Beer and ferrero rocher

Posted in Uncategorized on July 6, 2010 by tiddlyompom

Beer is very good for your digestion, ancient civilizations knew this, their workers were given beer rations. Elizabethans drank beer over fetid water. I’ve come late to beer, but I’m a convert. Lagery beer that is, always like heavy (Arrols 80/ my favourite).
Ferrero rocher, another winner, maybe not so ancient, hazelnuts and chocolate, I feel sure someone must have put these two together as soon as it was possible. A sacred foodstuff and the kernel of a new plant: heady stuff.
I like the idea that sugar is a commodity the universe would ban, peculiar to Earth. I suspect alcohol might also fall into that category. But what wild chemicals await us out there in the cosmos?



Posted in Thinking with tags on June 19, 2010 by tiddlyompom

Gosh, what a long time ago it was when I was last here! Yet it doesn’t seem like it. Mostly because May was wished away in a flash so that we could all go on holiday. Or rather on experience, since we went on the Orient Express to Venice. Part of it was like going home ( one of my homes anyway) because my husband and I shared a compartment even smaller than the cabins we had shared at sea, part of it was dressing up and therefore not doing anything dirty or mundane and part of it was the usual freedoms associated with being on holiday. However, the feeling of being chilled and relaxed and un- stressed has remained, and I am trying hard to retain the feeling. Venice of course may be another reason, such an un- real and yet eminently practical city, where due to the maritime nature of things time runs slower anyway. I am determined to stay on maritime setting for as long as possible.
{raises glass}

Work and Money

Posted in Thinking with tags , , on March 27, 2010 by tiddlyompom

When I first started working ( I mean properly working not saturday working) I wrote a poem about work. How it lured you in, all the positive things about it causing you to become caught in a net while all the free time disappeared.

I’ve always enjoyed the jobs I’ve done, but they do suck you in, demand more of your time than you’re paid for, more conscienciousness, more of your thinking. I can’t help it and I know it’s there – a part of my personality. My husband has just gone back to work; he’s very conscientious but he says he can switch it off when he gets home: it seems like he can. We met on a seismic survey vessel, and he still works at sea. It’s five weeks on and five weeks off. Well actually its five and a bit weeks on and about four weeks off, because the days before you go are not your own and the days it takes to get back are all spent on helicopters and planes. It’s a 24 hour operation on every day, you work a 12 hour shift, but if, like him, you’re a Party Chief you work more than that: you work what it takes.

We do work for money: even if it’s a job we enjoy we’d do it less without pay. Money corrupts, it becomes part of the reward of work, it overrides the enjoyment. Without money, without work, we only have Time. That’s the hidden word in the title here. Time. We need time. Time to experience, to relate, to communicate. Somehow we have made the world work in a way where Time is no longer enough to do those things, we need money to do them too, but money only comes from work and work steals time. The ultimate Rock-Paper-Scissors game.

One day I will write a book about the strange thing we call money. That token of value, neither reflecting true value nor true need. I’ll cover it’s origins, the way it has failed and the way it has worked, about giving to Caesar,  the Weimar Republic, about Golgafrichans, the Great Depression and company scripts, about Chava chains, Bright House and credit lines. I hope when people read it they might think more about what money means to them, how funny an idea it is, how old fashioned an idea it is, and how maybe it’s time to give it up.

Then maybe we’ll all have our Time back, work a bit less and enjoy a lot more.

Smell! What does it mean?

Posted in Uncategorized on March 12, 2010 by tiddlyompom

I’ve received a small plastic cube containing ‘Confidence’. I’m jolly pleased with it. It’s a positive smell, slightly sweet in the way that certain men’s aftershave is. Slightly pine, in the way that toilet cleaner isn’t. It does make you feel upbeat the way major chords do.

I also received ‘Hawthorn Blossom’, but this is more tricky because we’re not after an emotion but a memory. The memory of a giant Hawthorn tree in which I spend a pleasant spring day with my friends.

‘Hawthorn Blossom’ smells close, it smells familiar but it doesn’t hit the memory. Not in the way that the actual smell when you walk past a tree in bloom lifts you mentally back into the branches.

I’ve ordered from the same supplier the following; carbolic soap, pencil shavings (we all know where that will lead) old style hospital, which is perhaps more correctly the smell of public health buildings in the late 60’s early 70’s (for me) the mixture of linoleum and disinfectants.

And that was a smell I came across again just yesterday, cimbing the stairs in an ex-school building, exposed to the weak heat of March sun, it took me right back to matriculation queues at college.


Are we old? Are we hell!

Posted in Thinking, Uncategorized on February 7, 2010 by tiddlyompom

Been to an engagement party last night, full of forty-somethings, it really didn’t feel different to the eighteenths and twenty-firsts I had been to with pretty much the same people. Converstion was different though…. travel, children, bands (no wait, that ones not changed) exes ( think that one might be the same too) and the conversations in the ladies loo were much changed, the consolation of “plenty more fish in the sea” doesn’t work when it’s a parent you’ve lost instead of a boyfriend.
I wondered what the young bar staff made of us all? I don’t think we were trying to recapture any *lost age* because we genuinely haven’t lost anything, except possible phone/car keys/small child. We’re not trying to stay young we’re just staying the same!

protein and sugar

Posted in Suburban Gripes on November 7, 2009 by tiddlyompom

Lately I’ve been having mars bars for breakfast. Reviving my student habits hasn’t had much effect on my waistline because I haven’t been eating chips or potatoes, rice or pasta, bread or pastries. I have been eating meat, fish and sweeties. Just like bears. I’d like to promote the sugar and protein diet because I think it is a natural way to eat. It is better to eat fish and fruit but I personally think sweeties and salami sausage are close enough. And of course exercise, and for that you need long, and often winding shopping streets. Who says 21st century living isn’t natural?

Happy Samhain!

Posted in Uncategorized on October 31, 2009 by tiddlyompom

The end of summer, the harvest, the start of the long dark days of winter. Live seasonally, live naturally, live happily.