20 July 2006

Missing: Presumed Dead Happy on Holiday

Right, I have a ten minute window amongst my busy schedule of packing, watching trash on telly (for medical reasons, compulsory relaxation time, naturally), getting N's blinking birthday stuff ready despite him not actually being 13 till the end of the month, and yet more packing. Oh, and also some panicking is pencilled in, some time about midnight I'd say, when I realise that have nothing packed. Therefore, think yourselves very lucky that I am choosing to dedicate these ten minutes to blogging.

The end of an era. Le grande finale. A day to end all days. The passing of an age. All of which I could use to describe the last day of term, and indeed the year. However, I have a preferred and arguably more appropriate expression that sums up the veritable feast of emotion and high-spirited commotion of the day; phew.

And so to summer and holidays. And early starts, and forgotten toothbrushes, and irritable travellers, and cramped cars, and hot sweaty grumbling. Still, the excitement remains. Getting up at the crack of dawn (a 4am start in this case) is rather exhilerating. The intrepid explorers will embark on their adventure as the town sleeps. Ooh, what a thrill. As long as ma is pumped full of caffeine, J doesn't whitter, N leaves the mandolin in the boot, and I am still in a pleasantly comatose state it will be a blast.

Two weeks away en famille (blessing or barking? Discuss) after a day of Kia Picanto style travel down to Charismatic Cornwall. Let's hope that it doesn't turn out to be calamitous or cataclismal. A blend of curiosities and culture would be far more contenting and congenial. Shutup.
Don't know if it has wireless though so may be out of action on the blogging front. So don't ring 999, or register me as a missing person or anything hasty like that. Will merely be sunning myself in the south, being a bodacious beach babe, and hanging with the yuppie set in Cornwall. Bear my absence as best you can.

14 July 2006

Ignorance is bliss

After crawling out of an anna-sized hole, in which I have been licking my wounds (metaphorically speaking as doing so literally would be gross) and cooling my cheeks due to recent spelling shame, I have been mostly ignoring things.
You would think this was easy, but it actually requires a great deal of effort and skill. Amongst the growing list of 'Things I am Trying to Ignore' are:
  1. The fact I have to complete a French presentation for early next week, despite NOT KNOWING ANY FRENCH and hating it with all my heart and being one of only three in a class and the only reason I attend these lessons being that I feel sorry for Mr R and I thought I might actually learn something such as the actual French language but this is just a big lie as all we do is pretend to write presentations whilst actually screaming inwardly 'I hate French and could be doing something far more useful and constructive like sunbathing right now' and leaving early to do some 'research' in the library or chatting to Mr R about anything other than verbs. And why in God's name did I decide to do a presentation on Montmartre? Random. I think I was hoping that the thrills, excitement, interesting culture, raunchiness etc of the region would inject the same into French lessons. It hasn't.
  2. Having to write a comparative essay on two literary texts for Tuesday. Whilst wild horses couldn't stop me from devouring this task and gorging myself on themes, motifs, language, structure and so on, it is unfortunate that I have lost the will to live.
  3. The pressure from adults of the teaching profession in regards to higher education.
  4. Miss M's psychotic rolling eyes, wild, russet mane, ruddy, ageing skin, fidgety, manic limbs, acid tongue, and spine chilling penetrative lilt. All made terrifying to the extreme when directed at mild, meek, 'rabbit caught in headlights' me.
  5. N's alarmingly good mood. It makes me suspicious and uneasy. Something must be about to go awry, I can feel it.
  6. My stupid, stupid hair. Because it is being stupid.
  7. Vast pile of books that I really should read.
  8. The fact that I haven't seen the crew for weeks. But I have been very busy recruiting new crew. No excuse however.
  9. The gradual disintegration of my most recent attempt at a filing system.

So all in all, I am blissfully content in my state of ignorance.

Anyway, what do I care as I am off to Ecclefechan (say it aloud, give yourself a chuckle) where rural life will be experienced, the boredom of cousins will be briefly quelled, and the 'fechan bus may even be taken. Dear me, that'll never get old.

10 July 2006

The ladel? Surely some sort of tracking device...

Be not alarmed, but we have been Pammed.

