New Ears

Disaster last night, when my Sony cd cassette recorder WITH REMOTE refused to play my (cd) audio book.  I immediately flicked about with it and finally got it working, but it’s happened a few times lately, and my old cassettes don’t always play – it might be a Sony, but it’s not alright.

To the interweb thing.  Well goodie, Sony doesn’t even make this model anymore.  Ebay doesn’t sell it.  If I want a cd player I have to buy an ugly box thing and manually move the radio dial myself!!  No remote controlled presets here!!!  As for cassette players…

It’s a whole new world my dear.  I will have to – what, MP3 it?  Ipod that?  I haven’t a clue.

Naturally I have turned to youth and called Lilsister a whopping 9 years younger than me.  I began my tale of woe and as soon as I said ‘MP3’ she audibly moved the phone from her ear whilst muttering ‘I don’t get that shit’.  I asked her not to underestimate the significance of the information she was receiving and she laughed.  How can I listen to my plays now?

I am going to have to (Jesus) sit down with Hangsandwich or Boo Boo, both IT experts, to get them to explain to me how to work an ipod and then how to transfer my millions of cds to said ipod, and how to listen to them on what I believe is called an ipod ‘dock’ (headphones are for walking).  I pity them already, and I am afraid.

There is hope, as I type I am listening to rainforest sounds on youtube via the interweb.  We stress heads like our rainforest sounds, you see.

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When Michael Jackson Did NOT Come to Dublin

Just because you have some sellotape on your fingers does not give you the right to parade around as a Michael Jackson impersonator.

I had decided to forgo watching my beloved Dublin football team play what turned out to be an absolute belter of a match against Mayo in order to see this cretin.  I had hoped that he would be bad, that wasn’t the problem, the problem was that I showed up at 8pm and he came on after a bloke with glasses and a tracksuit who sang Bob Marley songs, at an unholy 11pm.

He was short and fat with greased back long hair tied into a ponytail.  He had a hugely receding hairline.  Then he put on a black hat and shades and began to screech Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’.  It was ok.  The Baker said a professional troupe of impersonators were in Dublin at the moment and perhaps he was one of them, then he failed to hit the high notes on Billie Jean and we said no way.  Then at the end he said he was part of a professional troupe of impersonators who were in Dublin and I continued drinking the beers from a large ‘five beers in a bucket’ promotion the pub was doing.  Middlebro kept shaking his head and saying it was wrong wrong wrong.  He is a bit of a purist when it comes to music.

A lot of people then began grabbing their crotches and doing really bad dance moves.  A group of badly dressed (meaning barely dressed) girls with extensions then chatted up the non-impersonator and the tracksuited singer and once again I wondered how people like that could score whilst I can’t.

Next morning I woke up in splendour in the guest FLOOR of Middlebro and The Baker’s new house and Middlebro knocked politely to tell me he was heading in for a beer poo but would do the fry up immediately afterwards.

 

No, Madonna, One is NOT a Lonely Number

I have begun a new job, and breakfast is an issue.

I need to clarify firstly that breakfast, for me, needs to be had in total silence, and preferably alone, enhancing the silence aspect.  It is the start of the day, and I need to ease into it.  Quietly.  This ambience is only altered on the weekends, when I sit with my little bowl of fruit nuts and yoghurt in front of the telly, to watch cake making on a cookery show.  Again though, I do not omit any words, as I like it to be QUIET.

In my last job they had a large canteen where I could come into work early, sit at the corner table with my back to the rest of the slaves, and read and not say anything.

 The people in my new job are very friendly.  And they have a tiny canteen with four tiny tables.  In the morning, when I come in, they sit together and talk to each other and occasionally talk to me (they’ve since learned not to keep this up).  However, even though I am at my table alone, and eight of them are at the next table laughing and being normal, I am unhappy.

So!

I have taken to eating in the carpark, which is utterly fabulous.  I park the car, jump into the back seat for a good old stretch and pop a green tea bag into my travel mug which is already full of expectant hot water, brew the tea, then pull out my book and plastic bowl of breakfast, take my little spoon out of its plastic sandwich bag and munch away, in complete solitude and silence.

Yes people can see me, but I don’t care.  The beauty of being one month away from turning 39 is that you are just too old to care what people think.  Anybody walking by and staring gets a good stare back, and when they jump I know I’ve won.

Until today.

The blonde TWAT.  She keeps parking about two spaces away from me – I get there first then IT arrives – who takes as long to do her makeup in her carspace as I do to eat, drink green tea and read my book.  Seriously, at LEAST twenty minutes.  I try not to look but I throw the odd filthy grimace at her, not that she can see as she is ENGROSSED in her rear view mirror and always, ALWAYS applying more foundation.  Can you imagine how much slop is on your face if you just keep adding to it for twenty whole minutes?

