Saturday, 30 June 2012

Good things

There is much more to come; I have not been able to post anything as I was on holiday in Center Parcs, but there will be a big post coming up! For now, here is a little something I found rather amusing: on our way to the train station, I spotted a sign in a Christian book shop declaring: "All good things come from above." I know this was meant to be a very lovely message about God, but because my mind is in the gutter, I obviously pictured this: 

In case this is not clear, the man above is defecating on the man below.  I found this surprisingly difficult to represent in picture form.

Sunday, 24 June 2012


I’ve now had over 1000 views on my blog! Thank you everyone for your support so far, and please do continue to read and feedback your thoughts, and subscribe if you have an account.  :)

I'll do another of these when I get 10,000 views, and there might even be a llama on it, if you're all very good, that is...

I love animals

My boyfriend came back from the bathroom yesterday to find me sitting at my computer in tears.  He said-

“Oh NO! What’s wrong, Stinky?”

And I said-

“Oh, Foofy, I’m just so sad that there are so many dogs in the world that nobody loves!”

He was a bit confused, so I showed him that I’d been watching videos of abandoned dogs being rescued, including one blind dog that was so scared of people that he was shaking and weeing everywhere, but instantly as he was given a hug and a stroke, he learnt to trust people again, and within weeks he was bounding around, happy as anything.

It’s strange that I seem to care far more about animals in pain than about people in pain.  This is me sitting through one of those Oxfam adverts where they show starving children in Africa:

And this is me watching a video on youtube about a frightened dog:

It’s not that I don’t care about people, I DO, but somehow a person harming an animal seems far worse than a person harming a person, or people being at the mercy of natural disasters, perhaps because many animals, especially dogs, (I’m not talking about killer whales or anything) have no capacity for maliciousness, and everything they do is to please people.  If a person kicks a dog out of their own anger, the dog is not clever enough to rationalise it; he will merely believe that he deserved it, and will continue to be steadfastly loyal to his owner despite the abuse he is sure to receive.

All this led to a new game that my boyfriend and I now play- one of us is a terrified, yelping, abandoned puppy, and the other one has to get close enough (avoiding getting bitten or scratched) to tickle it under the chin and stroke its head, making it happy and calming it down.  I need to stress right now that this game in NO WAY has led to anything sexual.  Yet.

Saturday, 23 June 2012


They say that to pass your driving test you should have one hour’s worth of driving lessons for every year of your life; if this were true, I would literally be about 250 years old.  I like to think that I am good at driving and say so at every opportunity:

“Can you drive?”
“Oh YES, I’m a very good driver.”
“Have you passed your test?”
“Well no.”

And they look at me with confusion.  You see, I suffer with a crippling anxiety that only makes itself known during driving tests, (and when I try to do scales on the piano a 6th apart).  I have taken four driving tests, and failed all four.  In one of those tests I received nine major faults and the examiner, genuinely worried about my mental health, stopped the test in the middle and had to calm me down as I hysterically cried.  I also cried in my last test because I stalled on a dual carriageway with a lorry behind me, but it was a marked improvement.

I also seem to be plagued by incredibly bad luck in my tests; in my first one I turned tentatively round a corner to be faced with a horse galloping straight towards me.  In my test last week somebody reversed out of a driveway at about 90 mph without looking.  I dealt with both of these situations very well, (though I did yell ‘SHIIIIIIIT!’ in the last one- thankfully my examiner laughed.) it’s only on stupid, annoying mistakes that I’d normally never make that I fail on.    

What bothers me most of all is when people say something like-

“Well if you can’t drive in front of an examiner you have no hope in real life…”


Being put in a situation where I have to drive while bring judged by a complete stranger is so artificial and thus so terrifying to me, that, would I to feel that anxious in real life, I would not dream of getting in a car and driving:

My recent lessons were going all right, but I found myself distracted by the fact that my instructor kept saying ‘myself’ and ‘yourself’ when she meant ‘me’ and ‘you,’  so I failed for the fourth time a few days ago.

I think that all cars should actually be abolished entirely; it would cause millions of people extreme inconvenience but it would make me feel slightly less of a failure every time I see a car.

