When Life Punches You, Smile at Gazelles

Hello! *waves energetically*

Goodness. It seems like a long time indeed since I’ve sat down to write a blog post about nothing in particular – just life. I know I shared a poem not too long ago, and also what spring means to the Ilimoskus yesterday, but they only took a second to do because it was mostly copy-and-paste. It hasn’t been that long really, it just feels like it. Or has it been a while? I don’t even know. Time has blurred for me these days. One indistinguishable haze.

Anyway, I am having a very active weekend blog-wise. Two days in a row, good heavens! Though, I will be running away again after this post, but will be back on 2nd April. Why? You shall have to wait and see.

But let us focus on the here and now. I’m just going to update you all on some things. Don’t you think it’s funny how life can sometimes seem to hand you something so wonderfully fated, but then decides to go, “HAHA, not really!” and then gives you a charming punch to the gut? That’s totally happened to me recently. I shall explain…

…It all started about a week and a half ago…

Regular readers of my blog might remember that I wasn’t desperately happy not too long ago. I felt so lost and confused and lonely because I’d recently moved away from everything and everyone I knew and blah blah etc etc. Anyway, I was getting really angsty about my life and how I seemed to be so forever aimless. I still feel aimless, truth be told, but nothing like before. Well, I won’t go into boring details, but to cut a long story short I basically got a new job. Good news, right? This was the wonderfully fated bit, ’cause I still don’t understand how on earth this happened, but there we go. So, what is this job? A teaching assistant in a first school. With children, aged 4-9. In a school. With children. Did I already say that? Sorry.

I find myself, even now, questioning what I’m doing. Why am I working with children? I thought I didn’t like children. I have forever said “I dislike children, I am never having children, ugh children.” I have also said so many times that I am never going back to an educational environment. Ever. Well, that worked out didn’t it.

The ‘interview’ (if you can even call it that) was… interesting… shall we say? The most informal interview in the history of interviews. I was sprint-walking (is there such a thing? There is now) across the school playground to keep up with the headteacher, and then we went into a classroom and ended up speaking with her in the middle of the room with noisy reception children (4-5 year olds) charging about doing their thing. And then I was just thrown into it. I kind of wish I was joking.

So yeah, I started on the Monday. Now, here is where life punched me in the gut. On the Tuesday, my knee decided to just… pop. And now I am a crippled old lady hobbling around the place in tremendous amounts of pain. I mean seriously life. Why let me sort things out with a job and then bring me down on the SECOND DAY. *sigh* I’ve been drugging myself up on pain killers, and also been wearing a knee support, but still I am in such pain throughout the day, and by the time I get home, I am nearly in tears. It’s so bad. I don’t even know how I make it through the day, quite frankly. But somehow I do. It is not ideal when working with children, constantly being on your feet or kneeling on the floor, but I’m not letting my knee ruin things, the stupid thing. Needless to say, a trip to the doctors is on the table…

But besides the knee, things have been going okay. Although I’ve lost my voice this weekend, which again is not ideal. I guess it’s a good thing I don’t talk much. I’m still not sure what to think or how to feel about his job, though. Considering my alleged dislike for children and educational environments, I find working there rewarding indeed. I do feel strange there, though, but I think that’s just me. I feel unsettled and restless whatever I do and wherever I am.

So, shall I share some work stories with you?

Yes, I shall.

I’m not the most sociable person in the world… I’m quite quiet and shy initially, for it takes me a long time to come out of my shell; with the children it’s different, but when it comes to break and lunch and I’m sitting in the busy staff room, my usual seclusion returns to me. But that’s fine. I’m happy to simply sit and listen to all around me. I like quietly observing the world. I usually have my nose stuck in a book anyway, minding my own business. I barely know anyone’s names yet, and it’s been over a week, Β because I don’t talk to people (how I get anywhere in life is beyond me). But, one day, in my sitting and listening, the only male teacher in the school (it’s always the way, isn’t it? There are hardly any male first/primary school teachers)Β came into the staff room and, unsurprisingly, started talking – like a normal, sociable human being – to other people.

There is a YouTuber called ‘charlieissocoollike’; he himself is not important right now – his voice is. He has a very distinctive voice. This only male teacher in the school, called Mr. Catley, sounds JUST LIKE HIM. Now, for anyone who doesn’t know who ‘charlieissocoollike’ is, this will mean nothing to you, so, I am sharing a video with you. Just listen to his voice.

(This video is for all fellow Britons out there)

A pretty distinctive voice, right? I really, really don’t know why, but I find the fact Mr. Catley sounds just like this YouTuber so amusing. Thinking about it now, I’m not laughing, because it’s not funny, but when I actually hear him speak, I cannot tell you how much I have to restrain my laughter. WHY DO I FIND IT SO FUNNY?! It’s awful, because it’s not funny. There is nothing funny about the voice, so I just do not understand what comes over me. I seriously end up hiding my face with my book and discreetly sniggering into it, pulling all manner of ridiculous facial expressions to hide the fact I’m smiling. I’m sure you know those faces you pull when you’re trying not to laugh. Awful. Mr. Catley is one of the few members of staff I’ve actually spoken to as well – only very briefly, but I’ve spoken to him nonetheless. It was about reading, funnily enough, because he saw me with my nose in a book and asked about it. It was a dire situation I found myself in. Maybe, if I was lucky, I just came across overly smiley to him… That was also the first time I properly saw his face. You know some people have suchΒ bright blue eyes that it’s genuinely like a slap in the face when you see them? Yeah, this Mr. Catley has those kind of eyes. I’ll admit, that did help somewhat with me restraining my laughter, for I was so distracted and taken aback after being slapped. As anyone would be, right?

This Mr. Catley seems to be quite a character, mind you. You always know when he’s in the room. Maybe that’s just because he’s the only man, but even so. I feel quite sorry for him, actually – being so horribly outnumbered by women must be a bit disconcerting sometimes. On Friday it was Sports Relief, and a few days before they were discussing in the staff room that we were to dress in sporty clothing; the other women were saying (laughing) how Mr. Catley should wear a dancing leotard. Poor man. But anyway, you always know when he’s around. For example, during class I was in the outside section patrolling the area (as usual), and from there you can easily see the staff room. There are two ways to get into the staff room: one door has steps to it, and the other door has a long ramp. At the bottom of this ramp there’s a wooden bench (if you’re wondering why there’s a wooden bench at the bottom of the ramp, it’s because there is this child in the school who has bad social/learning difficulties and he spends a large proportion of his time running away, and he often runs up the ramp and into the staff room, so the bench is there to deter him from doing that). But on this day, I saw Mr. Catley run into the staff room – clearly on a mission – via the step door, and then after a little while, he came running down the ramp and leapt over the bench – like a serious leap, I haven’t seen someone jump like that in a long time. It’s a big bench as well, and he sailed over it. He was like a gazelle for goodness sake, or an Olympic hurdler. I mean, what was so urgent that he needed to be a gazelle? Either way, it was quite impressive, for I could not help but think if that were me, I would have just charged straight into the bench like an elephant, and then fallen over and basically just killed myself. Especially with my cripple knee at the moment.

^ That is actual footage of Mr. Gazelle-Catley

I really hope Mr. Catley never reads this, or else that would be slightly awkward. But yes, besides gazelle members of staff with slapping eyes, I don’t really have any other stories to tell. I suppose I could say that the children insist on calling me MRS. Marsh, despite having been corrected by myself and other members of staff about a thousand times. Do I look married to them? I am not married. I’ve given up, quite frankly, and so I just accept the fact that I am now, apparently, a married woman – Mrs. Marsh-Mouse, isn’t that right, Steven! πŸ˜‰ (if anyone’s wondering, I’m married to Mickey Mouse. Minnie isn’t too pleased with me) You know, this isn’t the first time I’ve been called Mrs. Marsh before: when I lived in Salisbury, my hairdressers thought I was married… On my receipts or appointment slip things, it ALWAYS said Mrs. Marsh. I was like… ?? When have I ever called myself Mrs. Marsh?! And then another time, I answered the door to someone and they kept calling me Mrs. WHAT IS THIS.

***

I think I’ve rambled on enough. So there we go, you are now up to date with my life. Please contain yourselves, I know it is terribly exciting. With regards to writing Ilimoskus, that’s not going very well at the moment. And you know what? That’s okay. I used to put myself under such pressure;Β ‘I need to get this done NOW oh my goodness I’m the worst person ever if I don’t write one day WHAT AM I!’ –Β that kind of thing, constantly. But then, not too long ago, I just went… It doesn’t matter. If I force my story, I’m never going to be happy with it, and I’ve finally realised that just because I don’t write often these days, that doesn’t mean I’ve given up on the story. I’m never going to give up on it, and I know that deep down. I may be fifty by the time I finish it, but I will finish it.Β And that’s all that matters. And so, when I see my notes and sprawly handwriting staring at me on my desk, I poignantly smile and think, ‘I’m coming back to you, don’t worry.’Β Always on my mind, always in my heart, but it will come out when the time is right.