 This would all be fine except to do this, she has to keep her engine running (?) and her radio blaring at full blast.  If you’ve parked your car, turn the engine off.  I cannot stress this enough.  She is not running air-con, or heating (this being the Irish summer, there is little need for both, as it is warm enough to not be too hot, and not cold enough to require rugging up or additional heating.  In otherwords – just right).  There is no NEED to keep spitting out toxins into our fragile environment.  Selfish, blonde twat!

I need not go into the rubbish being spewed from her radio whilst all of this is going on.  Suffice it to say that the ‘’presenters’’ are of the loud, crude and non-funny variety.

Then there was today.  I parked in my space, being half asleep, forgetting that twat would soon be here.  I jumped into the back and began the brewing.  I hear a roaring engine and a DJ being really, really unfunny (I knew this because his alleged sidekick was guffawing really loudly in response to his non-funny observation on modern life type non-comedy).

It reversed into its spot, meaning me in the back seat and her in the front were right beside each other.  It also can’t reverse in a straight line so when parked, there is very little space between us.  And I am a firm believer in the Personal Territorial Bubble.

This was awful, except literally ten seconds later, an older, more annoying blonde twat pulled up on my opposite side, in her even louder red sports car, with a DIFFERENT horrible radio station on – an eavesdropping ASSAULT!!!  Cue rear view mirror, pile of foundation time and I felt trapped in an idiot sandwich made of my pain and their horror.  And I still had to do a full day’s work!!!

I am now considering parking at the far end of the park, further to walk yes but quiet, silent and twat-free.  I should not have to make these decisions so early in the day.

A Flood of Sorts

Just back from watching Ireland HAMMER Argentenia in the rugby with Panties, Hangsandwich and members of both of their families, not a game I know anything about but that was okay as I had some excellent company, homemade Victoria Spongecake (possibly the best cake in the world?) and the undivided attentions of Panties’ three year old nephew, who kept asking me how his Superman character could get out of whatever particular difficulty he happened to find himself in whilst on his DS.   I had very little to offer, not being familiar with laser eyes, icy cold breath and invisible suits,  not to mention the DS, which just looks like a stupid gadget with two too many screens on it.  My lack of knowledge was regularly rewarded by said three year old running off and checking with his Dad about viable escape options and sad sighs of pity.  At one stage he told me he was three, and how many numbers was I?  I replied ”five, of course,” and he asked how this was possible.  I felt old, and waited for Hangsandwich to pour me more tea.

This is possibly my first social occasion in a while, as I have been in a bit of a funk for the last week or so.  I ended up not going to my social singles occasion, after the bus that was to deposit me at the pub failed to turn up, rendering me late, which was not allowed, and I slinked off home after waiting forty minutes for any mode of transport to turn up (taxis also refused to make an appearance).  This brought on a mini-depression and feelings of uselessness and failureness and general no-life-edness.  Add to this that the one I wink at when he isn’t looking is in a VERY serious relationship and life in general has been very blue, with plenty of black moments.

On such occasions I like to take to the bed and indulge in possibly my most favourite past time ever, which is lying in a warm bed listening to music.  I did this today and for some reason the Take That song ”The Flood” cheered me up.  Maybe it was the way Robbie Williams said ”watch your mouth son or you’ll find yourself floating home” but something ended and I started to feel a little better.  Then I got up and the water has been cut off in my house, but this didn’t cause me to go into a rage, so I must be getting along.  I had a ladywhizz and didn’t flush the toilet, made sure I had enough water for tea, and departed for the social rugby visit.

These are the things I want:

1. Beloved to dump his girl and whisk me away for romantic weekend, and tell me that even though I am incapable of being in a relationship right now, that is fine as he will wait for me to be ready, but sleep with me at every opportunity till that happens (yes I KNOW that this will never come off but I can dream can’t I?).

2. To pass my second horrible financial exam in January and get out of the horrific job I am in and into something that gives me money and a distraction from Beloved.  This is actually possible, as I have full control over studying.  Hurray!

3. To begin to look fabulous.  This week, in the depths of my funk, I began exercising again and already feel a little lighter.  I also only ate about half a tonne of rubbish, as opposed to several of my usual tonnes, and I have noticed that ONE of my bellies has begun to reduce, and that I have a shape to my hips.  Soon I will even look womanly!

4. Mammy’s fake cough is back.   Refer posts from this time last year.  I cannot STAND someone hocking their lungs up on me, let alone someone with nothing to hock.  It gives the hocking action a hollow,dry and cackling sound, and turns my (decreasing!) stomach.