Friday, 22 June 2012

My version of the Ontological argument

I think it's probably about time I wrote my own illustrated philosophy book for children.


One of the traits I possess which I am most proud of is my honesty.  Now, I’m not including all the times I’ve had to tell a white lie to get out of trouble because I’m actually pretty good at that, but when it comes to real honesty that actually affects the people around me, I am pretty much incapable of lying, and this has led to a lot of problems for me in my love life.

Men say that they want women to be honest with them all the time.  They want the woman to say if she has feelings for them, and to say if they don’t, straight out.  If she doesn’t have feelings for the man, the man would prefer that she said this, rather than saying ‘let’s be friends.’  I have absorbed this information over the years and it has led me to be honest with pretty much every man I have been interested in.  If I like a man, I will jolly well tell him so, as I do not want to waste valuable time.  You’d think that, with what men say they want, I’d be fighting off hoards of potential boyfriends, but this really isn’t the case at all.  Let me show you what has happened in 95% of cases where I have tried this:

Obviously, the conversation wouldn’t go as smoothly as this and rather than him admitting that I’d come on too strong I would have found it out from someone else later, thus proving my point that honesty is not a natural human trait; people generally cannot take it, and they cannot give it out either. 

If this wasn’t enough, people are always complaining about other people’s dishonesty, as if they are perfectly honest themselves.  You can’t watch ‘Big Brother’ for 1 minute without someone calling someone else ‘fake’ or ‘playing to the camera.’  Here’s some news: NOBODY IS A FAKE PERSON.  People can be deceitful and do things that seem to be out of character, but everything that a person does makes them who they are.  If everybody went around all the time saying exactly what they thought about everyone else, there would be CHAOS! We need a little bit of dishonesty in order to live, and even I, with my pathological honesty, can easily be completely different people in different situations:

I am not a fake person, I am a multi-dimensional person, but I still can’t read maps.

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

My top five completely irrational phobias

5. Standing on chairs.  This is particularly weird because I’m absolutely fine with heights in general.  Specifically, I am concerned about falling backwards off chairs, meaning that when I had to do a play once where I spent almost the entire time standing on a chair it was one of the most terrifying periods of my life.

4. Being talked to on public transport.  This is because I am (a) very shy with strangers and (b) too British to say if I’m feeling uncomfortable.

3. Brushes being dragged across carpet.  One of the scariest things that ever happened to me working as a catering assistant was when a colleague dropped a tray of champagne glasses on a carpet and we had to use a brush to clean it up.  I had to feign needing the toilet so that I could escape, otherwise I probably would have just stood there screaming.

2. The skin that forms on milk.  Once I merely saw that some milk had formed a skin and I fainted. 

1. Dead spiders (live ones are fine.) There’s something about the way that dead spiders crumple up that makes me absolutely terrified of them beyond anything else in this world; one time I accidentally TOUCHED one and, after being literally frozen with fear for 40 minutes, the first thing I did was scrape all the skin off the part of my finger that had touched the spider until I bled.  

I can't read maps

I cannot read maps; even the sight of something that resembles a map makes me feel physically ill, unless it’s this map:

Or this one:

Anyway.  If you ever came across me in the street you might wonder why I am looking at my phone instead of looking ahead, because if I were to take my eyes off the phone for ONE SECOND, I’d probably end up in Madagascar or something.  That’s how bad I am at reading maps.  I have several anecdotes about the hilarity that this has caused, and here is one: it happened about 2 and a half years ago when I was living in Glasgow.

I needed to go to a doctor’s appointment that day so I got up very early and left with plenty of time to get there by 7:45.  Because this is Scotland it was still pitch black outside during almost the entirety of my ill-fated trip.  It was also raining.  I did not own any sensible shoes so every step I took felt like I was wading deeper and deeper into a lake, and it made this horrible squelching noise.  My hair was a complete write-off, and I was very glad that I hadn’t bothered to wear make-up that day.

