In the meantime I must turn, sadly, to other topics. You may have noticed I do not limit myself to posting when I have something interesting to say, a piece of advice you often hear about blogging. No, I feel distressingly compelled to write even when I have nothing to say and my head feels like it has been placed in a vice, possibly one of the ones in Mr Easton's woodwork workshop of terror in Quaker School, and squeezed until there is not the tiniest drop of creative thought left in it. More's the pity.
News. Or rather "news".
1. I have signed up - with no little trepidation - for a session of "Laser Focussed Ass-Kicking". I'm not sure how laser focussed it needs to be, really. He could just roundly abuse me for all my myriad failings for an hour or so while I cringe on the floor whining and making lame excuses and it would probably do some good. My initial concern is that it is a telephone session. I don't "do" the telephone. I fear it like a lost Amazonian tribe might. But God knows, I need kicking, and Doctor Capybara has taken his pointy little hooves elsewhere for the winter. I feel sweaty and terrified at the thought of revealing the full extent of my pathetic neuroses to someone I met once at a party last summer and I am currently stalled at the first hurdle which involves setting out briefly what particular brand of lameness I would like him to focus on. It is so hard - and so shaming - to choose. Everything I have written in this last paragraph will be like catnip to him, I know. I am supposed to be filled with rockstar positivity, but my head hurts, HSBC own my soul and this miasma of self-loathing is so cosy.
2. The dog has developed several new neuroses of his own. They include: me opening the cellar door, anyone trying to sit on the large inflatable spider cushion and the sound of cardboard boxes being opened, all three of which reduce him to a yelping trembly wreck. I suppose it might be because since the children have come back, they seem intent on trying to ride him like a camel. I am monstrously impatient about it, anyway, and trying to resist the temptation to practise my laser focussed ass kicking on him. I also need to resist the temptation to dress him up like this. Maybe I would resent his diva freakouts less if he looked a bit more diva-esque? Unlikely, I concede.
3. Failures of the day: Revising the four times table (my father the scientist must be so proud). Breaking a coffee machine in someone else's office. Continued failure to engage with the Christmas Question (where, how, can't I just go into witness protection and avoid the whole thing). 'Fessing up to cutting my son's fringe myself at the hairdressers:
"Did you do the back too?"
"Errrrr .. just a tiny bit?"
(I had to. It was getting mullety).
4. Microscopic triumphs: the assassin's dishwasher fixing seems to have worked. When my landlady saw me today I was in looking totally respectable and carrying serious work style papers, rather than muttering to myself in a tracksuit with a freaked out, cardboard-phobic weepette on a piece of string. The illusion that I am gainfully employed is maintained, for now. My first born no longer has a bowl cut.
Pretty close, right? RIGHT?
(I had to cut J out of this picture, not only because he deserves better, but also because - even though it doesn't really look that similar - it made me think of that famous Andrew Neill picture they used to run in Private Eye weekly, with me in the Andrew Neill rôle and J as the girl. Too much wrongness for a Monday).