Monday, 15 December 2008


I love this place. I must say it out loud as he looks down at me and replies "I can tell."

Dim, rainy sunshine dripping onto the latticed roof. We walk halfway around the Reading Room, heading for the Parthenon galleries. Centaurs, ephebes, an explanation of why a small penis means you are a good Greek boy. The Rosetta stone, a favourite Exekias pot, the early Christian paintings I spent three months studying. The crowds are thinning as we leave to eat Thai. I get too drunk and rant about socialism all the way home.

The next day, cold cold wind on the Thames, hats and gloves and a pretend German Christmas market, wooden sheds and The Pogues on a loudspeaker. Coffee and cake by the steps of St Pauls. Sometimes, he says, I love London.

Sometimes, I do, too.

Thursday, 11 December 2008


Few things I'm loving at the moment:

Things on repeat on my ipod;
Homecoming - The Teenagers; sample lyric: 'I fucked my American cunt/I loved my English romance'. Class.
Paris - Friendly Fires. Hot Chip-esque pre-party music.
Quicksand - La Roux. Electro-pop. I think she's singing about a girl. Do you?
Girls' Night Out - The Knife. Listening to this, I had a sudden realisation that the singer also appears on a Royksopp song that I adore.

A really, really well written piece on a favourite site:
I wrote this in the past

Shoes I want, violently. The Miu Miu store in the new shopping centre marks the end of my retail pilgrimage every time.

Real post at some point. Good weekend coming up. Must start making notes again.

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

london love

"Hey, baby."
I roll my eyes and walk past him.
"You think you're too good for me, ah? You think you're too hot for me!"
The man; short, shorter than me in my heels, Hispanic, slick hair.

He turns to his friend. "She thinks she's too hot for me!"
I walk through the barrier.
"You're nada! Nada!" He yells, at my back.

I think briefly on what I will do if they appear on the platform. My train arrives, I abandon my grimace of distaste and start to snigger into the high collar of my coat.

Monday, 24 November 2008

pillow talk

On the phone, late Sunday evening, dozing as we compare weekends and make plans, conversation inevitably draws back to how cold it is. Because we are British. And incredibly interesting.
I am always cold. I list what I am wearing; Pyjama bottoms, two tshirts, my enormous (and unwashed) university hoodie, and socks. I even have the hood up.

It dawns on me, when we hang up, that should Law fail as a career, I'd be a great phone sex worker. You know, for that niche sector that likes girls in oversized grubby layers. Filth!

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

as predicted

I feel better today. Not more enthusiastic, but certainly more accepting.

And! Worse news! The greatest tragedy of our times! John Sargeant has bowed out of Strictly.
Proof the grass is never greener...?

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

where I am

I feel soulless. Not in the indulgent way I occasionally ignore any moral compass I may possess, but spineless, weightless. A grey uneasy rest.

I do not love the law. I will never love the law. I cannot do this for the rest of my life.
I do not think I can do this at all.

A phone call; I say what has been building in my throat for days I despise that I let myself do this.

I cannot bear the drudgery. Discussion of statute is not debate, application of rules and attempting to sidestep difficult tax issues is not intellectual or exciting or anything but work any person willing to push solidly through these pages of bullet points could do.

Fuck, let's hope I'm as fickle as usual and change my mind by morning.

Monday, 3 November 2008


I've had a some very complimentary comments on the way I dress recently. Basically, I want to be this girl.

You really should click that link.

I did some shopping at the weekend. I even bought a top that wasn't black, or grey. It is blue, though, so hardly a departure from my usual palette.

On a related note, anyone finding that London is making them accidentally skinny? I have dropped a jeans size without even trying. Not complaining, but boooo to having to try on clothes amid sweaty Saturday shoppers.

Seriously, click that link. Even if you're a bloke. She's very pretty.

Thursday, 30 October 2008


Two builders talk on the scaffolding. I listen as I walk towards Hammersmith.

"Yeah... I saw skanky Joe."
"No, not skanky Joe. Skanky Paul."

How many skanky people do you have to know to get them mixed up?

Tuesday, 28 October 2008


Tuesday is the new Sunday. Oh yes.

I spent the weekend in Bristol. Meeting AM in a bar after far too long an absence, we gossip and exclaim disbelief at how strange it is, how alien to be drinking in our university city. The attack of his warm, delighted hug is just as I remember.

As I stumbled from the train earlier in the afternoon, bleary from afternoon drinks in London, I text a friend; Just arrived. Feels like coming home.

Beautiful moments; emo kids perched like crows against the rounded wall of the building by the river; carrot cake and a stolen crossword; that extra hour on Sunday, and shy amazement at quite how wonderful some people can be.

Thursday, 23 October 2008


I'm ignoring this in October, too.

Update on Sunday. Promise. I even have something approaching gossip.

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

the answer to your unasked question

It seems September is the month I ignore my blog. Hurrah! For you, I mean. I should write more. Apart from all that beneficial release-of-emotion nonsense, it may help with the glitter-eyed dream about being published.

Anyway. Where have I been, you might say. Or! You might not! It is a crazy world, this one in which we live. You get an answer anyway. I have been:

moving in -
falling off chairs on my first day of law school - failing to get the job [yes I know it sucks, move on, move on]- making Norwegian boys in nightclubs really quite cross - getting a slightly rubbish haircut by mistake - writing letters - tripping over my own feet in aerobics - leaving my Oyster card at home multiple times causing much RAGE - and various other things.

In conclusion; somewhere in the ether of equity and contract and tort (I know what that means now! Eight thousand pounds WELL SPENT) I will get back to writing.

Monday, 25 August 2008

what it comes down to

Much to my surprise, I have a second interview with the Law Firm. I am mostly surprised by this because I appear to be losing it; I typed up that anecdote about my Oxford disasters in two successive posts. It's not even that interesting.

