Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Senior Ladies’ Social Committee

The Senior Ladies had decided that they must be seen to be doing something to encourage the youth of the local area. With this in mind they had devised a scheme involving a Youth Assembly, but not having any idea of what anyone under 40 actually enjoys doing, they had asked me to attend a meeting to offer some ideas.

The senior Senior Lady sat opposite me and eyed me with some suspicion and not a little fear for the future.

“If you could just give us some ideas we can take them away and work on them.” she said without any hint of a smile.

“Well, what about getting in the African Drummers. I’ve always fancied trying that out myself and I’m sure the youngsters would love them.”

Senior Senior Lady’s eyebrows arched away from her pearly blue eyeshadow as she pulled her lips in towards her teeth. “No, I’m not sure about drumming. Can you imagine the complaints about noise we would get. No, most definitely not.”

I wasn’t giving up that easily so I smiled sweetly and continued. “OK, well I’ve got a contact for a girl who does massage. That shouldn’t be too loud and I’m sure it would be enjoyable.”

“Oh no. That’s all that Reiki stuff isn’t it. That’s the invocation of evil spirits so we couldn’t have that.

At this point she may have heard the mini explosion as I attempted to stifle a laugh. “Erm I don’t think it’s got anything to do with evil spirits. I think its simply…”

“No dear, It’s just not what we were looking for”.

By this point the Youth Activities Section of my Mental Filing Cabinet was beginning to take on a rather sinister hue that I had never previously contemplated. “Well I do have a contact for a magician.”

By this point I could hear a few sharp intakes of breath. The more charitable amongst them were probably considering praying for my tainted soul. “A Magician!” Most certainly not. What have we just been saying about evil spirits?”

“But magic’s not evil. It’s just sleight of hand really.”

“Most certainly not. You really are not understanding our point. Look perhaps we will just leave our discussion of what we are going to do and think about how we are going to get sponsorship.

Now I should have been aware of the way the conversation was heading but the next words just seemed to slip out of my mouth without warning (It’ll be those pesky evil spirits I suppose).

“Well the Fox and Hounds has been good to us in the past.”

“THE PUB!” Oh my goodness well that certainly will not do. You don’t think that we would have anything to do with pubs do you. Oh dear oh dear.”

At this point my attempt to suppress my laughter was failing miserably and I felt that it was time to leave. To be fair I think that it was the only thing that we all agreed on all night.

“Oh all right I’ll admit it, I am in league with the Devil. Why don’t you just do crochet then. You’ll get a huge uptake of youngsters for that one”. *

*Of course I didn’t actually say this but the temptation was very strong.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

56 Things About Me

I had already written a blog for this week but the lovely Kelly has tagged me to write about 56 things about me. To be honest this seemed much more fun, so how could I refuse:-

8 things I'm passionate about:
1. My family. There’s not a lot of us so there’s more passion to go around.
2. All things Scottish. Honestly how could you not be.
3. Reading – Anything and everything, whether I understand it or not.
4. The weather. A warm sunny day (rare though they are) can lift your spirits and make the world seem a better place.
5. Cooking. I just love eating so why not?
6. Singing. I constantly sing very loudly all around the house. My next door neighbours recently moved out. Mmm I wonder why.
7. My friends. A regular friendship fix whether over the phone or over a meal or a drink is tremendously important.
8. Youth Work as I’ve said before.

8 things to do before I die:
1. Find a wonderful caring man to be with for the rest of my life. I can but hope.
2. See a bit more of the world. I should really have set foot on every continent but so far I’ve only seen Europe with a tiny toe dip in North Africa. I must get out more.
3. Own a chic city apartment and a country pile. (Again I can but hope).
4. Return to horse riding which I haven’t done since I was 16.
5. Plant a tree in honour of someone. I’m not sure who yet but it feels like it should be done.
6. Learn to say “No”. I must harden my heart the next time someone comes to me with sorrowful eyes asking for help which I just do not have the time to give them.
7. Despite the above, learn to be more tolerant and caring. This is sometimes hard when dealing with a bunch of teenagers but I must try to remember that their view of the world is different to mine.
8. Learn how to make the perfect loaf of bread.

8 things I often say:
1. I lie on a regular basis – ie – “No really the cake you made is delicious”
2. “I’m sorry my boss didn’t call you back. No, it’s not that he didn’t want to talk to you, it’s just that he had to go into an urgent meeting and it will probably not finish now until the end of the day.”
3. “Yes, no problem. When do you need it done by?” Please see item 6 above.
4. “Have you seen the weather forecast for today?” I am a little obsessed.
5. “I’m sure that these recipes off the internet are fine to use”.
Followed by
6. “I haven’t a clue why it didn’t work out.”
7. “Good Morning” at work when it is really the afternoon and vice versa.
8. “Let me spell that for you”. I have a rather complicated second name which no one ever spells right.

8 books I've read recently:
1. The Big Sleep – Raymond Chandler – A whole lot of fun but a bit confusing at times.
2. The Amateur Marriage – Anne Tyler – Sad but very true.
3. Enduring Love – Ian McEwan – A fantastic build up of tension.
4. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay – Michael Chabon – I absolutely loved this book and the wonderful characters although it did take me 7 weeks to read!
5. Happiness – Will Ferguson – Very funny and thought provoking.
6. Wonder Boys – Michael Chabon – Probably the funniest fiction book I have read in a long time.
7. Absolute Friends – John Le Carre. Again, I enjoyed this but struggled to follow all that was going on.
8. Tales of the City – Armistead Maupin. A bit of harmless fun.

I am slightly worried by the preponderance of American authors here. Pass me another John Le Carre will you.

8 songs I could listen to over and over:
1. Super Trouper - Abba – OK Glasgow comes into it but I would still love it anyway. This is by far and away my most favourite Abba track and to be honest I love them all.
2. Moonlight Shadow – Mike Oldfield. I know – weird and depressing but I love it.
3. One Night in Bangkok – Michael Head (From Chess). Again I can’t explain why but I still remember the moment my friend introduced me to this song in a small draughty study bedroom and it just blew me away.
4. Anything on the eponymous, hugely underrated album by a band called Silversun back in 1997. Whatever happened to them?
5. Ditto the above for a band called The Blessing from 1991.
4. Long Train Runnin’ – The Doobie Brothers
5. Goddess on a Hiway – Mercury Rev – I used to be able to play this on the guitar.
6. Orinoco Flow – Enya
7. Nkosi Sikele
8. Cannonball – the Breeders – I mean really how good???

8 qualities I look for in a best friend:
1. A sense of humour and a willingness to appreciate mine!
2. The ability to remain close even when we haven’t seen each other for weeks.
3. The ability to see the good in people
4. Optimism
5. The offering of encouragement when needed.
6. Patience
7. Someone who always returns things lent to them and in the same condition in which they were first lent.
8. Someone who respects you and all your quirky idiosyncrasies without a bad word.

Well that was fun. However I’m not going to pass this on to anyone in particular but if anyone is interested in taking up the challenge please do and I will enjoy reading about you.