1. I am kryptonite to all forms of jewellery and watches. I have broken: my non-engagement ring (diamond fell out, we searched for it all day in Violet's flat, it turned up in Lashes's shoe), my mum's engagement ring (emerald fell out, never found again), my Baume & Mercier birthday watch, my mum's amethyst earring, lost my diamond birthday bracelet somewhere between Reiss and Fenwicks. Kryptonite effect is not limited to expensive stuff, I can break Swatches, cheap charm bracelets, even cracker rings. It's magical. Never buy me jewellery (I can tell you were planning to).
2. My first boyfriend was called Danny Melusi. We were 13. He was American and thus exotic, blonde and blue eyed and did not have a Yaaarkshire accent. Unfortunately he was also extremely boring and a bit stupid. We got together at the school disco, me resplendent in Miss Selfridge polka dot skirt with a giant tulle underskirt and Warehouse vest top. Him, I have no idea. The minute I had inveigled him into asking me out I started to look for ways out of it. I had no desire to actually go out with him, it was more the idea. I chucked him after the Christmas holidays via the good old, note in locker method. This was a pattern repeated with all other school boyfriends.
3. I made my own packed lunches for school from the age of 8. They were identical every day - ham sandwich, cucumber slices, 4 cubes of jelly, Club biscuit. At secondary school this was replaced by iceberg lettuce sandwich on white sliced Mother's Pride for 7 years. Nice.
4. I played the clarinet for years. I was shite and hated it. My teacher looked more like a troll than any human ever born but kindly persevered even though she must have been dying inside every time I tongued a note (yes, that is the terminology. Gross, no?). I did get to play in Quaker school windband, which was a hotbed of dweeby lust. We were appallingly awful. So, SO unbelievably bad. But I dated both a clarinet and a French horn player, both incredibly acned. I didn't hate the piano so much, apart from the enforced trimming of fingerclaws, but I was pretty shite at that too. I was actually very good at singing. I nourish a secret desire to go to karaoke and have never been.
5. I am 35 and have never been to America.
6. Strange places I have sat down and wept: a traffic island on Wigmore Street, the Batignolles organic vegetable market, Foss Islands Road in York outside Halfords, Beckenham Junction station. Hmm, I can't think of many in Brussels, I realise. The 92 tram stop, of course (Beaux-Arts, usually with impotent rage at lack of trams). I do like a bit of alfresco wailing. The more incongruous the better. I think I always hope a handsome stranger will offer me a starched handkerchief. Thus far noone has, though I do often get to hear about elderly ladies' deceased husbands, for some reason.
7. I don't think I've ever been on a date. Well, maybe one with the CFO circa 1993, if getting drunk at his house and going to the midnight showing of Aladdin can possibly count. But I moved in with him the next day, pretty much.
8. After years of intense phobia, I discovered I actually love general anaesthetic. It's fucking great. Peaceful. I think I could be quite the hypochondriac in later life. I have had a surprising amount of medical stuff for someone of my age and I always secretly enjoy it on some weird level. It's the attention. I will be one of those elderly ladies who is ALWAYS down the surgery with some complaint or another just for the balm of 20 minutes of the doctor's company.
9. I have really long esprit d'escalier conversations with people (or more honestly usually the same person. I do hope it stops soon, I am bored of it). Out loud. Usually in the bathroom because they seem to require a mirror. I am extremely pithy and brave during these conversations in a way I never am in reality. In person I mumble inarticulately or go terribly Celia Johnson, clipped and exquisitely polite, whilst trembling with suppressed emotion.
10. Between the ages of 21 and 30 I didn't drink alcohol and convinced myself I didn't like chocolate. Ha!
Now some new blogs to highlight, or nominate. I still love all the ones I always did, still in the blogroll, still read and adored, but as previous meme-ees have done, I am choosing ones you might not have read.
Gina at Yonder Paw. Gina makes me laugh. She tells good jokes. And she might just be able to arrange to have someone killed for me, but sssh.
Un vieux vélo - The other half of my brain blogs here, weirdo bike perv that she is. However she is able to make even a bicycle entertain me. I fucking hate bikes but I read her pervy bike blog.
My next choice is dormant but I hope to galvanise her into writing again. Camel Barn Library. Read her twitter stream and you will see why. She's not short of material.
I'm rather fond of Indigo Alison too. A lovely mix of things that rather interest me, good photos and some slices of her life.
Tired Dad is magnificent, but would rather eviscerate himself with a picnic fork than do a meme. You should read him anyway though.
W1Mum is another good mix of stuff. I've just read her most recent thing about the sex text and I'm still snickering to myself. Also, she lives with her baby about a hundred yards from where I lived with my baby back in 2002 so it makes me mushy and nostalgic.
Red Fox. She is the only person whose little green gmail light is on as much as mine. I like her.
There are probably many more, but I am flagging. A weekend snowed in, to all practical purposes, with two small boys and a newly incontinent dog is kicking my ass in all manner of ways. We're only halfway through and I've shelled out 100 euros on new books and DVDs, screamed like a fishwife, eaten whole meals of cake and Nurofen and watched Boule et Bill until my brain ran out of my nostrils.