Monday, November 24, 2014

A word after a word after a word is power. - Margaret Atwood

I think it's safe to say Margaret Atwood has never read my blog.

Youguys, it is officially Deadline Week. My last manuscript is due at the end of this week and because of the wonderful wedding-weekend I just had, I am approximately two days behind schedule. This means I have to make the next three days look like five days. Luckily I can bend space and time so this shouldn't be a problem, but here's what will not be happening this week as a result:

Huffpo'ing, buzzfeeding, funny-or-dying, or jezebelling.
Making homemade hot sauce with the millions of chilis from my recently-deceased chili plants.
Getting dressed.
Acting anything like a normal human.

You may notice blogging is not on this list. Because darnit, this is MYBLOWRIMO and I am going to finish what I started. Though I'm not saying it's gonna be good, or that we're going to be wrapping it up on a high note.

Hey, look! A picture!

When in doubt, throw in a picture of a cathedral. People will think you're classy.

Okay, it is officially Go Time. Wish me luck!

Big hugs and lots of love,

Sunday, November 23, 2014

On weddings, boathouses, and yet more graveyards

A purpose of human life, no matter who is controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved. - Kurt Vonnegut

HOLYCOWYOUGUYS. Can we talk about yesterday's wedding for a minute? Only a minute. I can't imagine this would be interesting to anybody who wasn't there.*

First, the bride:
RIGHT! Meet Anne: famous for ball-busting, straight-talking, and having legs a mile long. Ugh.

Second, the weather. Scotland in the autumn is riDICulous:
It's honestly enough to turn your stomach.

Third, Glasgow Cathedral:
For the best Gothic ceremony a marriage can buy. Goats optional.

This morning we took a walk to the Loch Lomond boathouse because the air was crisp and clear and also we gained twenty pounds after eating for five hours straight last night and also they had a little restaurant serving coffee and also, how could you resist this?:
Motto: Making People Punch Themselves in the Face Since 1968.

It turns out half the London crew had the same idea. It's like we're all friends for a reason. Behold, the Ladies of Sporting Hackney**:
 This isn't all of them, of course. The others were no doubt in more sensible places, like bed. This is Maria the Intellect, Marie the Edge, and Louise the Style. Just wait until you meet the Comedy, the Party, and the Class***.

It's how we roll.

After we got back to Barrhead, we took a walk to visit Alan's aunt and uncle and had to pass a graveyard to get there and I kid you not:
THIS ROLLED RIGHT IN. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE DAY. It's like they know I know. 

Now if you'll excuse me, I need to find a cross made of garlic. Our trip back to London isn't going to protect itself. 

Big hugs and lots of love,

*I say this only because I would totally tune out anybody who wanted to tell me a wedding story. Please. Start with the traffic you encountered on the way there. I've got all day.

**Sporting Hackney: the London football team that binds our group like so much spilled whisky on a parquet dance floor.  

***This is you, Rachael. Once you're in, you can never get out.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

It is our responsibilities, not ourselves, that we should take seriously. - Peter Ustinov

Do you guys know the number one google search that directs people to my blog? It's the source of a TON of traffic. An ALARMING ton, because it's - are you ready for this? - ZOO PORN. I KNOW. I don't even know WHAT* those people are hoping to find, but imagine how disappointed they must be when they arrive on this post and there's only, like, some post-coital zebras smoking cigarettes.

In other news, look what we found sitting on the bed when we landed at Frank and Betty's yesterday: these cookbooks from Alan's sister Marie! They're a housewarming gift for the French house because MARIE KNOWS.** They fill me with warm fuzzies because it is exactly these sorts of additions that will turn it from a nice getaway into a real home-away-from-home. Check this out:

Do you love Floyd as much as I do? I'm already glad I have this, because I never knew one should do their cooking in a tux in France and I could have really embarrassed myself. 

Okay, off we go! A wedding in three hours and this bathrobe is going to look ridiculous if I don't at least add a flower.

Big hugs and lots of love,

*I mean, I can guess, but I DON'T WANT TO.
**The best places for heart-stabbing.

Friday, November 21, 2014

On Glasgow, an impending wedding, and a lazy Friday night

Y'all. I am so sleepy right now. This is why I should only blog at six in the morning; anytime after two and I am as functional as a roly-poly under the prodding finger of a six year old.

Guess what! We're in Glasgow right now. We came up for a wedding, with the added bonus of catching family. It promises to be a beautiful affair: Glasgow Cathedral followed by Cameron House on Loch Lomond. It also promises to be wicked fun: the groom's bringing the Irish, the bride's bringing the Scottish, and the London crowd's bringing the crazy. I'm gonna take loads of photos. (Or none. It's tough to say. Don't PRESSURE me, Sharona!)

