Friday, 31 August 2007

In which I get A SHINY TOY.

In the form of a MacBook.


I am excited!

But I do not know how to use it.

I will learn my very best, but I do not like not knowing all the shortcuts. It is a pain in the bottom.

So. I am in Birmingham, England, in the home of my parents. (I have come to do the training for my new yoof job; the company is based in the middle lands of the England). They are not here. (My parents. We are back-to-the-story.) They are in Scilly. The home of my parents is for sale.

It used to be my home, and it is the first time I have returned here since they put it up for sale.

I wept.

A lot.

On entering the house.

And in fact for the fifteen minutes prior to entering the house. And if I'm honest, the fifteen minutes afterwards too.

I may document it. With my new toys. (I also got a digital camera, a video camera and an ipod. Do not come and rob me. Please.) I will take photos and video footage of me in my house in which someone else will soon be coming to live.


Damn them.

PS. Woo! A MacBook! Pro!

Tuesday, 28 August 2007

My brain.

I have been considering. And I have come to a conclusion.

I feel I should have further exploited the beach security alert for witty and whimsical blog purposes.

I have missed a trick.

It is rather reflective of my slightly woolly and non-creative current state of brain.

I can only apologise.

I assume it's because at some unconscious level my brain is in fact feverishly compiling Important and Detailed Lists of Things To Do Before We Move.

It could be happening right now.

And a bit like a computer with its RAM, I am running on about 3. (I do not know much about RAM, except that the puter hub so cleverly built has about 1,500 RAM, and when we are doing too much computery goodness, it drops and goes red and says "Three left! Only three!" And stuff.)

So. My RAM is low and this accunts for the poor quality of recent posts and indeed the trick that I missed.

In connected but slightly tangential news, hub is afraid that he is getting stupider.

(I have known this for some time but did not wish to upset him.)

On Monday night, being the groovy and rock 'n roll couple that we are, we did the test the nation IQ test.


Anyway. The point is, that his IQ had gone down by 23 points from when he last did the test the nation IQ test.


And a mighty 58 points from when he once did one on the interweb.

All of which has led him to conclude that being a maker of furniture is good for the brawn but bad for the brain.

When we move to Brighton we shall be rectifying this.

I do not yet know how.

But we shall begin by compiling a list of Possible Security Alerts Facing a Kentish Beach and take it from there!

Join in!

1) Suicide shrimps
2) A suspicious looking limpet
3) Marines

Invading crabs? What? WHAT?

I had a rubbish bank holiday.

I will not lie.

I was meant to go to Cornwall to see my little-middle sister (It is not that she is little around the middle, although she is, but rather than I have two little sisters of which she is the middle one. If that makes sense. You know it does.) before she embarks on a six-month-round-the-world adventure. But on Thursday night, just as I was excitedly warming up to pack (knee-bends, finger-flexes and so forth) she informed me that it was "not great timing".

Her boy (who is a bit errant) had recently volunteered to go to Swaziland for a charity. And had been suddenly posted. (Not in an envelope. I don't think. Although to be entirely honest, I don't actually know.) So they had only three days left together. Which they obviously wanted to spend in a flurry of intense love-activity.

Without me.

I cannot understand it.

In an effort to save a little of my woo-woo-three-day-holiday spirit, hub and I carefully and time-consumingly selected a portion of your best British coast to visit on Saturday.

I drove for many hours. We arrived at the coast. There was an old man with a hat and a toll booth. He told us the aforementioned portion of coast was closed.

For security reasons.

I wept, dear readers, I did. Shamelessly and in the car.

I had so been looking forward to an afternoon frolicking with my hub by the sea.

After I had recovered (a bit) we drove some more and ended up at a slightly grotty seaside town.


There was a beach.

And there was the sea.

And even though it was VERY late in the day, the sun was still out.

So we had an ice-cream and paddled a bit (up to our knees) before clambering back in the Tickle-mobile and setting off home.

I know we will be moving to the sea in almost no time at all, but still.

It was a bit of a damp squib.


There is little worse than a Grumpy Tickle.

Thursday, 23 August 2007

The last romance

Hub and I didn't have a first dance. It wasn't really that sort of wedding. (It was in a field.)