I noticed it as soon as I walked through the door. Things were not where they had been left only a few hours before. Shoes all on the shoe rack (the clue is in the title, yet still the concept is not grasped), floors clear of fluff-monsters, sinks swiped of bacterial colonies, cushions plumped and in order (a like-minded soul in that respect, and one to whom I am eternally, though to many incomprehensibly, grateful), and the air heavy with the nostril-stripping scent of disinfectant and chemicals. Cleanliness truly is next to godliness. It must be said that Pam does have a certain celestial air to her, resonating halo-like as she sprays and scrubs. Though that could just be the layers of dust being dislodged and sparkling in the sunlight, creating a transcendental aura about her person.


Why, why, why would you put the whistling lid of the kettle in a ladel? And why keep the soap on top of the nail scrubbing brush? And why store all the biscuit tins in a toppling tower formation? And what, may I ask you, is with the endless plastic boxes on every surface to store things in, multiplying in number on every visit?

It is our house, but not as we know it. A parallel Kirk household where everything is very slightly different. A house that is slowly being infiltrated with Pamisms. Soon, no doubt, she will control us all, without us even realising it has happened. As innocent and amiable as Pam and her quiche eating ways may seem, I am sure some foul plot is afoot.
But fear not. I'm on to her. Just as she uses her cunning and subtle ways, so do I in returning things to how they were. It is a battle to be played out over time, the ball shifting from court to court as mind games and manipulations are scuppered. Ingleside will not be Pammified as long as I defend it.

8 July 2006

Tradition vs Twits

"Mags! How extraordinary!"
"Oh, Juuulia! I had no idea you would be here!"
"Yah, yah, I'm just up here with Daddy. Knows one of the dons, thought I'd tag along, you know the thing."
"Absolutely. Well, best be off. Do you know where the philosophy seminar's happening? Thought I'd fit it in before Mummy shows me her old digs at Kat's."
"I was wondering if it would be worth stating on applying for English Literature that one has a published poetry anthology in 'Faber & Faber'?"
"If my daughter was wishing to pursue, say, mathematics, is there a particular college that excels in the subject that you would suggest?"
"Would it make a difference to one's acceptance if one had performed works of Shakespeare for one's work experience?"
"Will there be opportunities to explore the intricacies of more recent theorists' texts such as Sartre also?"
And all I want to do is play at being Harry Potter for a bit.

4 July 2006

A very British outlook

'The heat! The heat! Oh, how it burns! Oh, how the sun's rays rage like a thousand fires of hell, setting my very soul alight!'

That is what I would be saying if I had the energy. The heat has made my brain melt however, draining every last vestige of common sense and logical thought from my clammy being. Urgh.

And I am heading further south. With a menopausal mother.

Good God, I wish I was a penguin.

2 July 2006

Read it and weep

Why can't a Personal Statement be just that: a statement of the personal persuasion? i.e, 'I am mint, pick me.'

But oh no, that great British institution that is the education system can never be that simple. Instead we are encouraged to wax lyrical for a page or so about how going on that geography field trip put my 'team work' and 'numerical formation skills' to good use, and how that I.T course enhanced and utilised my 'ability to develop organisational talents' and 'improve my evaluating credentials'. What does it all actually mean? Basically, I am mint. But in a depressingly fast spreading language that I presume university type people must speak.

An extract from Anna's Personal Statement: Draft 1
Since being but a mere sparkle in my mother's eye, it has been English Literature that has been the beating of my heart, the passion that drives me, the life force that moves me, the very essence of my soul. On completing 'Shakespeare: Complete Works' (at the age of six, in the gifted and talented extra-curricular group) I experienced an epiphany. Literature is my true calling. Therefore , I am chair of the 'Austen Discussion Club', head of 'The Classics Committee', enthusiastic contributer of our 'Budding Young Poets' publication as well as of course partaking in all sporting, choral, theatre, and chess activities in school. These enable me to develop extensive people skills, cultural appreciation, organisational, analytical, and motivational credentials, provides challenging stimulation and the chance to learn substantially about teamwork and communication... gush, gush, gush, I am amazing, yada yada, look how rightous I am, bla bla, I have virtues coming out my ears, etc etc ...

They will snap me up for sure.

And if not, then there is always plan B. 'I am mint, pick me'