Monthly Archives: February 2014

Staycation’s End

A well-needed week off from work has been, and very sadly, gone. Booooo.

I actually accomplished more than just masturbation or the cultivation of layers of body grime from sitting on my arse for the entire week. Wonders.

I put a curtain up across the front of my wardrobe (shower curtain = cheap door), put some boxes away in cupboards, did some washing and washing up, experimented with soda crystals, came up with a neater way to recycle (answer: paper and cardboard storage in a cheap laundry hamper), organised my makeup stash, sorted clothes to donate and made some more mess again once everything was tidy.

On a late night supermarket wander I discovered a new tea and liked it; it’s roasted – Hojicha. Which is odd, but quite tasty. I watched a fair bit of bobsleigh and marvelled at the built men in Lycra doing very well at not falling over. They’d be welcome to pick me up any day. I browsed for jobs daily, and thought about the week back at work.

Whilst out on a pottery social I discovered the weird fun that is working your way around a world buffet; I enjoyed being able to have nan bread with pretty much every course and cuisine. Yum. I learned from one of my pottery peers (a Professor of Engineering) that all Canadian engineers wear an iron ring that is bestowed upon them at graduation that reminds them of the expectations and responsibilities of their profession. I hadn’t noticed her ring before this, and I thought it was a really awesome idea.

I experienced the joy/rage of getting back into Nineties point-and-click adventuring, courtesy of Beneath A Steel Sky and Myst; I also whiled away a very happy afternoon playing The Room Two on my tablet. I watched the documentrary Cutie and the Boxer and pondered art, personal fulfilment and growth, and relationships and attempted to get Jonathan Meades on Brutalism to fit into my brain, but oh, my brain hurt with all the thinking. All those fabulous words were hard work, and I think I should give it another go (especially as I often quite like Brutalist structures). Here’s a YouTube Meades Shrine to fill your boots with should you wish.

I met up with my Mum in London and we went to the Tate to see the Richard Hamilton exhibition (where I experienced a telling off from a gallery attendant because I was – gasp – three feet away from a painting FFS). I met up with McCy for a birthday dinner (with cake!) and it was good to see how she is and hear how her Mum is doing at the mo (only retired a few months, her Mum has come up against quite a health challenge, but all are doing brilliantly).

I also tidied and organised The Art Table, making it a space that is used for more than parking ceramics trial pieces in, so it’s a functional space. I actually did some drawing and painting too. I know. What is wrong with me.

I watched the rain fall on the park and children scatter. I napped. I fantasised of long hugs.
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February Freedom


Friday post-work I came home, flopped on the sofa and slept for two hours. Woke for dinner. Went to bed.

Slept for ten hours, woke for a late breakfast, then absorbed the internet before USA vs. Russia in the Olympic ice hockey. Enjoyed the broad befurred men on display. Slept for another two hours. Woke for dinner and my inaugural viewing of Robocop; it was not as enjoyable as Total Recall, though I did enjoy the economy of action – much bang for little buck or time – and, of course, “Bitches. Leave.”

Shed a few tears over my smaller, younger, more femme, more Canadian celebrity doppelganger Ellen Page going public with her orientation; the video of her railing against what Hollywood regards as the norm was unexpectedly touching, with her outing herself the least affecting part of it. Her story of how her mental health and relationships suffered by living a lie was insightful, and reminded me that I’m doing the right thing in my attempts to do gender/orientation neutral when talking to kids at work.

Became engrossed in reading through all the comments on a YouPorn video of a natural-bodied woman with natural body hair enthusiastically enjoying herself solo; it was quite a positive experience, reading hundreds of posts declaring how attractive the geeky woman displaying herself was. There’s hope for humanity yet.

I’ve a break from school now for a week, and I need it. My head is increasingly filled full of gunk as I picked up something as I got more run down. I’m not planning on doing much and am looking forward to days of pyjama slumming. Yays.
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Valentines Means: I (Don’t) Love You

Whilst it’s the week of full-on exposure to the consumerist horrors that are so closely related to Valentine’s Day, I got to thinking about cards and such, the small things that you can buy or gestures you can make that show a loved one you care that don’t cost a months salary or cater to the insane levels of expectation and pressure centred around this market-driven event.

I’ve received but one Valentine from someone I was intimately involved with, and, indeed, was in love with. This time two years ago I was wandering around an arts and craft gallery in Pittsburgh with Coppell, browsing the wares on show and rifling through the card selection for just the right one. Romantic porridge – not too slushy, not too obvious, not too boring. It took a while let me tell you, and that was before I got to pondering what the hell to write inside the fucking thing.

I spent ages trying to strike the right balance in what I wrote, again, not wanting to say the wrong thing, as I wasn’t entirely sure where things were at in the relationship. I eventually decided to write a list (highly decorated of course) that ran through all the things that I thought were great about Coppell. All the while studiously avoiding writing three little words.

We swapped cards and I saw that Coppell’s was phrased in what was, to me, quite a disappointing way – decidedly non-committal in terms of emotional sharing. I didn’t expect a declaration of love, but at the same time wanted more than “I’m honoured to spend time with you” or similar bullshit. I shrugged the awkward off and helped set up for dinner, and after a very good steak (he was a Texan after all) we got set for some massage fun.

I’ve always wanted to be given a long, caring massage from a partner (when I feel comfortable with someone I am all about the tactile) and Coppell knew that a massage from him would probably make my holiday. He’d bought oil that he thought I’d like (and I did) whilst I, true to form, had bought a book and read up on technique. Ever the erotic nerd. Trying to be helpful (which I need to stop) I volunteered to give him a massage first, with the understanding that he’d return the favour. Alas, I did far too good a job and he started snoring. I threw a towel over him and slept in the spare bedroom.

Much romance.

So, “receive a long, leisurely, oil-based massage from a partner” is still on the list of things I’d like to accomplish with a significant other. Yes, I really do have a list. I spent, nay wasted an entire decade working through issues linked to low self-esteem, so having my needs met is something I take seriously. Lots of exploring I’d like to do, so the list helps remind me. I feel I’ve only just scratched the surface, which is frustrating at times when I have no outlet for expression, and I have so many things I’d love to try.

You will love me won’t you Mr Hot Water Bottle…?

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Southbank, remixed

A tour of the Southbank with Caversham Princess, with the occasional stop off for food, booze and art.

I’ve finally joined the age of the smart phone, so whilst I was wandering about I took the opportunity to experiment with some apps to create the above image; an honest-to-god sunny day helped show off the staircase to the roof garden on top of the Hayward Gallery to great effect. I was quite pleased with my fat-fingered fuckery.
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