Sometimes life can be a bit of a bastard, let’s be honest. Sometimes it can seem to be going very well, and then all of a sudden, BAM! Not so great. In such instances, you could quite easily break down and give up. But no no. We do not give up. So what you do is laugh, and smile, and think ‘Well, that was a bit sucky, but I’ll just laugh it off.’Β Some days when I’m at standing around at work and I feel that I would rather chop my leg off than deal with this knee pain, I think back to Mr. Gazelle leaping over the bench and I smile to myself. It’s such a simple thing, really, but it’s enough, for it then reminds me that I smile more at work than not. Surely the discomfort is worth it. And why shouldn’t he have leapt over the bench? He can, so why not! And when I’m stuck doing something I hate and I think about how I’d rather be writing my story, I daydream about my world and remember that just because I’m not writing about it, that doesn’t mean it’s not with me, and that it will come in time. There is no rush. The Ilimoskus are peaceful, and so the greatest justice I can do myself – and them – is be peaceful about their story.

So, if life punches you, find something to smile and laugh about. There is always so much around – you won’t have to look far.

***

Have a great week ahead of you, everyone!

And remember: laugh and smileΒ your way through life πŸ™‚

Gu’cuqeqa! As the Ilimoskus would say:

until we meet again, my friends

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56 responses to “When Life Punches You, Smile at Gazelles

  1. Haha, I’m glad you’re smiling and laughing despite life being a bastard and punching you! Oh man, that gazelle part–couldn’t stop laughing πŸ˜€ Especially the video: “That is actual footage of Mr. Gazelle-Catley”. The mental image alone was hilarious, but the video made it so much better. XD

    It’s good, too, that you’ve found peace with your book. It’s so true–your world is always with you and forcing it probably won’t work too well. Patience is good!

    You’ve made me smile with this post, so let’s both of us smile our way through this week πŸ™‚

    • Haha, I’ll tell you what, I find myself smiling whenever I SEE Mr. Catley now – or even the blumin’ bench! – because of that whole gazelle image. What have I done to myself? Heavens. He held the door open for me today and I genuinely had to look at the floor ’cause I just couldn’t bring myself to look at him. I really need to stop thinking of him as a gazelle. But you should have seen it, Alex. He was a total gazelle. In fact, considering how high he jumped, I question why he didn’t represent Great Britain in the Olympics.

      Yes, peace is good. We like peace. Peace and patience!

      I’m glad I made you smile πŸ™‚ We shall laugh and smile our way through this week, indeed πŸ˜‰ I certainly will, considering I’ll be seeing Mr. Gazelle at work!

      • Haha, you’ve got quite the predicament, haven’t you?! Well, I suppose it was really his fault, you were just an innocent observer. Oh, how I wish I was there; I think I’d pay to have seen it. You really should convince him to train for the Olympics! They could make a whole new event, bench hurdling, and Great Britain would win for sure πŸ˜›

      • Haha, I was the only one around so I think I was the only one who saw! I would loved for you to have seen it – I’m sure we would have been there laughing endlessly! I really should do that! Great Britain needs all the help it can get with the medal-winning. I approach the topic coolly: “Hey, Mr. Catley, you know that day when you sprung over the bench like a gazelle? Well, I saw that, and I really think you should train to be an Olympic hurdler. I mean, you could just practise with the benches here at school – won’t cost you a penny!” He’d be thrilled πŸ˜‰

  2. Oh Jenny Jen Jen, now I can’t get Mr Catley out of my mind!! This is absolutely hilarious and I do hope that he doesn’t read your blog, ha ha! I love the video btw of charlie-what’s-his-name and I totally agree with him. You made me laugh out loud with this for so many reasons, but the image of Mr Gazelle-Catley is the best thing ever.
    Seriously, i do hope you are feeling better with your knee (as I said before, I used to get that knee-popping thing for no reason and never did find out why, but I haven’t had it for a while, very odd). I hope too things are getting better with your job and the children are behaving!
    Great to catch up with you here, and looking forward to your next installment of playground adventures πŸ™‚

    • Haha, glad you enjoyed the mental image! πŸ˜‰ I still walk by that bench and smile to myself. I wish you could have seen him leap over it.

      My knee is still being a pain… (quite literally!) Going to the doctors on Saturday morning though. But next Tuesday, it will be two weeks of hobbling! :/ I think I’ve got abnormal patella tracking, if I remember what I was told years ago by another doctor. I imagine it’s just that playing up again. But we shall see, anyway!

      Work is okay thank you, but I didn’t have the greatest day today… Really quite a cruddy one, actually, but hey ho. Days like that are to be expected every once in a while!

  3. I hope your knee heals quickly! I happen to have some “popping” knee experience as mine popped back in October, and I suddenly found myself crippled. I couldn’t put any weight on it whatsoever, and I was in a horrible amount of pain. Well, it healed to a point and then decided to pop again. Anyway to make a long story short, I was finally diagnosed with a torn meniscus. I hope that yours doesn’t end up being torn. πŸ™‚

    Congratulations and good luck with the new job! πŸ™‚

    ~ Kayla

    • Ooo, that doesn’t sound fun! 😦 Curse our knees, ey! How is your knee these days? A couple of years ago, I was told I had abnormal patella tracking, so I’m just assuming my knee is something to do with that, but it might not be :/ Maybe something else is going on, ’cause the last time I had a knee problem it wasn’t anywhere near as bad as this. But I have the doctors soon, so hopefully things will improve.

      Thanks for the comment, and I hope everything’s okay with you πŸ™‚

  4. It’s good to hear your school days are full of such escapades πŸ˜‰ at least it’s not dredging up rice from a sandpit…

    I do the same thing with people’s voices. I don’t really know what it is either. I had a teacher in high school, who just would say ‘microbes’, and I’d be corpsing. Pinch the tip of your nose, and then say ‘microbes’. Her voice was like that. Or, the even more hilarious thing she said once: “DO NOT OPEN THAT DOOR – YOU WILL DIE.”

    This is hilarious! I am sitting here chuckling like a goon, right now. Mr. Catley sounds quite cat-like. What a sense of urgency he clearly has; prepared to look a right idiot to get to wherever he is needed in the shortest possible time. I too, would have probably killed myself… though, saying that, I did scale and leap over the garden wall when I was 17, to try and get out of the clutches of my doctor. Nearly broke my ankle, though, so not as slick as Mr. Catley.

    It’s curious how few male authority figures there are in this level of education now… there were many when I was in first school. When I was working with Y3, there was me and one other man in the whole school. The rest were women, all in their 20s/30s… I wonder why this is. With some of the behaviour I hear about, it seems as though they could do with some stern blokes. (Hilariously, that’s why they pushed me to do the IT)

    Hope today is treating you well, MRS. Marsh-Mouse.

    • Haha, at least I’m not the only one! I once had an RE teacher who lost totally her voice once and every time she said “um” she GENUINELY sounded like a quaking duck. I’m not even joking. To this day it reduces me to tears of laughter. But dying when opening a door? That sounds a little extreme.

      A cat by name, a cat by nature. Haha, running away from a doctor? What on earth…? NO ONE has Mr. Catley jumping abilities, I’m afraid. Once, I jumped a chair and I fell over it and sprained my wrist. That is me. Yay me.

      Yeeeahh, it’s probably ’cause the world calls all men who work with children a paedophile. Sad, really. Kids that age could probably do with having ‘stern blokes’, as you put it! Haha, are you stern, Steven? Well, considering you made that child write ‘I hate this school’ repeatedly over his books.. you are clearly ruthless πŸ˜‰

      • Haha! well, this teacher’s name was Duckett, so duck is appropriate. The door just went to open air… and we were three stories up. Perhaps the budget ran dry before they came to fire escapes. That line just makes me laugh so much. Whenevever anybody says “don’t laugh” or if the situation demands seriousness, that line plays over in my head, and I just lose it completely… I am genuinely in tears, here. “Do not open that door or YOU WILL DIEEEEEEEE.” Seriously. Crying.

        Sorry to go on and on here, but also, we were also on the dodgems once at the same time as her, which was hilarious in itself – she didn’t strike as the funfair type… but my friend who was the passenger in ours yelled out “DO NOT BUMP INTO THAT CAR OR YOU WILL DIIEEEE!” in a Duckett voice. I lost it so much that I basically span, swerved and wrote off our vehicle against the edge of the arena. The operator guy had to come and fix it for us when it became clear that we could no longer move. Oh, I am still crying.

        Mr. Catley does sound rather feline with his agility and sexy eyes… do you think he’d be interested in marrying me? Then my name could be Steven Catley.

        Oh, I was all over the place and scared of being taken to a mental hospital, so I basically ran the hell away from my doctor whenever and however I could.

        I’m sure that’s exactly the reason – I imagine it has put an awful lot of young men off teaching, too. It really is such a shame. Male teachers have a lot to offer, and it’s sad that they are tarred with that horrible brush.

        I am incredibly stern! πŸ˜‰ Well, I was told that the groups I was teaching IT to were a lot more cautious around me than they were with their previous teacher (a woman)… and I never did anything to make them fear me, in fact, I had a laugh with them most of the time. It just goes to show how the dynamic changes, with a man. To be honest, I was surprised, totally and utterly. I thought they were going to eat me alive.

        Haha, I think I was the straw that broke the camel’s back πŸ˜› He got into an awful lot of trouble in pretty much every lesson, it was the end of the day and he just lost it, basically. He was talking to me again the next lesson, as if it had never happened.

      • One of my old science teachers was called Mr. Duckett. Small world.
        Hahahah, a door to open air!? What the..? Health and safety hazard much? Ahh, back in the day eh, when you could step out of a door at school and plummet to your death πŸ˜‰ I love how such old memories can still produce tears πŸ™‚

        I hate the dodgems. I had a horrible incident on one as a child and have refused to even stand and watch ever since πŸ˜›

        Aha, well I believe Mr. Catley is already married, but by all means there is nothing stopping you from trying to ruin his marriage to claim him as your own.

