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Bit of a swingamajig and an apology

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I feel I ought to apologise to the ‘Electric Swing Circus’. They seem like nice people but tonight they dared to “step a little bit closer to the edge”.


My daughter has talked about them for a few years now. I saw them for the first time last year at Boomtown Fair in the absolute pissing rain. Then a couple of times at Shambala Festival and then again this year when the girls wanted me to take them to Swingamajig
festival that they organise and run in Birmingham.  

I recently saw on Instagram that amongst their recent tour dates, they were scheduled to play locally as part of the ‘Bradford festival’ and a free gig to boot.  Not sure how they managed to pull that short straw whilst the equally cool ‘Dutty Moonshine Band’ are a few miles up the road at Beatherder.
Anyway, never one to look a free gift gig horse in the mouth, off we went after I’d got in from work.

 

 

We felt that we should go and support them, as I feared for what sights might greet them in the craphole that is Sadford Town on a Saturday night. Centenary Square on a stage in front of Wetherspoons, where most locals’ idea of music is gangster wannabees in balaclavas, riding gypsy horse carts through streets, singing “I don’t fink so” on Youtube.

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The bands’ instagram feed has showed them in lovely places around Europe with bouncy crowds of smiley happy hipster people.  I feel like they may have looked out over the motley bunch tonight and mistakenly thought that it was a homeless spice tramp convention, or like that scene in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest when they sneak hookers in for a party.

 

A man in a Pink Floyd tee shirt who looked as if he had been drinking all week cheered them on as they warmed up, applauding the sound check and shouting for one more tune.       A small man in a running vest, also the worse for wear for something and reeking of Lynx, sidled up to me at the barrier at the front and tried to rub himself against me.  I booty-bounced him away from me and the Childerbeast and gave him a look that strongly said, “Back the hell away from me and my kids”

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I love that you’re here… but why?

The childerbeast kept their dancing and jumping to a minimum with the self-consciousness of being teenagers who are out locally and might see a teacher or someone from school.  My friend, asked if they were the type of band who did the old selfie with themselves and the crowd at the end of the gig.  I said, “Sometimes, but I suspect, not tonight”  They probably didn’t want to alarm their parents into thinking their musical offspring were playing gigs at a jobseekers festival for the pharmaceutically addicted and criminally insane, on the island of Doctor Moreau.

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Good to see the security fully on top of the old unattended backpack situation at the barrier right infront of the stage aswell. 

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See it. Say it. Sort it.

I was convinced I’d seen a one-armed security person at one point – quite possibly due to a previous unattended bag scenario.

Poor crowd turnout aside – the band played a cracking gig, giving it 110% regardless. Not quite the glamorous speakeasy of Shambala Festival or a gazebo in my back garden (the offer still stands guys).  If they’ve any sense they will be already on site at Beatherder sharing tequila shots with Dutty Moonshine.  I was astounded they did an encore TBH. If it had been me I would have been back in the van quick smart, shouting “Leave the equipment, we’ll get more. Just put your foot down and get the hell out of dodge FFS!”

So well done ESC.  I look forward to no doubt seeing you again at Shambala next month.  I’ll get Rhona to bring her mini pan pipes so she can play along.  That’s providing we’re still alive living round here, where the rules of the road do not apply. We all had to run to cross the road when heading back to the car park. The green man was still lit when some tosser flew down the road through the lights at about 80mph, not even attempting to slow down!

Asshole!

Welcome to Bradford. You may never leave. (Although you really should!)