I must revisit the tired Oxford story once more, I'm afraid. I performed poorly, that is true, but I'm also pretty certain they knew I just didn't want that place. I am sure people go in there to fight, and to win, and I didn't care by then. Oh my, how much that sounds like postoperative bitterness.

I know that my major stumbling block is convincing the Law Firm that I want this job. My clearest memories of my first interview are trying to explain why I want to be a lawyer. But there was no burst of brilliant inspiration, no desperate conviction from a young age. I went with something about long-standing undercurrent of ambition and a ramble about my transferable skills in the end. To me, jargon of that sort always translates to there is something I'd rather be doing.

I realise it is then paradoxical to claim that I want this. I do, though. This job would justify the path I am about to take. It is the goal that will push me through the tedium (and the preparatory course is Very Tedious).

And right there, in those few sentences, is why this is soulless, and why I am sad.

Saturday, 23 August 2008


I wouldn't come too close. I've got food poisoning for the second time this summer.

Dad got stuck in the lift the other night, for over an hour. We bent all the utensils trying to lever the doors. I think he was happier in there than in our company.
My mother was more concerned about what time the poisonous chicken needed to be removed from the oven.

Albahaca means Basil, and as such has nothing to with any of that, but I am in Spain and it is a Spanish word. Check out that craziness.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

I Don't Think I'm Ready Yet

I had an interview last Thursday.

When people ask how it went, I answer: It wasn't as bad as my Oxford interview.
It wasn't. In the second Oxford interview they showed me a picture of a large structure and asked me what it was. Clearly, it was a tomb, but I said watch tower. Oh yes. I also told Robin Lane Fox that there were multiple versions of Homer's Odyssey. My explanation of this sort-of truth was not sufficient, clearly.

There were the required amount of fatuous questions. I gave equally pretentious answers. I felt hardly myself, playing this game of pretty platitudes, jumping through hoops.

Good Things: (to distract me from silly interview) moved into new house (beautiful), listened many times to my new purchase- Patrick Wolf - The Magic Position, tiptoed around family, begun watching the first season of House (watch it watch it watch it) and revisited my Eels collection for comfort. (Check the title).

I don't think I got the job. But - watch this space.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

measuring up

I know you've missed me. Of course you have. I've missed you too.
A story. About bras.

"My daughter would like to be measured."
No. No, she wouldn't. The daughter, me, is hovering in the door of the shop, deeply regretting having pointed out that she has returned home from five weeks travelling with no bras. The rucksack ate them. Or an American stole them. That's another story.

"Mmph" I offer, sidling towards the saleswoman. "I've, er, never been measured."
"Oh. Really?" She is looking me over. I am wearing a bra that, I believe, fits. I haven't been this nervous since my Oxford interview. My knowledge of all that is womanly is about to be tested.
She gropes me.
"What do you wear?"
Clearly, this is the wrong answer. The expression on her face is akin to the moment when I told the Oxford professor that the tomb he was showing me was clearly a watch tower.

She gives me something to try on. It is enormous. Briefly, I contemplate putting it on my head, then I remember I am not a boy, and put it on properly.
"It's tight." I moan, when the lady reappears.
"That is how it is meant to be. In fact, it could be tighter." She pulls at it. "See how it sits at the sides?" she makes me lift my arms "That's how it's meant to look."

After many many repeats of this same conversation, we settle on a size. It involves compromise, and mutterings of a 30 back ("Ow" I say, though apparently that is Good) and an F cup (too big. Thank God).
"32E." She announces to my mother, proudly, like the baby is healthy and has all its toes.

The upshot is, I spent the rest of my student loan on underwear, and I now have bras people can wear as hats.

Thursday, 3 July 2008

american dream

For the last ten years, only one thing has been constant in my life "plan". I use the irritating little " because I am well aware that every major decision I have ever had to take has been made at the last minute. I have no plan. I have only this overwhelming, sickening desire to move to the US within the next five to ten years.

I cannot really explain it. It is an American Dream as far removed from Steinbeck's as you might get, but then, not. I'm not after wealth, but I am in search of something seen on the screen, something ostensibly perfect, something a little Desperate Housewives with a big twist of malicious Stepford smashed in among the ice. I want Disney, but I want it with the undercurrent of all that is terrible about clapboard facades and signs swinging in a humid bay breeze.

I'm in Connecticut. I might get my wish, if just for a while.

I'm afraid I shall be sending e-mails to all those who didn't request them, telling you about the things we're going to get up to, but do check here for pieces more tedious and pretentious in tone. Wouldn't want to let you down.

Tuesday, 1 July 2008


We have a flat. Slash house! It has stairs!

It is amazing. It has stairs!

Bit delirious. Hopefully will find picture soon.

Monday, 30 June 2008

the shoe fetish gets really silly

I have packed five pairs of shoes for my month away. Five. That is stupid.

Oddly, my backpack has still got a fair bit of room. My sleeping bag squashes to nothing (as nothing as a sleeping bag can be) and I have all the magical frugal travelling things you're meant to take, like a bit of chamois leather masquerading as a towel. I'm very fond of my car cleaning cloth, as it happens - until it starts to smell. That happens round about the ten day mark, I've found, as a result of being transported in its plastic bag home, nestled in among many other rucksacks in the belly of a dodgy bus.

Seriously, five pairs of shoes. That's not counting my beloved battered boots that I'm wearing on the plane.

On Wednesday I fly to Connecticut. Next week, we go south to Buenos Aires. The reason I have five (fine, SIX) pairs of shoes is really quite logical; the two climates will be very different.

In other shoe news: I have given myself yet another haematoma (the thing that is causing my nail to fall off), but this time, with the aid of high heels, rather than ill-fitting running shoes. That tells you all you need to know about my last few weeks in the city.

Saturday, 28 June 2008


Buried under application forms and/or being really bad at helping to organise travel stuff and a place to live next year.