        Yeah, kids just react differently to males, so it really is a shame they can’t have the best of both worlds in their younger years at school. Aha, oh I was horribly stern for reception children today – I might as well be a man, let’s face it. I just had ZERO patience today… I also finished my day wondering, as I walked home, why on earth anyone would want to have a child. What would possess them to put themselves through such an endless ordeal? Steven: care to enlighten me? (I think this is my bad mood that has lasted all week talking, but even so)

        Haha, that’s the thing about kids: they forgive you, or forget, so quickly. Especially the younger they are.

      • Wow, the similarities between us get even more bizarre. This was Science, too. Haha, I know! It perplexed us all. Why some girl was frantically trying to open it, who knows, but wherever she is, I want her to know that she is responsible for so much laughter on my part, over the years.

        “Such old memories” – thanks, Jennifer! Well, admittedly, this was probably about 1987.

        Oh, now, you see, you have to sedate me to stop me from going on a set of dodgems. They’re just hilarious. I like to single people out and just chase after them the whole time.

        Matter of fact, I did that once and the operator threw me off! Most unfair; I was determined not to let him get away with it, so I took him to court, for funfair dismissal.

        Oh! 😦 Tell him that I’m heartbroken.

        “Might as well be a man” – Haha! I’m glad to hear you were stern. They need it, and shouldn’t feel as though they can test your patience and get away with it.

        Well, I’d have thought it was obvious: they’re going to be looking after me when I’m too old to care for myself πŸ˜‰ I jest, of course. It’s very different when you have your own children. Trust me, they are beyond words. πŸ™‚

      • Indeed. STOP COPYING ME, STEVEN, jeez. Well, if anything, I’m copying you ’cause you’re the old man here, but shhh πŸ˜‰

        Well, if you’re allowed to go on the charm offensive, so am I! πŸ˜›

        And so he should have chucked you off! Traumatising poor people on the dodgems like a maniac. πŸ˜› I cannot express to you how much I hate that ‘ride’. I remember once, years ago, that my boyfriend (who wasn’t really my boyfriend but it’s easier to call him that) convinced me to go on with him once along with some other friends, and I genuinely started crying, and he was like “I FEEL SO BAD NOW JENNY, why didn’t you tell me you hated it that much?!” Well, if I recall, I kinda DID, but I thought, ‘Oh, maybe I’m over-reacting and should give it another chance.’ Never again, Steven. Never.

        Haha, well when I was ‘stern’, the children involved looked kind of traumatised, so I promptly went to being a little bit kinder. But still. We had to make Mother’s Day cards -_- and I sat at this table gathering a group of children, and I said to them, “Do you want to make your cards now?”
        “No,” they said.
        “You have to do at some point today, boys.”
        “No, I don’t want to,” they said.
        *in a firmer voice than I probably should have used* “Well, tough, it has to be done. You’ve got to make your mummy a card to thank her for everything she’s done for you. So, you can do it now and get it over with, or you can do it later, but you are making a card.”

        You’ll be pleased to know they did make the card with me – while smiling, even!

        I’m sure it is completely different when it’s your own, but even so. Pregnancy isn’t something I can say I particularly want to suffer.

      • Haha, such an old man. Hand me my slippers and cardie, young’un.

        The chucking me off bit was a joke, you realise πŸ˜› ‘funfair dismissal’. Wow, you really don’t like the dodgems. Do you like the Waltzers? They’re hilarious, too… I’m a bit of a wuss when it comes to roller coasters, though.

        I’m sure it’d be different if you went on with me. We could single out anyone who looks like Sherri πŸ˜‰ though if it is her, we’d probably live to regret it.

        Whooaaa, don’t mess with the Marsh. Good for you; such bratty kids need to be commanded. Go you! I’ve no doubt they were smiling with fear.

        Ha, well I can’t really speak from experience regarding pregnancy, you’ll be surprised to hear. Watch that One Born Every Minute show on C4, and see what’s in store at the end of those nine lonnng months πŸ˜‰

      • All right, Grandpa.

        I do hate the dodgems, yes. Is it that obvious? πŸ˜‰ I LOVE the Waltzers. Pure love. They are hilarious. Ahh, I used to be a wuss with roller coasters, but then I got to about 16 and went crazy with them, going on Stealth at Thorpe Park and all these corkscrew loopy ones. They are a right laugh. Well, were. I don’t go on them any more, ’cause I always think of death. I’m too old for all that excitement these days πŸ˜‰ This was the last roller coaster I ever went on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EjgiQm5GOv4 <- I remember I whacked my head on the side of the carriage during one of the sharp turns, and my earring made my ear bleed. Fun times πŸ˜‰

        Haha, we should sooo go on the dodgems with Sherri Poppins! I can imagine her unleashing her Terminator…She'd be one to watch!

        Hahaha, commanded? I'm not sure I could go that far. I'm no commander. (Reminds me of this song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dwfKZ-1jyiw – 0:46) Well… maybe a tiiiiny bit, sometimes πŸ˜› When bratty children are in the scene. And then I turn into Mr/Miss http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0h9oQu5tU8

        Actually, on the subject of Trunchbull, we used to call our lesbian PE teacher at school that. Not because she was strict etc, but because she kinda looked like her…

        Hahaha, oh goodness, One Born Every Minute reminds me of darling Meggie. When we were at college we were talking about it once with my friend Leah, and it got… a bit messy, shall we say? Meggie was like, "Why would anyone want to watch that programme? Why would they want to see screaming, sweaty women shit themselves while pushing out a bloody rat of a baby?" I would go on, but what she said really was not pretty, and should not be repeated. But it was hilarious, and she raised very good points. UGH, MEN. Not having to deal with pregnancy/birth.
        On the subject of Meggie and pregnancy, when I turned 20 she sent me a card, and in it she wrote: 'no more risk of teen pregnancy – horah! I hope your birthday consisted of you working that tree magic of yours and seducing multiple men, as I would expect nothing less of queen slut herself.' Isn't our friendship glorious?

      • Jennifer, you are bonkers. Why on earth would you want to go on that? It looks awful. No wonder you produce the facial expressions you do, on these monstrous rides…

        Waltzers are indeed absolutely hilarious. They’re my favourite… after the dodgems. πŸ˜‰

        Haha, well, to trump that ride totally, here’s the (probably) last roller coaster I went on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N-3k9liUs3s it was less of a dive back in the day. On there, it just looks unsafe πŸ˜›

        This was probably the scariest ride I would go on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rFOb0iGBp5I in the same park as the above roller coaster. The one we rode was called TERMINATOR, though… quite apt, too, as it used to throw you around something rotten. Deadly. Fun, though!

        Imagine it. Sherri would just send her Terminator cyborg thing onto the arena to destroy our vehicle, while she sits and laughs manically.

        You are totally Miss Trunchbull. I can see it now. I imagine the children are quaking on Sunday evenings at the prospect of facing your wrath on Monday morning.

        Oh my… I am so with Meggie on this – except maybe the ‘bloody rat’ bit – babies are cute. I cannot see the appeal of the show. Drives me potty, it does.

        The most shocking thing about this is the fact that you were still at college when this show was on air. Christ… I didn’t think you were THAT young! πŸ˜› Now I feel even older.

        Haha, oh man, she is so rude. I love it. I am heartbroken that she will never join us here on WordPress.

      • I was bonkers then, yes. Now, not so much. Hahaha, exactly! Oh, that face of mine. Classic.

        I’ve never been on a wooden roller coaster. I’ve never wanted to… The thought of them used to scare me more than the loopy-loop ones. They just sound as though they’re going to fall apart any second!

        LOL at Shania Twain playing on that video! That is not a song I would expect at a theme park.

        Ha, well I’m glad you can see the resemblance now.. ? Should I be glad? I’m not so sure. Even so, I think everyone has a Miss Trunchbull in them somewhere.

        Yeah, it’s an awful show. I don’t watch it. Well, you’re leaping to conclusions here, Steven πŸ˜› It could have been adult college for all you know. Haha, but I am horribly young. It’s funny, because as I’ve said, people think I’m older than I am, so I think everyone expects more from me because of that. How old do you think I am?? Or is this a dangerous game? πŸ˜› Meggie is even younger than me, though. It’s her birthday soon, actually.. Heavens.

        It is quite heartbreaking that she will never join us, but I can keep you up to date with her happenings via our comment threads πŸ˜‰

      • Anti-suicide campaign, remember πŸ˜‰ You and Nick make a great team.

        Wooden roller coasters have a great friction to them, but yes, that one probably is going to fall down one day. It looks a right state in that video. It’s about 80 years old, or something.

        So you were a mature student? Actually older than me? I’m clutching at this idea, now πŸ˜‰ as futile as those clutches appear to be. Haha, horribly young. Youth is wasted on the young.

        It’s because you’re so wise, you see! Well, I was thinking maybe circa 25, going by some of the stuff I’ve mentioned, which you seem to remember… have I cut you open, Leona? Huuhahahwohhhhh.

        Oh good grief. Remind me to stay indoors that evening.

        Well, I will forever hold out hope that one day she shall, but that’s a relief. I’m sure she’s far duller than you’re making out, anyway πŸ˜‰

      • Ah yes, of course. How could I forget about that anti-suicide campaign? All wooden roller coasters are that old, I believe, since it was before they really crafted from various metals.

