First up in this post of randomness: hoarding programmes. Yes, you read that right. Hey, I SAID this was going to be random, okay! So, hoarding programmes. I love 'em. And now they're ALL OVER THE TEEVEES and I am a very happy woman. There's just something about seeing all that clutter and chaos, and finding out the back story, and watching all the therapy and clearing coming together until BOOM! The poor downtrodden packrat has a Life Epiphany or a Grand Breakthrough Moment, turns into a whirling dervish of Skip-Chucking Efficiency, and winds up with a lovely home again, looking clean and fresh and beautiful instead of like a Vortex of Doom. It makes me want to go tidy stuff. And it usually makes me cry, because I'm a sap like that.
Which is why I was well pissed off when The Times TV guide thingy's only response to these programmes (which they put in their TV picks and everything) was 'Yeah, but how can you feel sorry for these freaks? Have you SEEN that programme about kiddies in the Great Ormond Street Hospital? No? Because it's on today/tomorrow/last week and THAT, my friends, is suffering.' Well, yeah, but not every programme can be about hospitals, guys. I can only hope that The Times TV guide thingy's critics aren't planning to become mental health professionals anytime soon.
If you're more sympathetic and intrigued like ME, Britain's Biggest Hoarders (with Jasmin Harman and her mum, from last year's documentary - this is 'one year on' for them, and looks at two other people's hoarding problems too) is available until the end of Tuesday on BBC iPlayer. The Hoarder Next Door is on Channel 4, Thursdays at 9pm, and there are two episodes already available on 4OD.
I Done Shopping
Despite another Crap Headache on Tuesday, I graciously (*cough*) agreed to accompany Mum to the local retail village so she could do fun stuff like looking at cushions and I could do fun stuff like looking at books. Maybe, thunk I, I might be permitted to partake of ONE BOOK in return for my Completely Unreluctant And Utterly Selfless (*cough cough*) companionship? Perhaps I might idly spend away ten of my Hard Earned Pounds on frivolity before we depart?
Oops. But right, no, listen, I TOTALLY needed some jazzy little shoes because I don't really DO jazzy little shoes, and I was in danger of attending my sister's summer graduation in Converse. So they were an okay buy, right? Tiny heel, quite comfy, glitzy enough to team with just about anything... And the FUDGE was dead important because we'd not had lunch, and we were hungry, and there was a chocolate chip tumbled version and it sounded nice. And the Pic 'n' Mix, yeah, that was VITAL because I needed some fruity sweets to balance up all that naughty fudge. And the BAG, right, well.... nah, I'm out of excuses now. The bag was just cute. :)
And then I went to The-Works-Like-Place-That-Isn't-The-Works-But-Magickally-Has-The-Exact-Same-Stuff. And a Miracle happened. Because Mum saw the 3-for-£5 deal and saw the Heartbreak I was facing trying to pick between another two as well and ACKSHUALLY SAID these words: "No more than four, please. I'll be in the shop opposite." I very excuse me? No "You don't need any more, the cat nearly got squashed under a pile last week"? No "Ellie, you may be 25 but you're not too old to be dragged out of a shop by the ear"? SHE SAID NEITHER OF THESE THINGS.
So when I had finished picking my jaw up off the floor and Sellotaping it back into place, I bought books! After much deliberation and a fair amount of funny looks from the bored sales girls, I chose Michele Jaffe's The Rosebush, Mary McCarthy's The Group (off my Gilmore list) and The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. It's entirely possible that I already have that last one, but this edition has Benedict Cumberbatchery going on and thought it'd be nice to be able to sit and lick the cover in between stories. For Book Four of my buying allowance I went for Steven Adler's My Appetite for Destruction: Sex, Drugs and Guns N' Roses. BUT WAIT, ELLIE! I hear you cry. Aren't there FIVE books in that photo? Why yes there are! Because in a childlike display of cunning I managed to mention/big up Steve Haywood's Narrowboat Dreams: A Journey North by England's Waterways so dazzlingly often as we visited all the other shops that Mum let me go back and buy it. TWO MIRACLES IN ONE DAY, PEOPLES!
And, Er, Then I Done More Shopping
Because sometimes five books and two miracles in a week just isn't enough. So I added two more books and a THIRD miracle. This is the stuff dreams are made of, ladies and gentlemen. There was a little more maternal Huffing And Puffing this time, and a brief hiss of "You don't want Lewis Carroll, Ellie! It's like he was on something!" but I still walked out of Mind with two more books. Hooray! This time it was the Oxford World's Classics edition of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and Through the Looking Glass (nowhere near as cute as the Vintage Classics or Vintage ♥ Film editions, but one step at a time) and an interesting-looking little natural history/travel writing tome called Downstream: Across England in a Punt by Tom Fort.
And Now, A Musical Interlude
Ahhh, the power of rhyme. Every day I have been reading Heart-Shaped Bruise and thinking about how I should be reading Half Blood Blues because it needs to go back to the library, and the whole time I've had 'Folsom Prison Blues' stuck in my head. Go figure. So now I'm going to attempt to get it stuck in EVERYONE'S head so I don't feel quite so bad about it. Play on!
Mum Quote of the Week
In our family, we're known for occasionally - and entirely unpredictably - coming out with some weird and wonderful stuff. But this might be one of my favourites of all time, particularly because it also slams together two great Hitchcock movie titles in glorious style. Picture the scene: Mum and I are wandering along the river on our way back to the car after a day at work. Watching two ducks and a swan fly in overhead, Mum suddenly opens with:
Mum: Do you think birds ever get vertigo?
Me: *bursts out laughing* Er, no.
Mum: *pause* What about penguins?
Me: Penguins? Penguins don't fly!
Mum: Well, no, but still... Do you think they do?
Me: You mean, do they ever look over the edge of an iceberg and get a bit giddy? No.
Mum: Okay, but do you think SOME birds do? Like, does a pigeon ever sit on the top of a building and think, "Whoa, it's a bit high up here"?
Mum: I would.
Me: I think natural selection probably ironed that one out fairly quickly, to be honest...
Ahhh, birds with vertigo. Definitely one for my mental archives, that one... ;)
This has been the week of the Live Streaming Kitties. Two websites have been open on my browser, side by side, for the last few days. The first is Miranda's Kittens. That's them on the left, only now they're bigger! Their foster dad John has a webcam set on their play area 24 hours a day, and I'm hooked! Whether they're being rounded up by their mum, bouncing around after a toy or falling out of their tower basket, they're just so CUTE! I WANTZ THE BABEEZ! The second Kitty Cam is in the zoo den of an Amur leopard. She has three tiny cubs and they're so adorable! Go, watch, fall in love... and if the camera freezes just refresh the page and all will be okay!
Final Thought For The Day
Works for me! Over and out, folks.