Proper post tomorrow.

Monday, 23 June 2008

in actual fact

I think my future is characterised by the fact that I change my mind every minute.

Law sounds OK today.
Shut up.

Saturday, 21 June 2008

memories from the final week

Leaving the Department to drink wheat beer in a favourite bar with the boys, they take a biro and scribble out the terrifying "Referred to Faculty Board" heading with my candidate number underneath, and replace it with "First Class Honours".

Unable to stop giggling on the fairground rides in the rain at Graduate Ball, grabbing at my dress to stop my breasts from overflowing and knowing the sparkly plastic seats will bruise my ribs badly.

Dancing to live jazz in AM's front room, an evening I will hold dear forever.

Handing my handbag to TH in the middle of a country estate lawn so that I can tighten Miss McG's navy corset, again at Grad Ball, again in the rain, and smiling drunkenly as I know the three of us are finding this just a little bit thrilling.

Listening to more live jazz on the steps of the Music Department in the centre of the city, hearing friends play improvised solos for the last time.

A mark of 75 for my dissertation, with subsequent pangs of longing for an MA and PhD.

Realisation that I am in the UK for the sum total of two weeks this summer.

Many more. Very tired. Very happy.

Friday, 20 June 2008


First class degree. Bada bing.

Thursday, 19 June 2008

d day

Results today. Planning to sleep until I need to collect them.

Will get back on with all this writing stuff soon, kids. Promise.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

spain to come

The past three nights' dreams:
1: sex with psycho ex.
2: sex with a good friend.
3: being pregnant with, and giving birth to, triplets.

Food for thought? Hope not.
PS: yes, that was a shocking post, even for a filler. Apologies.

Saturday, 7 June 2008


You live, you learn.

Anyway. I am beginning the task of moving out today. Catharsis.
Considering spending the night in the country, alone, Playstation and an early morning run.

Away for a week from tomorrow. Stories, I'm sure, on my return.

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

want/need #5

The only piece of jewellery I put on every day is my watch. I love it, but I don't wear it when I'm travelling for long periods abroad.

I want this to take on my travels this summer. It's totally trashy and impractical, as it's not waterproof, but I still want it.

Yes, in gold.

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

things I fear I'll never grow out of

1. Writing stuff (song lyrics, Latin phrases) on the inner side of my left wrist. Especially odd when you consider visible veins aren't my favourite thing.
2. Talking to myself while I drive.
3. Blink-182.
4. Leaving important decisions until the last second.
5. My Diet Coke habit.

Monday, 2 June 2008

roll on thursday

Vaguely irritated with myself as some of my girlfriends are out tonight, celebrating the end of their exams and I am too tired to be good company. I did my three mile run at a really good pace this morning, and having done Body Pump as well tonight I'm physically pretty worn out. This is good, and I need the rest, but I still want to drink cocktails.

It's all over on Thursday. Bring it.

Friday, 30 May 2008


Would you be shocked if I told you I have an addictive personality? No. Didn't think so. I can get obsessed with nearly anything.

As my flatmates are no doubt painfully aware, this includes music. If I find a song I like, I can, and will, listen to it many many times in a row. I believe in being upfront about these things; I have a totally bizarre, and mostly atrocious, taste in music. Last week I listened to a remix of Cazal's Somebody Somewhere ten million times in succession; the week before, it was Hadouken! Declaration of War. I like bad electro, very much. (See also: long-term love-affair with Basement Jaxx).

I also adore Britney. Sorry. I had a couple of days last week where all I listened to was Nelly's Ride With Me. As I documented at the time, Bon Iver's Skinny Love got me through many dark dissertation hours. Pop, crap R'n'B, and average acoustic emotional wittering. I should be mortified if you saw the i-pod play count for My Chemical Romance's The Sharpest Lives or Blink-182's A New Hope.

I wouldn't be, though, because I own something even worse. I have a piece of music so terrible, and so utterly ridiculous, that it beats Ms Spears without batting an eyelid.
If I tell you mine, you must tell me yours...
my worst musical obsession ever, and one that I still keep on my i-pod:

the theme song for the anime cartoon Sailormoon, in English.

Thursday, 29 May 2008

unrelated thoughts

Can you breast feed if your nipples are pierced?

It is not necessary to tell the boy you like that your toenail is about to come off.

I hope my mother doesn't notice that I cut my fringe myself.

R'n'B at 9am is just a bit wrong.

When did I turn into such a girl?

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

and I was doing so well

Have a ridiculous headache. Must stop with the get-trashed-sleep-late routine. I have little more to say about last other than I really, really should not be allowed a phone when I've been drinking. I am trying to convince myself the drunk pestering was charming, but it probably bordered more on insane.


Monday, 26 May 2008


Bank Holiday Monday meant nothing to me at school. I still had two and a half hours of Economics. That's a lot of numbers, especially if you barely scraped a B in GCSE Maths. The calculator paper induced visible despair, to the point where my teacher tapped me on the shoulder mid-exam to ask whether I was okay. I just shrugged.

The May holidays are just as weird now. Radio One is pretty shocking anyway, but it's worse today. The weather is crap, wintery rain and grey cloud, soaking the books on my windowsill in the early hours. I'm not dressed yet.

Sudden saving grace on the radio - the strange Welsh bloke is playing Johnny Foreigner.

Happy enough, just stuck in that strange level land where there's no clear next step. No pressing academic commitments, no real need to leave the house. At least I've finally caught up on some sleep.

Sunday, 25 May 2008

doris and the wank puppets

"Can you undo a bra with one hand?" I sway a little on my stool and reach out to JW, steadying myself on his shoulder.
"I have done." he says, with hesitance. I laugh.
"That" I pour more dark wheat beer into my wine glass "means no."
I drink. "It's a life skill."

