Sunday, 15 December 2013

Things Which Are Just Plain Wrong

Here are just a few personal favourites which spring to mind. I'm sure you can think of your own to add to the list.

1. Grown women wearing items of clothing with cartoon characters or animals on them.

2. People who use 'The Daily Mail' to inform their social and political conscience.

3. Michael Gove. No more need be said.

4. Radio phone-ins, or more precisely the kind of individual who has the time and inclination to ring in with their ill-thought-out, bigoted and often not-terribly-eloquent contributions. Haven't they got better things to do like polish their golf caddies?

5. Golf. What is right about it? The outfits, the 'networking', the sexism, the elitism...?

6. Having Christmas items in the shops in September. I LOVE Christmas but not until about December 19th.

7. Women who don't go out to work (that bit's fine - if you've found a rich husband you make the most of it sister!) but who then spend all their time complaining to the rest of us (who work and have a family) about how busy they are. Unless you have small infants at home or do masses of voluntary work then you have no claim to the phrase 'things are so manic at present'!

8. Porridge boiling over in the microwave. It's a conspiracy. The moment you stop watching it and turn your back, there it goes erupting over the edge. When I'm feeling reckless, however, I do like to play a game which I call 'porridge roulette' where you set the timer, watch it rising and see if you can stop yourself intervening to switch it off. This is not an activity for those of a nervous disposition.

Friday, 4 October 2013

Being Insulted by your Children

My son has unfortunately inherited my rather wicked sense of humour. I say 'unfortunately' as I am often on the receiving end of it.
Today on the way home from school we were playing the game where you say what sort of animal, fruit etc. you would be. I foolishly asked him what type of vehicle I would be. Quick as a flash he replied, "A rust-bucket 1971".
This is the same child who decided he was going to sell his dad on e-bay (he'd obviously run out of old toys to flog) and said that the listing would have to be in the 'faulty, for parts only' category.
I would like to tell him that before he came along we were both young, beautiful and wild, but the truth is... I can't remember that far back!

Friday, 13 September 2013

The Harrison Theory of Mediocrity

It would appear that the 'Harrison Theory of Mediocrity' is gathering momentum, with my own colleagues starting to pass my advice on to their own friends. I shall soon be running seminars on it at this rate, but that would rather defeat the object of the whole philosophy. For those of you who missed my post on it earlier in the year it goes something like this.

I am going to let you into the secret of a peaceful existence; mediocrity. I have spent much of my adult life perfecting the art of mediocrity and I like to think I am fairly good at it. Let me explain why being mediocre is the key to happiness, taking your working life as an example. I am sure you will agree that if you are bad at your job then you are in line for all manner of grief, although not if your first name is Michael and your surname Gove. Nobody wants to be on the receiving end of complaints from line managers, stern emails from the boss and uncomfortable appraisal meetings, so it doesn't pay to be too shabby.
This reminds me of a story I heard about a colleague of a friend who was having their annual performance management interview. He came out of the meeting fairly pleased with the way it had gone, saying that his manager had complimented him on the improvement in his work. The others in the office were mildly surprised as this individual was renowned for being lazy and incompetent. "So, what exactly did he say then?", one co-worker asked. "He said I used to be f****** sh*t, but now I'm just sh*t", came the reply.
However, if you are too good at what you do then people expect a lot of you and give you more to do. Some of my colleagues are constantly snowed under by requests to run a course, go to a meeting, organise an event. Why? Because they are too good at their job. I do try to give them the benefit of my wisdom but they are too busy answering the 150 emails they have received that morning to listen to me.
So, for now I shall endeavour to tread the line of least resistance and happily continue in my own little world with my delusions of adequacy.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Keeping up with the Grandparents

Letting your child spend too long with their grandparents can have its downsides I have discovered. I have just been told by no.1 son that he expects £2 rather than the customary £1 next time a tooth comes out, as this is what he received from the tooth-fairy at Mamgu (Welsh for Granny) and Granfer's house. He has also just asked me to put his pyjamas to warm on the towel rail so they are ready for when he gets out of the bath! This indulgence has also been instigated by my mum. How come I didn't get that kind of treatment from them when I was a child?!

Sunday, 8 September 2013

10 Strange Facts About Me

1. I am not sure if I am left or right handed. I can't totally use either interchangeably so am not a true ambidexter, but I have different tasks for my right and left hands.

2. I like those crisps which have folded over on themselves the best.

3. I once appeared on Pebble Mill with a group of friends and met Richard Stilgoe in the corridor. I like to think I haven't let fame change me though.

4. I know all the lyrics to every Wham song ever released. When I finally lose my mind you will find me in the care home unable to remember my own name but singing Young Guns and possibly conjugating Spanish verbs.

5. I took 7 driving tests. People have got their own TV series based on a lot less than that.

6. I actually enjoy ironing but no, I don't want to do yours too.

7. When I was at school my nick name was 'Piglet' and somewhere I still have a collection of about 200 pigs. Think that could be one for e-bay unless the V&A wants them?

8. I am a Marmite hater married to a Marmite lover.

9. I have a body piercing but no tattoos.

10. I lose the will to live in winter. Is there not a job which you can just do from March - October so I could hibernate the rest of the year?