Bitch on the Blog

December 31, 2016

Caution and the wind

This entry is inspired by Cro Magnon. He is an Englishman. No, not in New York; in France. If you are into growing your own food, dogs and questionable political views please do visit his blog. He is, unlike some, also a gentleman. One may say “refined”, with a, as yet small, dose of “ennui” thrown in.

Yes, so in one of his recent posts he brought to my attention a bit of folklore. Namely that when eating your first mince pie of the season you should  make a wish. This was news to me. But felt immediate relief that I hadn’t yet had THAT mince pie. If I’d had  I’d have wasted a good opportunity. He also, more or less, guarantees that that wish will come true. Marvellous. If I were five years old I couldn’t have been more excited.

Now the crux sets in – and when the Angel took me on a magical walk in the New Forest and to one of his favourite spots, on Boxing Day, I related one of his mother’s shortcomings to him. Remember Boxing Day is on the twenty sixth of December. I still hadn’t had my FIRST mince pie. Why? Sweethearts, it’s simple. There are times in life when I will dither. Whilst once upon a time (BC – Before Cro) I would have eaten mince pies with abandon, his innocent piece of information made me enter dangerous territory. What should I wish for?  I am spoilt for choice. Will I, by accident, wish for something idiotic (think of the fisherman, his wife – and they had THREE wishes – and how that ended up a bit of a disaster and a massive disappointment)?

I wouldn’t call myself indecisive but when it comes to wishes one can’t be too careful. So, naturally, and being risk averse, I keep postponing the moment. As I was relating to him this new found anxiety the Angel smiled. Ok, I said. I’ll take my life into my hands – bury me later -, on our return home we’ll have the first mince pies of the season. In separate rooms if need be.

Imagine my surprise when, back at the ranch, I rifled through the cupboards and couldn’t find any. I “knew” I’d bought them. Not least because they were on my shopping list. Nope. No mince pies. I even checked all my receipts. No mince pies. One wonders how the subconscious plays little practical jokes on us. Don’t quite know what to make of it. Should I be glad that I didn’t tempt fate? Should I curse fate that I missed a chance? Obviously I could just curse myself. In which case I’d need a mince pie to undo my curse. Where to go from here?

31st December greetings,

U

December 22, 2016

Jesus Christ

Filed under: Atmosphere,Exasperation,Human condition — bitchontheblog @ 14:59
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Naturally I consider myself the epitome. Don’t ask of what. Or you’ll all hate me. For ever and ever and ever. It would be disingenuous of me to say I don’t care whether I am liked or not. On the whole I don’t but – on account of being human – will make exceptions.

Yes, insert heart felt sigh, earlier today I came across a fine example of stupidity. Not mine. That would be forgivable. Others’ stupidity? Nah. Forget it. Not that I am easily disappointed. But then I am.

When I say “stupid” I don’t mean people like myself who don’t understand theorems, maths and stuff. I mean people who are so stupid they’d light a match to see if there is a fire. Who light a match to see if they have switched off the light. People who look at you blankly. People who are so stupid all you can do is keep your temper in check and remember that it’s not their fault. If ever there was something to test my humanity it’s stupidity. The other being “inconsiderate”. Don’t get me started on the latter. There is not enough foam within me to cover the contempt I do have for the inconsiderate. My only consolation that I try and remember they aren’t inconsiderate DELIBERATELY. Thus saints are made. You forgive everything and everyone.

Yes, so today I was what can only be called “on a wild goose chase”. The goose wasn’t wild. It was dead. And nowhere to be found despite a delivery address.

Still, what would life be like without an injection of drama and associated adrenaline? Peaceful. That’s what. Who wants peace? In the season of peace and good will. Am on vigil of the next instalment.

In the meantime, light a match to light a candle. I love candles. As soon as winter’s daytime darkness sets in (think Finland) candles will be lit in this house. So soothing.

And yes, before your condolences flood in, it took me all but twenty minutes to locate the temporarily missing goose. No thanks to imbeciles involved but my own brilliance of powers of deduction. And what a beauty it [the goose] is.

