Thursday, January 20, 2011

Hell Is Nice People

An example of the Comicbore hybrid. How do you deal with people like this without resorting to drugs or physical violence?

It started innocently enough. I picked up a book called Be Nice Or Else! And What's In It For You. It was written by an insanely cheerful hairdresser called Winn and was fairly inspirational but it got a bit much by the end. You were meant to write 'love letters' to your friends to tell them just how much they meant to you. I did kind of wonder what authority a hairdresser had to write this kind of upbeat jaunty self-help tome but what the heck. I did lose focus after a while though because the book was a little bit too rich for my blood, and I was beginning to feel like I was being force fed cotton candy. The gist of it was that you need to train your 'nice muscle' every day (and no apparently that's not a euphemism) because being nice will make you feel better ... or something.

But one thing did ring a bell and that was that you have to 'banish negative influences from your life.' So I had to stop reading trashy mystery novels because they kept giving me nightmares. I had to stop watching the news when there was any kind of mass shooting or disaster because I'd start getting paranoid that someone was going to shoot me in the street or that I was going to be hit by a hurricane. At that point life became, I must admit it Winn, very pleasant and completely devoid of stress. I had nothing to worry about or get my knickers in a bunch about.

But Winn, I got a bit of a mixed message about the people bit. If I cut down every whinging whining individual I know then life's gonna get pretty dull pretty fast. And have you ever noticed, Winn, how the most boring people actually have no idea they are boring as hell and often even try and be funny, creating the Frankenstein hybrid: the Comicbore. No, frankly you can keep your upbeat types with their practical jokes. I prefer people with lots and lots of dysfunctional problems as long as they have some good stories. Yes of course I want to know about someone's husband who has an uncontrollable gambling habit, who disappears for weeks and who has several illegitimate kids his wife has just found out about on a 'Don't Date This Man' website. Winn claims when someone starts dishing about all the 'negative shit in their lives' you're meant to say 'listen I love you but I can't be burdened by your emotional garbage.' To which I say WTF?

Firstly I'm not attracted to nice people. I mean nice people are all well and good. They bring you casseroles when you're sick and offer to mind your kids even when you tell them they have swine flu. But are they any good for a rollicking good gossip about whether Mrs Dobbins at Number 34 is having it off with Mr Blackstone at Number 67 because his Merc is always parked outside her house from one to two on weekdays? Of course they're not. They're useless for that.

So I really need some advice on this. If you can't have a bloody good gossip with someone what in the name of God are you meant to talk about? That's what I can't get my head around.

I mean I'm pleased that I'm all Zen and that but I'm simply not attracted to nice people. I can forgive people anything really - turning up very late, driving me somewhere and getting lost for hours, me always buying them drinks, mild body odour, a dreadful spouse, even an interest in watching indoor bowling if they are 1. entertaining 2. have some bloody good gossip.

Is that so wrong? Am I going to have to stop consorting with the craziest nutballs in the area simply because Winn wants me to cleanse my soul of negative influences? And the irony is hairdressers are the biggest gossips out there and I go to my one less because she can cut hair and more because she has some great stories about the mentally retarded methadone addict next door who was stalking her before she got a restraining order.

Please tell me dear readers what to do. Do I have to permanently give up hot gossip and bitchfests with my pals in order to have a parched and pure interior life to rival that of Sting or the Dalai Lama? Or can I indulge in the odd nugget of gossip on high days and holidays. Or share your pearls of wisdom on this thorny issue: what do you talk to nice people about? Answers on a postcard.


Friday, January 07, 2011

Prayers needed for Tony and Lori

I had some terrible news yesterday. Lori of Ramblings of a Stay at Home Mum, a friend of mine here has seen her husband Tony be taken into intensive care. I don't know the details of why but I do know that this has been a tremendous and tragic shock to everyone, and that Tony is fighting for his life. Lori needs all the support she can get.

Lori posted this message on her blog yesterday to briefly explain the situation as it stands.

