Tag Archives: Top Ten Lists

Top Ten Scariest Receptionists

4 Nov
Nice Reception people at DICE in Stockholm

Nice Reception people at DICE in Stockholm (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Show me a person who doesn’t fear receptionists and I’ll show you the person who runs the organisation and employs receptionists specifically to keep us plebs out.

The law of averages dictates that at least one of my readers is bound to be a receptionist of some sort so I acknowledge in advance that you are absolutely not one of the following monsters who ruin ordinary lives, being the exception that proves the rule.  Though how an exception proves a rule, I’ve never understood: surely an exception disproves the rule?

Dear Reception Exception, you’re not by any chance gatekeeper to someone who can explain that, are you?


10.  Switchboard Operators

Receptionists with delusions of grandeur and real power.  Think your partner is having an affair because you can never get hold of them?  They’re not – they just annoyed the Switchboard Operator who won’t now put calls through.

They come in at Number Ten because mobile phones and email are stripping them of their ability to break up your relationship.

9.  Receptionists Who Work in Government Offices

Your taxes pay their salaries so, effectively, they work for you.

Like they care about that.

8.  Conglomerate Receptionists

Professional, attractive, friendly, helpful.

They are the bait that conglomerates use to hook you.  Be prepared for a thorough fleecing and some mixed metaphors.

7.  Office Administrators

Receptionists with delusions of grandeur.  I’ve been one.  I know whereof I speak.  Ask me for a new pen and see how quickly you lose an eye.

6.  Gym Receptionists

Like Conglomerate Receptionists but with sickeningly gorgeous figures in lycra and the ability to shave money from your bank account for an indefinite period of time.

5.  Job Centre Receptionists

How dare you be unemployed!?  Get out, scum.

4.  Hairdressers’ Receptionists

Slim, beautiful, perfectly coiffed and manicured.

Intimidating in an I-can’t-believe-you’d-dare-visit-this-over-priced-salon-in-no-make-up-and-wearing-that sort of way.

3.  Post Office Counter Staff

So unhelpful and unfriendly, they count as Honorary Receptionists.

Tell me I’m wrong.

2.  School Receptionists

‘Grim’ is their default facial expression setting.

I never met one yet who didn’t terrify me.  Though there was one tiny, skinny, middle-aged woman in my high school years who won points for riding a 750cc motorbike in full leathers and helmet to work.  Total astonishment always trumps fear.

1.  Medical Receptionists

My failure to prevent the Hub’s future pneumonia is a case in point.  They get to be Number One because they hold the power of life and death in their appointment book-wielding hands.


Ten Don’ts For When I’m Dead

9 Apr

If I die, think only this of me: there is a corner shop going out of business because of the dramatic drop in Malteser sales. 


Maltesers (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1.  DON’T say I was your ‘rock’. 

I’m not a cliché in life; don’t make me one in death.  Paul Burrell started the fashion for this and it really irritates me.

2.  DON’T leave flowers at the scene.

Yes, my going was tragic: the way that bus skidded to miss a cat and toppled sideways on to me did not leave me looking pretty (though it did leave me thinner: there’s always a silver lining), but I don’t like this maudlin habit of loved ones, strangers and people who hope to get on the news leaving flowers and soppy notes to go mouldy in the rain.  I’m too British for all that nonsense.  If you must leave something, make it a box of Maltesers.  Take off the cellophane (please dispose of wrapper responsibly; I was many things but a litter bug wasn’t one of them).  It never stops raining in Stockport and a river of malted chocolate would be a fitting tribute to the greedy pig I was.

3.  DON’T worry, I won’t haunt the Hub.

It’s okay for him to marry again.  I want him to be happy at least once in his life.  But she must have a sense of humour.  She’ll need it, with our kids.

4.  DON’T bury me.

My husband will marry again and forget me; my kids will live successful lives abroad; the world doesn’t need more worms.  Cremate me, then scatter my ashes in New York and Washington D.C.  I’m determined to get there, one way or the other.  Or turn me into a diamond.

Aside for my boys: If you do turn me into a diamond, give me to your Dad’s new wife for Christmas.

5.  DON’T buy an expensive coffin.

I want a white cardboard box with a lid, like a shoe box.  Everyone must write and draw messages on it, like it was a plaster cast.  Take photos, for posterity.  Use safety crayons – no toxic fumes.

6.  DON’T think that hiring a stand up comic for the after-funeral party is too crass.

It isn’t.

7.  DON’T choose sad songs for the service.

I’m a cheerful soul and death is not the end for me.  Celebrate!  Especially you, Hub: maybe you could play ‘Free At Last’.

8.  DON’T forget to tell my readers.

Don't Speak

Don't Speak (Photo credit: susy ♥)

Let them know I’m now the mouldering housewife.  It’s only polite.  Accept all compliments at face value.  I’m dead; I no longer have the power to ban them. 

9.  DON’T throw away my notebooks.

You’ll need them to plan my funeral.  Check all of them: there’s a large, circled ‘F’ at the front of each one that has a funeral requirement hastily scribbled down.  I have about a hundred song choices; you may have to narrow it down a little, unless you’re planning a state funeral.  If you are planning a state funeral, I don’t want Elton John.  He’s such a diva.  Mika would be nice.

10.  DON’T forget I can’t count.

I never completed a Top Ten list in my life; don’t expect things to change when I’m dead.


Three DOs.


If you enjoy my blog, DO share the laughter.  Post a funny picture, a joke, a hilarious video.  Share a funny story about yourself.

Then acknowledge me as the one who made you do it and send all royalties to my family.


DO have a good clear out at last, if only to prove that the real reason your stuff is all over the house is because the cupboards, loft and shed are filled with your wife’s junk.