        Ha, yeah, I actually turned 41 in February. But ssshhhhh, keep that between us πŸ˜‰ Sometimes I do wish I was older, but not so I’m wishing my life away, ’cause you should never do that, but just that I was born a bit earlier, y’know? It sucks being younger in this day and age. For a start, all society views you as a menace, or a burden, or a nuisance, until about the age of 25 – possibly even later. I feel sorry for teenagers these days.

        Ha, I am a wise old lady πŸ˜‰ Far wiser than my years, I feel. I just like to play a guessing game, acting and looking older than I am to throw everyone into disarray (not really). It’s just how I am, unfortunately! Maybe that’s why I’m always mistaken for being married, or even being a mother (someone thought I was a child’s mother once 😐 ). But sure, let’s just say 25. Close enough πŸ˜‰ I am most certainly in my 20s, though.

        Speaking of Leona again, would you like another example of my beauty? I have a cold at the moment, and earlier I blew my nose (already a gorgeous story), and it was just pure blood. I mean, my beauty is just beyond words. I always have nosebleeds when I have a cold. Always. Without fail.

        And, here’s something: I was nearly called Leanne by my parents. That’s kind of similar to Leona… kinda. Well, more similar than ‘Jennifer’, anyway.

        Just avoid the Oxford area on 20th April, and you’ll be fine πŸ˜‰

        She’s far from dull, I can tell you. Unlike you and I, who sound far more exciting online, she actually is. She’s always got some story to tell.

      • It’s working here, trust me. Just picturing that photograph: 😦 > 😐 > πŸ™‚ I think that roller coaster now has a photo section on it. Doubtless everyone looks similar to you, in fear of how rickety and unstable the whole structure appears. But hey, I guess that makes it more exciting!

        41! Goodness, hasn’t time been unkind on your features? I used to wish I was born a little bit earlier too, actually, probably for similar reasons you mention. We were better off in the 90s in that respect – it seemed so much easier to find a job, get on the property ladder and so forth… not today. I feel for young people now, too.

        You’re certainly wiser than I am at 40, then, I’ve always been a bit dim. I like guessing games! HIGHER! LOWER! HIGHER! Haha, well, when I first found you, I, for some reason, assumed you’d have a child. I don’t know why that was, you must just radiate maternity.

        ‘I am most certainly in my 20s’ – 29, then.

        Oh, that’s an absolutely beautiful image you have painted for me there, Jenny. Really lovely. That’s never happened to me… I remember getting a nosebleed in the middle of Graphics at college, once. Everybody laughed.

        Oooh, Leanne Marsh-Mouse. Meh, I prefer Jennifer. Jennifer is a nice name. I would apparently have been ‘Leah’, had I been a girl. Leah Fisher sounds awful, if you ask me, but there you go.

        I shall be safe, as 20th April is my nephew Charlie’s first birthday! I look forward to being far more into the party games and festivities than he is.

        Speak for yourself πŸ˜‰ wild one, here. Live-wire. Maybe she should write a book! It could wipe the floor with 50 Shades of Grey. I am being so cheeky about this woman, whom I’ve not even met.. I hope she doesn’t see this. Though, I think she’d like me. I mean, come on, Salacious Steven here – peas in a pod. πŸ˜‰

      • Everything about this reply made me laugh. So fantastic.

        I’m just imagining everyone with faces like mine on a a wooden roller coaster. Oh, priceless. Seriously, I should enter that photo into some ‘best ride photo’ competition or something. I would win, hands down.

        You are so kind to me, it’s just so touching. Yeah well, time has been kinder to my features than yours. Hahaha, sorry, I can’t do mean. Even when joking. I’m only messin’ πŸ˜‰ The 90s was great, though I was too young to enjoy it as well as, say, Mr. Old Man here πŸ˜‰ This decade is just horrific in comparison.

        You are not dim, don’t be an idiot. Or else I’ll go all mumsey on you – or, worse, Miss Trunchbull. Haha, THE PRICE IS RIGHT. Or was the higher/lower that other one? Play Your Cards Right? The Price Is Right was brilliant, wasn’t it? I used to love watching that. I’m clearly too cool.

        Hahaha, are you pulling my leg with the thinking I had a child thing, or are you being serious? How can I possibly radiate maternity? Maybe I’m more maternal than I give myself credit. Either way: hilarious.

        Ha, you cheeky bugger! Well, even if I WAS 29, I would still technically be in my 20s, so shut it πŸ˜›

        Well, I just want you to get an accurate representation of my endless beauty, you know? You’re lucky it’s never happened to you, it’s horrid. It’s happened to me more times than I can say. Nosebleeds are just awful. They just come out of nowhere most of the time, too: minding your own business and then BAM! Bleeding nose. People are so kind, aren’t they, laughing at someone bleeding.

        Jennifer is all right, I suppose. I don’t feel overly strongly about it either way. Here’s a fun fact for you πŸ˜› Had I been a boy, I would have been called Steven. No joke, either, this is totally the truth. Steven Marsh πŸ˜‰

        Haha, it’s a good excuse to act like a child with all the childish games/toys and such, right? I do it at school all the time these days.

        Just so you know, I’ve actually told Meggie about you now. Well, not you specifically, but that there’s this guy I talk to and I tell him about you, kinda thing. And while we’re on the matter of salaciousness, I asked her what she was playing with that whole guy thing, y’know? She said, and I quote: ‘I do not learn, no. As soon as either of us have a drink in our hand we’re bloody on top of each other.’ To which I replied: ‘Well, it’s nice to know you can resist your sexual urges, Meggie.’ So, if you do meet her, just make sure she isn’t holding an alcoholic beverage. But then, you being Salacious Steven, I’m sure you wouldn’t mind πŸ˜‰

      • Glad to hear it! We need all the chuckles we can get.

        Seriously, I would be like that on a kids’ roller coaster. I wasn’t best pleased about going on that one. I see some of these crazy track designs these days and just think… why would you do it to yourself?

        Haha, well, it’s certainly a novel photograph.

        It’s that natural charm I possess. It just flows out. You’re only messing that you can’t do mean? Oh I know. You have struck at my heart many a time 😦

        The 90s were okay I suppose, and I’m glad I was in my 20s then, rather than now, yes. But, you’re forgetting, it DID give us The Spice Girls… 😐

        Hmm. Not dim? Bumbling fool, then. Haha, the higher/lower thing was Play Your Cards Right, with the totty turning over the cards. I wasn’t overly keen on either, but I did prefer The Price is Right. I was more of a secret Supermarket Sweep fan, myself.

        I was being serious. You obviously demonstrate a lot of care and wisdom… basically I was saying that you’d be a good mother.

        So you are 29 then. Glad that’s settled.

        It doesn’t sound nice… my nose only tends to bleed when I pick it too much πŸ˜‰ That was really irritating. When I came back from cleaning it up, my friends had drawn a big nose inside my sketchbook, and wrote something or other about my it falling off. I would have laughed, but I had to hand that book in… I got really annoyed about it actually, because they just wouldn’t let it go… just laughing at me constantly… and defacing my sketchbook – there’s a line, isn’t there? I basically just got up and walked home about 15 minutes before the end of the lesson, leaving all my stuff behind. They never mentioned it again.

        STEVEN! I like the name Steven, actually. Never shorten it to ‘Steve’, though – awful. I can take ‘Stevie’, though… it’s cute.

        It is indeed the perfect excuse. I don’t need much motivation to act like an infant, though, so the opportunity to do it without being frowned upon. “Erm, Steven… we didn’t buy those toys for you… they’re for our 36-month old son,” etc. etc…

        Oh dear. My eyes opened pretty wide when I began reading this paragraph about Meggie. I was all, “OH NO, what has she told her?” Haha, she’s such a laugh. It’s a good job I don’t drink, so I’d be able to keep things above board.

      • Oh jeez, I laughed so much at the thought of you on a kids’ roller coaster screaming and pulling a face like mine. It is definitely a sign of age, don’t you think? Going off rides, I mean. I look at them now and, as you say, think… ‘Just why? Do you WANT to die?’ Although, saying that, my uncle is still as crazy as ever regarding rides, and he’s in his… late 30s, I think? There are always exceptions to the rule.

        Oh, man up, Steven πŸ˜‰ I’m hardly mean. You’re way worse to me πŸ˜› All my life I’ve just taken it. People are actually surprisingly cruel to me – always have been. At school I was forever given grief, but I never gave it back. So much so, in fact, that many of my friends used to say to me: “I seriously don’t understand why people are so harsh to you. You literally do nothing to anyone.” SO, Steven πŸ˜› when I say I can’t do mean, I am being serious. It’s so rare for me to say anything remotely harsh about someone, that if I DID say something at school or whatever, I meant it only as a joke, and I said sorry the second it came out of my mouth. One of my closest friends at school came from an Indian heritage (shame on me for forgetting which, exactly 😐 ), and I had some wrapper or something with Arabic on it, and I said to him, “What does this say?” My other friends died on the floor laughing, ’cause nothing like that ever comes from my mouth. As my best bud Ian says: ‘You just don’t say things like that, so whenever you DO, it makes it a thousand times funnier purely because it came from your mouth.’

        Hahaha, THE SPICE GIRLS. Oh, wow. I used to loooove them πŸ˜‰ SOOOOOOO TELL ME WHAT YOU WANT WHAT YOU REALLY REALLY WANT … I WANNA HUH I WANNA HUH I WANNA ZIG-A-ZIG AAHHHH. Why can I imagine you diva-ing out to that? I am in hysterics right now. Oh, Jenny, control yourself. To be honest, though, The Spice Girls were better than the slutty groups we get these days, influencing the minds of little girls. I’d rather them over promiscuous so and sos, any day.