But if it had been that sort of wedding, I think it would have been Don't Ask Me To Dance by Arab Strap.

You know I've felt like this before
I know you have felt it too
But maybe I don't want to dance
Cause I've not had as much as you

Our lives did not begin
The very moment that we met
I don't want to hold your hand
There is so much that I'll forget

You're no angel from above
You're the last girl I will love

Possibly a little too ironic for our own good, but still the most romantic song that almost exists I think.

Listen a bit (I don't know how to do listen a lot.)

PS. I realise I am posting a lot at the moment. I wonder if I should consider more deeply the old adage "quality not quantity", but frankly, I can't be buggered.

La crise!

I am having an existential crisis!

I did not know, until I read the existential section of the book I am reading about different kinds of therapy (kindly recommended by la bobo).

It is dreadful!

I am going to smoke cigarettes in cafes and wander the streets in the rain wearing a trenchcoat.

I might grow a moustache.

I am finding all of this reading about the different approaches to therapy completely fascinating. And with every one I think "Yes, that's it, that's definitely the one! The one for me!"

I am rather impulsive.

What is rather heartening, and rather wonderful, is that it has made me realise just how much I believe in people, in how precious we are, and in our ability to grow and change for the better.

There is one exercise (I am not sure if this is the right terminology. And I am used to working in theatre, where we do exercises all the time. Actually, I call them games, but important people call them exercises. They are not to do with starjumps. Anyway.) which is from the constructivist section (get me!) in which the therapist asks the client to write a description of herself as if she were the main character in a play.

It is called self-characterisation.

Now I am sure that this is to do with all my drama training, but I have been thinking about it a lot.

The idea is for the therapist to get a real picture of the way the person sees themself, to understand more clearly inside where the person lives. It provides a window into the way we invent and create ourselves.

The next step is that the therapist writes an alternative version, which is then worked on with the person until it gets to a description of someone that the person feels it would be possible to be.

Then they try it out for a week. Or so. And see.

See how they are in this new skin. How others react. How things change.

See it is possible to change.

I think this is A Good.

I am sure that from my naive standpoint, there is a great deal more to it than this, and there are many associated complications. But the point is, that it gave me hope.

Which is A Good.

As I said.

Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Path #2

I have enrolled on a counselling course.

It is big news, I know. I would be surprised if any of you are still on your chairs.

This whole theatre thing you see, has been getting me down. I have done the theatrical career equivalent of falling down the back of the sofa. The thing is, I quite like it down here. It is warm and cosy and there are lots of other exciting lost things to play with.

I may have stretched the metaphor too far.

The point is that I don't know if I am happy with the way things are going. Career-wise.

I couldn't be happier about moving by the sea. That is ace.

But I think I might have to face up to the fact that I will never be Peter Hall. And more importantly, that I am not really sure I want to be Peter Hall. His plays are boring.

Anyway. So for a while now I have been thinking what else I might be able to do.

And I thought about being a therapist. This is partly to do with my overwhelming positive experience over the past year or so, but also it was that other path that I didn't take when I was 18.

Does anyone else have one of those?

When we were about 15 at school, they made us write a list of the jobs we would like to do (I think the idea was to help us choose which A levels to take) and mine said actress and psychologist.

And I find, some considerable years later, that I am still interested in it.

So I am going to do a counselling course alongside my new job with the yoof, and see how it and I rub along together.

See how my other path actually pans out.


Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Miss T

You might have noticed, those of you who are kind and indeed committed enough to have returned here I hesitate to say repeatedly, but certainly more than twice, that I like tea.

I like tea a lot.

I consider a day in which under five cups of tea have been let us say enjoyed, to be an abject failure.

*takes a sip of tea* (fourth cup)

I sometimes consider that I should perhaps drink more water. Like those magazines and programmes and all tell you to do.

But, can I be frank?

It's not tea.

It's just not.

I worry about my hydration levels.

So I have some more tea.

Sometimes I wonder if I will turn into a cup of tea.

I think I would like it.

Friday, 17 August 2007

On Friday Afternoon.

Sometimes the unremitting, total and complete cynicism of others gets me down.

