That play

We had set our hearts on a trip out. Son wanted to go for a walk round a quiet lake. I wanted sea air to cleanse my soul. I was born near the sea and it has great healing properties. But the weather was grim. Too grim. So a change of plan.

Plan B. We needed a few smiles this morning so off we set to the cinema to see the new Horrible Histories movie. Maybe not quite as funny as Bill but it was a really good film. Yes it brought many smiles.

As the rain lashed down on the drive back home it was decided to just have an afternoon of movie watching.

Dad let’s watch Bill when we get home.

So it was a TV lunch. Jacket Potatoes and a super funny take on Shakespeare. It’s amazing how a couple of funny films can lift the spirits. Makes you forget your own reality. It’s a most odd feeling these days. That feeling of laughing. So as Bill finished I wondered what comedy classic our son would pick next. Monty Python? Paddington? Ice Age? Spongebob?

I’ve decided Dad. Can you check if you can find XXXXXXXX for free. Always fancied watching it.

So 20 minutes later we are watching another movie. MacBeth staring Michael Fassbender. Yes not the happiest movie. A bit short on laughs. One of those films which is just so bleak that it forces you to put on the thickest jumper you can find. Even the steaming hot coffees fail to warm my bones. It’s gory, it’s dark, the music is brooding, the imagery is stunning. Not quite the family movie I had set my heart on but I suspect William Shakespeare would have loved what his words had become.

It’s strange how something so bleak can help you forget your reality as well. My mum would always say she would play sad songs to cheer herself up. I understand that now.

Terrible Poetry

It’s time for a bit of the weekly Terrible Poetry indulgence run by Chelsea Owen. This week the guidelines are

  1. Topic: Plot twists. Lament about how often stories have them, include a few in your poem, or pull a fast one on us and keep the poem going exactly where we expect.
  2. Length: Since this is Bruce’s first time, let’s be nice to him and keep the word count under 200.
  3. Rhyme? Your call. Have fun with it!
  4. As the #1 rule listed at #4, make it terrible. I want Bruce himself, master of the macabre story twist, to shake his head in disbelief and secretly envy the part of the twisting Roman gutters in which your mind lies.
  5. Rating? For general audiences, keep things PG-13 or cleaner. Bleep it out if you really need to release a torrent.


Yoda was the all seeing Jedi Knight

Yet was fooled with a hood and a dodgie light

While Luke was being the Star Wars Galahad

Who honestly thought that Vader was his dad

Bruce Willis seemed the perfect host

But ended up being a sodding Ghost

Poor Liberty Valence ended up getting shot

By John Wayne that’s a strange train of thought

The Sting was a shock when Paul and Robert copped it

But it just ended up being a gigantic counterfeit

The Village tried to fool us with a bit of double play

But it ended up being set in the Present Day

Anthony Perkins seemed such a nice chap

Yet as Mum and a psycho he got me into a flap

Seven tried so hard to subvert

By having a Box in the desert

Vertigo was Very very bleak

Judy being Madeleine was a bit of a cheek

Who in the Murder on the Orient Express would be first to admit

But what a sneaky trick to have them all do seem do it

The Wizard of Oz seemed strangely certain

Yet the wizard was a sad bloke behind a curtain

Reservoir Dogs was as cool as a soda pop

Yet sneaked in that Mr Orange was in fact a cop

Wow Scream tried smoke and mirrors

All to hide we didn’t have one but two killers

Jacobs Ladder tried to hide the thread

Hang on a moment another one who is dead

Even poor Harry Potter tried to be as shifty as a Manx Cat

I never saw Peter Pettigrew was Scabbers the Rat

Oh come on…

Stood watching the sunset. Two thoughts crossed my mind.

One… what a stunning sunset. Developed without warning and only lasted a few minutes. It’s the sort of sunset that would have made my partner so happy.

Two… bloody hell my fingers hurt.

You get towards the end of the school year with the once extensive school uniform reserves drained to drought levels. Down to one of each item and they have seen much better days. Sizing is probably about two sizes to small and really they are just a collections of holes held together by a few resilient fibres. Just got to make them last two more weeks. That reminds me – I had better start saving for next terms uniform replenishment. Bet that’s cheap!!!

It maybe only two weeks but you can almost see what’s left of the clothes disintegrating in the air. It’s time for drastic action. It’s time for emergency patching. Unfortunately sewing comes as naturally to me as veganism comes to Donald Trump. I am useless. Always have been, always will be. Up to two years ago that wasn’t a problem. My partner loved darning and out would come the sewing box with such glee. My mum was also an expert in the dark sewing arts. Those days have gone now.

So now it’s down to me. Houston we have a problem. So out came my partners sewing box. A result a couple of useable patches ready to go. How hard can this really be. So a fine looking needle was selected. Several different types of thread to go for. Helpfully each has a number 60, 70, 75, 80 – what the hell does that mean – is it size, age, weight, tensile strength. Let’s go for 60 as it’s black. We then start to put the thread through the needle eye. T***, f***, s***, b******, buggerations. I might as well of been trying to give a cheesed off Honey Badger a haircut. One hour it took me, one hour of my life wasted on that instrument of torture.