        It’s A Knock-out – that’s where it’s at. Best game show ever.

        A lot of my friends say I’d be a good mother; it kind of annoys me sometimes, though I don’t know why. And, I get told I’d be a good teacher, too. Both mothers and teachers take no nonsense, so I guess it works. I should obviously just have a child, then. What am I waiting for? Dya reckon anyone would be willing to have one with me? hahaha.
        Speaking of motherhood: today, on playground duty, a bunch of kids latched onto me and I had to play ‘Mummy’ with them. I had to pay Β£400 for cinema tickets. I knew prices had risen, but blimey.

        Haha, I am not 29. Nor am I 41. How old am I? oooooooooooooooooooooooo who knows.

        Ugh, I hated it when people pushed it too far. Like, there’s a line, you know? And they seemed blind to it, always. And then you were the one who got into trouble when they pushed you over the edge. Similar things happened to me at school. They weren’t fun days, were they? Well, certainly not for two little sob stories like us. The amount of times I did what you did, storming out of class – and sometimes out of school – I can’t say. It’s a shame it had to come to that for them to realise they should probably shut up, but there we go. Well, either storming off in anger or me crying, actually.

        You never struck me as a Steve, strangely. Meggie’s like that with her name; she can tolerate ‘Meg’, but ‘Megan’? Ha. She loathes it. I remember in college she rang me even though we I could see each other down the long corridor (it was a really long corridor, though), and I called her Megan – ’cause, you know, it’s how our loving friendship works – and she hung up and I watched her storm away while I sniggered like a fool.

        Ha πŸ˜› Acting like an infant is just too fun. It doesn’t help that I’m so easily amused – again, like an infant. A simple elastic band can amuse me for hours. I always feel kids these days could never be amused by such simple things. A sign of the times, perhaps?

        Haha, I’ve told her nothing, don’t you worry πŸ˜‰ Well, nothing much. Ah well, lucky indeed πŸ˜› I’m making her sound so bad. She’s not that bad. I mean, we call each other sluts, and although she’s undoubtedly, without hesitation, more of a slut than I am, she is not a slut. She started this whole ‘slut’ thing by calling me a slut in college, and that was because, according to her, I had “20 guys on the go at the same time” – which was not true at all, it was just her blowing things wildly out of proportion and context, as she always does. But I love her for it, nonetheless.

      • Blimey, this was a lonnnng comment :P. Deep breath, here goes…

        I think it is an age thing, you’re probably right. We become less invincible as we age. I am much happier on this sort of thing: http://www.ourgreatyarmouth.org.uk/images/uploaded/scaled/26072007060.jpg than any kind of white-knuckle vomit aid.

        THIS however is amazing, and is basically my childhood summer wrapped up in a fairground ride. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcG9Sgdvjmc “Fuckin hell I’m gonna pee in a minute,” what a lovely, ladylike thing to say in front of your two children.

        I cannot believe the tubs and the snails are still going πŸ˜› they must be about two hundred years old. Many an evening in the good old days spent invading these toddlers’ rides, when we were about 15.

        Aw, you know that I never mean any of it πŸ˜› that’s the beauty of being me – people always say that after I jokingly insult them. Little do they know I REALLY DO MEAN IT. Haha, I joke, of course. Except in your case. I mean it very much. People were always rather intimidated by me, for some reason – so, for a nerd, I got off very lightly at school… strange, because if they had braved the apparent fear, they’d have seen what a stupidly easy target I was. The friends laughing thing was similar, though, especially when they heard me swear. I don’t swear too often (I just don’t see the fuckin’ need!), so it comes as a bit of a novelty to those around me.

        You probably were thinking that because I did do exactly that, a number of times :P. But ugh, they just irritate me now. Hard to believe the whole GIRLL POWWER thing was nearly twenty years ago now… sigh.

        “Best game show ever” – you are clearly forgetting a maze which wasn’t actually a maze, nor was it made of crystal… but it was still the best thing to ever be on television, never mind game show.

        Haha, how about that Jack the Lad who Meggie sleeps with and then hurls out of bed? Or maybe you could ask Mr. Catley? Other than that, and forgetting about your husband Mickey, I am not sure…

        I’m not sure why the whole nosebleed thing got to me like that, because I am usually quite good at ignoring it all, when being ribbed, or laughing along, even. That day, not so. It never happened before and didn’t happen again. They just did not seem to shut up about it, and the drawing in my journal made me so angry. I’m sorry to hear it happened to you so often. People mystify me, they really do…

        I wish I didn’t get annoyed when people call me Steve, but secretly I do, a little bit. Hmm, I think I’d prefer ‘Megan’ to either ‘Meg’ or ‘Meggie’, really. At least then I couldn’t be called Mystic Meg. Haha! Hilarious. Is it far-fetched to suggest that maybe Meggie got into trouble a bit as a child, and her parents constantly called her Megan as a consequence?

        Haha, ‘slut’ is such a funny word, isn’t it? A sign of my infancy, there. 20 men, well, Jennifer, I am appalled. Out of proportion? Was it 19…?

      • I know, sorry. I went on forever yesterday.

        Ha, what ride even is that? Just one that spins around? Spinning rides are hilarious, I do love them.Yes, there are some true ladies out there these days, right? Swearing and cursing and being all brusque in front of their children. Though, now we’re probably going to get yelled at by feminists saying WOMEN DON’T NEED TO BE LADY-LIKE ANYMORE IT’S REPRESSION A IN THIS PATRIARCHAL WORLD.

        I want to make it my aim in life to see you diva out to The Spice Girls… Is that weird?

        Oh my, forgive. Of course, The Crystal Maze is the King of game shows. It slipped my mind, I am terribly sorry. WON’T HAPPEN AGAIN, CAP’N *salutes*

        Hahaha! Oh dear. Jack the Lad, Mr. Catley and husband Mickey are my only options? Well.

        Hahaha, about Catley, acutally (this is funny, it made me laugh, allow me to divert): in that presentation afterschool, we were discussing the headteacher candidates after they had left, and we were saying how one lady seemed quite rude to the staff. And then Mr. Catley goes, “Well, she put her thumb up to me.” Everyone was like, “Yeah, I bet she did! πŸ˜‰ ” And then we moved on to talk about the other candidate, and we were saying how she didn’t go into everyone’s classes, and Mr. Catley said, “That’s probably because she spent so long in my cloakroom!” And everyone else was like, “Ooooo, what’s going on here then, Jonathan?”
        And he was like, “Not in there WITH me!”
        “And what did you do to get the other one to stick her thumb up at you, I wonder!”
        It was funny. Poor man, so totally ganged up on by the ladies. Though, I bet he loves it really.

        Only three options is mildly depressing. Isn’t it?? Though, I’ve actually had a surge of male attention recently, with one calling me “super attractive” and the other “incredibly hot” – which, if you ask me, is hilarious. I hate it when people say things like that. Just no. Be quiet, hush, goodbye *closes door* But, I suppose I should be having a child with my husband, right? All proper and that. Not gallivanting off with married men and ‘lads’.

        Ha, knowing Meggie.. probably, yes. One of the headteacher candidates is called Jennifer. Just thought I’d share that with you. For my name, I don’t really care what people called me, to be honest (Jennifer, Jenny, Jen), but I am sometimes a bit funny with ‘Jen’. Only my closest friends and family call me Jen, so if someone I don’t really know calls me ‘Jen’, I’m a bit like… What are you doing? Y’know?

        It is quite a funny word. Reminds me of ‘slug’. Slug is also a funny word. Hahaha, well, given how much of a slut I am, finding someone to father my child shouldn’t be too much of an issue.

      • No apologies! I would encourage ‘going on’, ESPECIALLY if it means getting less housework done.

        I’ve always called it the Tubs. I think the technical name for the ride is ‘Virginia Reel’. It’s basically, a tub you sit in, which goes along a track, like a roller coaster. Of course, with every corner and drop, the tub revolves. Like a Waltzer mixed with a roller coaster – great fun, even if its summit is about a foot off the ground (but hey, it is in a toddlers’ theme park)

        I don’t have an issue with women, or indeed men swearing, as long as it’s done with some degree of restraint. F… this, F… that, isn’t very attractive, and just defeats the entire object of swearing, doesn’t it? You don’t need to say things like that in front of anybody, least of all children.

        Haha! That is rather bizarre, yes, but then, it’s my life aim to see you diva out to Leona Lewis.

        I now feel desperately sorry for Mr. Catley, having to put up with this grief in the workplace daily. Leave my husband alone. Seriously though, he did kind of dig himself a hole, there, with those remarks… twice. I think he’s inviting it. And why not πŸ˜›

        Haha, only three. Well, how many options do you normally have open to you for impregnation, Jennifer? I’m intrigued, though Meggie’s words suggest it’s normally in double figures.

        Look at you with all the attention from the boys πŸ˜› I have had a surge of attention recently, too. “Please Steven, would you come into my linen closet for wild and passionate sex?” I think was one. And, “We don’t care about your writing or your art. We just fantasise over the pictures of you.”… I also have a “damned fine face”, apparently.

        All of the above were from men.

        Flattered… I mean, this is why we’ve clicked like we have… we’re just too beautiful for anybody to resist.

        But anyway, Jenny, yes – were these complimentary remarks all from Mr. Catley?

        I try to call you Jenny but always end up saying Jennifer. I like Jennifer, but I guess it’s because I like my name in full too. I’m not so keen on ‘Jen’.

