TMP25: Booze Infused

Paula Light hosts The Monday Peeve – an opportunity to let rip and have a good old rant. There’s a weekly topic, but you’re free to vent about whatever displeases you.

It’s official; I am the most boring person on the planet. Twice in the last week, I had the temerity to turn down the offer of an alcoholic beverage.

The first occasion was Mr Neighbour’s Name Day. And Mrs Neighbour looked askance at me, but still poured a hefty dose of Rakia into my glass. I ignored it.

The second occasion was at an English friend’s birthday bash. The whole party stopped and stared when I said no to a beer and asked for a juice instead. Or maybe I made a derogatory comment about the size of my hostess’s arse. Which would have been a lesser faux pas than not having an alcoholic drink.

If you are interested, my reasons for not drinking were weather-related. We are in the middle of a heatwave. And I have learnt from painful experience that after breaking sod in the hot sun, if I so much as look at a beer bottle, I will have a screaming hangover and feel like crap the next day.

So, I decided to forgo the dubious pleasures alcohol can impart and stick to juice and water. Why is this incomprehensible to some? No really does mean no. And if you can’t cope with that, then you can jolly well do one.

But, they say, how can you have fun if you don’t get a wee dram of falling-down water inside you? I have news for these people. I never was the life and soul of the party type. And have no desire to be.

Booze is not a magic potion for the socially disinclined (me!). It does not transform me into an entertaining bon vivant. Quite the opposite. It turns me into a gibbering twonk who thinks dancing around the room with a lampshade on her head is hilarious.

Why are we conditioned to think being teetotal is weird, and non-drinkers are sad, lonely people without a life? And the best cure is to pour more booze down their throats.

If I said I was in recovery because of drug, gambling, or video game addiction, I guarantee no one would insist I shoot up, place a bet, or play Fortnite. People would be supportive and not tempt me. But the refusal of a glass of grog can put some on the defensive and unleash their weird side.

They are fine if you don’t drink because you are the designated driver, on medication or in recovery. But not drinking through personal choice, then you must be clinically insane.

Here’s something for them to mull over. When you offer someone a cigarette, and they say I don’t smoke or I’m giving up, do you force a fag on them? No, you don’t. So, if you can respect a non-smoker, you can bloody well respect a non-drinker.

TMP22: Stepford Shopping

Paula Light hosts The Monday Peeve – an opportunity to let rip and have a good old rant. There’s a weekly topic, but you’re free to vent about whatever displeases you.

Today we drove into town to do a little shopping. Lucky us! Our local supermarket is a soulless store the size of a football pitch. It plays truly dreadful music and pumps out a non-detectable gas that turns people into shuffling, mumbling morons. Honestly, you feel like an extra from Dawn of the Dead.

Scene from Dawn of the Dead (1978)

But at least these zombies don’t rip you limb from limb. They settle for ramming shopping trollies into your ankles, sneezing all over the fruit and spending hours reading the labels on every item on the shelf you too would like to admire.

This gas also affects people’s hearing because no matter how loudly you bellow Извинете (excuse me), they carry on humming under their breath as they weigh up the merits of branded versus generic pesto.

And when you finally pick up your own jar, that’s when you discover the dingbat who was blocking your access has taken your trolley, leaving theirs behind. And because the shop is so big, you give up the search, put the crap from your new trolley back on the shelves and start all over again.


Before I go, supermarkets, will you please stop moving things around? I am a marketing bod’s nightmare, no impulse buying for me. I always go shopping with a list. And I write it to match the layout of the aisles. I am not amused when I reach out to pick up a carton of fruit juice and end up with a bottle of bleach.

And breathe…

TMP13: Unplugging the Matrix (Part 1)

Paula Light hosts The Monday Peeve – an opportunity to let rip and have a good old rant

I never realised how much I relied on the internet until it went AWOL. After only three days in a Wi-Fi free black hole, I was a basket case, twitching and dribbling. You wouldn’t believe how close I was to screaming mama and beating my head against a wall.

Yeah, I know, first world problems and all that, I should just get a grip. And probably a life. But, in my defence, I rely on emails and Skype to keep in touch with my nearest and dearest back in Blighty.

And as for social media.

Living without Twitter was annoying, but I didn’t miss the cute cat gifs or the oh-so-hilarious videos of people falling off things. But the lack of WordPress was an almighty pain in the arse.

I confess my blogging has been lax of late (my definitions of both lax and late are very broad). But when the naughty, nasty, knackered internet denied me the opportunity to be lazy on my own terms, I descended into a gibbering and frustrated wreck.