I wonder if it is a quality posessed solely by menopausal receptionists. Women who have spent their entire lives trapped behind a desk in front of which everyone walks. Watching others gaily and freely wandering around the open-plan office, exchanging pleasantries with their co-workers, occasionally making a cup of tea, or even popping out for a Special Cup Of Coffee.

The menopausal receptionist fumes. Quietly. And considers what colour she will paint her nails this evening. And whether her husband will once again awake from a nightmare at four o'clock in the morning, and cling to her like a child, preventing all chance of returning to that welcome unconsciousness that only sleep can provide her with.

She darkly refreshes Google, scouring the various travel-watch sites for any news of roadworks which will prevent her from visiting her elderly parents-in-law at the weeknd.

She smokes.

Benson and Hedges.

And considers that she could have been a hairdresser. Or a god.

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

Goodbyes (with hugs)

Last night I said goodbye to my therapist.

This is not the title of a Smiths song, but is in fact My Real Life.

It was a bit harrowing.

So with the move to Brighton and the starting of the new life and all of that, there is some stuff in the old life that I have to be doing the finishing with.

This includes my therapist. Who is lovely.

A year and a half ago I was in a horrible place. I do not mean this geographically you understand. I mean it americanically. Like they say. "A bad place" and stuff.

So my bad place. It was horrid and dark and I did not think I would ever get out again. It got as dark and gloomy as dark places ever get.

I was scared.

I wanted help.

And help came in the form of a sofly spoken Australian lady.

For the past year and a half she has been gradually shedding light in my darkness, untangling my tangles and planting little shoots of spangles that flare up whenever the dark threatens to loom.

She has helped me profoundly.

I thank her.

And was very relieved when I was allowed to hug her goodbye (one never knows with all these therapy boundaries and whatnot).

Life is changing, la la la... (I am trying not to be nervous about it).

Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Speaking of getting older...

Proof, if proof were needed that when I get old, I will simply turn into Diana Rigg (Dame).

PS. This is me. Cunningly disguised as an older lady. You would never recognise me in the street, never!

Monday, 13 August 2007

The same but different.

I had a lovely time.

I did not have to show my arse.

It was a relief.

We stayed in the same flat as we had when we were 18, and played cricket like we did when we were 18 (I did not, I sat in the sun and watched and gossiped and drank wine, occasionally complimenting the boys on their marvellous throwing and such like) and we sat on the beach in the dark like we did when we were 18, and we sang a lot of songs like we did when we were 18.

It was good.

There was less snogging.

In fact, there was no snogging at all.

This was a bit of a shame, but with having a hub and all, I thought it would be bad form. (Hub was at home. Going to beer festivals. And getting so drunk that he fell asleep on the bus and ended up in Croydon. Then fell asleep again and ended up back in town. And finally made it home on his third go. Foolish boy.)

This time, two people had dogs. (One was a puppy. He was really good.)

Next time, some people might have children. (We are doing it again in another ten years. Fingers crossed we will all be alive.)

What was nice and odd and nice was that it has sort of made me feel younger; like re-visiting and re-experiencing that place and the dynamics of that particular group of friends has reminded me a bit of where I came from and who I am.

And as I sat in the sunshine on some oddly spongy grass looking out over the sea yesterday, I realised that I quite like who I have become, and I am *whispers* happy.

It is good.

PS. I have just been informed that I have won a thing! It is exciting. Thank you Anna, and thank you Mike. Gosh, things are all nice.

Friday, 10 August 2007

My arse.

I am going to Devon. In one hour and nine minutes. It is exciting.

It is also a bit strange.


But strange.

You see the last time I went to this place in Devon was ten years ago with a group of my very dearest friends after we had finished our A levels.

It is a sort of ten year anniversary.

(I am a bit apprehensive. This is mostly because the weekend might involve swimming and therefore people who last saw me semi-naked at 18 seeing me semi-naked now which let me assure you, is a very different kettle of fish.)

Oh semi-nudity! And its friend, accompanying dreadful anxiety!

I like my friends. I hope they like me enough not to be put off by the sight of my arse. (Not naked arse. I do not want to lose them forever.)

I will let you know how I get on.

(On the plus side, sea! Again! That's three times in a month! A bit like it will be when we move by the sea. Only less often. Not sure that was really worth including.)