Miss McG makes noises of agreement from the sofa.
I turn to the other boys.

M tells a story about removing a bra from a lady named Doris, a patient at the hospital he volunteers in. Doris is incontinent. Doris, incontinence, bra removal and M all unfortunately coincided. M wins the multi-tasking bra removal award, which consists of us all making retching noises.

"How did we get from sex to shit?" I am still drinking. I have also figured out how to use my new phone while slipping into drunkenness. This is bad for the person receiving my enthusiastic text messages.

As I hunch over my electronic downfall, Miss McG drags the conversation back towards fucking. "...had a wank puppet."
It is enough to snap me away from the messages. "What?"
"A friend of mine had a wank puppet. It was a character from that Sooty show - the little grey one. Sweep?"
"Yeah. It was called Sweep... but oh my... a wank puppet?"

The boys decline to comment further.

Eurovision parties seem to bring people closer together, certainly.

Friday, 23 May 2008

shoes! or: why I should not buy fashion magazines

Yes. Yes, I know every woman in the world is entranced by shoes. It's a common disease. I don't claim to have it any worse, though my illness is quite specific; I lust after the most ridiculous of high heels, over shoes that would cause a stripper to think twice. I am 5'3" in bare feet, so I feel 5" and over is quite justifiable.

River Island currently have some astounding yellow peep toes with a hidden platform and an ankle strap. Generally I avoid things that require buckling, and I have a really stupid reason for this so I'm not going to tell you, but these are something quite special. They're sold out online in every size but a 7. It's a serious problem. I might die without them.

I was going to tell you about my other current obsession (Indiana Jones) but he deserves a post all to himself. The film, it was good. Although quite why nobody learnt from the moan-inducing direness of the last Star Wars trilogy and let George Lucas write the story is beyond me. As I say, that's for another post.

Wednesday, 21 May 2008


If I were to liveblog the football match that's on at the moment, my entry would be something like 'man in red is kicking the ball, man in blue has got in the way, guy with whistle is being pointy and taking the ball away'. You should be impressed that I actually know there's, like, a ball involved, and two teams.

I went through a stage of watching a lot of matches, keeping a friend of mine company in the pub across the road. I did a lot of nodding as he chattered on about fuck knows what. He supported Arsenal, of whom I approved because they had Thierry Henry, obviously God's 'sorry' gift to women who must watch football with men in pubs. Mr Henry isn't playing tonight. I expect you knew that.

The red people have scored. Much screaming. I live opposite a pub and below red people supporters.

Still, I'm enjoying the game in a girl-like way, with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc and the windows open to let in the evening air. We've spent the day cleaning and I've tidied my room, cooked a curry and made up a bowl of falafel mixture to fry off tomorrow. I'd rather it was a tennis match on the television but Wimbledon will come around soon enough, and then it will be hard to pull me away from the sofa.

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

and then

Fretting over a minor upset on Sunday night, I opened my e-mail inbox yesterday hoping for a distraction. Perspective smacked me in the face; there was a message from my tutor, telling her tutees she'd not been replying to our exam queries because at the end of last week her baby son was prematurely stillborn.

Life, you're such a bitch. Seriously, screw you.

Monday, 19 May 2008

the drawback

The one thing I really need to talk about, I can't. I just can't, not even offline.

Didn't sleep well and now just want to wallow. That won't help. Up I get.

Sunday, 18 May 2008

a year on

Friday night marked one year since I had my fall. Tomorrow it will be a year since I split up with my ex. The changes happened fast, but the effects resounded through the next twelve months.

It has been a strange year. I've spent the majority of it repairing the damage I did to myself and my friendships last summer.

Friday was also the 21st birthday of one of my best girlfriends at university. Champagne, wonderful food, tipsy noisy conversation in a beautiful hotel (Miss McG to me, on a toilet break - "I can't even hear you across the room" - I'm notoriously mouthy with a few drinks inside me) and then to a bar where I smashed a glass of wine on the floor while gesturing enthusiastically.

Shortly after the barman had swept up my embarrassment, I was chatting to my friend A about the evening and quite how good a time we'd all had. The birthday girl was propped on a stool by this point, lolling a bit. It was time to go home. I remember, through the blur of alcohol, telling A "I don't believe things have been this good, ever."

And they haven't. Anticipating the end of university, proud to know this amazing group of girls and boys, meeting someone new and just as interesting and exciting, with summer plans and happy expectations for next year.

And Indiana Jones is on the TV tonight. What more could I want?

Friday, 16 May 2008

a question

Do you trust your instincts, dear readers?

I think my instincts (everyone's?) are born of a defensive mechanism. Although I do not always act on them, I often regret ignoring the twinge of understanding playing on my ribs.

Truly, I know nothing about the things that really matter.

Wednesday, 14 May 2008

trailer trash

Terrible things that I really love:

1. Rose Vamp nail varnish by Bourjois, enriched with vinyl. It resembles the peel-off varnish I used to have as a kid.
2. Britney.
3. Really trashy newspapers/magazines, like the News of the World, and the National Enquirer.
4. Enormous hoop earrings.
5. Chunky gold jewellery, and too much of it. An armful of bracelets is my good luck charm.
6. McDonalds McChicken sandwiches.
7. Tranvestite-esque high heels.
8. Anything animal print.
9. Metallic bikinis.
10. White jeans.

Monday, 12 May 2008


"I think it's brave of you to post a link to your blog on facebook."
I think about this, as I walk down the main drag towards home with Miss McG.
"I don't write about anything consequential." I reply.
"But you put your life out there."

We wait for the lights.

"I'm more aware of what I write about other people. I try not to write anything I wouldn't want them to come across."
She nods.

Miss McG doesn't read this. She'd know who she was, if she did. If you know me, and my friends, even a little, you'll know who she is. Writing about her, about anyone I know, doesn't make this necessarily less narcissistic. Possibly, it focuses it more on my own indulgences,
taking parts of other people, sanitising and packaging them in words, sentences, and posting them online.