DO miss me a little, but most of all, live, love, laugh.  And be nice to irritating people – they might be missing their mother.

Always know that you were the highlight of my life: I love making fun of you.  Such rich source material.



My Ten Favourite Things About Blogging

14 Mar
This chimpanzee was enjoying a snooze this sun...

Image via Wikipedia

Three hours’ sleep last night.  A bit of a repost for you. 

A bit, because it is part of a greater whole.  Not ‘greater’ as in ‘better’ than this (let’s face it – how could it not be?  One paragraph in and even I’m confused.  What can I tell you?  Three hours’ sleep last night) but ‘greater’ as in, ‘there’s more than this but you’ll have to go back to the original post to find it.’  Which you can’t do ’cause I copied and pasted the bit that I wanted to use and then clicked ‘Add new post’, forgetting to keep open the original post so that I…oh, who cares?

Three hours’ sleep.

Where was I?

Um.  Oh, yes: my ten favourite things about blogging:

  • Meeting all you wonderful readers and your delightful blogs.
  • Learning the art of sucking up.
  • Finding interesting titles.  Today’s being the exception that proves the rule.  I never got that: how can an exception prove a rule?  Surely it disproves a rule?  And what’s with the sudden fashion of announcing ‘proven’ as ‘proven’?  Sorry; you want a side order of clarification with that?  What’s with the sudden fashion of announcing ‘proooven’ as ‘pro-ven’?  Irritates me no end, and not just because I only had three hours’ sleep last night.
  • Sharing searches that find me.
  • Reading comments – you always surprise me.
  • Feeling like Sally Field at the Oscars – you like me; you really like me!  But we’ve been there, so maybe I’ll scratch that one.
  • Reposting.  (Three hours’ sleep last night).
  • That some of you can’t count to ten; and most of you won’t bother.
  • Your indulgence of daft posts like this when I’ve had only three hours’ sleep.

She’s Listing Badly, Cap’n…

4 Oct
Ship Garthsnaid, ca 1920s
Image by National Library NZ on The Commons via Flickr

Top Ten Reasons To Write A Top Ten List:

  • People keep telling you to
  • Alliteration needs an outlet too
  • Five reasons are not enough; two-times-five is ten: baby bear would approve
  • You have nothing else to do
  • To get Freshly Pressed, because you’re a stats junkie
  • You’ve tried every other version of blog posting known to man: short-long-funny-serious-words-no-words-stream-of-consciousness-plagiarism-cartoons-jokes-carefully crafted-slapped on the page in a hurry-one-two-three and four posts a day…what else is there?
  • Too many things get left unsaid otherwise
  • You want to see how many times you can use ‘to’ and its homonyms before anyone notices
  • You can’t count




Catching Up With Prompts

12 Sep
The Crew of NCC-1701-D

Image by Dunechaser via Flickr

What is your biggest frustration about driving?

That I don’t.  I did once, until a nasty man was mean to me and I lost my nerve.  Not that I had much nerve to start with: three attempts to pass my test, and I bawled my eyes out during each one.

Remember something important you’ve lost.

My nerve (previous prompt refers).  And my mind.  I had one once.  It all goes into the first baby, you know.  The nurse at my ante-natal class told us that babies are parasites.  I wonder if she thought it was an anti-natal class?

Suggest a way for the government to unload foreclosed properties without swamping the already depressed real estate market.

Don’t foreclose in the first place.  Give the people you’ve made unemployed because of your mishandling of the economy a breathing space.

When is it ok to quit something?

When you’ve made everyone unemployed and homeless and you realise you don’t know how to handle the economy.

Write your bucket list.

  • Mop
  • Plastic
  • Metal
  • Seat

That’s all I’ve got.

Write a top ten list of your favorite songs.

Dear WordPress: why the sudden preoccupation with lists?  Why do you want me to bore my readers?  Who finds these lists interesting except the person who wrote them?

Dear readers: just remembered I’ve read at least half a dozen of your top ten songs lists.  Sorry.

Dear reader: thanks for staying.

Assemble your dream dinner guest list.

Seriously?  Did you not read my last response?


Okay then:

  • any model/actress/WAG.

They’ll be on diets, meaning I get all the roast potatoes.

If you could be part of any fictional universe, what would it be?

I first thought of Harry Potter’s world, but I guarantee I wouldn’t be Hermione or Dumbledore.  At best, I’d be Luna; at worst, I’d be a squib.

I’d join Ender but, let’s face it: saviour of the planet, yes; barrel of laughs, no.

Perhaps Georgette Heyer’s Regency England?  Hmm…what are the chances I’d be the maid who empties the chamber pots (never mentioned, but you just know she’s lurking in the background)?  Or worse: the cook.

I’d join Jean-Luc on the Enterprise because of our shared love of Tea, Earl Grey, hot, and rigid adherence to good manners; but that Dr Beverley Crusher never lets him out of her sight and for all I know she could be well-named.

No, I think I’ll stay in my own universe of happy marriage, perfect kids and successful blog.  They don’t come more fictional than that.


My Top Ten Lists

22 Jul

Make a list of the reasons why top ten lists are often so disappointing; if you’re feeling more positive today than I am, go for a top ten list of why top ten lists are awesome.

I’m going for the latter option today, and I’m doing it with pictures.  I appreciate that not everyone thinks like I do, so if you don’t get the joke, the explanation is at the bottom of the post.

Copenhagen opened the leaning towers of the Beautiful Sky Hotel




a careening, or leaning to one side, as of a ship.
–verb (used without object)


(of a ship or boat) to incline to one side; careen: The ship listed to starboard.
–verb (used with object)


to cause (a vessel) to incline to one side: The shifting of the cargo listed the ship to starboard.

1620–30; origin uncertain
2, 3. tilt, slant, heel.
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