The articles in question….

And so, a little later than promised, I know, we have the articles themselves. Well, mine and Best Friend’s anyway. See if you can spot the differences. I mean apart from the fact that neither Best Friend or myself feel obliged to add a comma before every single use of ‘and’ or ‘but’. Can I please point out before you read that I copied these exactly from the magazine, the punctuation isn’t ours…

Me

Kids would ruin my lifestyle

Vicola, 31, from Lancaster has been married to Mr V, 36 for 4 years.

Mr V and I have a great life. We have jobs we enjoy and while we’re not exactly rolling in money, we’re lucky that we have enough disposable cash to pretty much do what we please. We go out with our friends, buy the clothes we want and enjoy as many holidays as we can.

But I know that if we were to have children our lives would change beyond recognition – and that’s not a sacrifice I’m prepared to make.

For a start I’d probably have to give up my job so immediately we’d lose half our income, and on top of that we’d have the added expense of feeding, clothing and caring for our offspring.

But it’s not even really about the financial cost.

Our freedom is what we treasure most – and I know we’d lose that immediately with a couple of little people tying us down. We wouldn’t be able to nip off to the South of France at short notice like we did this year, or come back late after a night out without worrying about the babysitter.

I’m horribly bad tempered if I don’t get enough sleep, and I know lie-ins would become a distant memory with an overexcited toddler jumping on your head at 5am.

I’m squeamish about vomit and faeces, and the idea of children’s parties full of shrieking banshees out of their minds on E-numbers and sugar fills me with dread.

And as if young children wouldn’t be enough of a burden, teenagers would be even worse. I dread the thought of having my drinks cupboard regularly raided, being used as an unpaid taxi service and having to get new door keys cut every month because some fool has left them on the bus. My brother and I inflicted all of the above on my parents, so there’s no reason to suspect my child wouldn’t do the same to me.

I’m happy with my decision not to have children, as is my husband, and it annoys me that I’m constantly having to defend my choice to others. “Why did you get married if you didn’t want to have babies?” everyone asks me. “Well I don’t remember my wedding vows saying breeding is obligatory!” I reply.

No one would question my decision to get hitched if I was clinically sterile, but for some reason if you choose to remain childless it’s unacceptable.

It’s not that I don’t like children. I love my friend’s kids and I’m more than happy to buy them presents and play with them. But the best thing about them? I get to hand them back to their parents whenever I choose.

Best Friend

Youngsters are boring and self obsessed.

Best Friend lives with her husband G in Manchester and works in Administration.

I know we’re all supposed to fawn over kids like they’re the best thing since sliced bread, but the truth is I just don’t like them very much.

Babies aren’t so bad (when they’re not crying) but as far as I’m concerned children are boring and self-obsessed, and I have no idea what to say to them.

I have no maternal urges whatsoever, so why would I have children just because society expects it of me?

My husband G and I have been together since we were teenagers, but the question of children didn’t come up until later in our relationship. We were shopping in the supermarket when we passed a kid having an almighty hissy fit because his mum wouldn’t buy him chocolate. I knew I didn’t want that. “Er, I don’t think I want kids,” I told G there and then. “Not ever.” Luckily he was fine with it. He doesn’t feel strongly either way and he’s perfectly happy with it being just the two of us, as am I. We like being able to make choices based on what we want to do, rather than having to take a child’s needs into consideration.

I’m just not interested in being one of those stressed-out women screaming at my brood in the supermarket, but I’m constantly amazed by the criticism I face for choosing to live my life the way I do.

People tell me that if I had a child of my own I’d feel differently, but I don’t believe it. And anyway, what if they were wrong? I couldn’t send the kid back, or cram it into my wardrobe like a badly chosen handbag.

My worst fear is that if I fell pregnant by accident and decided to keep the baby I’d discover that I was right all along – that I’m completely ill equipped to be a mother. 

So there you have it. Two badly written, appallingly punctuated articles misrepresenting everything we said. Yes, the researcher phoned us to get details and a few bits to ‘flesh it out’ but even so, would anyone care to take a punt on how much of those articles is utter bilge? My best guess would be about 75% of each. Utter, utter wankers. So everyone, please learn from the experiences of Best Friend, Stu on the last post’s comments and myself – steer well clear of the media because they really are the collection of dishonest venal bastards that you suspect them to be….