        Haha! I remember being out with a girl friend of mine a few years back, who was bitching to me about her friend being such a slut (does this sound familiar to you?) and she went, “Lucy’s a sloppy, slappy, slaggy, slutty sluggy slug slut.” I lost it, because she didn’t realise the person she was talking about was basically right behind her.

        Ah, but it might be even more of an issue, for you see, you have so many potential candidates.

      • This is going to be a horribly, horribly shit and brief reply because my laptop is shit and fucked up my comment again and I don’t have time to sit and write it properly because I always have SO MUCH TO DO FFS WHY. Sorry. It’s amazing how much this enrages me.

        This WILL make your ears bleed, but you simply must listen to it. Oh-so apt! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__HeE6NWmDE And in this instance, you are a girl, yes. Is this not the story of our lives?

        Look at YOU with all the attention for the boys! πŸ˜‰ Steven, why are you not homosexual? You’ve got it all going for you, clearly, with your “damned fine face” and all. Also, if you do have passionate sex in the linen closet, do mind your head on the wall, won’t you?

        May I just say, ‘”We don’t care about your writing or your art.”‘ <- Even if that's meant as a joke, it's one I fail to find amusing. Things like that really annoy me. PISS OFF, basically, if you can't appreciate someone for anything other than their bloody appearance.

        Oh, well, you know… I have a queue of guys, really. What can I say? Seriously though, are you actually going to pay attention to what Meggie says? This is Meggie. She once made me sit down and list all the guys who liked me at the same time in college, and it was actually something like 10. Hilarious. She then proceeded to call me a slut, as usual. But it's not like I get with any of them.

        Meggie has said to me a few times that I could get anyone I wanted if I actually wanted to. Sometimes, while we're sat in a cafe or whatever, she points to some guys and says to me, "You'd have beautiful children with him. Get with him." This is what I have to put up with. Why do I have such a moronic best friend? And you know this Chris, and how she's always nagging me to get with him? She often likes to say to me, "THINK OF THE UNBELIEVABLY GORGEOUS CHILDREN YOU WOULD HAVE." Why is she so obsessed with beautiful children? She doesn't even like children.

        Ha, not Catley, no. How heartbreaking for me, eh. One guy keeps harassing me for a date. Meggie affectionately refers to him as my' Harasser'. Although, the other day she did call him 'the predator'. How many times must I say no, though? Seriously.

        I had one friend at school who always called me Jennifer. I thought that was kinda strange, 'cause everyone else called me Jenny, apart from the certain teachers who hated me and only called me Jennifer. But you can call me Jennifer if you wish – just know that I really don't mind if you call me Jenny.

        Ha, oh, funny. I was in the car with my good friend Ian once, and we were talking about sluts and slugs. Sluts are slugs, and slugs and sluts. "Sluts often look like slugs," said Ian. Brilliant conversation, that was. We were stuck in traffic at the time.

        Ha, I know! I have SO MUCH choice for impregnation I just don't know what to do with myself. Though, to be fair, I don't exactly help myself by being impossible to get. I just don't care.

      • Oh no! Not again. Curse that stupid thing. Be calm, Jennifer. Think of me sighing, and Mary Berry falling over.

        OK, I don’t know what I would have called the worst song ever before this, but whatever that was, it has been overtaken. WHAT ON EARTH.

        Haha, maybe I should be homosexual. I do love gay people, they seem so much more open-minded and accepting. Everybody thinks I’m gay, and I’ve had gay men come up to me in clubs and stuff, just assuming that I am.

        Haha, the linen closet remark was from Mark – he’s the one who calls me Superman (though it’s died off recently). Seriously, he’s adorable! I love him so much, that I think I might be gay… very naughty at times, as you can probably tell, but such a lovely, eloquent person (he would be way out of my league if I actually were gay, which makes it all the more flattering). Hahaha! I forgot all about that! I will try and avoid being thrust through the wall.

        I’m sure it was meant as a joke, but yeah, I was kind of miffed by it when I read it. Our sense of humour does sometimes grate, though. I’m sure this was just another example. He’s not that shallow, I’d like to think.

        Of course I’m going to listen to Meggie. She speaks gospel, doesn’t she? I’m sure you could have any chap you wanted, Jennifer. Seriously. Just be a dear, and keep away from my Jonathan. I’d hate to have to divorce him, before we’ve even met.

        Women do that a lot, don’t they? I have often been with women who sit there gushing at passers by and going all peculiar at the thought of the potential children. Mind you, I suppose it’s slightly more acceptable than men, most of whom just whistle at any and every pair of breasts that go by. (I do not do this, by the way).

        Well, if you have said no he needs to realise that no means no, doesn’t he? That is harassment!

        I am wildly inconsistent with Jenny/Jennifer, it seems… so I’ll just go with whatever takes my fancy, Leona.

        Listen to you at the end there. God Jennifer, you’re such a slut. πŸ˜›

      • I know, just don’t even go there. So angry. There was a lot I wanted to say, as well – more about Mr. Catley, which you would have loved, but I couldn’t be bothered to type it again.

        That’s because you just exude endless campness, Steven. Or, on the other hand, you are SO CRAZILY BEAUTIFUL that you turn men gay and they cannot resist you.

        I think you might still be in the closest (no pun intended there). Although, saying that, Meggie and I are always talking to and about each other as though we’re a lesbian couple, so I’m hardly one to talk. We’re just gonna marry each other, ’cause we don’t really have luck with men. It’s cool.

        Meggie speaks male cow faeces, not gospel. Well, not saying she’s a liar, ’cause I don’t associate with liars, but she is a master at twisting and dramatising everything. So, I guess you COULD say that there is a teeeeny bit of truth behind what she says, but the truth in the case of me having 20 million admirers is simply this: somebody had a thing for me once. Dya see what I’m saying, Stevick? πŸ˜› I could never get any chap I wanted, though, ’cause my confidence is non-existent.

        I don’t get why women do that. I don’t do it. This has nothing to do with anything, but I’m going to tell you anyway: Once I had this guy friend who Meggie insisted loved me, and there came a point when he came to join Meggie and I in cafe (Meggie and I love our cafes). Before he got there, I was giving her a stern lecture about how she needed to be on her best behaviour, ’cause she can come across so overbearing when you don’t know her. But I had also warned this guy, and apologised in advance, about Meggie. Hahaha, the horror on his face when I used to talk about her. Priceless. But she did actually behave herself (for her), though the second he left she was back to her usual ways.

        Why of course you don’t whistle at women and stare at their breasts! You’re a gentleman πŸ˜‰

        Is it pretty much harassment, yes. It’s been going on for… 3 years now? Meggie has said to me so many times that I just need to get a boyfriend so he will shut up. This is probably very true, but y’know… that involves effort.

        Hahaha, I think you misinterpreted what I wrote. I can hardly be a slut when I don’t get with anyone, can I? I seriously just don’t. Meggie actually said this once, in a cafe, (of course!): “You look and act all bloody innocent, but you’re actually a minx. A big, slutty minx.” But really, I look and act innocent because I ACTUALLY am. I’m a very good girl, would you believe it? πŸ˜› Though everyone does seem to just assume otherwise, which is charming. Do I radiate sluggy slutness?

      • Trust you to want to talk a load about that man. He’s becoming quite the celebrity in these circles… I wonder if his ears are burning?

        I am rather camp, apparently. “Camp as a row of tents” as the hilarious saying goes. It’s the source of great amusement for many people, for some reason. It’s not something that bothers me, and, Mark reassures me that I’m not camp, so ha!

        Aww, well, so long as I’m invited to the wedding. You both shall be invited to ours (me and Mark, or me and Mr. Catley…? I’m not even sure which I’m talking about, anymore. So many potential boys.)

        Haha, she sounds so cool. With the way I gleefully twist your words out of all proportion too, imagine being stuck with us both! Wouldn’t that be joy for you!? Or imagine Sherri having to nanny us all. Wow, that would be torture.

        I love so much that you feel obliged to apologise for her in advance. I feel the need to do that for most of my family, to be honest. Especially Marmite… heaven help us if she wasn’t allowed in the front seat on the way over! πŸ˜‰

        Haha, I was being sarcastic, Jennifer. I do not think you’re a slut. Oh, I cried at the minx remark :P. That’s amazing. She’s spot on the money, I feel. There were similar comments thrown at me at school and college, pretty much whenever I interacted with a girl. A sort of ‘always the quiet ones’ ideology, I guess. For the record, most girls found me ugly, nerdy, mute and just ‘eww’, really, so they never got to know me properly.

        Ha, maybe you should get someone to pretend to be your boyfriend in front of him. Mr. Catley, perhaps?

        Well, when I first found your blog, I thought you were this squeaky-clean, delicate young woman (with child, for some reason, as I said before.) Then I heard about all of your escapades. Golly, how wrong I was! πŸ˜‰ For all of your high-jinks, though, you do not radiate slugginess or sluttiness. You’re just a bit of a dark horse, perhaps (another nickname thrown at me). Nothing wrong with that.

      • It was funny, though! He said it that presentation evening. I’ll tell you now, since I’m in a better mood (here’s hoping my laptop doesn’t cock up…) When the candidates and governors had left, the staff stayed behind to talk about it all, and Mr. Catley said (though I don’t know what made him): “I saw Anna (who is the headteacher, and, just so you understand, she is a a pretty scary lady) the other day carrying a big plank of wood across the playground, so I asked her, “Would you like a hand with that, Mrs. Boulton?” And she goes (in her usual brisk way), “No thank you, Mr. Catley, I’m probably stronger than you anyway.” I think she really believes that she’s stronger than me, and to be honest, she probably is!” It amused us.