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Lines and Lines and Lines and Lines

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Gone are the days of half term days out with the offspring involving trips to Eureka or Blackpool Pleasure Beach.  Today we followed blue dot and I took youngest child to Hadfield, the home of Royston Vasey, for a right good treat ja? While the eldest child went to Pride in Bradford with her mates. Pride for the gays, lesbians, Bi’s, Tri’s, girls who like guys who like guys who like girls; Tails, no-tails, Cis, trans, pans, flans, mans, puns, bums, femmes, fams and wingdings symbols like when Prince changed his name presumably – because there’s fuck all else to be proud of about Bradford! There’s not a day goes by when I don’t mentally beat myself up about the fact that we live here and brought our children up here.  #sorrykids

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“The room is starting to spin cos of the gayness” – Talledega Nights

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stay safe out there kids

The Hadfield thing was purely because the youngest daughter shares my affinity for dark and twisted humour whilst the elder one ‘doesn’t get it’.
I’d promised her some time ago that I would take her to where League of Gentlemen was filmed.  Half-term seemed as good a time as ever. It would get us both out of the house for a start and she could earn maximum points for spending time with her mama.  I’m not sure what she expected, as there’s not a lot there, which I think was rather the point when it was chosen as the location.  No Babs Cabs merry-go-round or Dr Chinnery petting zoo. But there is a good pub and a very local shop with possibly not quite official merch for sale.
It has a very friendly local shopkeeper who doesn’t mind you touching the precious things or flicking through his fannymesto of photographs.  He also told us an amusing tale of the local old folk storming the barricades at the Post Office one time during filming.  How very rude dear. Restricting access to the Post Office on pension day. How very dare you!

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Literally me

We ate our lunch on a bench, had a drink in the pub, almost bought a side table in the shape of an elephant but thought the better of it, then headed back into Manchester without any sign of a nose bleed of being kidnapped by Papa Lazarou.

Trains on the way to and back from Manchester were awash with leopard print and prosecco. The Spice Girls were in town for their comeback (yet again) tour at the Etihad.  The women we saw were fairly lively already by 3pm and the gig didn’t start until 7:30pm.  My advice to any train guards working the late shift tonight would be: lock yourself in the back cab and turn off the lights.  It’s gonna be messy out there come 11pm. These birds won’t look quite as glamorous 7 hours and 3 bottles of fizz later when their spangled wedge heels are in their hand and their hair extensions hanging off as they piss in a drain behind a Greggs singing ‘Spice Up Your Life’ while their pals live stream that shit on Facebook.

😦

🙂

You know it girls!

In fairness, I somehow managed to get shit (my own no less) on my jeans this morning and I don’t even drink prosecco! Luckily oldest fruit of my loins spotted it before I left the house. Fooooooooks Saaaaaake! No idea how I managed that. Such a classy chick.

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 Ciao Ciao local MoFos.

Alles Klar?

XX

Just a typical Saturday

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So I overslept this morning and woke up to the sound of a chupacabra crawling about in the wall cavity above the front door.

It may have been a bird. Or a mouse, or a rat.  Either way, my daughter heard it too so I know it wasn’t me going nuts (again).  It’s gone quiet since so it’s either escaped, died, or is lying in wait to peck or claw its way out in the early hours and suck our blood.

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Meanwhile I’ve been into Sadford two days running and now feel like I need therapy. And by therapy, I mean beer.

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You’ll never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy than …. Bradford

 

The bus journey there on my Mum mission to exchange the too small short shorts was very much full of people like this.

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Ashtray’s a girl’s name

I hoped I didn’t blend in.

I also prayed none of them were going to buy short shorts.

Primarda was like a scene from Dante’s Inferno. Clammy, hot, swarming with lost souls, eyes aglaze as they bustled through the racks of tat on their individual quests for sweatshop made, hotwash intolerant garments of ill-advised fashion.

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Abandon hope all ye who enter here (especially on a Saturday)

I then went to the pool to observe some lessons to gain some teaching tips. This would have been a very helpful exercise had I gone on the right day.  It was meant to be next weekend FFS!  What a dingus. My mentor wasn’t even there – she’s in London.

😦

So then I set off for home and had to run for the bus. Not a pretty sight for anyone witness to such a thing. Even more so when it wasn’t even my bastarding bus. 

 

In my head I looked like this.

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The reality was probably closer to this.