Half an hour later I was late for my appointment and desperately, desperately lost. None of the roads in Glasgow have street signs so I had no idea where I was on the map. I asked a girl for directions and she said "You need to go right" while gesturing left, and I didn't want to draw attention to it for fear of insulting her, so I just went left and hoped for the best, but before I knew it, the road started to curve right. At about 8:00 I was crying tears of coldness and frustration. I was soaked to the bone; it was STILL dark, it was windy, and I was in a deserted street where no one could hear me scream if I was suddenly caught and raped, which I became immediately convinced was definitely going to happen. It was not a safe area and the odd person that did walk past me looked very suspicious. I went into a bus shelter and rang my boyfriend at the time, J, in hysterics, saying that I didn't know where I was. I then thought to look at the bus shelter which told me the street that I was on. It took J quite a long time to find the street on the internet because it was nowhere near where I was meant to be. This is a map of what I did- 

(1) is where I lived, (2) is the health centre, and (3) is where I phoned J. So the red route is the route I was meant to take and the purple was the route I actually took:

I'm an idiot.

So J convinced me to walk back home, and I was walking against the howling wind the entire way. Every few steps the wind would be so strong it would literally stop me, blow rain and my wet hair all over my face and make me scream out in pain. I was in so much distress that I did not care at all that people could see me crying and screaming; all I wanted to do was to curl up in the foetal position on the side of the road and wait to be rescued by a friendly stranger, but I managed to get home by 8:45.

The purpose of the doctor’s appointment? To cure my crippling anxiety.

Monday, 18 June 2012

The worst parenting I have ever seen

This actually happened a few months ago, but it made me 'LOL', as they say.  It was as I was about to get on a train:


I have a condition called ‘Misophonia.’  (I’m also a massive hypochondriac but more on that later.)

This condition translates as ‘hatred of sound’ and is quite common among musicians and other people who have very finely tuned and sensitive ears.  It just means that there are certain sounds that do not just irritate me, but that I cannot physically bear and that I have to turn to very dark and violent thoughts in order to cope with them.

The sound I cannot cope with at all is people eating.  Not all eating sounds; but most of them, especially if the person’s mouth is open and if the food is particularly sloppy, like banana or ice cream.  It’s a terrible problem because there is no correct social etiquette for asking someone to eat more quietly; you simply cannot do it.  Even close friends don’t understand how much of a problem it is for me, most of them tend to assume it’s because I think they are being ‘rude’ or ‘impolite’:

When in fact my thoughts during somebody eating disgustingly are more accurately represented like this:

There are only two ways of solving this problem.  One way is to ask the person, very politely, if they could eat a little quieter, but this is almost universally received with annoyance and misunderstanding.  What I usually try and do is move away from the problem, but sometimes this is impossible without being rude.  The other way is to put my fingers in my ears and imagine this kind of thing:

However if I have a friend who I am constantly imagining destroying by cutting out her tongue, it’ll most likely taint my view of her, so after a while, the friendship will disintegrate.  This means ultimately that it is very difficult for me to get close to people, and has been a cause (or at least part of the cause) of pretty much all my failed relationships. Thankfully, my current boyfriend is as quiet as a mouse.

So if you know me and I ever ask you to eat a little quieter, take it as a compliment that I care about you enough to break social etiquette.  Or just don’t be my friend.  If eating loudly really means more to you than being friends with me, I’m not sure I’d want to be friends with you anyway.  Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

Friday, 15 June 2012

Ha ha!

Another funny:


Chocolate Kittens

Because I used to spend all night reading instead of sleeping as a result of the Watership Down fiasco, I quickly read my way through my entire collection of books, but I simply read them all again, and again, and again.  Because of this, I have a startlingly good recollection of many of my favourite stories of my childhood, and one of those short stories that has stayed with me to this day is the story of the chocolate kittens.

Basically, there was this little girl who needed to get a present for her brother whose birthday it was the next day.  After going shopping, she bought him a box of chocolate kittens.  As a child, I often used to buy these kittens myself; I think they were packaged slightly differently 20 years ago but they looked something like this:

Anyway, the little girl couldn’t sleep that night because she kept thinking about the box of chocolate kittens in her room that she was about to give to her brother the next day.  Perhaps I felt a special affinity with this because I, too, would stay up all night, and I, too, liked chocolate of any form.  After a while of tossing and turning, the girl decided that her brother wouldn’t mind if she ate ‘only one’ of the kittens, so she did just that.  A while later, she reasoned that, since she had already opened them, she may as well eat another, since two is only one more than one.  As you can probably imagine, she ends up eating the whole box.  The next morning, she admits to her brother what she did; she gets in a huge amount of trouble, and both of them cry.