Then I started to attach the patch to the trouser knee hole. The sodding thread falls out of the needle. So we start again. Two coffees later we have a needle and thread ready to go again. Now the needle won’t go through the patch. What is it made of – bullet proof armour. Eventually I punch through but with so much force that the needle eye has embedded into my finger. Blood everywhere. After a plaster has been applied I continue. Not once, not twice maybe six times the needle struggles to get through the patch but once through it passes through my finger skin with such ease. In the end my fingers resembles Spongebob Squarepants’s backside. Holes everywhere.

But finally the job is done. The patch is secured and doesn’t look too bad. Quite pleased with that. THEN. Oh for f*** sake, oh come on!!!!

In hindsight it might not have been a great idea to push the needle not only through the front of the trousers but then through the back of the trousers as well. Great work. Now the left trouser leg is completely sewn tight at the knee. What’s the kid supposed to do – hop to school, pirate style.

Don’t think badly of me. After I unpicked the stitching I decided to stick the patch on with superglue. Let’s hope it doesn’t rain.

So yes it’s a wonderful sunset but my fingers are so much more redder…

Yoga is not good for you

I thought yoga was supposed to be relaxing. My new Yoga dvd arrived yesterday . So I eagerly tried to open it so I could see my stress levels tumble off me. Unfortunately it had been cellophane wrapped by Superman. Eventually I managed to slice open the wrapping and my thumb with the kitchen knife. Good start to my yoga career.

After applying plaster to cut thumb put yoga dvd into player and get an error message. Invalid dvd region – note to self seemingly very heavily discounted US disks are discounted for a reason here …. So onto the internet to find the code to unlock all regions on the player. Sods Law dictates that of the 100 models listed for our well known brand of Japanese Player ours is the one that is not listed. After randomly trying codes for many minutes I stumble across one that works.

The first solid piece of advice provided was to select a cd of some of your favourite music which you can play while following the routine. Do you think Motörhead would work….

So I started… 10 seconds later the phone rings. My sister.

10 minutes later we un pause the dvd and off we go again…. 1 minute later the doorbell rings. Do I want to buy some freshly caught Whitby Cod. Every few months the same bloke comes round trying to sell his so called fresh fish. Given we are 40 miles from Whitby I suspect the fish was more likely caught from the local Quick-E-Mart.

Few minutes later settled on my back in the bridge pose. Maybe pulse starting to fall…. unprovoked dog licking attack to the face …. dog banished to another room, face feeling distinctly tainted.

2 minutes later we again un pause the dvd…. and 2 minutes later the phone rings and keeps ringing. Another sister.

15 minutes later we try again…. we just settle into the cat pose when the doorbell rings again. I try to ignore it but then there is a knock at the window. Look up to see the Postman waving. After accepting a parcel for next door I officially give up more stressed than I started.

That is not what the DVD promised.

That is not what Yoga promised.

Monster Movies

I’ve just pitched this blockbuster monster movie to Marvel. I think it’s a winner. Works on so many levels especially emotional.

My deepest apologies – clearly I have now lost the plot. Officially cracked now. To such an extent that we are going to build our own movie franchise up over the coming months.

Muddy Pool

This muddy pool has history.

A few years back I was crouched next to it trying to point out a dragonfly. My old treadless walking boots and a muddy bank are a perfect match. Much laughing as Dad falls headfirst into the stinky soup.

It makes you look more like a Neanderthal”


Looking back at my life it’s probably my only really useful talent. Being the hapless butt of so many put downs.

While batting in a cricket match against my former team filled with friends the bowler sledged me with the immortal line “Can I borrow your face will my bum goes on holiday for a few days”

In the same match another bowler shouted as he got me out “Don’t worry old boy. a lot of people don’t have talent”

A football referee (and friend) said when he was going to book me for a foul “I can’t seem to remember your name, please don’t help me. I’m just going to write down numpty”

Another time remember climbing a crag in Scotland when I heard a shout below from my one of my climbing partners “You have the poise of a one legged mountain goat”. Followed by another voice shouting “Looking up at your butt will haunt me for years, it’s that big it’s got its own climate”

At the local fun park ticket office (and very full) my very young son announced to the crowd “This is my Dad he is a Muppet”

At school when asked about what looks or personality they got from each parent our son said “in the case of my dad thankfully it’s just his eyelashes”

At an airport passport checkpoint as the Officer looked at my passport son said “yes my dad does look a bit suspicious but don’t worry he’s just from Yorkshire”

At son’s nursery a young boy asked how old I was. When I told him his face filled with wonder and he just said “Wow” – even the young join in….

Just too many to mention. But you get the point.

I will say this quietly. But I do enjoy it so much. It’s nice to see people laugh. It’s nice occasionally to feel like you are the centre of attention. It is also reassuring that no one is going to be offended – certainly not me as I am so used to it.