Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Home Made Spider Repellent

This maybe of little interest to people who are comfortable with a house full of eight legged creeps, but I am becoming sick of being under siege by spiders. And I mean under siege. Every single night there are at least three new spiders who have sought me out and are creeping around above my head in bed. They have to be caught and released before I can sleep.

There's a book where a character is a rain god and doesn't realise, just thinks that he's being plagued by rain clouds but actually they are drawn to him because they love him and want to give him their all. I suspect the spiders and I have a similar thing going on. They are certainly efficient and creative in their web building. Has to stop.

So, by the powers of google, I have learned that French lavender oil repels them, and I am going to anoint my home as if preparing for some Pagan ceremony. I will let you know how that works. Does anyone else have any tried and tested remedies? I don't want to kill them, just keep them out.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

An Uncelebrated Anniversary

Today is the fifteenth anniversary of my being run over and having my foot crushed and I got a letter through from the Occupational Health Dr who my employer referred me to because my absence due to surgery exceeded the council's ten day target. It's a copy of the letter sent to my employer about the referral they made, and it says that under the 2005 Disability Discrimination Act an employment tribunal would consider me disabled, and therefore I have a case for constructive dismissal, as I've been so unsupported I've resigned.

I'm not going to go through the courts or anything like that. The school have been cr-p but ultimately I think it will only make me feel worse about myself if I do take action. I have really mixed emotions about this label. On the one hand it helps me accept that I struggle with these things because my leg is a genuine disability, but on the whole I just wish it would all go away and that I could get on with my life.

I intend to get on with my life. I want to be able to walk, exercise, shop etc. without the pain. I've got a follow up email from a job application for a less physical job. I'm hoping that being able to sit down all day in work will leave me physically able to walk about a little bit in the evenings, maybe go to the cinema and things. Here's to hope.

The boyfriend has been a big help today in getting the flat sorted out. It's beginning to look more like a home at last. He even bought me some roses and peonies, which are lovely. I'm mostly too tired to lift my own arms at the moment, and that's not been helping my mood much. I spent most of yesterday asleep because I am so exhausted.

The room decoration is something of a mood boost. I'll put some pictures up soon.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

World Cup Football

 So I was watching USA vs Slovenia the other day and noticed what I think is an uncanny resemblence between the little USA player Francisco Torres and Amanda Bynes in She's The Man.

Could this be why she has decided to retire from acting at the ripe old age of 24? And since she's the same age as me (probably a few months younger- successful people always do that to bug me) does that mean I can retire now too?

In an attempt to increase my retirement fund, I have been placing small bets on the outcome of the group stages of the football- with favourable odds. Knowing my luck I won't win, but you don't try and you never know.

Anyway, my bets are perfectly sensible, they just rely on England maintaining their current form (or lack of). All I need is for USA and Slovenia to keep playing their little socks off in their next matches.

Go on Bocanegra! I'm sure you'll swing it for me. You had crazy intense eyes last match, and I know you want the victory as much as I do!!!


My house is full of them. Where do they come from and why? There are no other insects in the house for them to prey on, so what do they eat? I'm convinced lots of them starve, and I find their dried up little corpses when I'm dusting.

I don't like them. I don't like the way they move. These are especially long legged and frail; they move more ponderously than your more athletic, strong-legged spider- though we've had those too. They creep me out.

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

By Lamplight

In the hush before dawn I sit and type by the dim glow of an ancient lamp. The sounds of the day have been silenced, and the low hum of an electrical choir- fridge, fan and router takes their place. From the bedroom, I can hear my boyfriend reaching for me in his sleep. He murmurs, waking briefly to find me gone from the bed, but used to my late night wanderings returns to his sleep.Translucent spiders crawl eerily in the lamplight, moving as if in slow motion as they prowl the dusty floor boards.

The sky has already begun to soften from a midnight blue to a dilute ink; silhouettes of trees and church yard begin to free themselves from the night which consumes them.

A solitary bird throbs summons the chorus to wake and greet the first rays of the sun

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Glee Fashion Genius

If anyone else loves loves LOVES Emma Pilsbury in Glee you have to visit this blog.