I feel torn about it. What right do I have? Is that why I avoid typing up the bad days, the arguments? I leave out most of my romantic disasters for similar reasons. I'm a very judgmental person, and so are you, my dear. Why put the worst of myself in the spotlight?

I don't think writing is brave. I think it is a selection process, a methodical and cunning way of presenting an image, constructing it secretly, delicately, until you can be satisfied with this linguistic projection of yourself. This isn't an expression of my honesty, but a way of ridding myself of the dishonest, the personality that I would like you to think I have.

Bit deep for a Monday morning, yes?

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

and it drops

The weird bruises on the back of my hands? Are from being too lazy to fetch the postbox key when checking the mail. Instead I force my fingers into the slot (heh) and end up with these marks. Another mystery solved.

Tuesday, 6 May 2008


Broke an eight minute mile today. Would be nice to do two in a row. Wildly unlikely. As I finished it today I laughed, well, I made a noise through the sweat and heavy breathing that may be described as happy. I think I'm prouder of how far I've pushed myself with the fitness than the stupid degree. I'm by no means excelling at either, but I do enjoy the weary smugness post-gym so very much.

I won't miss the TV in the gym that they tune to this bricklaying infomercial. It's totally inexplicable. The ten minute ad for some kind of spangly new building equipment plays over and over and over. I was distracted today by an endlessly homoerotic Take That video on the screen next to the bricks. Bare clammy British arses at nine am. Yuck.

Totally procrastinating. Have an essay to finish. Predict late night rush tomorrow.

Saturday, 3 May 2008


In addition to people that don't live here, the flat is now host to a dog.

That is all.

Friday, 2 May 2008


All I will say is that this flat is meant for four people. Not five. Not six. Not seven. Four.

Had enough of it.

Thursday, 1 May 2008

good times

There was a moment last night, as I did ridiculous air guitar to Feeder's 'All By Myself' and jumped high enough that I flashed whoever was stood behind me that I believed I'd never, never been happier. Despite being in a club I hate, at a night that has morphed from mildly kooky indie music to boring 'The [whatever]' bands surrounded by groups of girls I openly made faces at because I found them so awful I was elated, exhaustedly delighted to be out with good friends, drinking bad beer.

Watching the boys on the pull made me laugh, hard. The neon paint that now speckles my new jacket I admittedly could have forgone, similarly the groping hands of stupid emo men wearing more makeup than me, but still, it was perfect.

You don't read this, boys, but thankyou.

Monday, 28 April 2008

want/need #4

This would either look fabulous or dreadful on me. click.

I'd put my hair up, wear too much eyeliner, thick black tights and enormous black patent heels. I think it would look equally good/trashy with bare legs and my gold peeptoes.

Want want want. Sigh.

Saturday, 26 April 2008

back in the game

I take all that shit back about not being stressed. I am definitely stressed. I know this because this morning I ran an eight minute mile. I have been hovering at nine (ish) for ages. I took my frustration out on the treadmill. It helped. I might pay for it later, but my knee seems to have improved a lot recently.

Unfortunately, I ended up going later than usual, and the Stupid Bitches were out in force. Ladies, if you can hold a full-on conversation while you're exercising, you're not working hard enough. Plus, if you're walking on that massive incline but holding the bar, you're not burning shit. Shut the fuck up and do it properly. And take your fucking make-up off. You look ridiculous.

Very, very tense. Be nice.

Friday, 25 April 2008


My good friend E is in the city this weekend, visiting from Czechland where she is finishing up her year abroad. It is wonderful to see her. I wish I was on better form, and not in the library. I am tired. I do not feel stressed. I'm just dull company.

Having said that, I stole something from the pub last night, that I intend to pass on to Miss McG next week (it is her birthday). I am not sure I really "stole" it. I think it was there to be taken. Through the slight fuzz of wine and beer I do not really remember. I do not think the intended recipient visits this narcissistic waste heap but I won't say anything more about the item.

It is totally out of character for me to remove something that isn't mine. I worry over slices of bread, the last splash of orange squash. Flatmates who use my olive oil should be hung. To whoever stole my favourite t-shirt when we were sixteen, a big Fuck You.

I'm not morally bothered by the brief episode of drunken kleptomania, just amused. I'm sure the psychologists out there would say something about buried stress manifested as erratic behaviour. Interesting.

(I'm really fucking tired).

Wednesday, 23 April 2008

we know all about you

yes we do - Ebony Bones.

New musical obsession ^. Click click.

Listen to We Know All About You, please. I heard it on the radio a couple of months ago. It disappeared. I remembered it the other day and tracked it down. The girl is good good good.

She is also playing at Brighton's Great Escape weekend thing. I cannot go. Booooo to exams.

Feeling quite happy nonetheless.

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

assorted weirdness

Why can't wisdom teeth all come through at once?
Why did I have difficulty remembering how to spell 'through'?


Dislike not exercising, dislike the library, dislike the sudden explosion of Rah-rah-rah at every desk.

No. You cannot unplug my laptop. Fuck off.

Really irritated by wearing a bra today. Ow. Feel too exposed without one, in England, sober.

Bring it, summer. I'm ready.

Monday, 21 April 2008


Slept badly. Lay in bed fretting about work, friends, the summer. Looked at the orange sky.

My friend E loves the light polluted night sky, and in my few years in the city I've grown attached to it in an odd sort of way. I leave my curtain slightly open.

Sluggish and hoping that translates into easily, silently, swiftly plodding through the last thousand words or so that I need to write before I can begin to edit my dissertation.

Sunday, 20 April 2008

shoddy journalism: John Prescott

Is this headline the Times' words, or Prescott's? I think the Times'. Hence the outrage that follows.

