Friday 14 January 2011

Commercial break (avert your eyes Grandma in Cyprus)

Our household seems quite penis focused recently. I'm not sure why, but may be it is because The Cat's Mother and The Cat spent too long in an all female environment, and are now over-compensating.

When we holidayed in Iceland, the subject of The Boy's Welsh background was much discussed, not withstanding he also became our designated Troll. Anyway, his heritage became corrupted to 'hairy tidge'. And several months later, the subject regularly comes up (ooh err missus).

This week, I managed to split my motorcycle trousers, wear out the crotch of my favourite jeans and burst the zip on some black trousers. I declared I must have 'enormous bollocks' to The Cat's Mother, who couldn't resist in passing that gem on to The Boy and The Cat. For Viz readers, this may bring back memories of one sort or another:

Anyway, enough of that. I've had a torrent of press releases this month. As usual most are completely wrong and especially irritating when they start, "I really enjoy reading your blog" Before trying to get me to write about nappies. Not sure if they're trying to tell me I'll be reaching the age of incontinence soon...

FlipVideoHD want to know if I'm doing a Valentines list and if so would I like to publish a press release about their camera. Well only if 'mucky movies' interest The Cat's Mother. Flippin' heck.

Holiday Nanny thinks 'childcare vouchers are the perfect Mother's Day present' Well may be...after a washing machine, food processor and a toaster.

Thanks to Madeleine Scarlett-Smith for giving me a six hour 'heads up' on new research that says that people with children are less likely to have a Carbon Dioxide alarm. Perhaps they need the peace and quiet.

Ryan Levitt of Team Wholegrain wants me to 'drop me a line to work out what exclusive content we can jointly develop to make your blog stand out' Thanks for the vote of confidence. Evidently some celebs will be spending a day teaching me to cook using Shreddies and Cheerios. Are they kidding? Really? Really.

OK there's been loads more...but you've probably had them all. But one more.

And this one I liked getting. But you're not to be interested in it. I repeat NOT to be interested in it. Autotrader is running a competition for people to write a review of their car and win £1000 for their troubles. But you're NOT to enter. I've entered and I'd like the money. Most of you are better writers than me so give me a break. Don't enter. You don't need the money. My entry is here..the typos are their fault. Not mine. Don't forget. Do not enter. Please. Pretty please.

Thursday 13 January 2011

50 not out

The office ground to a halt yesterday with the first of the 20-20 cricket matches. Some work was done through most of the commentary, but the last four overs were quite distracting. In fact very distracting. So distracting that I was late leaving for lunch with The Cats Mother. Some people are golf widows, some football widows...and some suffer for the cricketing cause.

On Saturday I went to the Cultural Highlight of 2011 - or - The Idea That Wouldn't Go Away.

Curiously it was The Cat's Mother's Brother's birthday. Henceforth he will be known as Up. Now the strange thing is, he was in the same class as me at school but neither of us remember each other. The stranger thing is that this was his 50th birthday. So you would assume that this year is also my 50th birthday year. But by some curious mathematical quirk, although I was born in 1961, I will be 37. I am currently 37 and quite content to stay there.

Now back to Up. He is musically talented, as indeed are the rest of his fact in becoming an accountant he missed his vocation. But to make up for it, for his birthday he hired a theatre and invited friends and family to put on little performances. For many people, that would be a horrifying, embarrassing experience. But his is surrounded by extrovert, talented people and they rose to the challenge. From 12.30 through to 6.30, there was a continuous stream of performances ranging from Sondheim to choral music; from music hall to Elton John; there were readings there was slapstick. The Boy played guitar and The Cat sang...together they did an excellent rendition of Your Song...and with the backing of professional musicians from the ENO, they did Is this the way to Amarillo. Up conducted the proceedings as well as performing a few pieces including Neil Hammonds 'Bankers'. Participants ranged in age from 5 to 90. I blew a whistle.

It was an amazing, life enhancing experience. And I can't think of a better way for anyone to celebrate their half century.

Wednesday 12 January 2011

The Burke and Hare entry

Another year, another photo challenge from Stickyfingers...and I rise to the challenge with a cheat. Obviously I didn't take any of these pictures. But they are body parts, and the first three are mine.

Here's my arm, which suffered a 'compression fracture' when I came off my Vespa at the bottom of my road. That didn't stop me continuing on to work, and going out for lunch, before deciding that sweating, feeling nauseous and having a very painful arm was probably not right. I went skiing two days later.

And here are my eyes. The optician said I should see the doctor because all the blood vessels are wiggly. The doctor said opticians should stop interfering. I just want to know that my precious eyes are ok. Which they are.

And finally, a fabulous work of art. Life size 'Airfix' kit by Wayne Chisnell

Tuesday 11 January 2011

All washed up

I received a text from my friend in Australia today - she lives near Brisbane:

"My parents will almost certainly lose their house. They are staying with my sister but even that is not safe - but no way out. My brother and his family are also stranded. The island is likely to flood by Thursday, but we have no way off. We will be OK, but the shop may not"

The floods in Australia are horrendous, and the death toll is rising daily as the rain keeps pouring down. The flooded area, I'm told, is the size of France and Germany - almost unimaginable.

So if you get a little moment...say a prayer

Monday 10 January 2011

Dancing Queen

I like dancing. I love dancing. In fact there is no better 'Dad dancer' than me. Give me a birthday party, a wedding or New Year celebration and I'll be there. Much to the dismay of The Boy and The Cat. But you reach a certain age when the disapproving eyes of offspring don't matter.

But there's another sort of dancing I like. Ballet. Yep poofs in tights is good for me. And just after the New Year we went to see a ballet that I first saw nigh on twenty years ago. The Tales of Beatrix Potter. I don't remember being a Beatrix Potter fan when I was in short trousers, but I guess something must have persuaded me to go and see it all those years ago. And I loved it. Of course this is not high-brow stuff, it's good fun stuff. And not a spandex wrapped crotch to be seen anywhere. Instead, the most exquisite costumes which are perfect reproductions of the original Tales drawings. How they dance in them I have no idea. They must sweat like Pigling Bland. Anyway, my first (and probably only) recommendation for the New Year is that should you get the chance do go and see The Tales Of Beatrix Potter. Take your offspring if you must; we left ours at home.