        I would totally invite you to my wedding πŸ˜‰ Then you could meet Meggie, and inevitably ruin the entire day for me. Meggie and I are often talking/laughing about something, and then we both pause and say in unison, “I feel so sorry for our potential future husbands.” They’d be in for a treat, that’s for sure.

        There are just so many guys to choose from, right Steven?! πŸ˜›

        She’s spot on the money with the minx remark? Well, THANKS. That’s what you think of me, I see. I am certain that’s not true, Steven. Ha, they found you ‘eww’. That’s so not true, but funny, nonetheless (I’m not laughing at you, honest πŸ˜‰ )

        Hahahaha, your first impression of me was the correct one, Stevick! Well, minus the child, of course. I may have a few escapade tales, but they were from my crazy younger years, and thus, not an accurate reflection. And to be honest, even those escapades weren’t half as bad as they could have been! The only thing that is remotely ‘dark horse’ about me is how fiery and passionate I can be, I think, and I can have a very explosive temper. It’s the last thing people expect if they don’t know me, I feel, because all they see is this girl quietly and politely sitting in a corner, doing and saying nothing. I am certainly not a quiet pushover. But everybody has a few dark tales to tell, don’t they? It’s only natural πŸ˜›

      • Oh so he’s a weakling, then? He is so dumped, if he can’t even carry me off into the sunset.

        Haha, ruin is right. We’d bring the place to its knees. Yes, indeed – any man who goes neither either of you, deserves some kind of medal for bravery.

        Well, Jennifer, these are the perils of being such an obvious gay magnet.

        Haha, well, a lot of those ‘eww’ assertions were simply because I was seen as a bit of a geek. ‘Geek’ was not a cool thing in my day, like it somehow is now, though I maintain I had a very easy ride compared to fellows. But, as a girl wrote on my leaver’s shirt, “I used to think you were just a nerd… until I got to know you…. now you don’t shut up.” Or something like that. I’m sure you would agree with at least part of that πŸ˜‰

        Nothing wrong with being passionate and temperamental… just remind me never to wind you up too much. I had a similar image, and people were most surprised when I did something to even remotely challenge it. I wasn’t a hooligan, I didn’t cause much trouble… but I certainly wasn’t some goody goody.

      • Hahaha, gosh, the image of Mr. Catley carrying you into the sunset. Wow.

        I feel that I should be offended by you saying such a thing, but truth is, I think you’re right. They should get the Victoria Cross or something.

        Ugh struth, the whole ‘hipster’ thing. And you know what I wanna do? I want to punch those people who wear ‘glasses’ when they don’t actually need to wear glasses so hard in the face. I WANT TO PUNCH THEM SO HARD IT COCKS UP THEIR EYESIGHT SO THEY ACTUALLY NEED GLASSES. They have no clue. No clue. Sorry, that’s my rant for the day.

        Always the quiet ones, eh Steven πŸ˜‰ I don’t do anything ‘wrong’ these days. Literally nothing. I am a total goody goody πŸ˜‰ Meggie, on the other hand… ha.

      • Again, you’ll have to blame Sherri for making me miss this.

        Enjoying it, are you? Well, it is quite the erotic image, isn’t it? Move over, Brokeback Mountain…

        Haha, the goal with that remark was to offend/wind up, so I’m naturally very disappointed that you seem to agree with me.

        Yes!! They drive me potty, going around with their really thick-framed glasses on and such. “Oh, look at me, I’m such a geek.” No you’re not, you’re just hipster. There’s a BIG difference. HOORAY AND SNORTS FOR GENUINE GEEKS.

        Haha, always the quiet ones indeed πŸ˜‰ I don’t do anything wrong anymore, either… stupid model citizen that I am.

      • Hahaha, so Brokeback Mountain!!

        Well, if I was any other woman, I’m sure you would have got a wonderful reaction from your comment. But, you know, I’m not πŸ˜›

        Oh yes, snorting away over here with MY PRESCRIPTION GLASSES on. I should have my dictionary and thesaurus and novel beside me as I type. Geek galore!

        I know, isn’t it so boring being a model citizen? *tuts* We should set up some model citizen underground crazeathon so we can all go wild without judgement. I’m not quite sure what a crazeathon is, but, let’s just go with it.

      • We’d totally trump Heath and Jake. Have I mentioned that Sherri said I looked like him? Hence her calling me ‘JG’ most of the time. Does that mean Jake Gyllenhaal looks a bit like Nick Hewer?

        You’re not just ANY old woman now, are you πŸ˜›

        Haha, as am I, with my PRESCRIPTION HEWER SPECS. I can go one step further than that. I am drinking milk through a straw, and have a Pocket Dictionary in the vicinity. Definitions on the go, Jennifer!

        Speaking of geek: I saw Countdown today, and got TWO nine letter words. Not just that, but in consecutive rounds! Beat that.

        Haha, naturally I put forward the summerhouse as the nerve centre of this revolutionary movement.

        Another random thing: during Countdown, an insanely cute (and huge) tabby cat I’ve never seen before was prowling around in my front garden. You can probably guess how much I enjoyed this. Imagine how you’d feel, if One Direction were playing a concert in your garden. THAT.

        I was sitting there staring and waving frantically at it out of the window… though, when it saw me, it bolted. Seriously though, it was SO ADORABLE! I hope it returns.

      • Hahaa, well, he must do if he bears any resemblance to you! πŸ˜‰

        I’m a the hippest old woman out there *puts on cool shades*

        Wow. You are just THE coolest. Do you have glasses like Hewer? That is, rimless? ‘Cause, if so… snorting with laughter over here. Not that there’s anything funny about rimless glasses, just it would be another similarity you ad Nick share πŸ˜‰ I have half-rimmed glasses myself. And would you like to know why I always have half-rimmed? I look too intelligent with fully rimmed ones – EVERYONE says so. I don’t want people to get the wrong impression of me. Although, next time I’m due a change in prescription, I might go wild and get fully rimmed, if I find some I like.

        Well, get you, sir πŸ˜‰ I’m hopeless at Countdown. So, so hopeless. I watched a bit of it yesterday, funnily enough.

        Hahaha, it’s so funny when strange cats bolt from you. I think so, anyway. The terror on their faces. Let’s hope it returns indeed, Stevick, for your sake πŸ˜›

        Look what I found: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2190782/Countdown-star-Rachel-Riley-weds-university-sweetheart.html <- Nick is more keenly 'kissing' her cheek than her blumin' husband.

        I had yet another nosebleed today, just after I got out of bed. Isn't that gorgeous? That is about the millionth in two weeks now, right? Meggie said to me the other day: "I swear every single time I talk to you, your nose is bleeding." At the moment, that is certainly true. Ugh, I hate it when I have colds!!! Instead of endless snot, it is endless blood. Again, just sharing the beauty with you, Stevick.

      • I have half-rimmed glasses, though I did have rimless ones when this woman said I looked like Nick… Back in the mid-90s, I had those cool half-moon glasses! Yes! The super cool ones which look like someone’s chopped them in half. They were amazingly studious-looking… I might get some more.

        I have seen a couple of episodes, this week. In another episode, Nick remarked on how he loved BEAVER, after it came up in a letters game. There was a gentle ripple of laughter from the audience.

        Haha, just discovering them has me in a kind of hysterical joy, so I’m laughing anyway. It better come back! It was so cute.

        Oh lord. I saw that when it came out. What on earth was he even doing, being put in that photo anyway? Creepy. I think her (now ex) husband is thinking the same thing, as I would probably have been too. Oh, how we love the Daily Mail readership – “phwooooaaar”, with 20 thumbs up. I assume that’s aimed at Nick.

        Oh no 😦 Haha, Meggie, about as compassionate as I would have expected. Well, as long as you’re not bleeding love. That would be terrible.

      • Hahahahahaha, half-moon glasses. Oh, brilliant. They are seriously studious! I tried on some half-moon glasses last time I needed a prescription change, and it was actually scary how much they suited me. Hilarious. I genuinely looked like some pompous professor, or some stuck-up librarian. I hate choosing glasses, don’t you? I’m there for about an age trying to make up my mind. I only got new glasses last… August? And I already can’t see through them properly. Royally pissed off about that, I am. MY BLOODY EYES.

        I find Nick to be so awkward on Countdown. Like, Rachel doesn’t know how to reply to the nonsense that comes from him mouth half the time. And he always seems to be belittling Susie after Dictionary Corner. If I were her, or there, I’d be like, OI, MATE, LAY OFF THE ARROGANT ATTITUDE. This isn’t The bloody Apprentice, which is the only programme whereby such a demeanour is appropriate.

        Ex-husband? Oh. Well, their marriage lasted long, then. I find it very sad, short marriages. The meaning of marriage has completely gone nowadays. Whatever happened to ‘death do us part’, I wonder. Or I am just being foolishly medieval? Anyway, maybe her (ex-)husband was fed up with battling away the sexy-pest Nick and all his Hewerish charm. The Daily Mail readership quite something, isn’t it? You never find sexist men reading it, do you πŸ˜‰ OBVIOUSLY aimed at Nick, blimey. He just makes everyone hot under the collar.

