Growing up, my favourites were the Witches (examining the scalp of every woman I meet) and TheTwits (gave me anxiety attacks every time I was offered tomato spaghetti for fear that I am actually eating worms). Eventually, I graduated to histwisted short stories like Lamb to the Slaughter, which thrilled and terrified me in equal measure.
Today, I thought about how I probably only have 300 more books to go before I die (assuming that I live to be a 100, and that I read on average 4 books a year), and got very cross because I was at work looking at excel spreadsheets. Well, I guess it's time to toss out all the icky finance stuff.
The Wormy Spaghetti, aka the my biggest fucking nightmare as a child.
His granddaughter, Sophie Dahl, wrote about him here. The man calls his cigarettes gaspers. Swoon.
“There are many different kinds of bravery. There’s the bravery of thinking of others before one’s self. Now, your father has never brandished a sword nor fired a pistol, thank heavens. But he has made many sacrifices for his family, and put away many dreams.”
“Where did he put them?”
“He put them in a drawer. And sometimes, late at night, we take them out and admire them. But it gets harder and harder to close the drawer… He does. And that is why he is brave.”
— Conversation between Mrs. Darling and Michael, Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
I have imposed on myself a month of no alcohol (MONA for short) During this period of extremely trying time, I apologise to anybody who meets me for the first time because I am likely to be absolutely un-charming.
Shakespeare had it right: “My tongue will tell the anger of my heart, or else my heart, concealing it, will break.” I never spoke of the anger in my heart, the mounting resentments and hurts, and neither did he. I never demanded attention or care, and neither did he. And that’s why we broke.
Today, an ungodly craving for cookies led me to Nex's supermarket, a.k.a. human pits of hell. I was there at 4pm, during the golden hour of grocery shopping. What a gigantic lapse in judgment.
The scene was lifted right out of your primary school oral exam - you know, the one where they hand you a picture with too many things happening and you have to describe the picture sequentially?
It was UTTER CHAOS: there was an appliance promoter churn-rapping hype words, frazzled parents + crying babies, old people on those supermarket scooters (why do they even allow that???) and etc.
I don't know how some families turn this into a bonding session because it was nowhere close to my idea of a leisurely time. It was more like a competitive sport. Supermarket friend (SF) and I tried to strategise: you sweep the baking aisle and I'll take down the dairy section, I'll meet you at the onions!! Alas, it failed. We decided to band together after a while because SF was pretty close to tapping out.
When I was choosing the chocolate chips, which was a BIG deal for me, SF passed away multiple times. He breathing so heavily, I thought he was going to get fits. He did calf stretches in between to distract himself (hilarious)
At the long checkout line, SF launched into a thoughtful tirade about we need a new plague and how parents are the greatest. For me, supermarket shopping just takes me back to Belgium days. I thought about how lucky I am because if this were Belgium, I would have had to choose between the milk or the juice - I could only carry so much on the snowy 6km bike ride home. Those were dark times.
This might just have been the most simulating, introspective experience I've had in months.
P.S. If you were wondering how my cookies turned out... I added too many chocolate chips so some of them were structurally unsound. Other than that, they were great!
“I read once that the ancient Egyptians had fifty words for sand & the Eskimos had a hundred words for snow. I wish I had a thousand words for love, but all that comes to mind is the way you move against me while you sleep & there are no words for that.”
Mother: Is this the new dress that you got online?
Me: Mmhm (chugging juice)
Mother: I like it. It fits nicely.
Me: Yea I'm pleased with it.
Mother: Aren't you glad you're born so average? It's so easy to find clothes that fit.
Me: Uhh, thank..... you? (bewildered)
My mom likes to wrap her compliments in reality checkers to keep me grounded. My sister and I agree that she has prepared us well for the real world: nothing you say can hurt because because our mother has probably said it to us before.