U

November 10, 2016

Don’t fence me in

Once upon a time I was a homeowner with all the responsibility that entails. Not least, in Britain, to respect the boundaries your neighbours will impose. Though not British, when in Britain, I will do (within reason) as the British do – or, at least, try not to ridicule what’s bred in their bone. And as much as the Brits’ homes are their castles (complete with a mortgage that even a drawbridge groans under) as much they do like borders.

Yes, borders. As in walls, fences. One of my more far fetched theories that the reason the British prefer dogs to cats that cats do not respect fences. If they want to climb up and jump over one they jolly well will.

So back to Trump and neighbourly etiquette. If my neighbour wants to put a fence or a hedge or whatever else round his patch of immaculate lawn thus blocking his view that’s fine. What’s not fine, indeed unacceptable, is to ask me to pay for it. That’s Trump’s plan on Mexico. The guy has no manners.

Before I take this post into a direction even I find beyond satire I’ll leave you to do your own fencing.

U

November 9, 2016

Awakening

Filed under: Atmosphere,Exasperation,Future — bitchontheblog @ 13:13
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Don’t say I didn’t warn you. It’s November.

And on this fine 9th of the month my first words spoken out loud, the tune the Angel woke up to: “The future is orange”.

I can’t discuss Putin on these pages as the Angel has warned me that people, particularly Americans, get a bit tetchy when you give the guy the benefit of the doubt. The Angel’s interest in world politics is such that he will sit me down and make me watch (and listen to  – subtitles allowing) the most tucked away Putin interviews – available on the internet if you know what you are looking for. Yes, so my long held wish which had faded over the years, namely to learn Russian so I can read Dostoewski in the original, may yet come true. After hours and hours of Putin’s Russian ringing in my ears I’ve definitely got the incantation of the language. The rest will follow.

Yes, Putin. Oh, must he be laughing (in a smirking kind of way) at this morning’s result. Like the cat who will be playing with the mouse.

On a different, a sociological note, just now I went to our nearest shop. I mentioned to the cashier that I was a little befuddled in the “aftermath”, and she asked me what had happened. WHAT HAD HAPPENED? Such innocence, such bliss. At mid day (GMT) there are still people who don’t know about a new political landscape. I don’t hold it against her. Still … Makes me wonder what planet I do live on.

Will I ever look at one of my favourite coat dresses (burnt orange with streaks of black) the same again?

U

PS Do you know what the two men (Putin and Trump) have in common? They both don’t drink. I wish they did.

October 13, 2016

Munch’s Scream

Having been brought up on folklore and fairy tales to bursting point and lasting as fodder for my nightmares (and dreams) a life time I sometimes wonder about “sayings”.

Today’s is “walking in some else’s shoes”. Having a lot of imagination and empathy by the bucket load, I flatter myself that I do not need to walk in someone else’s shoes to understand. Ha. Never overestimate your abilities. You may have a clue, a bit like finding your way through fog. You will get lost in the woods.

In absence of any other diversion I have just tried to imagine what a rat, indeed any animal (or human), feels when forced into a corner. Main thing, I suppose, is to have your back against the wall. That way you face the horrors in pursuit of you full on; better than being stabbed in the back. Similar, I imagine, to drowning. You know it’s happening and, in absence of a lifeline, for a few minutes in your life, you’ll have certainty.

Ray of sunshine greetings,

U

September 14, 2016

Summer

A swallow just caught my attention.

Once upon a time we lived in the middle of nowhere. Even our immediate neighbours, one either side (we were in the middle) were a good walking distance away. Let’s say, not in earshot.

Yes, surrounded by fields, meadows, a little stream, dried out ponds (spare a thought for the frogs), and generally all that I was accustomed to from my earliest childhood I’d spent with my grandparents. And, the FREEDOM. I was allowed to just wander anywhere. Then I met a bull. But that’s another story. I am a fast runner.

