Wednesday, June 28, 2006


Hi, it's me here, how are you? Are you there? Hellllooooo? Anyone, anyone at all? Ok I'm starting to feel like I'm addressing the void here. Are you all reading me and not commenting or did you get bored and go read dooce? Because no-one has commented on about my last 5 posts. Including my long essay about my close escape from a call centre. Which I thought you might be interested in. No? Ok - but tell me if I'm boring you to death.

There's no point in me warbling on about my latest MySpace discovery or that Citalopram is a big pile of steaming elephant poo if no-one's listening. I mean if I wanted a completely private space to vent I'd go buy one of those 5 year diaries with a padlock on it. So please comment! De-lurk. Let me know you are here. And to make it easy for you - here is the question du jour.

What is/was your other halves (past or present) most annoying habit? And - what did /do you do that you KNOW annoy(ed) the hell out of them, but you did/do it anyway because.

I'll tell you my answers. The Boy WILL NOT do the washing up unless I nag him about it. Repeatedly. And me? Naturally I have no annoying habits because I am practically perfect in every way. But the Boy does get irrationally upset about this one teeny tiny thing. The hot water taps is one of those annoying taps that you have to really turn off tightly, other wise it will merely pretend to be off, and then about 5 minutes later will dribble back on again. The Boy is constantly reprimanding me for not turning it off properly. Which y'know whatevs. So minor compared to the washing up.

PS. I am working here for a while. Go order yourself a wedding cake and maybe Mr Top Hat will keep me on beyond the agreed 'until the work runs out'

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Lily Allen is Gurt Lush

I’ve just found Lily Allen who is apparently the latest MySpace discovery. Yawn. Bored though I am with MySpace and all its evil spawn, Lily is a gem. Boppy, poppy ska lite, she’s a middle class London girl with street and The Streets postures. The bling on her album cover is just a disguise – Lily is from Islington and you don’t get much more middle class than that. I should know, it’s where I’m from. Ahem. And yeah, I do live in Cotham, the Islington of Bristol. Once a nice girl, always a nice girl awriiight? So what if Lily is a bit posher than she makes out, it doesn’t make her album any less of a pleasure. And you’ve got to love the kid rhyming Tesco with al-fresco on LDN, the album’s most infectious tune and a charming paean to London in all it’s filthy glory. It's just begging to be played over a crap stereo while you laze in the park with a beer and an illegal barbeque. I love Alfie too, an exasperated elders sister's ticking off to her lazy, pot smoking brother. Lily Allen. The download of the summer.

Friday, June 23, 2006

The Festival Jacket

This is the Boy's Festival Jacket. He's had it for far longer than I've known him. Note the dirty patches, the faded colour (it used to be dark blue), the kicky 80's styling. I have several times threatened to leave him if he didn't bin it, but he has always refused and has remained in our wardrobe taking up valuable space that could be better used by say, a jacket that not even a tramp would refuse to wear. In fact, the Eagle (whose sartorial choices occasionally verge towards the tramplike) once stopped by Casa BG for a drink. While we were drinking it started raining. When it was time to leave the Boy offered the Eagle the Festival Jacket as a means of keeping out the rain. He refused. The Eagle would rather get wet than be seen dead in the Festival Jacket.
So you can colour me surprised when yesterday, after no nagging, no threats of departure, the Boy voluntarily agreed to get rid of it. Why, after all this time? I have no idea. It may have had something to do with the fact I have always refused to be seen with him in public with it on. Maybe it's Midsummer Madness. Who knows. I just know I'm glad to see the back of it.

N.B. I now have an official blog email address. It's bristolgirl at googlemail dot com. It's in the sidebar too. Use it! I'd love to get me some email.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Notify List

See over there on the right? Scroll down a bit - there! Underneath 'Previous Posts'. If you put your email in the little box, I'll send you an email every time I update the site with a new post.
Cause I'm a lazy blogger and don't blog everyday I thought, if I had any Imaginary Readers left you might like to sign up for it. Thisaway you don't have to check the blog for a new post, you can just wait for that email to roll into your inbox.