One day, when I get around to sorting out my closet and coordinating my outfits, instead of just throwing on jeans and a tshirt, I will look like this titan haired wonder. She's even more beautiful in real life.

I'm going to have to dye my hair too. But apparently Christina Hendricks is a natural blonde and it works for her.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Do you concur?

I've had a sore throat and been generally really tired for a few days now. Last night things came to a head though- I couldn't swallow, headache, crawly skin and constantly hot and cold. This morning I had a temperature of 38 Celsius.

Diagnosis? I'm hoping it's not tonsillitis though my throat does look like it's closing up- no blisters yet though. Either way I'm pretty sure I have a whopping "winter bug" in June. Who gets that? Oh yes, me. Great.

In the winter you know what to do with these things. Wrap up warm, climb into bed with a hot water bottle and sleep. Maybe fall asleep on the sofa watching a film. Plenty of hot drinks. What do you do in the summer though? I was burning up so much last night that I wanted to cry every time my boyfriend tried to cuddle me.

6am this morning caught me practising mindfulness in the kitchen, as I gave thanks to the powers that be for lemsip max strength. They've brought my temperature down a bit, but boy do I feel rough.

My advice? Keep your medicine cabinet stocked up all year round. You never know when germs will attack. And take care of yourselves!

Saturday, 12 June 2010

Love, Carol Ann Duffy Style

Christopher Plummer said that working with Julie Andrews was like being hit on the head with a Valentine's Card. Now, that's not even a back handed compliment is it?

Anyway, I was reading some Carol Ann Duffy earlier, and I thought I would share her poem Valentine. Julie Andrews could ne'er hope to be so complex...

I might have it read at my wedding.

Valentine by Carol Ann Duffy
Not a red rose or a satin heart.

I give you an onion.
It is a moon wrapped in brown paper.
It promises light
like the careful undressing of love.

It will blind you with tears
like a lover.
It will make your reflection
a wobbling photo of grief.

I am trying to be truthful.

Not a cute card or a kissogram.

I give you an onion.
Its fierce kiss will stay on your lips,
possessive and faithful
as we are,
for as long as we are.

Take it.
Its platinum loops shrink to a wedding-ring,
if you like.

Its scent will cling to your fingers,
cling to your knife.

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Sign Errors :-)

Something which always amused me when learning Welsh at a higher level was the mistranslation of road signs. They tend to arise from auto response emails, overly literal translations of idiomatic English or people just not paying attention. Here are a few examples which have amused me. With the translation of the Welsh in red for you to compare.


I am not in the office at present. Send any work for translation. 

A basic grasp of Welsh would have been an advantage for this council. Or maybe they should have bilingual autoresponses. This isn't the first time I've seen this type of error.

Bladder disease upset.
Someone clearly couldn't speak Welsh OR read English, and pulled cystitis out of the dictionary instead of cyclist. Ouch.

Pupils and wooden stakes to... gibberish. Berlewyg isn't even a word.
Parents were very upset about this sign for some reason. Maybe because their children are vampires?

Pedestrians look to the left.
Now depending on which way they should have looked, there are two possible conspiracy theories here. Either attempting to kill of native Welsh speakers or the English... either way. Dangerous.

My favourite one, which I don't have a picture of, is one I found on campus in University about a raised manhole cover. This is where the literal translation comes in. They had translated manhole literally to twll dyn... they got the raised bit right. However in Welsh, twll dyn isn't man hole but arsehole. I was wandering about all afternoon at the idea the university warning us that someone had their bum in the air... ah, little things and little minds.

What's the funniest sign you've seen?

Monday, 7 June 2010

Lottery Win Investment

On Saturday I won £10 on the lottery. I decided to use it to buy How to Write and Sell Short Stories by Della Galton, which I've heard great things about.

If I actually managed to write and sell a short story, then I would , in theory, make more than the cost of the book. However, we're still a long way off that point so I will consider my win a lottery investment in the arts.

