Bitch on the Blog

November 24, 2017

Health and Safety

Filed under: Amusement,Environment,Future,shortcut — bitchontheblog @ 21:03
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Do you ever feel you live on borrowed time? I mean other than when you do (by virtue of age) live on borrowed time.

The last few days mistrust has grown. Mistrust in the sturdiness of my hot water bottle. Yes, I know hot water bottles are quaint and belong to mid of last century. However, they are marvellous at keeping you warm. So, what I do, when I sit at my desk, is wedge a hot water bottle between the cushion on my chair and my lower to middle back. It’s mainly, and it is rather freaky, because I often feel the cold wind of futility between my shoulder blades. Quite something considering how warm I am otherwise. A right little oven.

Yes, suspicion. I think that hot water bottle  (red) is on its last rubber. It feels somewhat brittle and, therefore, it’s only a question of a few more uses before it bursts and I’ll burn my backside. Don’t say I didn’t warn myself BEFORE the event. I can see it now – having a cold shower in the middle of winter in the name of damage limitation.

Have you ever experienced or gone for the “burn” (not necessarily Jane Fonda in the Eighties)? If so, how big was your blister and do you still bear the scars?

U

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November 9, 2017

By Association

Apparently there are many ways of keeping less desirable thoughts and memories at arm’s length. What are they?

Memories triggered by the mention of a date or a place? If you know of how to keep those at bay please do let me know.

Today is the 9th of November 2017. Which, in an earlier missive, I put as 9/11. Nine Eleven. For Europeans, and I don’t know which other countries,  9/11 means 9th November, November being the eleventh month of the year. I am painfully aware that this is not so for Americans. Nine Eleven has taken on such a life of its own that even as a European when I hear Nine Eleven I do NOT think of today’s date. Oh, no. I think of the eleventh of September. The American way.

Places: Dallas, Texas, to me means one thing only (leaving J R Ewing, oil and barons aside). Yes, 22 November 1963. The only time I’d seen adults walking around with grave faces like that, not their usual cheerful selves, was not long before (cue Cuba Crisis). On a personal note, and I have mentioned it before: November, the month, does have a lot to answer for. At least in my life.

How does your brain work?

U

November 8, 2017

Others

Filed under: Environment,Geography,Psychology,Travel — bitchontheblog @ 21:16
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If people knew how much, and particularly why, they contribute to the hilarity of my daily life I dare say few would still be on talking terms with me.

Take those who travel. Now, those who travel – not least on their blogs – have a nerve. They will say things like how much they enjoyed a spot once “the tourists” had all gone. As in “It was ok once I got away from all the tourists”. Yes, no doubt. Bar one [you,tourist], turning your nose up at all other fellow visitors.

U

October 20, 2017

Dishing the dirt

Remember when people traded in their Rolls Royce for a new one because the ashtray was full?

I can totally relate to the sentiment. I don’t mind battle, yet, occasionally, there is only one way. That of least resistance.

Sometimes things are just disgusting. So disgusting all you want is to get rid of them. Like my keyboard. Of course, I could take the easy way out and pray. Pray that the keyboard will die, thus giving me an excellent excuse to buy a new one without having the sin of waste on my conscience. Hand me a rosary now – and I am not even Catholic.

So what do you suggest? Not least the engineers (in Silly Con Valley) among you. Why on earth, with all the magic the human mind can weave, has no one yet invented a way to prevent the crevices between the keys of a keyboard from becoming a cesspit?

U

 

September 30, 2017

Location, location, location

Unlike most of you and other squeamish, sanitized and contemporaries, there will be no fire for me. Brimstone more like it.

Yes, I shall be buried. Come maggot and worm. OH MY GOD. I can see it now. Particularly my eye sockets. Never mind. Whilst aesthetically not pleasing I shall stick with earth to earth. Ashes go with the wind. Earth is solid.

In one of the more wonderous moments of my life, a few days ago I found the cemetery cum graveyard I would like to be buried in. If push comes to shove I’ll move into its vicinity to ensure a place. It’s pure magic. Absolute magic. Acres and acres, largely not yet populated. Proper graves. Can’t wait.

Urns (and their ashes), by comparison, measly. Measly. Meagre. Mean. Cheek by jowl. Reminds me of some two years ago when the Angel and I visited Minstead’s graveyard where Arthur Canon Doyle (think Sherlock Holmes) and his wife are buried. The Angel remarked that it’s so much nicer to be able to visit a grave (and, naturally, to the Angel’s horror, I managed to stand on it) rather than being restricted to, well, a measly, teensy, weensy spot with an urn of which there are quite a few on Minstead’s cemetery too,  even if blessed with a “view” over rolling country side.

I am not particularly tall though some people think me so. There is something to be said to be buried stretched to your full length rather than reduced to your volume in ashes. I am sure that’s what Archimedes thought when displacing water, resulting in his joyous “Eureka”.

U

September 22, 2017

Treasure

Filed under: Atmosphere,Environment,Human condition,Joy — bitchontheblog @ 21:42
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Unleashing my inner archiver (as opposed to archivist).

Taking an inventory is a close relative of making lists. My desire for order being the other side of my coin. Some years ago I lost a great deal (not least my dignity) since when I have become not obsessed by but fond of knowing what’s what where. Why doesn’t come into it. And it’s always the “how” that has potential to trip me up.