Aren't I nice to you Imaginary Readers? I make reading blogs eaaassyyy. And look! 2 posts in one day! And one of them is 1120 word long! I counted!

Call Centre Hell

On Tuesday I got a text from one of the many agencies I am signed up with. It read ‘Inbound Call centre, £6.50p/h’. I have always specifically said I do not want to work in a call centre. I imagine them to be pretty decent simulacrums of hell. But the thing is, the BG household funds are perilously low. So I phoned the agency who told me where and when the interview was. Where was the interview? A 40 minute bus ride away that’s where. Worse and worse. So, yesterday morning I tog myself up some smart office-y clothes, and trot off to the interview.

I turn up at the company (let’s call it Kwik Kall) in plenty of time. Kwik Kall is headquartered in a distant suburb of Bristol in a large pre-fab building on an industrial estate. The building looks new and is smart and clean. There is a toothy American receptionist who directs me to take a seat with the other monkeys. I inspect the other monkeys. The other monkeys are much as I would expect: between 6-10 years younger than me. They are dressed in the synthetic office garb you can buy in Next and H&M which is the un-official uniform of low waged office slaves everywhere. I have always refused to buy it despite being a low-waged office slave and am therefore chicly dressed in red linen trousers, a striped white shirt and a tailored black jacket. I am the only one wearing a jacket. There are two pretty Muslim girls who are clearly friends, they giggle and whisper behind their hands whilst the rest of us covertly eye each other. I fish out a novel from my bag and start reading in order to pass the time.

Eventually a rep from the agency turns up and checks us off on her list. Then ‘Steve’ from the company appears. He’s young enough – early thirties with a fashionable spiky haircut of the type I loathe, although he obviously spends money on it – it suits him. He’s good looking and confident and makes cracks about the England – Sweden match from the night before to put us at our ease. We are herded up to a large room set up with rows of chairs and a projection screen. Steve introduces himself and some of the other staff members. They are all supervisors or managers of varying levels of seniority and Steve himself is the Ops Manager. A short presentation follows during which we are told that Kwik Kall is number 1 in its industry and we are given various statistics to do with sales and growth. The final slide is entitled ‘What Kwik Kall Can do for You’ Apparently we can have unlimited free parking and breakfast with the CEO. Goody Goody Gumdrops. We are told that free parking is one the top things requested by call centre staff. No doubt, but not much good to car-less moi. However it is interesting to see that some research has been done into the needs and desires of their staff. Cynically, this is because call centres have extremely high turnovers of people, as the job is both very stressful and very badly paid.

Once the presentation is over Steve asks us each to stand up and tell the room a little about ourselves and what we’d do if we won the lottery. Most people say they’d buy a house or go on holiday. One boy says he’d get the bank to convert his winnings into £5 notes so he could go and sit on top of a pile of money. A pretty, faintly punk rock girl says she is Swiss and is here to improve her English. When it’s my turn, I stand up and make something up about buying a house in New York. I say I’m from London and don’t mention my age.

Now it’s time for the one on one interviews. I am one of the last to be interviewed and I am led away by rotund, mildly smiling woman whom I judge to be about my own age. She tells me her name is Beth and takes me through the call centre which is a large cavernous room shared with the marketing and IT departments. There are workmen assembling more desks, and I comment that it looks like they are doing a big recruitment drive. Beth agrees but then says the Swindon lot are moving in soon as well. I immediately think of The Office and have to stifle a giggle. We go into a meeting room and Beth flutters about fiddling with the air conditioning and apologising for my long wait. She’s a lot more nervous than I am so I gently put her at ease by making a few mild jokes about interviews. I get a giggle and Beth finally relaxes and sits down. We speed through the interview which is a few very standard questions – where do you see yourself in 5 years time etc. I always answer this one differently depending on the interview. The truth is, I don’t really know. I suppose a somewhat truthful answer would be ‘earning a decent amount of money.’ We shall see. The answer to that question is one of the things I am supposed to work out this year.