It would be wrong to say every thing's going wrong here, but things are very confusing. I feel like I'm walking about in soup some days. The clumsiness continues, and I hit my head again yesterday. This time standing up into an open window.

Last night I had another panic attack. Hyperventilating. Boyfriend got very scared and upset. I thought my ribs were going to break. I'm still not feeling right, and my head hurts from crying. I'm going to see the doctor today. Not because I think they can solve the various concerns that I have in one appointment but I'm hoping maybe for some guidance.

Some reassurance that things are getting on top of me now, but will sort themselves out slowly.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Aros/Waiting a Translation

Aros is one of my favourite modern Welsh poems, and I decided to translate it so that others could enjoy it. I hope the poet doesn't mind, but I think it's important that more people appreciate the great literature which is still coming from Wales in our language. It was written by Mererid Puw Davies in 1996. Translation by moi :-)


aros am rywun
mewn cafe min-nosol
mwg yn wlith ar blanhigion gwyrddion
oriau'n llwenwi'r panediau coffi
a'r munudau'n siwgr arian

dal i aros am rywun
mewn cornel wlithog
sy'n lliferio o amser

aros am rywun
(na chyrhaeddith bellach)
tynnaf sgwrs a'r planhigion

aros am rywun
(dibwys beth bynnag)
tête à tête a planhigyn

a phwy a wyr alle
fod y planhigyn siriol
yn gryn dipyn mwy annwyl
gryn dipyn mwy rhywiol

na rhywun ddyfeisiais i?


waiting for someone
in an late night cafe
smoke like dew on the green plants
hours filling the coffee cups
and silver sugar minutes

still waiting for someone
in a liquid corner
which flows from time

waiting for someone
(who won't come anymore)
I make conversation with the plants

waiting for someone
(it's not important anyway)
tête à tête with the plant

and who knows, it could
be this cheerful plant
is quite a bit more dear
quite a bit sexier

than someone I devised.

Thursday, 3 June 2010


It's been a pretty bad day today all told, first with my head injury which left me woozy and sore for most of the day, then nearly falling to my death in my grandparents garden... a leg tangled in a tricksy rhubarb leaf, a five foot drop onto concrete... my grandfather's superior balance and reflexes saving the day.

You can imagine then that I was not particularly impressed when little sister decided to "facebook rape" me when I leant her my laptop to watch a YouTube video. For those not familiar with this process, it involves posting an outrageous status on someone else's account. My rape involved details of a sex act. People from work are contacts on there.... At least I'm leaving soon.

So, I got my sister back. Though I reckon her age category are much harder to embarrass. And I decided to go a step further. She has a morbid fear of spiders and there are some whoppers about at the moment. I don't really like them either, but I can handle them with sufficient mental preparation and she knows this.

So, while she was relaxing with a book in the bath, I burst into the bathroom shouting, "I'm not looking!!!" and threw a handful of.... tomato tops at her. You know the crinkly green leaves which at first glance look like huge spiders? As soon as they hit her there was a flurry of curses and squeals. She was not impressed but is having a joke about it now.

I don't expect much comeback either... she knows I can be more inventive in terms of nasty shocking pranks when I need to be...just in case though. I've set her up to think there is another, more unpleasant surprise waiting for her tonight if she disturbs me. Psychological deterrents work very well on her.

Head Banging

I managed to knock myself out this morning. I was walking through the garden and didn't realise a beam had sagged down since I'd last been home. I was also reading a book and not looking where I was going. Bang.

I now have a huge egg on my head and a really bad headache.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Almost Forgotten Birthday :S

I remembered today that my little sister's birthday is in five days time. This means that I had almost forgotten. I won't forget again now, but it does limit the time, thought and preparation that I can put into her present.

So what do you give the girl who is about to turn twenty?

Her interests currently revolve around facebooking... partying... a bit of film, a bit of reading... fashion in so far as she has money... she's about to move into a house with her friends for her second year of university. My grandmother has already called cleaning products and an apron.

Any suggestions? Money or a gift voucher seem a bit boring....