Speaking of, here are some pictures from Glasgow today!

We met Alan's favourite* brother Ken and his wife Maureen for lunch! They are lovely company because - as Alan put it just this morning - when you're with them, they're present

I'm currently blogging from the living room and Alan just turned on Ocean's 11 and I forgot how good it was and right now I'm pretending like I can multi-task but it's obviously not true because I haven't typed in five minutes. This is clearly the end of today's activity.

I hope you're having a great weekend!

Big hugs and lots of love,

*Alan has three brothers, so this should stir things up. Cheers!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

If Water is the Essence of Moisture, then Will is the Essence of Time

I mean, time for me, I can make it go slow or fast, however I please, and that’s how I know it doesn’t exist. - Willow Smith

Willow has totally got a point, youguys. Like right now, I'm going to post photos from an adventure that happened TWO WEEKS AGO, but I'm going to act like it was THIS week for the sake of relevancy, and that's how I know time doesn't exist. 

So, recently* a girlfriend and I were trying to make plans to catch up because we hadn't seen each other since her birthday many moons ago and a reunion was long overdue. We were debating the merits of visiting a haunted pub when she had the idea for bingo. BINGOYOUGUYS. BINGO. Obviously, I was immediately on board. Then she sent me the following information. JUST WHEN I THOUGHT IT COULDN'T GET BETTER:
    "[It's] at the oh so multi-cultural and slightly edgy Elephant & Castle shopping centre. It will be full of African women sucking their teeth, Polish people eating cabbage and Colombians tapping their feet to salsa tunes. I went for a recce the other day and it is a fantastically parallel universe of London. Do you like the sound of it?"

This is outside the shopping centre:

World's Most Literal Design Interpretation of Elephant & Castle. The artist they commissioned just nailed it.

This is where we ate the promised Polish food:

I know, right! You totally thought it was going to be full of plastic tables and florescent lighting. Instead it's full of HIPSTERS. It has been discovered. In the grimmest shopping centre that London has to offer, after-hours when everything is shuttered down and you think surely if you stick around, they'll find your body in one of those urns in the morning, there's this place, a beacon of light and hope and good smells. It was so so tasty. Sidebar: Polish food has got to be the most unphotogenic food ever. I tried taking a photo of the pancakes covered with gravy and I don't even want to talk about how it looked. Also, all the food is the colour of nothing, the colour of soviet-tenement-beige. And it doesn't even MATTER because HOLY PIEROGIES, BATMAN. GET IN ME. 

This is us before we went in to play, holding our new member forms so they would let us in. We are now** official members of the Palace Games Club! 

Don't be jealous of our coolness. I know it's intimidating.

Now to get down to the meat of things: THE BINGO. First off, can I tell you how difficult it was to take any pictures? They do NOT want that, people. Anytime I'd even REMOTELY hold my phone up, I'd instantly get tackled by a host of staff members: 'what was that?' 'what'd you do?' 'did you take a photo?' 'let me see the photo you took,' 'delete the photo you took,' 'oh, you didn't take a photo? okay.' Absolute denial (even while clearly holding a camera) generally satisfied them, at which point they'd smooth down each other's ruffled feathers and get back to wandering listlessly around. 

This was so worth the battle.

EVERYwhere you'd see these little slips crammed into the machines. TO SAVE THEM. 

I pulled one out (right before getting tackled again) and IT'S A REAL SAVE SLIP. It's not a bunch of old ladies cramming wads of tissue in there. 

Needless to say, I got no photos of the actual bingo room (the vultures!) but I DID manage to sneak a recording of the guy doing the number call. Can you believe that VOICE? So hypnotic. So very, very unbelievably hypnotic.***


I want to go to bed every night listening to this guy read numbers.

Needless to say, we'll totally be returning. Especially now that we're *cough* members. It's only a matter of time until we win big now that we've got all these slips.

I leave you with this original Bingo Haiku, created with real British Bingo Lingo:

Lucky musty hive
And Grandma's getting fisty
Oh Dirty Gertie

The first person to tell me in the comments the numbers I've just called is totally getting a prize.****

Big hugs and lots of love,

*A month ago, three weeks ago, yesterday - who can say? So is the nature of time.

**Or not now. Again, time. Also, the guy who took our cards said his 'machine was down' - I'm sure he meant computer and wasn't making this up at all - therefore he couldn't process our membership forms at that moment, but he would TOTALLY get to it. I'm sure my card will arrive in the mail any day now.

***This is the sound of time disappearing.

****I'm not saying it's a good prize.