Interview over, Beth walks me out and I make my way home. I’m supposed to find out today whether I’ve got the job or not. To be totally honest I would really much rather not have the job as it’s, well, shit. But the BG coffers are in dire need of replenishment and I can go on looking while I’m there.

I didn't get the job, much to my relief. Unfortunately I was a bit too honest in the interview and didn't say I would be able commit to working there forever and ever. I said I could commit to it for about 3 or 4 months and I think dear old Beth cottoned on to the fact that I'm massively overqualified and under interested. Phew. Over-riding sense of having dodged a bullet there. I mean really - commuting out to Warmley every day? For the choice of working 8am-4pm or 12pm-8pm? For £6.50 an hour? I don't fucking think so.
I normally get quite upset when I fail interviews. Especially as until I started looking this time round, I had never failed an interview. This is completely true I'm afraid. So when i first started getting rejection letters it was more upsetting than I expected it to be. But this time? Nah.

Monday, June 19, 2006

I think this says it all

Friday, June 16, 2006

Prom Queens

Hic! Might have had a few too many Babychams with Titsy Galore this evening. hic hiic. Scuse me.

Am somewhat excited because this Saturday is the Communist State of Road we Used to Live On's bi-annual party. The theme is Geeks and Jocks which has been slightly amended to include Prom Queens. Well, we (Art Star, HeadGirl and I) have decided to amend it, and as we are all ex-inmates of the Communist State of... I think that that's allowed. And it means I get I to wear my fabulous 1950's party dress that looks like it's made from your Granny's chintz curtains. With a tiara. Oh Happy Day!

Plus, Art Star, the VP, the HeadGirl and Handsome Man are all coming in from London for the party, which makes it extra fun, as I haven't seen any of them, since, um. well it's been a while. (I might have been a bit desperately drunk the last time). Anyway, have laid in stocks of Gin and am contemplating the creation of some pleasantly exotic cocktails for the pre-ball drinks party. (do I sound like an alcoholic?)

Happy Birthday Student, you old fart/ young whippersnapper (delete as applicable)

Get better soon OwlLover. I am sending gin addled positive vibes your way. (man)

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

More LLAMA festival

As you might have gathered from my last post, the Boy and I plus our friends Corporate Curls and her husband the Student went to the LLAMA festival at the weekend.

Because we are lame we didn’t set off till Saturday afternoon as we had to go to the supermarket to buy supplies. Curls tried to convince me to buy the sloe gin because ‘it might be interesting’ but I demurred, because a campsite with nowhere to buy booze is Not The Place To Find Out You Don’t Like the Only Gin There Is. No it isn’t. And camping without gin? Is like strawberries without cream. And then the Boy and I had an argument about whether meat would survive the journey in the heat. Which I won, but I now think he might have been right, it would have been okay in the cool bag. (Shhh.)

A torturously hot car journey across Exmoor later, we arrived at the campsite to find we were in the overflow space. Which was on the edge of a cliff more or less. And therefore incredibly windy. After putting our tents up in gale force winds which was only achieved without a full scale domestic on the part of the Boy and I by suppressing all our natural instincts so as not to embarrass ourselves in front of our friends, who were naturally a picture of marital bliss AND got their tent up in record time, alcohol was handed out all round. Frayed tempers darned, the barbeque was got going by Curls who made us some suitably greasy sausage sandwiches. Glory of glory the wind had died down. Bliss. There is nothing quite like lounging around on a hot sunny day with a well made G&T in one hand and a sausage sandwich in the other and nothing to look forward to but a music festival.

