Let me bore you, and ask you as, no doubt, have done so before: What’s in a name?
I don’t mean surnames. From a woman’s point of view and/or if you were born out of wedlock, your father later marrying your mother, you may have had as many surnames as me, namely a few. I will not beat Liz Taylor’s record as I am not the marrying kind.
So, first names. How did you come by your first name? If any of you have already told me, that’s fine. I am more than happy to be told the same story many a time. Repetition is what anchors an anecdote in one’s mind.
Myself? I am rather in love with the story how I became an Ursula. All down to my beloved grandmother who registered my birth. My mother’s preferred choice would have caused me no end of pain. She registered her second daughter under the name she wanted to give me. Which is why I am a little bear and my sister is a rock. Not as in reliable, but as in immovable. Stone. Hard as nails. She was followed by our brother, named after “The Great”, and Cornelia, our youngest, who feels short changed to this day. What Cornelia doesn’t understand that someone does have to be the youngest – even if you were part of quadruplets. Perish the thought.
So, please do indulge me and tell me, if you know or at least have an inkling, how you came by your first name. Why you love it, hate it, are indifferent to it. What you’d name yourself if you could be arsed to apply for a name change. What was your name shortened to if at all? No guess what our very own Nick’s of “here and now” fame complete name is. And, last but, not least: Were you given a nickname? By whom? And why?
Just when you think yourself as snug as a bug in a hug with, more or less, all questions of ethics and their answers under the belt one sneaks up on you.
Holy cannoli – the noose tightens.
This, drawn to my attention a few minutes ago, is so awful I am in knots.
For sake of argument you have to assume you have more than one child. You find yourself at the mercy of the elements and you can only save ONE of your children. Which one would you save? This is so awful I can barely get my head round it. Naturally, as one does, I cast my eye back to my family of origin. Who would either of my parents of four have saved? I dare say, being quite a bit older than my siblings and therefore stronger, both my mother and my father would have left me to fend for myself. But that still leaves them with three to choose from. I’d rather not pursue this line of thought. It’s unsettling beyond belief. At least that’s tonight’s nightmare guaranteed. Not that members of my family normally play much of a role in my dreams.
Any crutches of your own thoughts on this truly horrendous scenario welcome.
You know what this whole mouse saga has confirmed to me once more?
I have the patience of a fucking saint. The extent of my patience is so extraordinary I am in awe of myself. If I were someone else I wouldn’t stand for some of the shit coming my way. But there you go. By way of example, and I had only asked a stranger a perfectly innocent question, I was told this morning “You ARE taking the piss.” This was not improved on by him repeating it. I wasn’t taking anything, most certainly not piss. I remained that what I so admire in the heroines of Jane Austen novels: Calm DESPITE of it. Even charming. Even smiling. I came away from that encounter distinctly feeling that he wasn’t mothered properly.
Yes, so the mouse in the house. My nights are those of intermittent sleep – what with all the scratching. No, not scratching – mice need, emphasis on need, to chew hard stuff to keep their teeth growing too long. Yes, live and let live. I just wish it would die without my intervention.
If it were more than one mouse I’d call pest control (my landlord) but it’s only one. A lost soul. If this is going to go on much longer we’ll be friends. However, how can you be friends with the elusive? And elusive a mouse is. You never see it, you only hear it. At night. And yes, it’s still in the lounge. Where? I don’t know. I have turned the place over. Hoovered in unlikely places and generally gone ship shape. Tonight, I am sorry to say, is that little creature’s last chance. If that bloody – intermittent – scratching starts again, tomorrow I shall fork out real money for the dreaded trap (Rentokil – their website leaving you perplexed and grateful how many pests I have escaped in my life, also giving you a bewildering choice as to methods to kill).
Yes, so greetings from the soft touch,
As some of you know, others just guessing and studiously ignoring it, I have been in the shit hole of all shit holes (financially) for some time. It’s the fucking old devil’s job to climb out of that hole you make when you find yourself having fallen from a great height. People who once champagne danced on your floor at your expense will turn their backs. It’s quite fantastic. Has shattered my view of the world. I am not a leper. Not being in the money is not contagious.
Yes, insert sigh, so limping on pennies from day to day is a disgrace. Particularly at my age. That comes from not securing a “bread winner”, instead preferring to struggle on, on my own, in the wake of a divorce twenty years ago. Dear dog in heaven will you pay for relinquishing “rights” in the divorce court. My solicitor told me at the time I was making a big mistake. Never mind. That was my choice. Optimist, those for whom the future will “be fine” (my mantra) pay through their nose. Do you actually know how expensive it is to be poor? You don’t. Don’t try it. It’s an experience. But one of those experiences which (best case scenario) serve to make you more compassionate but can do without.
Long intro.Today’s question is about an aspect of a subject dear to my heart: Ethics/morals.