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Particularly whilst wearing an oversized men’s ‘Wyld Stallyns’ * vest with one boob peeping out of the sleeve. (I was at least wearing a bra).

So I’ll leave you with that image.,,

You’re welcome!

Xx

 

*Bill & Ted fans – next Saturday is ‘Speak like Bill & Ted Day’.  Sixty-Nine Dudes!

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in need of something but not sure what

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I was meant to be heading south this weekend to visit some pals and have a curry and some drinks.  There was even loose talk of getting hold of a “hot tug” and sailing it to Harlow, but I don’t think that came off.  Maybe next time, when it’s warmer.

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Stock Photo from Google Images

 

As it goes, I haven’t gone.  I started with the snots when I got back from Chester over the Easter Weekend, which was awesome by the way (the Easter weekend in Chester – not the snots).
I also had a clairsentient gut feeling that I should stay home & leave it til another time.  I’ve learned it’s best to pay attention to these things, so here I am.  At home. In the rain. Not ever wanting to see another Easter Egg in a long time and feeling rather cross at why people can’t just commit to a long planned arrangement or answer a text from time to time in a civil, unfacetious fashion.

I know everyone has their own little lives and shit but FFS!

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So what have I done instead?

    Ventured to Sadford Town to return a pair of silver Doc Martens.  Not mine I hasten to add.  Seems my eldest wants to go for the Gary Gliiter, Glam Rock aesthetic for her birthday this year.  It’s not ’til June, but these boots she wanted were on offer in Foot Asylum. 

Ordered them. They arrived.  But are neither the right size not the requisite shade of silver apparently.

FML!

Had one lovely spring-like day on Wednesday so ordered some new garden furniture.  Natch it has pissed down ever since.  Furniture currently clogging up the hallway and kitchen ready to be assembled.

Still no washing machine because the fucker needs yet more parts.  Bastarding Hotpoint.  ‘Oh we’ll replace your washer if it can’t be repaired’.  Repair dude just laughed at us and said that almost never happens.  It can be repaired….eventually….when he comes back for a third time on Wednesday.  That’ll be over 3 weeks since it initially broke.  I’m running out of neighbours to impose upon to wash my smalls, my mediums and my larges!

So anyway, the trip into Sadford, usually a cure-all when you’ve got the blues, did not help in any way whatsoever. It was like accidentally stumbling through the set of the Walking Dead.  Normally this type of thing makes me feel less inferior. Better about myself.  It could be worse etc.  Yesterday it just made me feel sad and full of gloom that I was doomed to die here. That I had failed as a mother and I had condemmed my offspring to a miserable life in a miserable place.

“Hello is that the Emergency St John’s Wort & Evening Primrose Oil hotline? I’d like to place an order please!”

The best part of the day was when I smuggled some tech into an allegedly haunted shop in my handbag, for a mini lone investigation, Sadly the recorder failed. Coinicidence? Supernatural? Or operator ineptitude?  You decide.  Either way, it had a most oppressive atmos (but did sell the most amazing bits, bobs, tat and oddments).  There was a man in there talking to the shopkeeper about his imaginary friends as she listened unjudgementally and with sound advice.   I may have found my spiritual home.

🙂

Boyes store however lit up my K2 device like a gay pride parade.  Too many mobiles on in the vicinity? Or it being so full of the elderly and infirm that the veil between this life and the next is ridiculously thin – the afterlife almost tangible through the smell of wee, lavender bags and the scent of decrepitude?  Again – you decide.

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from Google Images

 

I didn’t want to be one of those olds.  Complaining in the cafe upstairs in Boyes that the tomato soup was sold out, or that so and so hadn’t turned up today and did they think she might have died over the weekend.
But I also felt like I was skidding quickly towards being one of those people (but with less friends).

This time last year we were in Orlando, yet it doesn’t seem two minutes since we were only just planning it and it was 18 months away!