After some more drinks we ambled down the festival and ended up listening to some bloke from Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci play some odd little tunes on a keyboard. Quite charming but not as charming as GZM themselves whom I saw live once in London. Many drinks and packets of Salt and Vinegar crisps later and suddenly it was rather late, the music was ended and our campsite was the wrong end of a 1:4 gradient. Fortunately a mini bus had been laid on for us drunk tired and emotional festival goers to ferry us back to our campsites. The mini bus driver was called Keith Richards and was determined to fit at least 50 people into a mini bus designed for 12. This precipitated and amusingly frightening lurch up aforesaid 1:4 gradient road. Back at the tents, the re-appearance of gale force winds curtailed any further drinking socialising and I gratefully collapsed onto the air mattres*

The next morning (after a night of lying awake listening to the wind howl round our tent) we awoke to find the wind had died down and it was another glorious day. A peaceful morning ensued, punctuated by reading aloud the more revolting bits of the Sunday Mirror, (the only paper available in the campsite shop) bacon sandwiches and cups of tea. We struck camp and drove to Linton to park for the festival, where the Boy found a shop selling rather fetching straw hats. With some encouragement from me, he bought one although he (correctly) pointed out that it made him look like a Panamanian drug dealer called Carlos. The rest of the day was spent listening to psychedelic folk music, drinking cider and eating crab sandwiches and ice cream. I burned my back terribly but it was worth it. And that is how I spent my weekend.

*To quote the Domestic Goddess (one of my sisters, do keep up) 'After a certain age a woman needs a supportive mattress. I am one of those women. I do not do camping without an air mattress and a duvet.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Weekend at the LLAMA Festival

This little boy was very grumpy despite the face paint.

Fabulous outfit. Check out those braces.
The Festival. This was the main stage. Yes, it was that small

Great tats

The Boy, Corporate Curls and the Student licking their cones

Don't you wish you were there? I do.

Saturday, June 10, 2006


Sorry I’ve been a bit quiet the last few days, but nothing much has happened really. Found out I didn’t even make it to the interview stage for one of the jobs I applied for last week. Damn it! I could do that job with one hand behind my back.
I’ve also been suffering from oh… you know, the usual black cloud of depression that descends whenever I get rejected from anything. Because here’s the thing. I am reasonably intelligent. I have a degree, albeit in Fine Art. I am literate, articulate and I get on with people. Unless they are arseholes and then I don’t. But actually the pool of people I consider to be arseholes is fairly small. Most of the jobs I’m applying for are…not too challenging. I could do them. So why won’t anyone hire me?

The other issue is that I don’t want to be doing these boring office-y jobs. It’s not what I want to be doing with my life. But I’m not qualified for anything else. I’d love a challenging, fulfilling job not mention one that might pay me enough to enable the Boy and I to start thinking about buying a house. But would give me such a job? I’ve certainly applied for a few, but have I even made it to the interview stages? I have not. Usually because I don’t have the requisite experience or some other quality is required that I lack. It’s so frustrating, because actually I interview rather well. I can be fairly charming in person. Not that I think I can charm my way into a job, but I can give it a damn good try.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


Arse, arse, arse. Been temping for the last 2 days at a little company, envelope stuffing. Gah. I HAVE a degree you know! I was told I’d be there all week, but the agency just phoned and said to not bother going back, they don’t need me after all. So no money this week. Or very little anyway. Am extremely conflicted as the job was total shite, but I really needed the money.

Let’s hope one of my interviews pays off with a job soon because, goddamn it I a) can’t take much more of these crapola temping jobs and b) I need the motherfucking money. Excuse my language, but I am a little frustrated. Can you tell?

Sunday, June 04, 2006

The Queen of Veg's Poppies

Friday, June 02, 2006


Godammit! I just got off the phone with one of my bestest friends Nerak. I have been a really bad friend and not really been in touch for about 6 months and good grief did she have some news. Her good friend the Little Bitch whom she has known for over 15 years tried to commit her. Yes, you read that right. And – nearly succeeded. It is certainly true that Nerak is the possessor of ‘a beautiful mind’ and has had mental health issues in the past. About ten years ago when we were living together at art college, in fact. Which is a story for another day. But you don’t try and commit one of your oldest and best friends because you have a crush on her boyfriend. Good God no, you don’t.

Due to the vagaries of my father’s jobs and my education I went to high school in California and then the art school on the East Coast. So I have all these fantastic and slightly insane friends peppered all over the US. And I really wish I could see them more often. Especially Nerak, because she is a freak like no other and makes me laugh until the tea squirts out of my nose. And because I really wish I could have rescued her when that Little Bitch was trying to commit her, over a MAN. For fucks sake.

