23 March 2008

Tally Ho Chaps!

Yes, I may technically be an adult. And yes, I am a student of English literature.

Now that that is taken care of and acknowledged I can proceed to express my outrage. Check this out http://books.guardian.co.uk/news/articles/0,,2266691,00.html

Incensed? Angered? Provoked? I certainly am. Especially as this piece of heinous sacrilege came to light just a few short days after I was initiated into my very own Famous Five. I was tremendously excited about our explorations, super sleuthing and discovery of smugglers. And of course, returning home in time for Auntie's famous sarnies.
I, due to my strong masculine physique and air of strapping male leadership, am of course Julian. Chloe is the home-maker and super-feminine Anne, destined for the apron and aga. Frances is the tomboy, ultra feminist, bra-burning George. Claudie is Timmy as she is a mad dog. And Gary's Dick.
A secret handshake has yet to be devised, but plans for picnics of ginger beer, potted meat, fishpaste sandwhiches and cream buns are in full sway. And we shall require some villainous thieves to stalk, as well as jumpers in various pastel shades. Jolly times will be had and lashings of good clean fun, followed by afternoon tea.

Except we shall have to try even harder to continue the hallowed traditions old Blytey endeavoured to maintain in polite society so well, now that all this preposterous 'modernisation' seems to be taking place. The sexism, misogyny, mild racism and childhood obesity through artery clogging clotted cream and sticky buns that Enid was such an afficionado of could be in danger.

She would be turning over in her grave if only it wasn't for the likes of us, fearlessly countering the beastliness of the politically correct world. Hurrah! Top hole! Super!

15 March 2008

A Reminder of Roots

Browsing in a bookshop in a post-lunch haze of contentment is a simple pleasure but one to be treasured.
Even better when the bookshop is not your run-of-the-mill, generic Waterstones specimen that has tables of Richard and Judy recommendations and is indistinguishable from any other populist book outlet. Staffed by a Bill Bryson look-alike, light and airy, appealingly arranged and with a cafe selling hefty slabs of cake attached - perfection.

The words 'pottering' and 'mooching' were coined specifically for a bookshop experience such as this. Bumping into bookshelves and fellow browsers is commonplace when your head is buried in the first few pages of a book that caught your eye. You forget where you are, and jump when your mother comes up behind you with a query about a paperback she picked from a display. 'Is this that book we...?' But she need not finish her sentence as her daughter has the same book open in her hands, selected from the packed shelf before her, and is a number of pages in. Sometimes a moment can charm and astound. You can remove the girl from her cultural and literary mentors and influencers, but you can't remove the lasting effects.

A quick pit-stop at the comic book/graphic novel emporium and straight on to the British Library! It's a hard life.

7 March 2008

Paying for Genetics Through the Nose

What would you get if somebody posessed the face of the Disney Sleeping Beauty's Malefacent, the body of The Princess Bride's Fezzick, the arms of Edward Scissorhands, the mind of Stephen Hawking/Jeremy Paxman and the voice of Alan Rickman? A force to be reckoned with is what. It would be so cool...

Unfortunately I only have the ordinary attributes of a rather pathetic adolescent. Except for one thing that I claim absolutely no responsibility for, something that is independant from my body as a whole and that has a mind of its own.

My nose seems to have a seperate circulatory system, going bright red in complete contrast to the rest of me, and is more akin to a tap than to anything of vaguely human origin. Not to mention its total and ill-judged departure from the general asthetic of my face as a cohesive image. 'Characterful' will not cut it.

I may be forced to cut my nose off to spite my face.

If only anatomy could flatter me. But no, it went and shat on me.

2 March 2008

Pessimism Schmessimism

I am sure people don't actually refer to things as 'half empty'. It's more natural terminology to say something is half full surely, as the receptacle will contain at least some kind of substance and is therefore rather more filled than it is if empty. Anyway, I understand that it is a useful way to illustrate the optimist/pessimist distinction. I like to think that I can always see the upside of situations and glean at least something useful or amusing from any unpleasantness that occurs. Take the last couple of days for instance...

The bar at the Union was absolutely packed last night, with people clamouring hotly and sweatily for cheap drinks, slopping beer all over the place and continuously prodding me in the back, which drives me a little bit crrrrrazy. A girl behind me went ahead and ordered her drink before me, despite it being blatant that I had been waiting far longer. Grrr. However, the longer wait did make me notice that there was a young chap sitting right amongst the hullaballoo, pint set down on the bar, sedately and leisurely reading the Guardian obiturary pages. This unexpected image made me smile.

The final of Masterchef has aired, meaning that the series is over and I won't see Greg's bald, cheery noggin or John's jowelly chops until next year. They, and their cries of 'Cooking DOESN'T get tougher than this!' and 'It will CHANGE THEIR LIVES!', have been a pretty much constant source of amusement and chucklesome pleasure over recent weeks. Alas, no more. This does mean that those phrases may actually get out of my head now, and opens up new viewing opportunities, such as the returned 'Love Soup' with the super Tamsin Greig. Or I could do some work.

It turns out no Tattoo parlours in Soho are actually open after 8pm (who knew? Soho obviously not as wild or hardcore as it makes out to be), so it looked like our evening trip had been in vain. Yet we were enlightened as to the exterior decor of sex shops, strip clubs and lingerie boutiques. It was an education of sorts. We saw some pretty neon lights so not a wasted outing.

I sliced my finger whilst trying to prise open a tin of 19p rice pudding without the aid of a tin opener. It hurt a little and bled a lot. However, the result was worth the price of a few pennies and blood. The pudding tasted damn good.

So you see, I'm a glass half full kind of a girl. Of course it helps if the glass is half full of a semi-decent white wine. Or, indeed, completely full.