5. To visit the Dublin Christmas markets.  Panties mentioned these earlier and I jumped in the air saying hurray, when are we going and she said she did not want a repeat of last year.  I had no idea what she meant.  She meant that last year, myself and Trevor were to meet her at 5pm at the Christmas markets.  Myself and Trevor met at noon, and went to the pub for lunch, but ended up having dirty pints instead.  At 7pm, after I cried on Grafton Street after seeing the Christmas carrol singers, we met Panties, excessively drunk, and Panties had to drive us both home.  I had no recollection of any of this, until Panties reminded me that, put upon friend that she is, she gave myself and Trevor cupcakes from the markets she had attended ALONE, and that when we got to Trevor’s house, we ate them with tea made by Boo Boo, who was judging us severely.

So the markets should be fun, then.

H? As In the Letter?

”I need a new car,” I said to Mammy the other day.  I am moving back into the house I co-own with the bank, and in order to get around I will need some wheels, as my legs are too old to handle walking everywhere, and at 38 (sigh) I really shouldn’t be borrowing Lilsister’s car no more.

Cue phonecalls to my insane UncleCarExpert for advice, which he promptly refused to give as he was going to accompany us on our spree.  This also meant that my mad AuntieFabulous would also be tagging along, as she is mad, and loves any excuse to get out of the house and meet people, even if they are used car salesmen called H – ”as in the letter” – yes he actually said that down the phone.

Mammy and I rocked up to UncleCarExpert’s massive house about 10.30amish, and remembered that a member of the Dubliner’s lived next door, which was nice, although we didn’t see him.  There was some home renovations going on, and rave music was blasting out of the living room, not really what I expected from the traditional Irish singer but there you go, it is the weekend and we all need to relax in our own way.

As UncleCE showed us his amazing back garden (which I have since booked for my 40th) AuntieFabulous popped her head out from the upstairs window, bra on and not much else, to say she was getting fabuloused up and would be with us shortly.  She then popped down, still in bra, and told us she had just lost two stone in weight, so myself and Mammy admired her (in fairness, she is a BABE, she may as well show us) and then told her to get ready.

Eventually, AuntieF found her heels, and a top, and we were off, to Dublin’s northside, which none of us know anything about.  Naturally we got lost, which was fine as Mammy and UncleCE argued in the front and myself and AuntieF talked about her sex life in the back.  She also asked me how my husband was, and seemed confused that I had mislaid him, then agreed with me that it was best to leave him wherever he happened to be.

Eventually locating H, who is in actual fact called ”Habib” (he believes no-one in Ireland can pronounce the name, are we that ignorant?  Possibly.) Mammy and UncleCE pointed out the cars that they liked, and promptly got into them and tried to drive off, until I told them I didn’t need a mini van, or a giant engine, thank you very much, this was a car that only needed to fit me and a handbag, as I was alone, abandoned, and would never have nine kids to squeeze in.  Jesus.

After much arguing, we selected a little silver number, which I very much liked, and which UncleCE pronounced to be ”acceptable”, so I took her for a test spin, well I sat in the passenger seat and UncleCE drove.  H gave us a dummy licence plate, which sat in the front window until I got a chance to drive and it flew out and onto the road, causing UncleCE to jump out and nearly get run over by those terrible northside drivers who have no manners or patience.  To conclude, the car was deemed acceptable, and when I got back I took a photo to show Lilsister, which became obscured as AuntieF draped herself over it, Monroe style, to emphasise its and her own finer points.

Some excellent haggling by UncleCE concluded, I popped back into H’s office to hand over a deposit and sign the paperwork, and naturally AuntieF came with me and asked for five business cards, which she got.  The meeting concluded, I shook H’s hand, as did AuntieF, but she also received a kiss for her troubles too, for I think H was quite in love.  She asked him to put a bow round the car when it was ready for pickup, and he looked quite serious when he said he would do his best. 

I do like to unwrap presents.

We Talk to God and Receive the Delaney Cup

A glorious sunny day, a rarity in Dublin, with light winds, bright rays, the Boys in Blue aka the Dublin Gaelic football team, beating the hell out of arch rivals Meath at the truly amazing Croke Park – and a couple of rows from the front in the Cusack stand, four very hungover and crimson-faced supporters, all hating the sun for making the alcohol, still in their systems from the night before, sweat and drip out of them.

First in the row was myself, constantly turning my arms over as I had NO sunblock on and my goth skin was beginning to burn, and how.  My sunglasses sliding off my nose, my makeup refusing to keep my rosy cheeks pale.  Next to me an equally beetroot Lilsister, panting in her Dublin top, fighting with me over our fourth bottle of water bought since getting off the tram in the city centre mere moments before.  Next to her, Scarydancer, equally dripping, and praying for rain, and splendidly at the end, Papabear, with an actual wet face, loving the heat, but cursing its intensity in our unprotected area.