I would like to send my love to Lori and her family. I hope and pray that Tony is recovering and will be back with his family soon.

There is nothing I can do practically, but I'd like to send this message to say that I'm thinking of you and I hope that in a small way it helps to know you have my good wishes behind you.

Wanderlust has put together this FYBF in honour of Lori and what I’d like you to do as you link up today:

  • If you haven’t already, please read Lori’s searing and heartfelt post from last night (it’s first on the Linky) and leave a comment of support for her.
  • Send your prayers and/or good vibes to her and her family.
  • Link up for Lori. Let her know you were here.
  • If it is within your means, consider donating some money to help her family through this difficult time (her husband is the breadwinner and regardless of the outcome, this will be a rough financial ride for them). There is a paypal widget on Wanderlust's sidebar.
  • Spread the word about the Linky so she can have as much support as possible at this time.


Monday, January 03, 2011

A Priceless Piece of Tat

I've had a busy time of it recently since Waity Katie decided to tie the knot with that bald fellow with the receding chin - Wills or whatever his name is. To my British friends out there I have this momentous news to impart: yes there are actually people, okay Americans that did not know that Harry was son of Hewitt.

In the midst of Royal Wedding hysteria over here in the US it's been my duty to inform the Yanks about the history of the royals, and to set some stuff straight about what exactly Diana did with her riding instructor. I can inform you that there are many people okay Americans who actually think Di was an innocent victim in her marriage, and okay maybe she was to some extent but that didn't stop her from playing hide the salami with every Tom, Dick and Hewitt and more power to her I say.

But enough cynicism from me. It's not every day that the humble daughter of a millionaire gets to marry an inbred son (definitely a product of Charles on this one due to the balding etc). And get this - even though Katie is sporting the engagement ring once worn by Di worth a cool £85,700 now you too can share in the great day by purchasing your own piece of celebrity tat for only $19.90!! (play video above) - in the form of the "Royal Heirloom Ring, a limited edition replica of the timeless heirloom. The beautiful simulated “Ceylon” sapphire represents the original quality of the centerpiece and is surrounded by scintillating brilliant Diamond X-4 CZs and prong set in silver plate. It’s style, luster, color and cut are unsurpassed." 

And I do take issue with this pile of silliness: "Kate’s story of an everyday girl meeting her Prince and one day becoming the Queen of England is a modern day fairytale come true."

What? Since when was Kate a checkout girl at Asda?

My point is this and there is a point - Kate is not a coal miner's daughter who happened to catch the eye of a prince. She is a stinking rich Sloane - a UK Paris Hilton as it were without the entrepreneurial spirit to make sex tapes like One Night In Paris but a woman of wealth who has never worked a day in her life. Which is fine but why pretend otherwise? To sell cheap ring imitations perhaps?

What gets me about Kate is she's so bloody boring. She has a great figure yet wears clothes that look like they come from M&S. At the very least Katie get some designers to make you some great fashion forward dresses. Am I alone in looking nostalgically back at the old royals? In the old days Royals knew that they were layabouts with a duty to entertain the British public. Who can forget Prince Edward's um, production company that never made a bean and was funded by the royal wallet or Prince Margaret who was always drunk as a skunk, Prince Phillips racist comments which were frankly hilarious, Prince Andrew swinging both ways, Princess Di crazy as a fruitbat cavorting with cokehead Dodi and doing hilarious interviews about 'there were three of us in our marriage', and last but not least the Princess of Pork who has been exceptionally good value on the entertainment front and even tried to sell 'access to Prince Andrew' for a cool $725,000 before being declared bankrupt (she now blames that debacle on being a boozer). God help me I miss the colourful old style royals. Do you? Do you think the royals have a duty to be entertaining or are you pleased to see the new breed of royals like Kate and Wills who are about as dull as a wet weekend in Bognor Regis and seem to have hermetically sealed genitals? Discuss.