For some reason, this story made me unimaginably angry for many years; perhaps it was the fact that it ended sadly and there was nothing happy about it, but it seemed like more than that.  The story so vividly took the reader through the girl’s reasoning process during the night that you felt like you were there with her, and so in the morning where she has to admit wrong, her guilt was also the reader’s guilt.  The purpose of the story seemed to be to make the reader feel bad about what the girl did, and thus, bad about themselves, or about something bad that they had done

It was only very recently that I decided to read the story again.  I expected to feel a surge of guilt with every page, but I didn’t feel that way at all.  In reality, it was a very basically written story without the emotional journey that I had remembered.  Also, at the end, instead of everyone crying, the girl admitted her mistake, and the parents, rather than being cross, were very proud of her for coming clean and found it almost funny; they revealed that the chocolate kittens were unimportant, as, in fact, they had bought her brother a REAL kitten for his birthday, and the story ended with them all happily playing with their new pet.

It says much about my mental state as a child that I seemed to completely misunderstand the message of this story; it wasn’t about guilt at all, it was about honesty, and forgiveness.  It was strange for me after agonising over the feelings of guilt that came from this story for many years to realise that the feelings had not come from the story, but must just have come from me, and something that I had done, and I only remembered the story through this veneer of guilt.  What had I done? Perhaps I’ll never know.  Fairly complex emotions for a 7-year-old!

Marmite Soup

I suddenly got a hankering for Marmite soup today.  Would you like the recipe? I thought you might.

What you will need:

(serves 4)

2 large onions
4 oz butter
2 large tablespoons Marmite
1 block of stilton (or a good sheep's milk cheese)

1.   Put the Marmite and butter into frying pan; melt into a paste
2.   Chop up onions and add to the paste.  Fry until onions are soft and delicious
3. Add Cheese and melt it in
4.   Add water until you like the taste
5.   Serve
6.   Enjoy!

I have made this soup for a good 20 people, and only 3 people physically couldn’t eat it.  

My Wedding

Like a lot of girls, I barely plan what I’m going to eat for lunch, but I have planned my future wedding down to the tiniest detail; it is going to be in this lovely big house near Aberdeen that I have been to often with University societies, and I will dress like a duck.  Here is an artist’s impression:

The four white ducks will have to be raised from eggs in order for them to trust me enough to follow me up the aisle.  This is a task I am more than willing to take on.

Here is the day’s itinerary in military time:

1200 hrs: Guests arrive for ceremony.  They will be greeted by llamas in ceremonial dress.
1230 hrs: The ceremony begins; I walk up the aisle followed by the 4 white ducks I will have trained from eggs.
1240 hrs: Bird of prey will fly the rings through the audience to my fiancĂ© and me.  Guests are enthralled.
1250 hrs: We are married.
1300 hrs: Guests exit the seating area to be greeted once more by llamas in ceremonial dress.
1315 hrs: Photos with the various animals and guests; while birds of prey give a display and people can have a go at getting the birds to fly to their arms.
1400 hrs: Guests are ushered into the dining room for food.  Food will be a buffet made up of jacket potatoes, nachos, fish and chips, chips and cheese, and Marmite soup, as well as ice cream, chocolate, sweets, meringue, mango, strawberries and whipped cream.
1445 hrs: While the guests are eating, speeches will be made.
1530 hrs: The guests slowly drift out.
1600 hrs: Guests are encouraged to drift between the food and drink on the inside and the games and music which will be outside.  There will also be an organised walk around the surrounding countryside while a stage is erected.
1800 hrs: Fully staged production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s ‘Trial by Jury’ along with a selection of favourites from other Gilbert and Sullivan operas.
1930 hrs: Wedding cake will be served; wedding cake will be made out of lots of little cupcakes. 
1945 hrs: Traditional Scottish country dancing (ceilidh) ensues
2100 hrs: Disco music begins, as does a specially choreographed routine to “I don’t speak Americano’ which will be filmed for posterity.
2230 hrs: Though music and dancing will continue, the younger guests will be encouraged to get changed and join the Bride and Groom in a game of ‘Sardines.’
0030 hrs: Exhausted, we go back to the main area, which will now be playing soft ‘chill-out’ music.  We will drink port and talk gaily of the wonderful day we have just had.
0200 hrs: Bed.
1100 hrs: Off to Center Parcs for a two week honeymoon!