Look, if any of you tarts tries to commit me because you have taken a fancy to FishBoy I will scratch your beady little eyes out. We will arm wrestle for him instead.

Unemployment Update

I have an interview on Monday. Hurray! I shan't say where in case they hire me. I wouldn't want to get dooced.
I shall say however, that it's with a large organisation, the work looks as though it might be fun and that the pay is not great. Wish me luck!
I also have to go and do some vile temping job next week, but it's all money, a commodity in increasingly short supply around here.

Domestic Bliss or How to Get Out of Doing Any Housework

Today, whilst ironing some napkins I told FishBoy that dinner would be ready soon.

There are so many things wrong with that sentence. I absolutely loathe housework, but I do it anyway because the alternative is worse. But ironing napkins? Good grief. Life’s too short. I suppose I should explain. My mother or The Chairman as she is sometimes referred to by her daughters came to dinner last week. As it was the first time I had had her to a formal dinner in at my flat I was anxious to make a good impression, hence the purchase, use, and subsequent washing and ironing of said napkins. I could have left them un-ironed, but the unfortunate fact is, I derive great aesthetic pleasure from stacks of pressed cloth. Yes it’s very sad. And I was also making supper which is how I came to be in the above situation whilst my inner feminist died a little more.

In my household which at present consists of me, the FishBoy and a lot of house plants it is me who does most of the housework. As I am currently not working and the FishBoy is you might think this is only fair. And you would be right, up to a point. But this was true when we were both working and in fact my day was significantly longer as I had the bigger commute. I don’t do any more housework now than I did before. But I still do most of it.

• Hoover the carpets
• Mop the kitchen floor
• Clean the kitchen
• Tidy the living room
• Make the bed
• Clean the bathroom
• Wash the sheets and towels
• Buy most of the groceries
• Wash my clothes
• Do most of the washing up
• Do about half the cooking

• Waters the plants
• Administers the bills account
• Does the washing up if I nag him enough
• Does about half the cooking
• Washes his own clothes
• Tidies
• Buys some groceries

How did we end up in this situation? I always thought that as equals, all household chores should be split evenly. And in theory, FishBoy believes this too. But getting him to do any household chore is so painful, it usually involves me doing a lot of nagging, and I really hate nagging. I don’t want to be a nag.

I think I just have a much lower tolerance level for dirt and disorder than the Boy does. I If left to his own devices the Boy would simply live in an increasingly dirty although tidy flat and sleep on unwashed sheets for months at a time. And I can’t live like that. So, as I don’t like to nag, I do most of the work and the Boy does the minimum that I ask him to (mostly doing the washing up and driving to the supermarket).

This is not meant to be a lengthy complaint about the Boy’s lack of domesticity, I wanted to examine how I, lifelong feminist came to be in this situation. It’s not the Boy’s fault exactly, nor is it mine. Or rather it is both of ours. I am not expected to clean, the Boy wouldn’t mind if I didn’t.

I suppose it is simple really – I am not expected to do all the cleaning and cooking and indeed I would be horrified if I were. But if I want to live in a clean house, then I’ve got to bust out the Marigolds and Mr Sheen on my own. I really, really hate this. As I’ve said before housework is my least favourite activity and it is so tied up in my head with ‘women’s work’ that it creates extra mental resentment.

The only workable answer I can think of is to hire a cleaning lady and buy a dishwasher. Hardly feasible at the moment. So I suppose I’m going to go on cleaning, and the Boy will go on doing what I ask him to, but not without grumpiness and procrastination.

How does it work in your house?

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Aliases Update

After a top level summit meeting in the Cambridge Arms it has been decided that the one heretofore known as 'Glamour Girl' is now to be known as 'Titsy Galore'. The one known as 'Sailing Boy' will be known as 'Sailor Boy'. The Boy who Cannot Love submitted a request to the floor that his alias be changed but it was decided that 'The Boy Who Cannot Love' is snappier than 'The Boy Who Has a Hole in his Heart Where Love Should Be' and his request was denied.