What an appalling way to characterise an eating disorder. I'm not particularly bothered by the inference that men aren't supposed to have bulimia. Of course that is a fairly crap and crass thing to believe, but at least that fuck-up is immediately noticeable.

Look at the title again.
The juxtaposition of 'big man' and 'girl's illness' - how utterly, utterly atrocious. The obvious point is that they've used the dominant 'man' for the male, and the submissive 'girl's' to refer to the female. If you have this disease, you are automatically demoted to the apparently weaker sex. Why are they allowed to do this?

The underlying implied message that this 'girl's illness' (and I'm not sure about that apostrophe, actually, Times) is acceptable in young women. The article, read in conjunction with the headline, makes bulimia sounds like viable relief for stressed-out females, even adding Princess Diana to the mix as a role model in the pursuit of thinness.

Kudos to John Prescott for speaking out. I don't necessarily agree with the way he presents his experience - masculinising it with vodka, for example - but everyone works through it in a different way. I could say a lot more. I'm totally overreacting.

Fuck the Times for that headline.

because we didn't know this already

You May Be a Bit Borderline...

Your mood swings make a roller coaster look tame!

When you're up, you're a little bit crazy...

And when you're down, your whole world is crashing

Scary thing is, these moods can change by the minute!

Saturday, 19 April 2008

hangover cure

I'm a touch hungover after a much-needed night out in my highest heels. Anticipating a need for comfort food I bought the ingredients for a Greek dish that reminds me of visits to grandparents. In the memories I am seven or eight, crowded around the long dark table with cousins, aunts, uncles. The two Alsatian dogs are nuzzling young knees and everyone over the age of fifteen is smoking. My grandmother serves us meat and potatoes, slow cooked for six hours and still the only way I will ever eat lamb willingly.

We call it tavar. It probably isn't spelt like that. You put lamb chops or chicken thighs in a large casserole dish with peeled and chopped white potatoes, a couple of chopped onions and enough tins of tomatoes to cover the whole lot. I add half a tin of water and some bay leaves as well. The meat falls off the bones when its done. I bite the ends off and suck the marrow, a bad habit learnt from those smoke filled nights with family.

Really quite tired now but very content. Also content to not read the outbox on my phone. Cocktails not necessarily conducive to making any sense.

Friday, 18 April 2008

things in my life that aren't my dissertation

1. The bruise on the back of my right hand. No idea how it got there. It looks like a grab mark, but it's a little quiet on that front.
2. That bloody Bon Iver song I was listening to yesterday. I do own steal crap music.
3. Two dreams, in two successive nights, about two different man-types who featured in the daytime world once upon a time.
4. Jugs of Pimms with the girls, drunk man telling us we shouldn't be in the pub if we didn't want to be "bothered".
5. Son of Rambow. Yeah, cute enough.
6. New platform sandals that may get an outing with obnoxious coloured tights and too much eyeliner tonight. The lovely Miss McG calls my dress sense "trashy" and I take it as a compliment.
7. Seriously. Bon Iver? You're meant to say it like it's French as well, but isn't 'winter' 'hiver', not 'iver'? It's bothering me.
8. Really shit TV programmes, like the Channel 4 documentary about the Ark of the Covenant. I didn't watch the end but I looked up what happened. The chap reckons the Ark is in a storeroom in Zimbabwe.
9. Another shit TV programme: Channel 5's knock-off of 4's 'Bodyshock' series. The man that looked like a tree was quite alarming. The shows are just excuses to stare. Doesn't mean I stop, though.
10. Chocolate. A lot of chocolate.

Basically, my life? Full of nonsense.

Thursday, 17 April 2008


I keep writing entries that I subsequently don't post. This is because I worry that they may be taken the wrong way, which I realise is totally narcissistic as it assumes a readership that would actually care. In that spirit, have some me me me.

I'm in the library. Sorry, the fucking library. I can see two people I know without moving my head. I feel like I know the rest of them because apparently everyone is as anal as I am about sitting in the same place every day. There is a guy who nearly always sits in my line of sight and he tends to stare. He's not staring at me but it reminds me, when my eyes flicker up, that typing is so monotonously absorbing that you forget people are able to see you. I've always enjoyed repetition. I find folding napkins at the end of a shift soothing.

I'm listening to Bon Iver's 'Skinny Love' on repeat but I can still hear the girl behind me chatting to a tall boy, awkward scruffy hair and a stupid t-shirt. She's eating something fake strawberry flavoured, perhaps my favourite flavour for sweets and icecream ever. Everything, the music, the smell, is nauseatingly sweet (and a guilty pleasure). I chew gum constantly when I'm writing so I expect the smell of Extra is just as imposing.

Bon Iver is being bitter in my ears. The music sounds like his lovechild with Kimya Dawson, except it isn't really tangible, it's just this rancid fondness that exists between two people who once meant everything to each other. It's also something that everyone on this earth thinks is personal to them but really, who doesn't wreck something precious at least once in their life? Sometimes it's necessary. If things ended well, they wouldn't end at all.

I know I'm pretentious most of the time anyway, but I get worse when I'm working hard. Introvert by nature, 12000 words wraps the world tighter. Time to finish this thing.

Thursday, 10 April 2008

nostalgic distractions

Dissertation is due three weeks from yesterday. It will be Done. On earth, as it is in heaven. Yeah, whatever. It's in my blood now.

I haven't worked this continuously since my A Levels. They were four years - FOUR YEARS - ago. I heard that Lost Prophets song 'Last Summer' on the radio this morning and was sad, for a moment, quiet and sad. So much loss.

I am nostalgic before the fact, often. Cold snap April air as I walk to the gym brings regret that these weeks will be the last time I make the early morning journey. Funny, to miss the little things, the nuts and bolts of life. Missing people is a given, but they are always there, somewhere. I can call those friends, they move on with you, but I will never recapture exactly how this city, this life makes me feel.

