Tag Archives: postaday2011

101/1001 (Week 137)

8 Nov

The last time I updated you about this challenge was in May.  If I don’t want to write a post five pages long in 41 days’ time, I’d better update you on my progress now.*

*Short break while I update the 101/1001 Page*

*Long break while I updated the 101/1001 Page

There’s rather a lot to tell, so I won’t bother with it all today.  I will just share some of Task 15:

Expose myself to twenty new experiences (14/20)

1. I tried a gin and tonic.

Writer's Block 1

Writer’s Block 1 (Photo credit: NathanGunter) After one G&T, I’m guessing

It was offered to me at, of all things, a church luncheon, by one of the wardens.  We were in her home and she found it at the back of the fridge, I hasten to add – she doesn’t keep it stashed under the cassocks for emergencies.  

I don’t think.

I had never drunk gin before.  And I never will again.  Foul stuff.

One thing in its favour, however, is that it gave me the courage for new experience number

2. Said, ‘I am a writer.’

The idea of the church monthly bring & share lunch is that people get to know each other.   One way of getting to know each other is by asking questions about each other.*

*Based on this paragraph, I think saying, ‘I am a writer’ may be a disservice to writers everywhere, at the very least; and an outrageous lie at best.

I asked an other what she did; she told me. For the purpose of our story, I won’t bore you with the details; you will have to be content with the boredom emitting from this long-winded paragraph instead.  The other then asked me what I did.  I opened my mouth to say, as I have done for the past twenty-three years, ‘I am a housewife,’  but what came out was, ‘I am a writer.’

I’ve been published in many anthologies, hard copy and online; I’ve been placed in several writing competitions; I regularly critique others’ work, some of which has been published; I have been posting on this blog for three and a half years; I am a member of poetry group Write Out Loud;  I give poetry readings; I run occasional writing workshops (even more occasionally, people turn up for them, but my writing flesh is at least willing even if their spirit is weak); I am a founder member and de facto manager of Stockport Writers.

I think it’s okay now to say, ‘I am a writer.’

Besides, I’ve never earned money from it: writing credentials don’t come any better than that.

Fresh (and flushed) from that triumph, I followed it up with

I am a writer.

I am a writer. (Photo credit: DavidTurnbull)

3. When asked my occupation on an official form, I wrote, ‘Writer’.

I still blush at my temerity. It’s one thing to say it with your mouth; something else altogether to say it with a pen.

At that same church lunch (who knew these events were so exciting?) I also

4. Drank ginger beer for the first time.

But not lashings of it, Famous Five fans!

It was…okay. I didn’t taste ginger and I didn’t taste beer, but it washed away the taste of gin and tonic, so that’s a big thumbs-up from me.

Virgin Trains First Class

Virgin Trains First Class (Photo credit: David McKelvey)

5. Travelled First Class

My London adventure refers.

It was on a train, not a plane, but I’ll take my free inedible sandwich where I can get it, thank you very much.

6. Went to a university Open Day

We never did it with Tory Boy because he spent a week or two at Lancaster the summer after his GCSEs and knew that Lancaster was where he wanted to go. I always felt a bit cheated, but the second son made up for his brother’s defect by dragging me to Sheffield a couple of weeks ago, as I told you.

There you have it!  These six things I had never done before bring me up to 20/20 new experiences, but that’s not quite it.  

However, this post is already too long for a Friday afternoon, so you’ll have to wait for the rest.

Proud Mama

14 Dec

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Alex001

I have two gorgeous sons.  That’s not why I’m proud, though I am proud.

They are kind and generous and hard-working.  That’s one reason I’m proud.  Or three, to be accurate.

I have a post coming up about Tory Boy; today I’m going to tell you about Spud.

From the age of four, Spud wanted to be an actor.  He played the lead in many a school production, including The Very Hungry Caterpillar – his Munch munch, munch munch was Oscar-worthy, in my opinion – and Jonah and the Whale.  I must try to upload the video of his singing I Need A Boat.  Adorable.

The Hub and I were convinced he was going to make a career in acting.  We were anxious but accepting, because he is a natural.  Then he went to high school and discovered rugby.  Rugby practise clashed with drama club and drama club lost. Our flab had never been so ghasted.

Rugby was abandoned after three years – too many wet and freezing early Saturday mornings and not enough aggression on his part to be a serious player. He was enthusiastic but nice – not a winning combination in rugby.  I was relieved when he gave it up, especially after the time he was knocked senseless for a minute.  I couldn’t watch him play; it hurt me too much.  I have plenty of photos of his scrapes and bruises if I feel nostalgic.

He never went back to drama, however.   We couldn’t convince him.  He has a full week with long school days, hours of homework each night and weekend, and his Manchester City season ticket, so we didn’t push it.  He said he wanted to concentrate on his GCSEs, knowing that no parent is going to argue with a child who claims he wants to work hard to pass his exams.  Did I mention he was clever?  And a little manipulative?

In September of this year he entered Sixth Form.  For my non-UK readers, that means two years of tough exams which must be passed to enter university at eighteen.  However, universities require more than good exam results; they want to see evidence of extra-curricular activity.  Spud became a mentor for new pupils starting high school; joined the climbing club; volunteered to help at school open events (we have always had to press-gang him into this; we insisted on it, because of how much the school is spending on him.  He just wanted to stay home and do homework.  Yeah, right; we believe you, Spud); and – wait for it – auditioned for the school’s Classics play.

Considering it has been five years since he’s done any acting to speak of, he did well to get the part of The Messenger, the third-biggest role.

It wasn’t enough for him.  A sign went up in school:

Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’  – auditions.  