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Poss my fave pic from last year’s hol

 

Life is short.  Do stuff.  Fun stuff.  Sometimes wrong stuff.  But stuff. Be kind.  Be nice. Go out. Have fun. Make some memories to keep you warm when you’re waiting for death in a cafe above Boyes in Bradford and the soup is off and your mate hasn’t turned up.

 

                                         Gravitating towards the water, as per

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Knock once for Yes & Twice for No

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The past two weekends I’ve been raking about in the dark til silly o’clock in the morning. Armed to the teeth with gadgets, in an attempt to converse with the dead. When I say ‘converse with the dead’, I mean, pratting about with my mate, sniggering like Beavis & Butthead & tutting at fakery & those more gullible than ourselves. Not that I am a non believer. More of a hopeful skeptic who needs to test all scientific reasoning first.

Our first adventure was at Fort Paull with Glen, the resident skeptic, from the ‘Most Haunted’ team.

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I am in there somewhere – in a yellow coat

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We liked Glen


In the supposedly haunted train carriage (which nobody seemed to know the history of) we almost had a stand up row with a lady who was determined to kill a moth.  “It deserves to die!” she screeched whilst removing her walking boot to try and squish it against the window.  “They’re not like butterflies inside you know” said her mate.  “A butterfly has innards and stuff when you squash one – but a moth is just dust. They’re just made of dust”.

Who the hell squashes a butterfly?

Who does that?

We managed to persuade her to leave the moth alone by employing stern teacher voices.

The venue was very interesting.  Comprising underground tunnels, a Beverley Bomber and various artillery gun thingumies  – and a shitload of moths, just for our lepidopterophobic friend.  An entertaining session on a ouija board ensued where I was seemingly contacted by someone called ‘Ash’. I denied any knowledge of knowing anyone of this name until Linda could tell by the look in my eye that I did.  Through stifled laughter I explained that the only Ash I knew was my eldest childerbeast’s dead dwarf hamster!  And that I doubted very much that he had gained the ability to spell in the afterlife, particularly as he only had one eye when he was alive!  One of the ladies around the board then suggested that perhaps the deceased had been cremated and this is why they were spelling out ‘Ash’ when asked their name.

FFS!

Time for a wander and an explore.

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Anybody there. Where? There on the stair

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Creepy Wheelchair in the Victorian Hospital area

We did have a moment like that film “Left Behind” when the Rapture comes and claims the pious.  We got split up from our group in one of the tunnels and realised we were wandering about a deserted garrison on our own, calling out to the living this time rather than the dead.  “Hallooo is there anybody there?”  We were half expecting to find piles of clothes on the ground.
We were finally put out of our misery by the lovely Glen who appeared behind a laser-grid pen from inside the Beverley Bomber.

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There’s those Lidl blow-up dolls again

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Come aboard the lurve train

 

Note to self:  if you want to keep things on a serious note, it’s probably best not to say things like “Have we got any seamen with us?” and not expect at least a bit of an immature titter in the dark.

Making the most of our visit to Hull, we decided in the morning to visit the supposed haunted hostel in DeGrey Street, Hull where Bman used to live.  He didn’t live at the haunted property (although he says he wouldn’t go in the attic room out of fear). He lived 3 doors up.  I say lived.  I mean squatted.  🙂

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Money for old rope anyone?

Am not convinced by the authenticity of this alleged haunted property.  It smacks to me of a decrepit old house someone can’t be arsed to renovate to a livable standard so a spooky back story has been invented.  I’ve told Bman we need to do this ourselves.  Bid on some old battered fixer-upper at auction and float some ideas out on the internet about spectral goings-on and then charge ghosthunters £40 a head to wander around it in the dark with torches on a weekend.

Kerchiing!

Last Friday we opted out of the (not quite yet) end of term drunken teachers shenanigans in Leeds and went instead to Bradford City Hall.  A beautiful building in the middle of a big shithole.  

