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Friday, 28 August 2009


Technologically speaking it’s not been a been a good couple of weeks. Admittedly some of it has been my fault. A great deal of it has not. I was not built for this age. I should be in the 1920s marvelling at a picture lantern. Not losing the will to live in the Car Phone Warehouse. Which by the way is the most ridiculously out dated name for a shop. Who has a car phone? It’s like popping to the Betamax Warehouse to buy a dvd.

A couple of weeks ago I went to the cinema one Sunday afternoon. I saw the Time Travellers Wife, which is alright, not sure I entirely understood it – just as I got my head round one concept (oh he can go forward and backwards) another one would spring up which would fox me – how could he write a list of the exact dates he would visit her? Anyway the sight of Eric Bana dancing around in the nip meant that I was fairly cheerful when I left the cinema, I checked my phone for messages, I had none, so I put my phone back in my bag. Or so I thought. I actually put it through both handles of my bag and it landed face down on some tiles and shattered the screen. Which isn’t handy when it’s a touch screen.

So I took it to the Car Phone Warehouse to make use of the insurance that I fork out for every month. Apparently they had to assess my claim as I have claimed on my insurance before. Yes, I have, when I hurled my phone in to a pint of water when I was asleep. This is why I have insurance, because I am clumsy, even when asleep. This is why I now wish to set the insurance wheels in motion. But no, I had to wait 72 hours to be assessed. So I thought I’d spend my time usefully backing up my phone. Or in my case, merrily deleting all the photos off both my phone and my computer. Did it properly too, can’t get any of them back. Great. I was mature about it. I cried.

I awoke on Monday ready to start the week afresh. Got to work and discovered that the central locking in my car had failed and I was locked in my car. I sat there for a while trying to decide whether to crawl out the boot or fling myself out the window. I wasn’t entirely sure if there was a release catch in the boot and I didn’t really fancy then being trapped in there. I also wasn’t too sure of my ability to Dukes of Hazard it out the window. However after a lot of pulling at handles and kicking the door (technical) I could get out the passenger side. Which is how I spent the three days before I could get it to the garage and have it fixed. So glamorous.

It was the strangest thing to break in a car. Almost as odd as the time that the wind caught my car door and knocked it off the hinges and I had to have the whole door realigned and glued back on.

Just so you know I drive a ford not a clown car where the doors fall off at random.

But now I have a car that opens and shuts and a temporary phone until mine is returned, still no photos though. Two out of three isn’t bad.

Facial Mutation

I still haven’t renewed my passport. Although my MP has replied to my ranty email and has said he’ll write to the home secretary about my assertion that renewing your passport shouldn’t cost the same as a new one. I picked up the forms for my passport on Saturday and then went to get photos taken. I was relishing the chance to get rid of my old passport photo as I look like a junkie on a come down. I’m really not sure what happened but I have had to put up with it for 10 years. So I paid 4 quid, followed the bizarre rules (hair tucked behind ears, face in the oval – it didn’t fit) and then got a set of photos which show I have progressed from a junkie on a come down to …a junkie who will mug you in the street with a dirty needle. I looked at them for ages (mainly in disgust) and then convinced myself they weren’t that bad. Then met my friends for lunch and they were all reduced to speechless hysteria and then one of them said “take anything you want just don’t hurt my face” so I have decided they were unusable.

So I thought I’d lard on the make up, tie my hair back rather than have it stuffed behind my ears and have the photos retaken. I was planning to do it on Monday. Then on Sunday a small lump appeared on my forehead. I thought it was a spot so attacked it, it wouldn’t die. By Sunday evening I looked like I had been hit on the head and had one of those amusing cartoon style head bumps. Monday I came to work and my whole forehead was swollen and my lump was enormous. I went to the chemist and he said it looked like a bite so gave me some stuff to put on it. When I woke up Tuesday I was looking a bit puffy so I thought I’d slap a lot of make up on. Sadly I couldn’t locate my eyelids as they were so swollen. On closer inspection the bridge of my nose had blended in to my massively swollen forehead and I looked horrific. I cried. The mature option. And then realised that I was only crying from one eye. Which amused me for a bit and then I went to the doctors. Was put on penicillin. Spent the day hiding from the world. Woke up Wednesday to discover even bigger face, one eye swollen shut and two massive eye bags. Cried again. Went back to doctor. Now on steroids. Hid from the world.

Today is Thursday and I have some semblance of a face, I still don’t have the most defined features so I am wearing my glasses so people are able to guess where my eyes should be. Sadly I am having to wear them half way down my nose in a librarian style as the top of my nose is still quite swollen. Such is life.

Of course this is the week when the person I like asks me out for a drink. I have refused on the grounds that I would have to wear a balaclava. I may be being overly vain but I am not that attractive at the best of times, I’d rather not ruin my chances totally by having Krakatoa on my forehead. Which is so swollen it’s now a fivehead. I really hope this goes down soon. It is deeply unpleasant. I hate it.

So still no passport photos. I shall have to put it on the back burner and do it next week when I have some shape to my face. If you see me tottering around looking like Bette Davis in What Happened to Baby Jane then I am off to have the snaps taken.

More Grumpy Letters

More I am thinking about writing another grumpy letter. This time the victim is living tv. Living tv is home to great programmes such as America’s Next Top Model and the brilliant Four Weddings, where brides attend each others weddings and then slag them off. I love living tv, so I probably won’t write to them as it would be heartbreaking for both of us. However I am very upset with them, so maybe when Four Weddings has finished and before the new series of America’s Next Top Model I will perform a brief boycott. A week or so, but not when there is anything I actually want to watch on.

The strop is prompted by an advert that I saw the other day. It’s for a programme called Dating in the Dark which is due to start soon (and looks appalling). Three girls and three boys go on blind dates together, but here’s the twist, all the dates take place in the pitch black. They see how they get on and then the lights are turned on. In the advert one girl is seen snogging a bloke in the darkened room. Then cut back to her chatting to the other girls where she is flushed with embarrassment and says in the tones normally reserved for telling someone you’ve run over their cat “and then the lights went on….and Sean was ginger”. Cue raucous laughing and gasps of horror from the other girls. How charming. I have a feeling if she’d come out and said in horror “then the lights went on and Sean was Chinese” it would be met with embarrassed silence at her racism and discrimination. But ginger – that’s fine. Let’s tell the world how ugly gingers are, let’s be embarrassed to find them attractive.

It’s just rude. But presumably if this poor Sean guy turned round and said “well you have a massive nose, so big it’s repulsive, what’s that about Schnozzy?”, he’d be told off for bullying and being rude as it’s a feature about herself that she can’t change. Unlike hair colour which presumably should be dyed on emergence from the womb.

I am only slightly ginger but it still gets commented on regularly. Perhaps people envy my ability to grow interestingly coloured hair. Perhaps they are just bored. Maybe I shall start a bizarre streak of prejudice against people with brown hair. Everytime someone with brown hair walks past I shall collapse in to paroxysms of mirth whilst pointing and going “oh my god you’ve got brown hair”. “poo head!”. I don’t really think anyone would take that as the brown haired person having the problem. I however would look very special indeed.

That was quite a rant but I do find it irritating. In my mind I should be celebrated (and not just for my hair colour). I have never had to dye my hair. Surely we should be mocking the people born with such non descript mousy hair who have to pay to get theirs dyed? People who have curly hair? People whose hair is too straight? Or perhaps we should all just get on with it.

Gosh that was a bit of a rant. Perhaps I won’t send it to living tv. Perhaps I should send it to the UN as a call for peace. Just call me Kofi Anan