tomorrow.

back to the biz.

Well, those of you that are left will know exactly how this feels (or know someone who knows!).
Sleep from that point on was impossible... I lay in bed absolutely convinced that I would be struck down with Toxic Shock, wither up and die alone in my flat, while life carried on only feet from my door.
I used to share a house with a woman who knew someone who had both her legs amputated, simply because she left a tampon in too long.
And so I lay there, preparing myself mentally for a life without legs.........

When morning finally limped along grudgingly, I'd had a very long bath and also lived a lifetime's worth of fear... but had devised a plan.

Due to most doctor's surgery's interpretation of seeing patients within a certain amount of time, my surgery, along with every other surgery on the planet that used to offer a user-friendly service, now refuses to book you in in advance.
You have to ring in at 8:15am, press redial every 4 seconds, and then having exhausted every swear word you know (and also made yourself late for work) you finally get through at 9:04 only to be told that all the appointments are taken for today, please ring again tomorrow, thank you very much. THANK YOU MY ARSE!

So I drove to work and stopped off at the surgery up the hill from my office.

What can I say?
After filling out a temporary patient form, I finally endured the pure HELL of having one nurse, one doctor and two speculums (speculi?) peering up my unmentionable.
YOU try to relax when they tell you! it's impossible. It's like trying not to blink in a sandstorm.

Needless to say, my baby-bits have remained tampon-free since this morning.

Monday, July 04, 2005

car wash

I've had a long-running paranoia concerning the car wash at Asda.
Well, since last summer, anyway. You'll remember that last summer you couldn't get within a quarter of a mile of any working car wash? Cardiff, certainly, was populated by a huge heaving mass of crazy-eyed wild staring sweat-drenched drivers all trying to outwit each other in the queue for a car wash.

I'd never experienced this before.
The reason? Because before last summer I was proper working class. That meant that I washed my own car. By hand. With the aid of a bucket and water, obviously.

In fact, I've been working class my whole life. You can tell this by the pride I take in doing everything the hard way. So washing clothes, for example. Washing machine? Pah! Laundrette? I spit on the posh upper classes who use laundrettes. Me, I haul my dirty washing to the nearest river and pound it mercilessly with rocks and my bare hands - until I've beaten the life out of every bacterial microbe that even thinks about looking at my clothes.

Back to my car.
I moved house last year onto the kind of busy street that you wouldn't dare wash your car on. Only inches from the metal, vehicles hurtle past in a hurtley kind of way. You would only stand in the road next to your car with a bucket in your hand if you wanted to wet the windscreen of the bus that mows you down and smears your poor, helpless (but by now thinner) body along the street on some kind of weirdly soapy suicide. Suicide for those with bacterial phobias.

Bearing this in mind, I joined the ranks of drivers lining up outside petrol stations.

The attraction to the Asda car wash as opposed to Tesco or Total etc., etc., is that the Asda car wash is only £1.25. Even a normal person can use a car wash without feeling like you have to apologise for being a posh lazy git.
However, the down side to the Asda car wash last summer was that every time I drove past it was broken down.

Not that it really got much better over the winter. Still gridlock at every car wash, jet wash and outdoor tap in town.
Then a few weeks ago I spotted that there was only one car in the wash, which meant that if I put my foot down and did a Dukes of Hazard style hand-brake turn around the mini roundabout, I should make it there before anyone else.
This I did... bought my slip of paper with the code on it, clambered up the side of my car and removed the aerial, and settled down to wait for my turn.

When it broke down.

Right in front of me. Right on top of the bonnet of the car in front of me.

How I wept and gnashed my teeth.

Fast forward to today.
I was driving past Asda and thought I'd chance it.. quickly nipped off the link road, through the lights... RESULT!!! One car in the wash, no queue.
Today, surely, statistics would work in my favour and everything would be all right?

Bought my ticket, waited for my turn, unscrewed the aerial, closed all the windows, drove in, settled back while my car had soapy water sprayed all over it, cracked open a can of diet Red Bull......... the rollers spun around a bit, did some impressive car-washing moves, then stopped.
On my bonnet. And didn't move again.

Bugger.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Aaargh!


This has got to be the most pointless YET addictive game ever.


I take it back, everything I said about any other game... this is it!

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Be Prepared (or whatever)

I turned down an offer last night from a mate at work to crash over at her house and watch the rugby with her and her brother this morning.
I've watched rugby matches before with the both of them where I made the mistake of sitting in the middle. This is a sure-fire way of ensuring that you get to see your own ears bleed.

So anyway, I said no, because Imp and I had already decided that we would set the alarm and crawl out of bed, lie on the settee in our pjs and stay there for as long as possible without having to get dressed. Saturday morning not-quite-married bliss.
For me, that would hopefully be right through the women's singles finals at Wimbledon and extend sometime into tomorrow around about the end of the men's singles finals.

It's worth pointing out that I was never in the girl-guides, scouts, brownies or any other twee knot-tying camp-song-singing organisations when I was a child. I'm pleased about that, but it does mean that I have never had that 'Be Prepared' gene inserted into my DNA with a tiny needle in the back of my neck while learning to crochet tea-making awards to my school bag.

To cut a long story short, we installed ourselves on the sofa, scrabbled around for the doojit for a while, scrabbled around then for a set of AA batteries that worked so that we could make said doojit work and THEN discovered that it was on Sky TV.... and we only have cable.

Goddarn it.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Just my luck!


Wooah! Make all the other drivers on the M4 wet their pants... :-) Posted by Picasa

These cunning helium balloons will guarantee you're noticed on your commute to work. Must get me some.