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They don’t build them like they used to 

 

 

 

Raking about again in the dark. debunking charlatans and trying not to actually laugh out loud at Stuart the Medium as he rather camply said; “Ooh hello Colin. I’ve got a gentleman called Colin here” and “Push the table harder for the ladies Colin, they like it harder. get it up on two legs for them Colin rather than 4”. as well as, “Let’s have a bit of vibration Gerry (it had changed from Colin to Gerry by this time) the ladies like things that vibrate.”

Alright Stuart – that’s enough now!

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Steve Irwin was here before the stingray got him

Not sure that Stuart liked it when we went rogue and wandered off around the old police cells by ourselves.  Not sure he could cope with us being seemingly unperturbed by the dark and the unknown, or the fact that we had our own tech.  Admittedly his tech was way funner (it’s a word) than ours:-  Sound amplifying headphones, weird rag dolls with light up eyes, interactive bears and night vision goggles.  We found ourselves especially hilarious at 1:45am when using an Ovulus speaking device and decided we must surely have contacted the spirit of Norman Collier.

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Why hello there Norman

Am pretty sure Stuart was glad to be rid of us at 2am.  No comedy wanderings through the streets of Bradford, chasing lights this time – just straight home.

Until next time, at Armley Mills in October, where I may not be so blase about it because that place is creepy in the bloody day time, as I think I have said before.

Ciao MoFos (alive or dead)

Xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vive le weekend

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Movie Quote of the Day:  “Take the blue pill – the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill – you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes.” – The Matrix

In explanation of the staffroom being over-run with BT Openreach engineers earlier this week, I was informed that “There was some kind of loop going on with the interface”. 

“I fucking knew it!” I yelled. “I knew we were in the bloody Matrix!”

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Not sure which one of us on the faculty is Neo but I know that when it comes to the choice of the red or the blue pill, I’m grabbing both and necking those fuckers dry.

By lunchtime we seemed to be plugged back in and ‘normal’ service was resumed. I have mixed feelings about that.

😀

Today I had to venture into Sadford town. Realised as I was about to set off that my MP3 had been on all night in my coat pocket. No battery.  I had to go into town with full aural capacity.

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There was a girl on the bus who had eyelashes so pumped and fake that I wondered if she would be able to press the bell just by blinking.  She didn’t, but if I had been her I would totally have tried.

Obviously Sadford does have its attractions.  Namely, Brown Muff. Not a euphemism or a nod to the female Asian community, but of course the legendary firm of solicitors long since gone.  The sign remains however as a testament to puerile humour and the immature.  Natch, I have a photo.

I was on a mission for a few essentials and a few treats for B’s birthday.  Usual epic fail trying to get a decent bra.  Either I have deformed breasts (SHIT TITS!) or everyone in Sadford is the same cup size.  Not a bra I liked to be found in the right size. Not unless it was some old lady number or something hideous made from easy-wipe faux PVC.  Neither being over 80, or a sex worker in a Sheffield brothel, I gave it up as a bad job.  It’s almost Valentines Day y’all. The stores need to up their game.
I eventually found some jeans I liked that weren’t ‘super skinny high-waist’. Am more of a boot cut girl myself. (which does NOT make me retard thank you very much Bman!)
 Needed a new pair, as my other two don’t need the zip undoing to pull ’em down because I lost 7kg! (Unlike you Mr B!)


**High Five Yourself MoFo**

Obvs I will still wear my favourite raggatus pair with the shredded bottoms from trailing along the floor because I also shrunk 2inches in the last 10 years.  I do like a raggy jean, but thought I ought to at least have a smarter pair.

Sadford was its usual sad self.  I trailed up to the market.  It smelled like all indoor markets the UK over – of raw meat, giros and desperation.  I was using it as a shortcut to Morries but then discovered that Morries is long gone.  The irony of a busker playing Pink Floyd’s, ‘Wish You Were Here’ from  the piss-stinking doorway of yet another empty store, was almost too much to bear.

Could be anywhere. Any mall. Any town. Any Matrix.