So, on the outhouse right next to our patio/terrace there was the swallows’ nest. You think bricks and mortar, the pyramids, the London Eye, a miracle? Look at a nest. That’s a miracle. An act of perseverance, ingenuity, hard relentless work and focus. Not to mention purpose.

Enter the farmer’s (on the left depending which direction you were looking from) cat. When I say cat I mean panther. Nowadays probably classified as feral. I dare say there was no “cat food”. Cats fed themselves doing it by means cats do best: Hunt.

Great. So far so good. Here is the recipe: Enter the swallows, their freshly hatched brood, my father AND the CAT into the mix. Watch this for a while as the baby swallows are being decimated. Swallows getting agitated, cat getting bold, my father getting ANGRY.

So, one morning I wake up and there is a big black panther lying under the outhouse roof. Shot. There was no blood. But that big black Tom of a cat was dead.

Not so. Apparently it was all in my imagination. I was never to breeze so much as a word to said farmer neighbour and generally condemned to silence. That’s when I decided to become a spy.

I don’t know why, twelve years old, a long time ago, I do remember the cat’s body.

The swallows? Did they come back the next year? I don’t know. By then we had moved.

U

August 30, 2016

Delivery

Filed under: Amusement,Animals,Atmosphere,Beauty,Psychology — bitchontheblog @ 15:03
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For light relief, and please forgive me before you continue reading, I have just come across an article stating the obvious. Namely that dogs react to the way you speak to them, your intonation.

Who’d have thought it.

I once, and once only since I am not cruel, tested this on our then two cats, Fleury and Bouncer. Despite being mother and son they couldn’t have been more different in temperament. Which was great. Who wants sameness in everyone around you?

As an aside: Unfortunately (for Bouncer) he inherited his mother’s looks and his father’s brain. The other way round would have been better (for everyone) but, being placid and not destined to be an alley cat, he made the best of both his beauty and his deficiency.

My experiment? Mitigating circumstances – both my arms broken and in plaster cast, being more or less immobilized lying on the sofa, I needed diversion from watching Bette Davis films on the loop. So, there they both were and I told them truly horrendous not so sweet nothings in a soothing voice. They purred. Oh, did they purr. Not a clue what I was actually saying. It wasn’t nice. No one talks to ME like that. Then, some time later, I shouted at them that I loved them to bits. And – guess what – just on the strength of my voice they bolted through the cat flap. It broke. Served me right. Collateral damage.

Don’t report me to the RSPCA. I wanted to prove a point. And I did. As they say in the motherland: “Intonation makes the music”. Pity in many ways. I’d rather content set the tone. Still …

U

August 15, 2016

The land of shadows

Filed under: Atmosphere,Communication,death,Future,Human condition,Psychology,The Reaper — bitchontheblog @ 03:53
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On the whole I do find my dreams entertaining. My dreams are stories, often riddles, mostly pointers as to where I need to find my feet in waking life.

However, there is one type of what I call a “half” dream which I find disconcerting. This usually involves other people (mainly the Angel) and their wellbeing. And – please don’t laugh – the phone will ring (in my dream). The phone will ring so convincingly in my dream that I wake and reach for it. During that moment of reaching for it I wake and realize it was “just” a dream.

Bear with me. It’s not remotely amusing. It’s frightening. And I am not easily frightened, if at all.

Tonight, and I write this with my heart as heavy as only a heart can be heavy in the middle of the night, my father “phoned”. It is the call I dread. The call I will not know what to say to my father. He said my name, and then he fell silent. So we stayed silent – it’s not easy to say nothing when on the phone.

And then I woke, the phone wasn’t ringing – and I trust my mother is still alive.

U

July 3, 2016

Valour and to debase

Picking a few of a plethora of notable quotes in the British press:

“The leave campaign is a revolution, and like all revolutions, it will eat its own.”

Maybe, though I think evoking the French Revolution’s big players is a little far fetched in the context of British politicians turning into Pinocchios, chameleons, piranhas, Judases, downright chancers and slime.  Leaving Jo Cox (England, shot 16 June 2016) aside, no one has yet been stabbed to death in the bath (reference Marat, Paris, July 1783).