To work.

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

what I did on my holiday

A list. Because I am tired.

1. Got rained on.

2. Did not get a tan.
3. Woke up one morning with a transfer tattoo on my left breast. Remembered vaguely, through the hangover, weird barman putting it there.
4. Did not remember - still a touch unsure - how we got back to the boat the same night of the transfer tattoo debacle.
(Sister assures me it had something to do with a bloke named Bill.)
5. Reacquainted myself with the unattractive lumpy rash I get on my hands and joints every time I go sailing.
6. Got several mosquito bites, despite it being cold.
7. Listened to Black and Gold by Sam Sparro many many many times.
8. Did not do the dissertation work I took with me.
9. Only dropped the warp when throwing it once. Still embarrassing.
10. Read This Book Will Save Your Life, by AM Homes. And it was the best novel I have read in years.

More, maybe, at some point. Maybe even with proper sentence structures.

Sunday, 16 March 2008

getting the message

Dear ex-boyfriend who found me on Facebook,

Given that I did not reply to your Myspace message, did you really think I'd react favourably to a Facebook friend request? If I wanted you in my life, I'd have kept you in it. Leave me alone.


PS: Facebook need to make their blocking process simpler. Your name, ex-boyfriend, is so common that it took me ten minutes of clicking through search results to find your photo and remove your electronic presence. Ugh.


In better and unrelated news, I am going away tomorrow; ten days of sailing in the BVIs. I am taking my notebook. All I have been able to think about for the past month is Leaving. I will be writing. Hopefully I'll blog about travel when I get back. It was the primary purpose of this, I know.

Until then.

Thursday, 13 March 2008

not fair

My knee still hurts and I want to cry.

The fall could have been so much worse but I just want to scream in frustration.


Tuesday, 11 March 2008

challenges, #1

When I was at school we used to be made to run the 1500m every year or so. I cannot remember why. I do remember that it used to take me in excess of twelve minutes. I am spectacularly unathletic by nature. I was also very overweight.

The year I turned sixteen something snapped, and I lost over three stone very fast, chiefly by eating very little and exercising obsessively. There are few photographs of me at my biggest, but at 5'3" and around thirteen stone I was rather round.

I am fitter now than I was then, though I still have half a stone to shift to match my lowest school weight. I believe I am fitter because I have learned to love running. I run for three miles in the mornings when the cold university gym seems a dull prospect. The route is full of hills. I like hills. I run for twenty minutes on my gym mornings.

I now run the 1500, albeit on a treadmill at a very slight incline, in just less than ten minutes, barely breaking a sweat. My next goal is a nine minute mile.

This may be hindered by a knee injury (that fall, again) that seems to have reappeared this week. I'm hoping it improves fast.

I don't believe fat fifteen year old me would ever have entertained the idea of running for pleasure. I'm not great with change, but this one I like.

Thursday, 6 March 2008

diet coke days

My sister came home at Christmas looking like a Fresher. As in, looking like all of us do when we first go to university and spend every night Not Sleeping and instead drinking things with curious names. As an officially boring finalist, I can't cope with the colourful cocktails and late nights anymore. However, I never learn and so am today nursing a mild hangover, aided by the cure for all known diseases, Diet Coke.

I suppose it was a celebration of sorts, because Good Things have happened this week. Here. Have a list. Lucky you.
1. I wrote a bit of my dissertation. 12000 words is still a lot but at least I have a few of them in an order that vaguely makes sense.
2. I got into Law School. That should maybe be first. Whatever.
3. I booked flights to Buenos Aires for July. I say "I", I actually had very little to do with it and merely nodded when appropriate. Friends are brilliant.

Millions of other little happy things have occurred recently as well.
Oh my! Life is good. Even with a hangover.

Friday, 8 February 2008


I think I am addicted to cornflakes.

I think this is because I do not do enough with my time, and so end up in the kitchen, idly eating breakfast cereal out of the packet. At least it is low fat.

Also, when the alternative is translating a site report, cornflakes are your friends.
(Average translation time: two pages of French an hour.)

Most people do drugs. Me? Cornflakes.

I think I need a drink.

Monday, 4 February 2008


...that was overdue.

An hour, a few buckets of tears and a confession of fragility later I'm still at home when I should be in the city.

I am tired, unwell, back to the bottom step.


Thursday, 31 January 2008

another kind of rush

My favourite chocolate at the moment is Lindt 99%. The squares are tiny, a perfect taste of (very) bittersweet comfort in the afternoon.

Unfortunately it is nearly Lent, and Lent means the forgoing of chocolate. Last year was one Big Failure, as Lent cruelly coincided with a trip to Paris.

I am preparing for the fearful day by indulging far too much in the good stuff. I just baked biscotti for the third time this month. Every time I make up a batch I put more chocolate in, and this time I really went overboard. I will make the excuse that it is Flatmate M's birthday.

The shaking of my hands from the sugar rush betrays my motive.

Wednesday, 30 January 2008

you tart

Of course I was ill this weekend, just when there were plans with girlfriends, a party splattered with neon paint, cold clear weather to walk in.

Still. We laughed and went to an exhibition and ate thick hot chocolate in a cafe filled with bittersweet scents, drank too much wine in a favourite pub. Every year since we left school I have travelled with these girls, the Tarts, and after they left on Sunday I flicked through my travel notes. I never wrote about Bordeaux, other than in that nostalgic romantic way from E's living room in a creaking apartment. Here, because I still haven't got around to posting any more of my summer travel e-mails and reflections, are a few notes I wrote while spending time in a wonderful French city last September:

J is having a rather sexually frustrated time of it. Things she has yelled out this holiday, with no prompting:
"Can you switch this fanny thing off?"
When asked why she'd said the last one, she replied "I don't know. It just came over me."
I have just found a Parker ink pen in S's bag. S says:
"It's for drawing in my eyebrows."
Gullible E asks, after a pause, "What colour ink does it have in it?"
J, as she hides a piece of gum in a napkin, giggling to herself all the while:
"Nasty surprise."
Stood in the winery cellar, having boring making-of-wine process explained to us. French man keeps referring to "Racking off."
E starts to giggle and a minute later we are both the subject of disapproving stares as tears of laughter start to trickle down our cheeks.