Two halves later and as Dublin lift the Delaney cup, as proud Leinster champions, we continue to insult and argue with the lame Meath supporters around us who tell us that we might have beaten them but not by much, to which we reply look over there lads, there’s the cup, being lifted over a blue shirt – and get back to your farms, your sheep are missing you.  Hmmpf.

So it was a long weekend, with Little Star’s christening taking place on the Saturday, and promises of coming over for a couple of drinks afterwards, and a couple of drinks only, quickly falling by the wayside as the pints flowed and my little water bottle that held no water, but gin, started to go down a treat (firstly tested for its authenticy by myself and Papabear outside the church – burning chests meant that yes, it was definitely gin in there).   Little Star was christened, with Lilsister as Godmother, and Preggers and Firstbrother at the top of the church silently mumbling their allegiance to a God Firstbrother doesn’t believe in, much to my delight (being of similar persuasion myself).  I then interrupted a Catholic Church rant by Papabear, and advised him that whilst he may believe religion to be the root of all evil, we were guests in a house and should behave accordingly.

Straight over to the pub afterwards, no mean feat as I was wearing a DRESS, yes, one of THOSE, and some shoes – so walking was slow, and awkward.  Bottles of beer flowed (the three for a tenner routine being used as an excuse), followed by gin, followed by extra gin from my little bottle, followed by pints.  Platters of unhealthy but amazing food came out, and rather than queuing with the mortals to get some, Mammy grabbed a whole platter for our table, Sisinlaw took a whole plate and dumped garlic mayo on it, we topped up our beers, and feasted.   Mammy left early with Little Niece N and Little Star, using their tiredness as an excuse to get away from the madness.   A man came on and sang about six songs on his guitar, and was roundly declared to be ”crap” by all of us.  I begged Sisinlaw and Babybro to leave as I was supposed to be sharing a taxi with them, and instead left them all merrily (till 3.30am I later found out) chatting away as I hitched a taxi with The Baker and Middlebro, who brought me home in the complete opposite direction to their flat so Middlebro could come into the apartment and locate some partysmokes that Scarydancer may have left behind (he left empty-handed, and dejected, and practically sober).

Sunday morning drew over me with my head coming out of my eye, so I quickly rose, closed all the blinds in the apartment to keep the sun out, and feasted on headache tablets and my delicious scrambled eggs.  Exhausted by the effort I took back to the bed, and begged the universe for the strength to face Meath at Croke Park later.  Lilsister and Scarydancer arrived home, looking horrific, and we three soldiers made it in to join our men in the Great Fight.

It was an early night but it didn’t make getting up for my horrific job any easier.  I woke to find I had not bought my fruit for my breakfast, meaning I had to go into work EARLY, buy fruit and yoghurt at the supermarket and eat it in our horrible canteen, which has no actual dishes, but plastic bowls and spoons UGH.  Happily, I noticed that as I left work and went to collect my things from the fridge, some IDIOT had knocked over my yoghurt and left it spilling away in the door of the fridge, sans lid, so I threw it out, stuck my tongue out at the mess left behind, and closed the door.  We had no teabags in our kitchen today, and no spoons to take the tea bags out with – you want to treat me like an animal I shall bloody behave like one.

I am currently at Mammy’s where I have received chicken and cake, in that order, and am mellowed and ready for bed once again.  We have just re-watched the match and are more impressed with our team than ever.

Up the Dubs!

Running Back Home

Keeping the running spirit alive this morning, with several 8 second bursts intertwined with listening to Freddie telling me that he would rock me, to which I spluttered along and most amazingly, did not get a stitch afterwards!!!  Must be improving.

Luckily just as the rain kicked in, Mammy spotted me as she drove by, dropping my little Niece N back to Babybro and Sisinlaw, who took the night off from parenthood to inhale alcohol and chickenwings at one of Dublin’s bigger comedy clubs.  I swiftly obtained a lift from Mammy, and brought little Niece N back to the hungover arms of her daddy, and got a cuddle and babykiss for my efforts.  I perked up, revived, and strolled back to the apartment for a big wash as I was very sweaty.  I was only awoken from my cleaning operations by Hangsandwich appearing at the door with a tupperware box filled with cupcakes, lovingly prepared by Panties this a.m. and driven over, delivered and deposited to her ever grateful friend. 

To think I could have stayed living in Australia, with their wine, fine dining and silly accents, when all this awaited me.  I was a fool to ever leave.