What a sad state to get in! But how’s this for a variation of Sod’s Law? The day you decide to up your game is the day big game hunters come to town and shoot your aspirations down in flames.

I had excelled myself and written two (yes, two!) pieces of flash fiction in response to the various prompts I sign up to. But there was no chance of posting the wretched things.

The Husband, fearing for my sanity and pissed off because he couldn’t play online golf, drove to town to have words with our internet provider. The upshot was our router had a meltdown (not literally) and couldn’t plug into the Matrix.

He came home with a shiny new box and (whoop-whoop) we were back online. For an hour. The nice man at the call centre pushed some buttons at his end and (yay) access restored. Until ten o’clock that evening.

The next day saw more phone calls and button-pushing. And just when I caught up with all my notifications, we had a power cut.

Somebody up there doesn’t like me.

The Monday Peeve & Three Things Challenge: Keep it in your Pants

Paula Light hosts (hosted?) The Monday Peeve – an opportunity to let rip and have a good old rant. And Pensitivity101 the Three Things Challenge prompt.

Today's 3TC Words are EVENING, REPLACE & SMUG

Yesterday evening, I lost my Twitter virginity. Three times!

My virtue was first assaulted when a kind gentleman sent me a photograph of his knob. Ahh, Baby’s first dick-pic, I’m honoured.

The second fall from grace occurred when I exercised my blocking rights for the first time.

And the third outrage was forcing me to report a Twitter user.

Will it surprise you to know these events are all related?

Why do people think I want to see pictures of their genitalia? I am neither a gynaecologist nor a knobologist and have no interest in staring at the private parts of random strangers.

And as for Mr Cockwomble, the smug look on his face was far more upsetting to view than the part of his anatomy he was holding up for me to admire. (His mother must be so proud!)

Please people, keep your bits under wraps, and only expose them among consenting adults. Then you won’t force me to do things I’d rather not do.

Because I’ve a good mind to Photoshop Willy Wanka’s picture, replace the offending item with a baby carrot, and send it back to him. In an open tweet.

The Monday Peeve 80 – Speechless

Paula Light hosts The Monday Peeve – an opportunity to let rip and have a good old rant. There’s a weekly topic, but you’re free to vent about whatever displeases you.

And this week I am mightily peeved with speech to text apps. Are these things designed by monkeys?

I sat through a tedious hour, reciting lines so the app could learn to recognise my voice. Providing I enunciated like a BBC radio presenter from the 1920s, didn’t breathe, and spoke with a pace slower than a funeral cortege, it managed to pick up some of the words.

Unfortunately this passage…
The telephone rang with a shrill insistence.
‘Shall I, shan’t I, shall I, shan’t I, shall I answer the phone?’ Kathryn Beck sang to herself.
She sat at the foot of the stairs, her head in her hands and her heart in her mouth.
It had to be him. He promised to ring at eleven this morning, and now it was six in the evening. Fantastic, another Sunday down the pan, thanks to Mr Infidelity himself.

Morphed into…
The telephone rang with a shilling instance.
‘Shelly, shanty, shelly, shanty, shelly answer the phone,’ Catherine Bach Santa SL.
She said the foot of the stair, shedding hands antler heart in her mouth.
It had to be him. He promised to rain at 11 this morning, I know it was 6 in the evening.
Fantastic mother Sunday down the pan, excellent ability itself.

WTF?! There goes my plan of dictating notes and ideas on the hoof. And it is far quicker to just type up my scribbles like I normally do. Ruddy technology.

But I did cheer myself up by reciting Lewis Carroll’s Jabberwocky into it…

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.
Twenty brilliant and the slightly toes
Garang Kimball in the wave
All means he was a bar of growth
In the morning wrap out grade.
‘Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!’
Where they juggle walk my son
George is back to the claws that catch
Where they jump jump in Sean
The through me and Bandersnatch.
He took his vorpal sword in hand:
Long time the manxome foe he sought
So rested he by the Tumtum tree,
And stood awhile in thought.
He took his vocal sorting hand
Long time the maximum photos sort
Threatened he by the time sundry
And stood awhile insult.
And, as in uffish thought he stood,
The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
And burbled as it came!
And was enough fish thought he stood
The job or what with eyes a flame
In whistling through the probably would
Be able to add it came.
One, two! One, two! And through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back.
One two one two and through and through
The vocal blade went snicker snack
Left it dead and with it Ted
He went to get something back.
‘And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!’
He chortled in his joy.
And half those fleeing their job or walk
Country my arms my beamish boy
Oh fractious day hallo Calais
Jordan is his joy.
’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.
Twenty billion that’s slightly toes
Guy ring game Belinda wave
Or Mindy where they borrow grows
On the morning wrap side green.