        Ha, Meggie doesn’t know the meaning of the word ‘compassion’. Bless her. She tries. (No she doesn’t). Don’t get the wrong idea of her, though – she is a lovely person πŸ˜‰ Remember that guy I told you about, and I warned him about Meggie before he met her? Dya know what he said to me? “I’m sure Meggie is lovely, because she’s a friend of yours, and I cannot imagine you would associate with unkind people.” I am yet to meet/know another man as gentlemanly as him.

      • Haha, I looked exactly like some kind of sinister librarian wearing them, though I was only 23-ish at the time. Very studious.

        I hate spectacle shopping, also, as there are just so many. But I don’t hate that as much as the actual tests. They do that “clearer or blurrier?” thing, you tell them which one it is, and they go “NO. It should be [the other one].” Well, why ask then?

        They also conned me out of the specs I needed, the last time I went, citing my heavy use of computers in work as a reason to not give me drastically stronger glasses. I mean, what on earth? So, as such, I’m stuck with ones that I can’t see brilliantly through. I don’t plan to go to SpecSavers for my next test… which I need quite badly. My eyesight is appalling.

        He is awkward, and yes, Rachel doesn’t know how to react. The age gap is so large between them, they are like a granddad and grand-child, and there’s little they can talk about with any mutual interest or sincerity. He witters on and interrupts people at will. He is rather short with Susie at times, which naturally makes me very angry, and was one of the main reasons I couldn’t take to him. I wanted to break in and say the same things to him, in defence of dear Dr. Dent. Then maybe carry her off and escort her from the evil Bond villain…

        Of course though, as we’ve said, we just laugh at him now.

        Yeah, she dumped him during Strictly, I think. Lots of garbage in the press about her having an affair with her dance partner, and such. I’m sure none of that was true. Must have been dreadful for them.

        Haha. Good old Meggie. I’m sure what he says is true and that, slutty as she may appear, she is a true treasure.

        Never known another man as gentlemanly? No, you know one who is even more so though, don’t you Jennifer πŸ˜‰

      • Spectacle shopping is a nightmare, yes. I can’t stand having to try different ones on and peering in the mirror every time. Oh blimey, the eye tests. They don’t annoy me, per se, but I always end up having to restrain excessive amounts of laughter. I don’t understand what happens to me. It’s probably because I’ve joked so much with friends about how all opticians say, “One, or two? Three, or four?” You know exactly what I mean. And you know when they shine that torch in your eye and they are LITERALLY a centimetre away from your face? Uuggghhhh, how I have to hold back endless nervous/awkward giggling!!

        My eyesight is also appalling.

        Well, I suppose laughing at Nick can only be a good thing, right? Now Countdown is a merry affair like it used to be.

        Ohh, Strictly. Susanna Reid split up with her husband not long after Strictly, too. What does that program do to relationships, seriously?! Though, I find myself being a cynic and saying I wouldn’t be overly surprised if anyone did actually have an affair with their dance partner.. I always feel sorry for people’s partners on that programme, ’cause dancing is a pretty intimate thing, and they are with them ALL the time.

        Meggie is a true treasure. Well put.

        Hahaha, well, who are we talking about here? YOU, or Mr. Catley? Both are true gentlemen though, no? πŸ˜‰

      • Great Scotland Yard, this is all exactly the same for me!! The torch – I had forgotten about that bit. It’s not the torch bit – that always makes my eyes water somewhat – but the look on the optician’s face. He’s right in your face and just glaring at your eyes, concentrating so hard. I’m certain I am smirking back at him, which makes it all the more difficult not to just explode into laughter…

        Ha, indeed. Nick is just hilariously inept now, rather than a grumpy Slugworth wannabe whom I find repulsive. It may also be that he’s beginning to settle into the role – about time, too. If he sticks with the show, that’s good – Whiteley did it for 23 years (and I’ve no doubt would still be there now, had he not passed), then four other hosts came in the following 7. It needs to regain some of its familiarity.

        Yes, there have been a number of break-ups occurring in the various series of Strictly Come Dancing over the years, and I think (not certain) that there have been a few affairs with dance partners. It must be incredibly difficult for their spouses, indeed, with some of the racy routines they are made to perform. A lot of people (mostly the refined Daily Mail readership) attacking Rachel for the break up, though – maybe it’s with good reason, but we don’t know that for certain. I feel sorry for her as it must have been very difficult, whatever happened; she’s the celebrity of the marriage, and so was always going to take the flak.

        Ha, I was talking about yours truly, but yes, Mr. Catley is obviously a total gent.

      • Haha, that’s exactly it! So hard not to burst out laughing during that bit. Surely, though, the opticians must be used to people snigger with awkwardness in the chair.

        Ha, well, he’s still as repulsive as ever, though now I simply laugh at the fact, as opposed to recoiling in horror at the slimy he so often makes. All adds to the humour πŸ˜‰ I’m interested to see how I will find The Apprentice this year, as this will be the first year I find such hilarity over the man that is Nick Hewer.

        Very raunchy routines, sometimes. Oh, I’ll tell you what, you don’t want to watch Strictly with me. I spend about 80% of the time moaning about how little clothing they all have on, and then saying that this is supposed to be a family programme – one that children too enjoy watching – and what are we showing them? Raunchy dance routines with, mainly, scantily clad women, and they seem to be slipping in more innuendos every year. It really annoys me. WHY is the world incapable of producing innocent programmes these day? They can’t even manage it before the watershed. I wouldn’t let my children watch Strictly, had I any. But then, I wouldn’t let my children watch much at all. I’d to be a horrible mother, and my children would hate me πŸ˜‰

        It must be very hard for everyone involved, as you say. Though, if the programme wasn’t so ridiculous, I cannot help but think there wouldn’t be such an issue. Since you are always making remarks about the Daily Mail readership, I find myself most curious to know what newspaper you read πŸ˜› The Sun? πŸ˜‰ Or are you a broadsheet man, taking up the entire train carriage when opening the pages to read? Are you even a newspaper reader at all?

      • I’m so pleased somebody else reacts this way. I was sure before that it was only me who behaved like this.

        Ha, repulsive. Not wrong there. The Apprentice will be hilarious – I am looking forward to it.

        Well, there we have another bullet on the ‘Things to never do with Jennifer Marsh’ list. It’s turning into a scroll πŸ˜‰ I actually really like Strictly, though I do agree they go overboard with the trims sometimes. Well, sadly, TV doesn’t really care about children in prime time anymore, particularly where advertisers are involved. They have their own kids’ channels for their innocent shows, it seems… I completely disagree with that, but it’s the way it is, apparently.

        My kids have watched the last two series of SCD though, and I don’t think it has corrupted them. I would ALWAYS rather that, than have them sit and laugh at people over on X Factor. That really is cruel. Abhor that programme.

        Hahaha ‘always making remarks’, as in two… πŸ˜› It is a dirt rag, though – online in particular. I do not read the papers.

      • Haha, I thought the same. I once spoke to my mother about it, and ask her if such a burst of the giggles ever befalls her at the opticians, and she looked at me like I was mental… I’ll take that as a no, then.

        Ha, there seriously is a scroll. And while we’re at it: don’t watch a film with me. I either get scared at the most ridiculous bit (not even joking, like someone opening a door or something), I laugh at bits no one else laughs at, or I just cry at everything.
        Boo to TV, though. I disagree with how it is now as well, but what can ya do? I doubt there are many people out there who would be willing to have a blumin’ TV revolution.

        Oh yeah, same here. Strictly over those awful reality talent shows, any day. They are the worst. People are just so bloody cruel, it really does enrage me.

        Oh yeah, you just have nothing to do with news in general. My apologies πŸ˜‰

      • Haha, I’m sure my mother would give me the same look of concern. Guessing it’s just us.

        This sounds like me, really, especially the laughing and crying bits, but then I should be used to this by now. I can remember watching Alien 3 in the cinema, and being horrified and disgusted at a dog’s stomach exploding, or something… but a man’s head being split in two? Nah, that didn’t bother me at all. BUT THE POOR DOG!!! I think I actually said that out loud in the cinema. That’s the sort of viewer I am.

        X-Factor etc. enrages me too. I wouldn’t touch it with a bargepole.

      • Ha, ah well. At least we know there’s SOMEONE out there who does the same, even if it is just each other.

        Hahaa, same here. My grandad always used to laugh at really inappropriate moments. For example, my all time favourite film ever in existence, Lord of the Rings: in the first film, he was properly laughing during Boromir’s death scene. And he also laughed when Gandalf fell off the bridge of Khazad-dum with the Balrog (I’m sensing geek alert again here…. *snorts*) But seriously, that man really needed to learn appropriate film-laughing conduct. That said, I often snigger when people cry or die in films myself… Obviously got it off him.

        Yeeeaaahh. I always question the mental capacity of those who watch programmes like that, quite frankly. Harsh as that sounds. But seriously… How can you actually ENJOY watching something like that??

  5. One thing about us Brits, Jennifer, is how we can (apparently!) keep calm and carry on. I mean, I do, and I’m sure others do as well, whether they be leaping over obstacles with a single bound, doing a job they said they’d never do with people they said they’d never work with again, or warble on about the joys of being British (I actually enjoyed watching that video…). We do it all well, methinks!
    Hope your knee’s starting to feel better – and good luck with your job. Give it time!

    • Haha, indeed. We are masters at it. I enjoy that video also. It is the video for all Britons.
      Unfortunately the knee is still as bad as ever, and in fact it’s been even worse today. But doctors tomorrow, so fingers crossed… But even so, chin up and power on through!

"What does your heart tell you?" - ToO, chpt. 32

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