“Democrats have no duty to endorse democracy’s every outcome.”

This one I love.  It’s an epiphany. Whoever wrote it I could kiss. Think about it: “Democrats have no duty to ENDORSE democracy’s EVERY outcome.”  Genius.

And then there is, the relatively harmless:

“People want to be lied to, Johnson. No, not Boris, 2016, who proved the point; the other one, Samuel, ca mid 17 hundreds, who made an observation.

I have a special relationship with lies/lying. I do concede that a white lie, in order to avert unnecessary harm and judiciously applied, does have its place in social relations. The blatant lie, the misleading, the blinding, the up and down the garden paths, the self serving, the coward’s way out? No. Not in my court. Which is not the same as saying that I don’t understand those who are trapped in a corner and make deals with the devil. It happens. And let no one cast the first or any stone.

Premeditated lying? There is no excuse for it. Even the most optimistic, “well meaning” and accomplished liar will have to accept that trust – once broken – is just that: Broken. Or in the words of Bertold Brecht, loosely translated: “The ends of a knot severed can be spliced together again but you won’t find me where you left me”. In other words: Rain doesn’t return whence it came from.

U

June 27, 2016

Follow the leader. What leader?

Filed under: Atmosphere,Culture,Despair,Errors,Future,Integrity,Peace — bitchontheblog @ 10:28
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I came across a rather strange mention of me on someone else’s blog – something along the lines of “poor U(rsula). She seems to think it’s targeted at her”.

If that is what any reader has taken away from my last two posts then I have not only failed to express myself but I must appear more stupid than I flatter myself I am. Of course, brexit is not “targeted” at the likes of me. And, no doubt, the practical fallout for me personally will me minimal.

What I find a little bewildering that even my most consistent commentators didn’t have anything to say. Not one word of comfort, not even a grunt. Though by way of handing me a virtual tissue to wipe my tears both Ramana and Looney ticked the “liked” box. Good old Nick took pity on me and left a few words. So thanks for that. Anyway, has confirmed a long held belief: People don’t take to being flooded by someone else’s emotion. (or reason, come to think of it) . It’s ok. Just a little strange for someone like me who basically lives in the trenches of passion – mine and others.

What I meant to express was my dismay at a “mindset“, my huge and heartfelt upset at Britain going retrograde. Throwing it all away based on spurious reasons, and, worse, political intrigue. I didn’t call my last post “Shakespearean” for nothing. What is being played out here, and will be for a long time to come unless someone takes decisive action, is pure Stratford-upon-Avon. Except on that stage the curtain will fall and the audience goes back home, unharmed.

Brexit has the impact of living in a family and suddenly you don’t understand the dynamics of that family any longer. Say, your father bolts, your mother still wipes your nose, your brother takes to solitary fishing, your sister marries the man she least likes, the cat snarls at her best friend the dog, the dog comes to me because it’s also totally bewildered as to what the hell has happened. It’s a mess. Let me take the garbage out.

In the last three days I have read (as did the Angel), and we keep doing so, acres and acres and acres of analysis, opinion, prognosis. I am delighted at the many many eloquent, sometimes bordering on brilliant, writings by some of Britain’s finest brains.

And I am dismayed at some of the arguments of the blinkered total delusional Brexiters awaiting tomorrow’s paradise in Britain. Do wake up. Wishful thinking is one thing. A dream is another.

Some people (feeling a bit sheepish now) ticked ‘out’ for a joke because they believed Remain was a forgone conclusion. They now suffer what is so cutely called “buyer’s regret”. At least when you buy something you aren’t so sure off when you get home you can take it back, get a refund or at least an exchange. HA!

And those who advocate popcorn. Sure. Anyone outside the area (Britain and Europe affected more deeply than your scant glance will indicate), those of you who maybe not culturally well versed, aren’t too familiar with history, who don’t have to worry about their kids’ and future generations’ wellbeing – ENJOY.

Let’s go back to the dark ages. Don’t forget to bring a candle (and at least two matches).

U

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