Googling Myself

12 Mar

It’s not that I’m vain, or anything, but I do occasionally Google my name (okay, I am vain; but can you blame me with this hair?).  At least I don’t check to see if I’ve got a Wikipedia page – no, really, I don’t, honest…

I have to Goggle myself when I’m submitting poems, because so many editors exclude poems already published online, even if it was on my now defunct poetry blogs which can no longer be accessed.

I Gaggled four poems and my name this morning and I was disappointed to find one of them in the 2010 comments section of a poetry blog, which means I can’t use it.  

The Haggle brought up a pleasant surprise, however – which isn’t always a given when you Giggle yourself; all I’m going to say is tea bags/washing line/shame…. Fortunately, I’m such a prolific blogger that the embarrassing photo is hidden way down in my Boggle listing.  

I discovered that a poem published by English Pen last year in their Dictionary of Made-Up Words was featured on their website earlier this year, as part of an ongoing promotion of the book.  I didn’t know it was there.  I’m chuffed!

Even better – it was retweeted!  It’s nice to be twit.

You may say it was coincidence, but I think it’s strange that I didn’t come across this poem until I had my hair cut.  I’m like an anti-Samson: all of my power was consumed by my long hair; now it’s short, I’m discovering my work in the ether and being invited to take part in poetry events which may or may not come off so I can’t say anything at the moment…except that the invites were issued after the haircut…

So, do you Wriggle yourself?  Or are you afraid to discover dirty little secrets of yours hiding out there in the ether?  Are there photos of you drunk at a party? Taking an illicit beach day from work?  Wearing flares?

I’ll find out, you know, when I Ogle you.

Short Cut

11 Mar

This was me last Friday morning:

IMG_3219

Me as Captain Caveman:

IMG_3213

This was me on Friday afternoon:

IMG_3223

What do you think?

Hoo-Ray!

10 Mar

So glad to see Ray Quinn win the last-ever Dancing On Ice.  Incredible to think he’s an amateur.  Here’s his Bolero:

My favourite skate:

His solo skate:

What am I going to do now DOI has finished forever?  Sad face.

I guess I’ll have to watch Strictly.  Sadder face.

Never Forget The Prompts

6 Mar

Have you ever eavesdropped on a conversation you weren’t supposed to? Tell us about a time when it was impossible not to overhear a conversation between people who didn’t know you were there. What was the conversation about? How did it make you feel?

It wasn’t eavesdropping so much as my first ten minutes in a new job in Johannesburg.  A secretary walked into the office in great distress, crying her eyes out and complaining that ‘he threw my elephant ears off the balcony!’

Hillbrow flats are small and their balconies are tiny and I wasn’t interested in the argument – instead, I was consumed with a desire to know  what exactly were elephant ears?  If they were ornamental elephant ears, how huge were they?  Did he have to use a tool to tip them over or was he so adrenalin/drink/rage fuelled that it was like a mother lifting a car from her child’s pinned-down body?

Or were they genuine elephant ears?  If they were, they’d still be pretty big but surely they’d have shrivelled to mankiness; and where would you buy something like that anyway?  You could buy legal ivory because elephants weren’t protected in South Africa in the Eighties but I never heard of anyone buying wrinkly skin flaps before.

I felt quite sorry for her distress and empathised with her experience of that terrible creature known as ‘man’, but I was cripplingly shy in those days, kept my head down and never stuck my nose in where it wasn’t wanted.  I went all day without knowing what the argument was about but, finally, at 16:29, one minute before leaving, I had to ask: what on earth are elephant ears?

She laughed and replied, ‘A plant.’

How mundane.  Eavesdropping: it’s really not worth the ear-burning it causes.

*

Tell us about a situation where you’d hoped against all hope, where the odds were completely stacked against you, yet you triumphed. Be sure to describe your situation in full detail. Tell us all about your triumph in all its glory.

I really hoped those ears were real.

That was back in the days when I wasn’t animal-mad; or unselfish (no kids yet).

I triumphed because I plucked up the courage – in the face of twenty-four years of terror at the thought of asking questions of a complete stranger, especially about her personal life – to satisfy my curiosity.