I did write a lot of pretty, prosaic pieces about the churches and the architecture and all the overblown deliciousness I usually indulge in. But this sitting around and eating and laughing is the stuff memories are really made of, don't you think?

Monday, 28 January 2008

do not read this box

"Gosh," says Wonderful Tutor, as I walk in. "You look... tired."
She is being polite. I look like death. I have just had a coughing fit and my make-up, applied in the hope that eyeliner would counteract the sickness, is smeared down my face in emo-wannabe stripes.

"Yes. I'm ill." I hand her some paper. "You just have to tick boxes. Please. Tick boxes."
Wonderful Tutor looks at me strangely. This is the woman who described me as "optimistic" on my mid-year progress report. I have wobbled over to see her in order to get these Boxes Ticked. Otherwise I don't get to go to Law School. Whatever.

She studies the Stupid Form. "Which box should I tick? You're between a 2.1 and a 1."
I know this. I feel so worn out that I don't give a shit. "I have written 2.1 on every bit of paper that asks for my degree class. Just in case."

"Should I write something in this Pointless Box?" she looks up at me. I can hear the fluid in my chest when I breathe. It's distracting. "Or are you going to go and get your transcript?"
I haven't realised either of these tasks is necessary.

Subsequently I find out that I have to pay for my transcripts. I have to give the University money to write my results on a piece of paper. So I don't do that.
Irritatingly, and prior to this discovery, I have also dissuaded Wonderful Tutor from writing Nice Things in the Pointless Box, and am now worrying vaguely about not getting a place at all.

Bureaucracy sucks ass. So does being ill.

Wednesday, 23 January 2008

want/need #3

Surely the definition of come-fuck-me boots:
Harder, baby.
The major benefit of my career choice? Being able to afford such frivolities.


The step machine in the gym said I burned 364 calories in fifteen minutes today. I don't believe it. I can't, because then I will rest on the laurels of my success and eat my bodyweight in biscotti. I usually burn 500 in an hour's workout. With the change in routine today, I bumped that up to somewhere around 800.

I like early mornings. I like the light, the quiet, watching the cafe over the road stirring. I adore how the gym makes me feel, after those first ten minutes of creaking hell, when the endorphin rush starts to tickle at the back of my neck.

I love how fit I am getting. I appreciate knee injuries now that I run more frequently, the impact of the treadmill resounding in my own joints, marginally fucked from that horrible fall. I frown at my rib as it spasms. And I go back, morning after morning, and sweat until my t-shirt sticks to me.

It is addictive, better than any drug rush.

Sunday, 20 January 2008

wherein I have news

...sort of. (Powerful words, sort of. As in... "You're going to live. Sort of." Have unashamedly stolen this joke from Dmitri Martin. Kind of takes the funny off, yes?)

Anyway. News! I have made what the magical They call a Decision. After a lifetime's stubborn resistance, I shall be taking a Law conversion course next year.

This is where the "sort of" kicks in, because I haven't actually applied yet. The deadline is the end of the month, so I've got ten days. This is a late decision, because I am me. Also, because They were right, and I wanted to sulk, and that degree I've nearly finished? Was just a procrastination effort. That half-baked idea about a PhD? A curious attempt to rebel, by, er, studying more. Whatever.

Decision leads to indecision, as I cannot plan my life until I know where I am going next. If I get a place, I don't yet know which city I'll be in. If I don't get a place, I shall get a job, some Lawyer-type work experience, and try again next year. I'm no stranger to impromptu time out.

It almost feels like 2004 all over again. Minus the crap waitressing job. And the boyfriend. And the death trap car. etc.

Sunday, 13 January 2008

two favourite chat up lines

Both rather politically incorrect.

#1: "Nice shoes. Wanna fuck?"

#2: "Wanna play the Rape Game?"
"That's the spirit!"

I am a sucker for bad taste. Also, I am sick of Feminism. Dissertation-itis has set in.

Tuesday, 8 January 2008

reasons why my sister rightly calls me a loser, #1

I have called my new i-pod Qui Gon.

The last one I named Obi Wan.

And I wonder why I'm single.

Monday, 7 January 2008

head shot

I spent much of today avoiding eye contact with acquaintances in the sad dusty corners of the library, struggling, resolute, back into the New Year's academic commitments.

And then from my seat I look up and he is there, at the issues desk, smooth accent liquid among the pages words punctuation. He sees me and smiles, briefly, tiredly; I raise a hand and my mouth curves in reply. My pulse quickens, adrenaline. Fight or flight. That last row, that final awful night ending in bitch and irreconcilable accusations, it flashes in my blood.

But that is it. He leaves.

I cannot concentrate, and I leave, too.

Friday, 4 January 2008

out with the old

As a rule, I detest New Year. There is always drama. Someone always vomits. I always cry about something. It marks the beginning of the month I wish I could sleep through most.

Celebrating with friends old and new in Cambridge this year was wonderful. Bollinger, glitter, sushi, karaoke and gateau. No drama, no vomit, no crying. No dread of the days to come.

Traditionally, January is a bad time for me, usually heralding one of those phases that used to drive my ex to frustrated silence and me to hysterical paranoia. How sickeningly precious; how self-indulgent.

I feel differently about January this year. The sense of direction that I expected from the changes of the past twelve months is tentative at best; my decisions slow. But, it is there.

Out with the old.

Happy New Year, with hope.