😦

I almost lost the will to live in the queue in Wilkinsons.  I watched a woman loudly berate her husband in Primark for paying too much attention to the underwear section even though he was just following her around.  “What are you looking at?”  Why are you staring?” Peck Peck Peck as she smacked him on the arm.

After trailing to Tesco Express, Sainsbury Metro, B&M, Poundland & M&S, I began to wonder who I had to fuck to get a packet of burger baps.  Turned out to be Gregg.  Good old Gregg.

Managed to even make it home without hearing the magic words “Hya Miss Brewer!”

So a mostly successful mission but am not in any hurry to repeat the experience.

Right now am on 3rd episode of ‘Lost’ on a catch up revisit with my old friends Jack & Sawyer with a G&T for company.

Whatever you fuckers are up to this Saturday night. Enjoy!

Ciao Tutti Xx

My mangey pussy & 20 seconds to comply

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Had to take the eldest cat to the vets after work on Friday. because she is suffering from a bad case of scabby skin.
I was all of a sweat lather as I had to get home sharpish after Mexican Mayhem Harvest afternoon at work. (I hadn’t even cooked, I just turned up with my class, chatted up the natives and took photos for the website – but I was still hot & bothered). I had to walk with the cat in the pet carrier because Bman was at the garage picking up the car after its MOT.  I felt like Clark Griswold in Christmas Vacation when his aunt gives him a cat wrapped up in a box. She was jiggling about a lot and it was cumbersome to carry.  It got worse when I realized half-way down Wild Grove that she’d done a shit and was trying to get out of the box to escape it.  It bloody stank!

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😀

Slightly embarrassing taking her into the surgery and apologizing for the stench.  The nurse was fine of course, probably quite used to being elbow deep in animal shite for a living.  Seemingly she is ok.  Just an allergy to a flea bite so needed a bit of a flea treatment. (The cat not the nurse).  I don’t really understand though how last time we took Alan Lickman to the vet he had 2 sprays of flea treatment and we got stiffed £13.  This time, we got 2 vials of treatment – one for each cat and it cost £6.94!  Bloody Herr Klopek, who dealt with us last time must’ve seen us coming!

Yesterday I decided to go into Bradford and make a start on some ‘C-word’ shopping with my eldest offspring. I was hoping she’d photograph me against a background of comedy characters and Royston Vasey types to help me illustrate this blog.  To be honest though, it seemed fairly normal. No drunken old folk falling over after a fight outside the pub and losing their false teeth in the gutter (this actually did happen once). We did see this guy in the Broadway Centre. though.

We watched for a couple of minutes but then I got the fear as I remembered how this shit went down in ‘Robocop’.  I feared for a “You have 20 seconds to comply” moment and steered my daughter out of harms way into Paperchase, where we could “coo” &  “aww” at overpriced novelty useless shiz and ludicrously priced paperclips and rubbers.

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Have these people never seen this movie?

 

 Made it home without hearing a “Hya Miss” from anyone and settled down for an evening listening to thousands of pounds going up in smoke outside for Bonfire Night. We opted to stay in and watch the classic 80’s movie, ‘Heathers’ (my girls needed educating that shows like ‘Pretty Little Liars’ and ‘Mean Girls’ didn’t just invent themselves!)  The alternative would have been to attend the pikey bonfire party at the local pub.  The last time we went to that, my girl was almost hit by a rogue banger and a trip to the loo inside the pub was like being an extra in ‘Shameless’.  I vowed then that I would never go again.  Needless to say it sounded like New Years Eve in Beirut until well after midnight.

Today I have mostly done fuck all except a bit of ironing and made tea.  Right now I am squirming at the brilliant new David Attenborough programme, ‘Planet Earth 2’.  I defy you not to squeal or cringe a little at the marine lizard dudes trying to escape the racing snakes. Get it watched on iplayer if you missed it.  That’s a thing y’all – lizards that swim and fucking racing snakes!  Holy shit!

Mother nature is terrifying and beautiful – a cruel mistress indeed.

Ciao Xx