I need to earn money – big time. Not much but urgently. I have got about ten days before this ship sinks. What do you do – and this is a serious question: Accept a job that you think stinks to high heaven (ethically) or suspend all moral sensibilities and do it regardless?
I can tell you the answer for me now. I CANNOT do it. I rather starve. On the other hand I don’t want my son to witness his mother being made homeless.
Great stuff, ain’t it?
“What did you want to be when you grew up?”
I don’t like that question. Before jamming the questioner’s comment box with elaborate musings I retreated – like the good dog I wish I were – to my own corner.
If I listed every single thing that took my fancy between the age of three and twenty I’d exceed my usual word count. Here is a taster: I never wanted to be a hairdresser. Mainly because I am not male. But, living with my grandparents and their younger sons drifting in and out, I’d pleat one of my uncles’ hair on his return home from what must have been a job to knacker anyone into submission. Yes, little red ribbons. Even my grandfather didn’t bat an eyelid at his youngest son’s beauty.
Then I became a teacher. This was a few years on – after I was BLESSED with siblings. I loved teaching them all sorts of things, long before they were ready. Like reading, writing and arithmetic. My mother thought me a natural. In hindsight I think I saved her a fortune in after school tuition.
Never waste time on siblings. Stay an only. Only joking. And in very bad taste.
Then there was a gap when I enjoyed life unencumbered by thought of the future. Until one day I came home with tears in my eyes. My father, uncharacteristically moved by my plight, asked me what was the matter. Some guys had whistled at me as I was passing. I was thirteen. Thirteen. My father laughed. And told me I’d better get used to it. You can’t beat my parents when it comes to compassion. My mother at the same time telling me (she was only concerned about my spine): “Chest out, back straight.” Thus I vowed to become a nun.
At eighteen I was spoilt for choice. Rather than being a ravishing nun tending to the cloister’s kitchen garden in silence I changed sides. Like Churchill crossing the corridor. Priest. Vicar. Whatever. Study theology. Be paid to talk and be listened to, even gawped at. Handicap being that whilst I adore Jesus, the man, I am not the corporate type. Next logical step: Politician. Is there more beauty to be found than in the starry, wide and dark brown eyed youngster who thinks she can change the world for the better and evade being corrupted? There isn’t.
And then … I had to earn money. Quickly. And I did. Lots of it. Indiscriminately.
And never shall you make more impact on the ground below than falling from a great height.
I am a responsible person. Which is why a lot of my thoughts and observations do not make it into the public domain of my blog. Rather a pity since you don’t know how much you are missing. Still, sometimes we have to giggle, snort, pontificate and slaughter in private.
Oh, Sweethearts, one thing I have learnt, to my amusement and frustration, that there are always at least two ways of putting something in writing. The one that makes me laugh the most I can’t possibly publish, and I am no coward. I hold it with one of my heroes though can’t say I particularly like the man of whom was said: “No one pisses from a greater height than …. does”. I love pissing from heights – yet withOUT so much as a grain of malice. Just for fun. Which has landed me in so much trouble in my life that, just as I am refining the art, I now have to curb myself sincerely, nay severely.
Well, what do you expect? Once I was a young Beaujolais (drink without delay), now I am a fine Chablis. A bit like those – on purchase – rock hard pears, peaches and avocados which you will have to let ripen (at their own pace) in the privacy of your kitchen. Those of you who have no idea what I am talking about live in California. Or shop at Harrods Food Hall.
And then there is Cider. Are any of you Orchards? Ripe for the picking to find your destiny in smashed form next to a nice bit of roast pork? I can think of at least person who’d make eye watering horseradish next to roast beef. Yes, I know: You can tell it’s Sunday. Roast being on my mind.
All you visual beasts out there: Leg it over to Lorna’s
and the link for Reader’s Choice she gives therein, and cast your vote. Don’t fall for the cute blue Bird with Attitude. Or do. That’s me. No, not the photographer; the likeness. I don’t need office. I need peanuts.
PS Having checked with Lorna, as not to unduly influence her in her duty as judge (I flatter my powers), I can not divulge who I voted for. SURPRISE! And keep yours to yourselves till after the event on Wednesday after which we will – so I hope – compare notes. Snap, click and crackle.
Did you know that it takes 6 (SIX) weeks to break a habit? Yes, so did I.
Let’s leave aside the absolutely mind boggling question what you’d do during the six weeks other than break yourself, your resolve, your patience, your pride and anyone witnessing the miserable failure you are. The last being the reason why I never tell anyone anything. Thus you only disappoint yourself. All others are spared.
I keep postponing the moment to test the theory. I am spoilt for choice: Which habit of mine deserves to be broken? The whole endeavour hampered by realisation that I am not a creature of habit but would love to give up something. Not least because there seems such virtue bestowed on those who give up. I myself would be better pleased if I’d manage to erect rather than tear down.
Let me know. Food (for thought) parcels welcome.