Tuesday, 7 August 2007

How a young heart really feels

I lay the blame for my rampant romanticism squarely at the feet of Matthew Hooper (aged 7.)

One day, as I was doing something Very Important in Class 3 (I suspect it was Cutting, or indeed, Sticking) I was interrupted by David Sutton. David Sutton was older than me (I was later hopelessly in love with his brother, Richard Sutton). He told me that I had to go and look in a particular book on the book table because Matthew Hooper had left a present for me.

The book table ran along the whole length of the classroom wall and overlooked the playground. I spent a lot of time there, rootling through for treasures. I loved books and read an awful lot.

I began to search. I can't remember which book it was; the fact of the present rather blocked out that particular bit of information. In any case, a popular children's book. Let's say.

So I found it. And opened it. And inside, lying lined up between the front cover and the first page were three daisies.

From Matthew Hooper.

I took them very carefully and put them in the pocket of my school dress.

On arriving home that afternoon, I filled my flask's yellow lid with water and placed them gently in it.

Then for reasons I can't explain, I put it on the windowsill of the downstairs toilet.

I don't remember ever thanking Matthew Hooper, or in fact even speaking to him. What I do remember is that thereafter and for a while, at the end of playtime when the bell rang and we all had to stand still, he would make sure he was standing next to me. And he would hold my hand.

I'm not.

Dear readers, do a thing for me.

Put your hands out in front of you, palms towards your body, fingertips touching.

Keeping them in the same position, bring them so they are hovering above your tummy.

Now describe a small dome shape in the air starting above the navel, and ending below.

This, my dear readers, was what a friend of mine did the other day on seeing me for the first time in a long while.

Accompanied by the words:

"Oh my god, are you...?" (aforementioned action)

What is a girl to do?

Thursday, 2 August 2007


This is my new look. I hope you like it. Knowing my exceptionally poor attention span, I will be changing it again soon. I am sure the accepted wisdom is that one should not consistently change one's blog in order not to alienate one's dear readers. I am hoping, however, that the changes which are bound to come will add a positive element of surprise, thereby attracting more readers, dropping by to see what today's scheme could possibly be.

Or something.

Anyway. George Bernard Shaw. I would have thought, in an exceptionally judgmental way, that I would not like George Bernard Shaw. Dry and intellectual, I would think to myself. No gags, I would also think. And a distinct lack of physical vitality and stuff.

I would be wrong!

Go and see Saint Joan at the National by George Bernard Shaw. It is ace. It has banging and stomping and men in armour. Also, it is funny. And as well, it is interesting in a very robust and muscular way. It was directed by Marianne Elliot, whose Therese Raquin I loved last year. It was seething and simmering and chock full of lust and guilt. But it was a similar surprise; I thought it would be all dull and drawing-roomy. This leads me to conclude that Marianne Elliot is VEER clever.

So, Saint Joan. All very good, apart from Paterson Joseph, who while completely brilliant in Peep Show, appears to lack the ability to speak lines, and where possible, sings them instead.

PS. We have a meeting about the plays! Those very ones you generously helped me a lot with earlier this year. We have a lady who is clever at producing who will help us raise money, and we are meeting with the theatre to talk about doing them properly for three weeks with a proper design and actors and everything. This is excellent news. I am heartily cheered by it.


Wednesday, 1 August 2007

Who nose what to do? (Do you see what I did? A-HA-HA-HA!)

I am suffering from smelly feet.

I do not know whether this is a wise thing to share with you as I am well aware that most of you are desperately in love with me, or at the very least lust, and this will off-put you forever.

It's a chance I'll have to take.

I am perplexed! Perplexed I say!

I have never suffered from smelly feet before! Not even once! In my whole life!

Hub thinks it is to do with not wearing socks, but I am firmly on the side of blaming a particular pair of shoes. They are my work shoes. I wear them when I am pretending to be business-like and such. But the overpowering foot-odour tends to knock the business-like stuff on the head. Quite hard.

Oh tell me dear ones, what can I do?
I do not know whether leather or pu;*
I cannot tell
If the ghastly smell
Is from my feet, or from the shoe.


*Pu. It is a man-made material from which cheapy shoes are crafted.