The auditions took the form of workshops, then call-backs for the bigger parts, then more call-backs (this school takes its drama productions seriously).  Spud read parts of the text, had me drill him in the story, and watched clips on You Tube.  He couldn’t find a complete version on the internet, or he’d have watched that as well.

Spud desperately wanted to win the leading role of Prospero.

Prospero and Miranda from a painting by Willia...

Prospero and Miranda from a painting by William Maw Egley; ca. 1850 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Spud won the leading role of Prospero.

That’s not why I’m proud, though I am thrilled.  I am proud because of something that happened in one of his auditions.  The teacher had the students read different parts together.  Spud and his partner finished reading and the teacher said to him, ‘Thank you.  You were excellent.’  

Spud was pleased to be complimented, of course, but mortified for his partner.   He immediately made a point of telling the teacher that if he was any good, it was thanks to his partner working with him.

I’m proud because he made sure to give credit to his friend, and because he was embarrassed to be singled out at the expense of someone else.

I don’t want my children to boast about themselves.  That’s my job.

 

Joke 600

13 Nov

From writersjokes.

The Mouth that Roared | 292/365

The Mouth that Roared | 292/365 (Photo credit: mfhiatt)

A hungry lion came across two men. One was sitting under a tree, reading a book; the other was typing away on his typewriter.

The lion pounced on the man reading the book and devoured him.  He ignored the man who was typing.

Even the king of the jungle knows that readers digest, and writers cramp.

Remembrance Sunday

11 Nov

English: Remembrance day poppy icon and slogan

 

NaNoWriMo Day 8

8 Nov

Yes, well…

Traffic Warden Clamping

If you recall, I’m attempting NaNoWriMo, to settle an argument with the Hub as to whether I have a novel in me or not.

To be considered a ‘winner’ it is necessary to write 1667 words a day to reach the target of 50,000 words.

Day One: Full of enthusiasm even though I think I don’t have a novel in me.  Easily reach the target.  Don’t mind the Hub winning this one.

Day Two:  Still enthusiastic,  the book is writing itself.  Come on, publishers, start courting me!

Day Three:  Busy day, don’t start writing until six p.m., by which time I’m ready for bed.  Drig out a thossand words of my comedey navel.

Day Four:  Another busy day.  Start at five.  Comedy is killed by a mystery element.  Hmm, write a murder mystery of sorts, but keep the housewife and the traffic warden?  Nine hundred words.

Day Five: 

Day Six: Wrote nothing yesterday because of everything I had to do in real life. However, only 1700 words behind.  I’ll soon catch up.  A thousand words.  Only 2400 words behind.  I’ll catch up.

Day Seven: Managing to make the traffic warden sexy.  Don’t know how, because I’ve never met one, and he’s modelled on the Hub.  Oops!  Discover the power of words: but he’s modelled on the Hub.  Only 3583 words behind.  Will I catch up?

Day Eight: Make a model of the computer and stick pins in it.

If I do have a novel in me, it’s trite, dull and meaningless.

They say you should write what you know.

*

*

For my non-Brit readers, a definition:

Traffic Warden: Evil creature sent to torment innocent drivers who only parked illegally for five minutes but it was urgent and yes, they know the rules of the road apply to them as well but, please, officer, please, please, please, my partner will kill me if I get another ticket…

 

Joke 586

30 Oct
Vines

Vines (Photo credit: Ted & Dani Percival)

From punoftheday.

I wrote a novel about a fellow who had a small garden.
It didn’t have much of a plot.
*

I love one-liners like this (it’s only on two lines because space is limited), so I found a few more for you on the Telegraph website, of all places.

Tim Vine (this one won him an award):

Conjunctivitis.com – that’s a site for sore eyes.

Tim with another award winner:

I’ve just been on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday. I’ll tell you what, never again.

Matt Kirshen:

I was playing chess with my friend and he said ‘Let’s make this more interesting’. So we stopped playing chess.

Mr Vine again (I’m a fan):

Crime in multi-storey car parks. That is wrong on so many different levels.

 

Joke 544

18 Sep

 

Image representing Bill Gates as depicted in C...

Image via CrunchBase

From ajokeaday.com.  I don’t know if it’s true, but it sure is amusing.

*

*

At a recent computer expo, Bill Gates reportedly compared the computer industry with the auto industry and stated, If GM had kept up with technology like the computer industry has, we would all be driving twenty-five dollar cars that got 1000 miles per gallon.

*

*

General Motors released this statement:

Yes, but would you want your car to crash twice a day? 

Not only that, but…

Every time they repainted the lines on the road you would have to buy a new car. 

Occasionally your car would die on the freeway for no reason, and you would just accept this, restart and drive on. 

Occasionally, executing a maneuver would cause your car to stop and fail and you would have to re-install the engine. For some strange reason, you would accept this too. 

You could only have one person in the car at a time, unless you bought “Car95″ or “CarNT”. But, then you would have to buy more seats. 

Macintosh would make a car that was powered by the sun, was reliable, five times as fast, twice as easy to drive, but would only run on five percent of the roads. 

English: Logo of General Motors Corporation. S...

English: Logo of General Motors Corporation. Source: 2007_business_choice_bro_en.pdf (on GM website). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Macintosh car owners would get expensive Microsoft upgrades to their cars, which would make their cars run much slower. 

The oil, gas and alternator warning lights would be replaced by a single “general car default” warning light. 

New seats would force everyone to have the same size butt. 

The airbag system would say, “Are you sure?” before going off. 

If you were involved in a crash, you would have no idea what happened. 

 

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