I challenge anyone to come up with a better wedding than this.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012


Here is a hilarious joke:

Here is another:

And here is a third:


My Brazillian sex adventure

Recently, I went to Brazil for a combination of reasons including both business and pleasure.  It was a delightful trip for so many reasons, but perhaps the highlight of the trip was the first night.

My two (male) friends, J and S, and I, arrived in Rio de Janeiro Airport at about 7pm local time.  We collected our bags without incident and joined the line to get our passports checked out.  As part of the process, we had to fill in a form, which involved information about where we would be staying.  For the last three nights, we had a hotel paid for, but for the first three nights, we had arranged our own hotel through a website which we will never be using again.  The room looked very nice and very clean, and was fairly reasonable, but not cheap enough for us to suspect that something might be wrong.

The first sign that something was up was when a volunteer at the airport who could speak both Portuguese and English told us that ‘motels’, in Brazil, were where people usually went to ‘have sex.’  The second sign something was up was when we had to drive through Favellas and abandoned houses to get to the motel.  On arriving at ‘Motel Caricia’ we were actually pleasantly surprised that it wasn’t a broken down building with people inside injecting drugs into their ears, but at this point, I hadn’t slept in 49 hours so I was just happy to be able to sit down.

The motel was designed so that you could pay by the hour to use the rooms, and we saw a lot of people going in with what were probably prostitutes.  We also saw a band go in, and an entire camera crew for some reason.  J and S were pretty mortified and wanted to get a cab back into town and find a hotel in Copacabana or Ipanema, but I was insistent that we stay in the seedy sex hotel because, firstly, we’d already paid for it, and I’d rather be brutally murdered in my sleep than not use something that I have paid for, and, more importantly, I thought that we’d actually be safer inside the room than outside.  After a very uncomfortable 45 minutes where a lot of people came in and out, saw us with our suitcases, and obviously thought we were complete wankers for booking this hotel, we negotiated our three night stay down to one night, and went up to our room.

The first thing we were greeted with in the room was what we thought was a room service menu, but turned out to be a list of dildos and other various sexual aids that the motel provided:

The entire bed, including the sheets was covered in some sort of resistant film and the shower was big enough for about 8 people, should the necessary situation have arisen.  The TV contained mostly porn channels, which we watched while drinking all the beers in the minibar.  As we were watching one particularly graphic porn channel, the camera zoomed out to reveal the guy playing bass that we had JUST seen in the lobby an hour earlier, leading us to believe that what we were watching was, in fact, a live feed from downstairs.  S tried to go downstairs to see what was going on but he was stopped because he wasn’t in a couple.  J also ventured outside at one point to get more beer, and he was, surprisingly, successful.

I actually got one of the best night’s sleep I’d ever had in that motel, despite music pounding through the floor and two boys watching porn beside me in our double bed.  When I woke up the next day, they had drunk about 16 beers; they tried to explain to the guy at the front desk that they had drunk the beers and needed to pay for them, but they didn’t seem to understand what J and S were saying.  I suggested that they use a helpful picture to explain the situation:

But my creativity fell on deaf ears.


I have loved ducks as long as I can remember.  I love them with a love that probably surpasses the love that one SHOULD have for waterfowl, but it is OKAY, because, the thing is, I think I might actually BE a duck.

Bear with me.

I don’t really have any evidence for this, but it is highly possible that I am a duck trapped in a person’s body, which would explain my desire to touch and stroke ducks and feed them out of my hand and my autistic-like aversion towards most people.  At least people who don’t like ducks.

I also quite like swimming.

I think my love affair with ducks started HERE:

This is the exactly 1-year-old me, having just unwrapped my best friend, the rather aptly named “Duck”, who I still have and love just as much to this day.  I cannot tell you what it is that I like about ducks, which is odd, as I can describe exactly what it is that makes me like llamas so much (but that’s a WHOLE other story).  The only explanation for this ineffable affinity with ducks is that I AM one.  QED. 

It must run in the family because my sister had a similar experience with rabbits.  Once, when she was in trouble, my mother said to her:

“You are a very naughty little girl!”

And she replied:

“I’m NOT a little girl; I’M A RABBIT.”

My sister has an IQ of about 150 so there’s probably something to be said for this.

My blog will be littered liberally with posts about various ducks; whenever I see a duck, a picture of a duck, or something which looks like a duck, I take a photo of it, thus:

I’m not sure if this is ‘Q’ for ‘Quack’ or simply the Q ‘ZONE’ of the car park of the boat I was on.  I was in Helsinki at the time so possibly the word for Duck in Finnish begins with a ‘Q’.  In context, although they have ‘O’ for ‘Owl’ down correctly, the whole thing just looks like a very bad alphabet display for children:

‘R’ for ‘Swan!’
'L' for 'Chicken!'

The ducks I am currently bonding with live with my boyfriend, or, specifically, in his college at University.  These ducks always hang out in a four and are therefore BEST FRIENDS.

Once we went to visit them at night and they were all sleeping but we woke them up by mistake and they started quacking.  Whoops.

Conclusion: I like ducks, and there will be a lot of them waddling and quacking their way through this blog.

Train Announcements

One of my main ambitions in life is to become the voice of the trains, i.e. the person whose voice you hear when you are on a train who is giving you information:

“This is the… Piccadilly Line…  Service… To… Cockfosters.”

That one always makes me laugh, because it has a cock in it. 

Because of the disjointed nature of these announcements they can sometimes be very funny.  One time I was travelling through North Wales to Chester and I heard the following.

“This is the… 10:48… Central Train service…  To… Chester.  Calling at…  Chester.  The next stop is… Chester.”

Other times they are funny because they impart horrifying information while sounding ridiculously calm about it:

“We are sorry to announce that the…17:15…First Great Western service…to…London Paddington…has been delayed by approximately…one hundred and ninety-five minutes…we apologise for the delay that this has caused to your journey today.” (Again with the ‘Todays!’)

One time, at Reading, the announcement got stuck halfway through so we got:

“We are sorry to announce that the… 18:06…First Great Western Service…to…Redhill…has been deLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA…”

It was one of the single funniest moments of my life, because the ‘lay’ of ‘delayed’ is spoken at a slightly higher pitch relative to the rest of the word, so the announcement jamming on this one syllable was particularly funny and surprising.  I immediately got a picture in my head of what the announcer would have been like if it had been a live announcement:

Apparently, the other fifty people on the platform were imagining the same thing because they all simultaneously burst out laughing and we had a wonderful moment of camaraderie rarely experienced in such a dull and dreary station.  The 'LAAAAAAAA..." went on for at least 8 minutes, and it was particularly funny, because during this time they occasionally managed to briefly turn it off, but we were able to hear that it still continued in other parts of the station.

Sometimes what makes me laugh is the reason for the delays; one time my train was cancelled because lightning had struck the tracks in between Reading and Slough, and another time it was because one of the doors on the train was malfunctioning and would not stop opening and closing.  My favourite, however, was when they didn’t attempt to give a reason at all, and just said:

“We are sorry to announce that this train has been delayed, due to ‘an incident earlier in the day’.”

I let my imagination run wild as to what this incident could have been: 

Friday, 8 June 2012


Why is it that people in customer service always ask me if I want something 'today?' 

"Can I help you pack your bags today?"
"Would you like to use a Boots Advantage card today?"
"Would you like a tea or coffee to go with that today?"

No thanks, I'd like one tomorrow actually.   

I feel like it must be something to do with people trying to make their sentences longer, and thus, cleverer (because that's how it works apparently) and  it drives me absolutely BANANAS; here is a picture of me being driven bananas:

this wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, except that I don't like bananas and don't like to be reminded that other people have passed their driving tests.

Last night's dinner

Last night I went to a dinner party.  The evening consisted of:

1. Going to the shops and trying to find a 'sturdy red' but ending up buying a bottle of peach bellini which was pretty disgusting.

2. Eating delicious cous cous and vegetables.

3. My 6 companions and I eating, quite literally, a litre of cream for dessert; my good friend, L, who created this dish (which also involved strawberries, honey, lime, and crushed biscuits) encouraged us to keep eating and not stop, as if we stopped just for a moment, we'd become frighteningly aware of all the sugar and fat coursing through our veins and would be unable to continue.  My boyfriend finished his first portion before everyone else, and, not only did he have second and third helpings, but just a little later he ate almost half of a banoffee pie intended for about 8 people.

4. Having a very detailed conversation about the sacrament of Baptism and the history of the divine right of kings during the reign of Elizabeth I.

5. Watching a film about Gilbert and Sullivan called 'Topsy Turvy', which I have seen about 20 times and which never gets boring to me. 

Watership Down

Perhaps a good place to start would be with the one thing that I feel affected my life more than anything else.

You may not have seen or read Watership Down, but if you haven’t, I urge you to do so.  You should not, however, show it to your children.  I made the mistake of watching this film when I was seven years old, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that it scarred me for life, and, according to a lot of reviews on, I am by no means alone.

The film/book follows a group of wild rabbits as they make their way to Watership Down, a presumed utopia as prophesised by the youngest rabbit, Fiver.  The film has a ‘U’ certificate meaning ‘suitable for all’, and from the blurb, one would merely assume that this film was a simple cartoon about bunnies on a journey.  This is what I imagined before I saw Watership Down:

It wasn’t like this at all.

The content of this film is simply horrific; rabbits getting caught in snares and coughing up blood while the others look on in horror, rabbits getting their throats torn out by other rabbits, being ripped apart and thrown around by dogs, and being crushed in their warrens as they are filled in with earth.  It is not so much the content, however, that really got to me.  It was the psychedelic and dark techniques used in the film; dozens of rabbits with terrified, red, eyes crawling and scraping their way through the ground only to be suffocated and crushed, accompanied by whiney, discordant music and the voices of the one survivor; “we couldn’t get out!” ringing in the background, the hurried, frantic music accompanying the snared rabbit coughing up blood and raggedly breathing as it is slowly strangled.  No film I have ever seen has quite captured pain and suffering in the way this film did for me.

(to get a general feel of the horror, I recommend parts 4 and 5 here: 

Of course, this is a great compliment for a film; I’d actually recommend that everyone goes ahead and watches it.  (It’s all there on youtube) But please, for the love of God, do not show this film to your children!!!!

As a result of this film, I did not sleep properly for five years.  For the first few weeks I lay awake, eyes wide open, knowing that if I closed them I’d be faced with all the visions of the rabbits that I was trying not to think about.  After a while, I gave up trying to sleep altogether, and would stay up all night reading and writing and drawing, until I could finally go in and sleep with my parents at 6am (as was their rule) where I would get a precious hour or so of sleep until we had to get up.  I’m not sure how I survived childhood on less than an hour’s sleep every night but it probably accounts for all the mental health and sleeping problems I have today.  It also, however, sparked off my desire to read and write and draw and be generally creative, so huzzah!  

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Look- I've done a blog

It is half past eleven at night on a rainy day in June.  For some reason I have 'Good King Wenceslas' stuck in my head.  Today was a day made up of going to the market and realising it had closed, and trying to recover from a fluey type cold thing which has been bothering me for almost one week now.

Something odd happened to me recently whereby I found myself commenting on things on the internet.  It happened slowly at first, but has now become a semi-obsession of which the aim is to CHANGE MANKIND FOR THE BETTER or something slightly less grand.  I don't want a medal, (although that would be kind of nice actually) but I would like to feel validation for the human being (or duck) that I am, and, rather than trying to cure cancer, or achieve world peace, I feel the best way to do that would be to start a blog.

And thus I started a blog.