Do you have (physical) objects in your life that give you joy every time you happen to gaze upon them; every time you touch them? What would you hate to “lose”?

Whilst you think about it I’ll wipe a tear or two such an emotional subject it is to me.

U

May 25, 2017

Spoilt for choice

There is a regular program on Radio Four (BBC, Sunday morning) called Desert Island Disks. Someone of relative public interest is invited to talk about their life and, intermittently, ten pieces of music of their choice are played.  They’ll then be asked to choose one of them to take with them – don’t say the BBC isn’t generous – before being shipped away and with little hope to return. You are given the Bible. You may choose one other book and one (in numbers 1) luxury item. No, not me. I am not a luxury item. I am cheap.

It’s amazing what people will choose as their luxury item. For heaven’s sake – who needs silk sheets in the middle of nowhere? Take a Swiss Army Pen Knife instead. What would I take? I don’t know. It’s not likely to be allowed within in the parameters of the programme but most likely a never ending supply of my favourite fruit/vegetable. Which is … What? Trying to come to a decision will take some time – a most welcome interval to delay the evil departure.

So, what about you? What’s your luxury item, food or otherwise, to take to the desert island? Please don’t say a harpoon. Life doesn’t work like that.

Tom Hanks greetings, and don’t forget to squirrel away some matches and don’t let them get wet during your voyage,

U

April 24, 2017

And then some

To keep you from your more urgent tasks in hand here is another one of those questions on ethics which plague me. And if I have mentioned this before (not that you’ll remember)  please put it down to my willingness to repeat myself.

So there you are. At the fresh fish counter. It’s all glistening, enticing, a cook’s dream. However, enter the unfortunate shopper (that’s me) who is also well informed about decimating stocks of various species in the oceans. Great. Now what?

I am not proud of myself which is, most likely, why I seek your thoughts yet fact is, I think to myself: “That particular fish is already DEAD. Why should I let it go to waste?” Yes, I say to the fish monger, pointing to my bounty, that’ll be lovely. Thank you. Have I just proven the law of supply and demand? Sugar. Nevertheless, the fish was ALREADY dead. Someone has to eat it.

Of course, one could spin this idea to the less savoury. Think Moby Dick, indeed any prolonged adventure at sea when the Vasco da Gamas and Columbuses of this world set sail to discover new lands and spices. There you are at sea. Since you are all already on the brink of death why prolong the agony by not eating your past-his-live-by mate? And what if you were vegetarian or vegan at sea? Yet hungry? Would you toss your principles overboard to stay alive? Actually, come to think of it – and I am a connoisseur of seafaring factual and fictional accounts – why do those who do resort to eat their own always go for the weedy first instead of the meatiest? Such a waste.

U

PS Please do note that I posed TWO questions/dilemmas (for the price of one post). No need to keep it short. Just pour yourself on this page. I will gnaw on any bone you throw me.

December 19, 2016

Keeping a foothold

If I had to define one aspect of (my) life I’d say: Happy go lucky.

Happy GO lucky? Literally? Come again.

In all our lives there are “themes”. Bits that repeat themselves. One of mine is stumbling, falling over. I’d like to say: “No shit”, but that’s not the sort of language I employ outside my own hearing.

My headmistress and my English and German teacher told me that I was the only pupil they’d ever known to fly UP the stairs and do herself an injury. And thus my feet slowed me down – not often, but at measurable intervals.

I won’t bore you with an episode, in my late twenties, when one of my legs gave way often enough for me to even more lose my footing. Never has anyone curtsied as graciously and as often as I did – even in an ice cream parlour. People fell in love with me thinking I was Cinderella. To the rescue here they came. Which was sweet. One can only love so many (romantically that is, otherwise the heart is wide). And I was already in love with the future father of my future son. Unfortunately FOS had, and probably still does, tendency to see multiple sclerosis and other dreads where there are none. Anyway, so that went away on its own account. And, years later, when runner’s shin was not a diagnosis, acupuncture miraculously cured a pain never to return.

Remember we are talking walking. And losing your footing. For years everything was fine. I’d carry the Angel, even at age four and of corresponding weight, running down a hill in pouring rain without so much as one ankle giving way. Now?

Now? Don’t ask. One time I faltered – right at the doorstep of our front door – the Angel said, and never shall words ring more in my ears: “MAMA, you ARE a liability”.

That’s nothing. I could be dead or demented. Then I’d really be a liability.

Since, and in the last few months, I keep falling. Nothing broken. So that’s good. What is not so good – and the point of this post – that I have recognized the law of being conditioned. Yes, conditioned. Not flummoxed. Not fixated. Conditioned. Thus, or so my theory goes, phobias develop. Where, once upon a time, my nose was up in the air admiring the clouds, now my eyes are fixed on the ground. Trying to locate pot holes in the pavement before they trip me up. Negotiating decaying damp leaves before I can slip on them as if they were a discarded banana skin.

I wouldn’t say it’s depressing since it gives you a different perspective, one you didn’t have before. Nevertheless, I now find it daunting to set a foot outside. And, remember “conditioning”, I can barely bear dare to do so after darkness falls. Because then, guess what, I can’t see where I am going.

I am sure there is a life lesson in there somewhere, one of my beloved metaphors. But what is it?

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

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