*

A song comes on the radio and instantly, you’re transported to a different time and place. Which song(s) bring back memories for you and why? Be sure to mention the song, and describe the memory it evokes.

Nellie the Elephant…some of you may have heard of it.  I’m transported to church at half-past seven in the evening and the recollection that I forgot to tell you that I’d had a spicy dinner that day and had to clench my butt cheeks the whole time I was on my knees practising CPR, in case the evidence seeped out.

Don’t mock: I could save your life one day.

*

You’re 12 years old. It’s your birthday. Write for ten minutes on that memory.

I can’t remember it.  I’m not an elephant.

*

What giant step did you take where you hoped your leg wouldn’t break? Was it worth it, were you successful in walking on the moon, or did your leg break?

You never take giant steps when you have a wind problem like mine.

*

When was the last time you were embarrassed? How do you react to embarrassment? 

Did you not read my last answer?  How easily embarrassed do you think I am?

Okay, you’re right: I am very easily embarrassed in real life; blogging is fairly anonymous so it removes my inhibitions.  If I were to break wind in your physical presence, I think I’d be embarrassed beyond measure.  We both would.

*

Publish a post in the style of a favorite author/blogger or photographer.

A nonsense poem for you, written in five minutes, as an homage to Ogden Nash, Roger McGough and the city of Chicago.

In Praise of Gas 

There’s an art to the fart, I’m sure
(just follow a wild beast’s spoor).
But if a pump makes you jump
stay away from the elephant’s trump.

He who has gas laughs last (and usually alone).
He capers at vapours and gels with smells;
but he secretly prays there’s no belligerence
caused by his intense flatulence –

he feels embarrassment
but masks it with merriment
and expensive,
frequently sprayed scent.

Apologies to my audience:
I feel I ought to rescind my words about wind –
I suspect I am less sinned against,
than I have sinned.

More On Doors

5 Mar

I remember another time a doorway exchange caused some confusion.

We were living in South Africa and we had a dog who had given birth to five puppies but who had no interest in caring for them.  She escaped at every opportunity and the Hub was at his wits’ end (admittedly, he didn’t have far to go), trying to persuade her to feed her pups.  

One warm Saturday morning (so, any Saturday morning; this was South Africa), Scamp sneaked out again and the Hub, watering the garden, spotted her doing her snake impression across the kitchen threshold.

We had new neighbours.  Their first impression of the kind of people we are – misogynistic husband; downtrodden wife – came when next door’s wife heard my husband scream, ‘Get in the house and look after your babies, you stupid b****.’

Guests

3 Mar

I thought Toby was scratching at my door at his usual five a.m. the other night. He never wants to go out; he wants to remind me that his breakfast is due in two hours and forty-five minutes.  I am never allowed to forget it: he will growl at me several or fourteen times between then and quarter-to-eight.

It wasn’t Toby; it was Spud, trying to slip a note under my door; and it wasn’t five; it was sometime after one.  He came in, as I was now awake, for spare bedding.  He said ‘Excuse me’ but I was half asleep and didn’t register until he knocked me over, having expected me to move.

The note was to explain, in case I woke up in the night and wandered around in confusion, that two of his friends had phoned at one a.m. to beg a bed.  They had been to a party which Spud had decided not to attend because of travel difficulties (three buses there; three buses back) and, because they live several towns over, had nowhere to sleep once they were kicked out.

We are not the sort of people to see teenagers on the streets, so of course the Hub had said ‘yes’.  Besides, they are both in Godspell, with Sam playing Jesus.   We want it to be a success and a destitute lead is not in the remit.

Spud was given his instructions by the Hub and, when the boys arrived some time after two, Spud opened the door and declared: ‘Sorry.  There’s no room at the inn.’

We might be kind but we will have fun at your expense.

A Treat For Doctor Who Fans

28 Feb

It’s about four years late but I’ve only just seen it.

Enjoy!

Quickly's

Get loose. Try something different.

benzeknees

A frustrated writer, who is her own worst enemy

Edwina Currie Made Me Start This Blog

Don't get mad; get writing

this fragile tent

a blog about small beautiful things

epitaphsblog

The last word on celebrities

Gethsemane Seeds

Learning the way of Christ

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,065 other followers

%d bloggers like this: