Thursday, 10 October 2013

This blog, and other things I never get round to doing

Hmm. I haven't updated this blog since MARCH, which is such a long time that it's a bit like being dead, really. Maybe you thought I was dead, unless you follow me on Twitter, (@lucytweet1 if you like idiocy!). If you do follow me, you might have either wished me dead, or at the very least quietly muted me and browsed the Guardian for recipes for plum cobbler.

Anyway, I'm not dead, not yet, but sometimes I wonder about all the things I'll never get round to doing before I die. All that unaddressed stuff that everyone says they'll do but won't. Don't worry, I'm not talking about a Bucket List. It's much more stupid than that. Because these things are silly to even think about. You can't honestly say this stuff is left undone because of procastination, because that would suggest that you've attempted to do something about it. No, this is stuff that I will never get done, not in a million years, but I've still managed to convince myself that one day I will do them. These things form a layer of pointless, dormant ambition sitting on top of my brain, like skin on a custard. (Mmm, brain custard, a perfect accompaniment to Brain Cobbler.)

5 Things I Won't Do Ever

1. Become a captivating singer songwriter
Ok, so I made a record once, before my child came and RUINED EVERYTHING by asking for water and food and hugs and stuff. Actually, I made two! But the thing was, it was with people who did things like book the rehearsals and the recordings while I swanned in holding a takeaway coffee and complaining about being a bit chilly. On my own, I am A Person Who Owns A Guitar. I'm not even Annoying Git Who Plays Guitar At Parties, because my unique take on grumbling ovary alt-folk can clear a room. So, Laura Marling, don't worry, love, you're safe.

2. Write a sitcom
Since I was about 15, I've made about 3000 frankly pathetic attempts to write a sitcom. They're all crap. I will never write a Seinfeld, or a Curb Your Enthusiasm. I won't even write a 'Yus My Dear' with me in the role of Arthur Mullard. It distresses me that I will never be Tina Fey or Lena Dunham or Mindy Kaling - or Arthur Mullard - but it's probably for the best.

3. Reading Great Books
Yeah, I'll just casually drop some reference to Anna Karenina into conversation while we're having a latte at literary festival. Or I'll whip out A La Recherche Des Temps Perdu on the bus. Ah, who am I kidding?  I read Middlemarch last year and it nearly fucking killed me. There was hardly any shagging in it at all and not one single cameo by Kiri Te Kanawa or Nigel Havers. 

4. Skiing
I once went to a ski resort and I didn't ski. Even though I think skiing is dangerous and unpleasant, annoyingly, this is one of my big regrets. When my life flashes before my eyes, there'll just be a big film of me not going on a ski lift and not crowbarring my arse into any salopettes. I tell myself if I try to ski, then my life will come full circle and I will have faced my deepest fears. But there is NO FUCKING WAY I WILL EVER GO SKIING BECAUSE IT WILL KILL ME.

5. Helping the needy
In my mind's eye I have always been a pale, noble, almost saintly figure, running a hospital in Africa. Or someone who gives up my Christmasses to trade fruity banter and lukewarm gravy with the homeless. Sorry, poor people, but I can't be arsed. However I will sometimes send £5 if you grow a moustache/stop drinking/run a 10k on a Sunday morning - if I remember.

There are loads more other things I'll never do, like watching the Sopranos and Nurse Jackie, and finding the perfect red lipstick, and making a brilliant pavlova. I will probably never go to Australia. (It's far.) But 5 things is probably enough, and you're probably dealing with your own top five stupid things you'll never do, too. So I'll leave you to not do them while I get on with not doing any of my stuff. See you in March. xx

Friday, 8 March 2013


Apart from the fact that they don’t pay their workers and you know, child labour and stuff, I can’t tell you how much I love a pound shop. My heart starts hammering as soon as I see a giant pack of batteries, or a bumper sack of off-brand Mini Cheezers, or a discounted Cheeky Girls autobiography. Mops, pegs, brushes, magic expanding socks, diaries made of thin toilet paper – I love it all.

I also love that, unlike the shiny doodads and pointless reactionary trinkets of John Lewis, it all comes with a moving whiff of Chinese warehouse. You’ve got to admire these shitty products. Unloved, piled high and viciously discounted, they’ve travelled the world trying to find a home. If that imported deodorant could speak, it would say: ‘Me and my family of lavender roll ons have been in a shipping crate in Shanghai for 6 months, wondering whether we will see an armpit again. But for just £1 you can adopt me and apply me gently into your crevices.’ 

And as a parent, pound shops are worth their weight in gold. Toys for other people’s children who you don’t know or particularly like? Check. Watery paint and newsprint colouring books? Check. And here’s a secret I only just found out myself. Poundland sell MIDDLE CLASS FRUIT SNACKS.  You don’t have to send Boudicca and Rafferty to school with cold chips and a biscuit any more! For one British pound you can throw in some Fruit Factory stringy things and give them one of their five a day like a BOSS. I even found some Dorset muesli in there the other day – admittedly the packet was thumbnail sized, but it was only a fucking quid. Suck on that, Mumford and Sons and Jamie Oliver and all you pork pulling artisan idiots. I might sleep under a motorway off ramp, but I know how to live!

Anyway, it’s a good job I have learned to treasure crap things, because they’re the only things I can afford. I can’t remember the last time I paid full price for anything. The combination of the financial crisis, a terrible government and working part time means I’ve become a bargain betty, a sales slut, a made in Taiwan fan. You wouldn’t catch me wearing Marni and Louboutins, because I am dressed head to toe in a massive bin bag from B&M. The best conversations I have involve money off coupons and 3 for 2s on jam.

Like the women who lived through WW2, who were still making cups of tea with powdered egg and making earrings out of potato peelings well into the 70s, I don’t think I’ll ever get over my modern day penny pinching. I will always be a Pound Shop Princess. You could give me a black Amex and Kanye’s pin number and I would still gravitate towards Poundland to fondle the washing baskets. 

Cheap? Yes - but I’ll have the last laugh. And I will also be the proud owner of SEVEN MILLION packets of Jammy Bodgers. Screw you, recession.