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A reply to the writer of crap

So, eventually, after stewing gently on high heat for a whole 4 days, best friend and I decided to express our displeasure at how we’d been portrayed in the aforementioned rag mag. So we each wrote an email. In the interests of being taken seriously and not being published as a ranting lunatic in next week’s issue, I decided to keep it clean, so here’s what I sent:

A,

I would just like to let you know that Best Friend is not the only one who is unhappy with how she was portrayed in the magazine name article.

 I mentioned a number of reasons why I didn’t want children and yes, I did realize that the article was going to concentrate on ‘lifestyle’ as my primary factor for not having them but I did not realize this was going to be to the exclusion of everything else. The result was a piece that painted me as a vapid pleasure seeker intent on spending as much money as I could on consumer products and holidays. This was compounded by the photograph that was chosen out of all the ones I sent, of me posing with a glass of wine and looking drunk. Yes, I did send the photograph and it was unwise but had I known how I was going to be portrayed I would only have sent the pictures of me walking, taking photographs and on holiday. It was a piece designed specifically to discredit me and my decision, as was Best Friend’s.

 I realize that magazine name is not Private Eye and that their target demographic is mainly middle aged/ late middle aged women with children but what I did not realize is that they were going to pander to their audience by portraying women who choose not to have children as unstable or lacking in some way. Even N’s piece, which was not as bad as Best Friend’s or mine, stated that we child-free women who encounter judgemental mothers refer to these women as ‘breeders’, which automatically discredited us all as unreasonable and unwilling to engage in intelligent discussion of our rationale, preferring to just call people names. It’s also not true, I have never referred to anyone as a ‘breeder’. The piece was not a neutral, rational portrayal of three intelligent women from a similar social demographic as magazine name’s readership who have chosen to take a different path, it was a biased hatchet job designed to justify the beliefs of tradionalist women that there is something lacking in a female who chooses not to exercise her ability to have children. Had I been offered a copy of the article to proof read before it went to press I would have withdrawn from it, because I signed up to offer my reasons for remaining child-free to a group of women who feel differently to me in the hope that some understanding could be fostered. I did not sign up to be painted as a cut price Paris Hilton compensating for  the enormous child-shaped hole in my life with conspicuous overspending and alcohol.

 In short, I am very disappointed that this opportunity to share views and promote understanding and acceptance of differences between women who have taken different life paths was thrown away in favour of a sop to tradional values. It was not only insulting to myself and the other two women involved, it was a waste.

 Regards

 Vicola

I await her reply…..

Hatchet-faced twatferret

You know how sometimes you have an ‘oops’ moment but it’s always too late to do anything about it? Well today Best Friend and I are having one of those moments and it’s all courtesy of a twatferret named Alice.

Best Friend and I joined a group on Facebook called ‘Child free and Proud’ or something like that. A few weeks back, this Alice bird contacted us (seperately) to see if we would like to put together a few thoughts on why women in this era are choosing more and more not to have children and how people react to that. So we did, we each wrote her a piece and sent it over. She got back in contact to ask a few questions and to tell us that our pieces were going to be put into a magazine, for which we would be paid the princely sum of fifty English pounds each. ‘Lovely’ thought Best Friend and I, ‘It’ll come in handy for the Food Fair in October and it’s nice to get our point of view across’. So we sat back and waited for the publication to come out.

This morning, publication day, I trundle out to the supermarket to buy a copy. I pick it off the shelf and scan the front cover to see if there’s any mention of our child free article. There is. “Childless and Proud – ‘Kids are boring and ruin lives”. This is the first inkling I have that Alice The Horn-Toed One may not have portrayed us entirely sympathetically. Our article is on page twenty something and on the way to page twenty something I pass at least 5 articles on the joys of having children. Fuckity fuck. Surely it won’t be as bad as I think?

Wrong. It is. Not only has the bitch twisted round what I’ve said to make it sound worse than it was, she’s made up some stuff that I didn’t even say at all. If I’d known she was going to take an axe to me, I’d have told her my name was Kevin, not used my actual title. Or, more likely, I’d have told her to shove her article right up her skinny, deceitful arse sideways.

Here is what I wrote:

To breed or not to breed? That is the question….

Kids, sprogs, rugrats, kinder, les enfants, whatever you want to call them, there’s no doubting that children are a contentious issue these days and one of the thorniest subjects for a woman is whether or not you’re going to have them at all. Personally, I know plenty of grossly unsuitable couples who have announced that they are now trying to start a family and while behind their back friends and family are coming up with helpful comments along the lines of “Well, I don’t know why they’re bothering, 90% of the time they’d be happy to see each other suspended over a pit of sharks on the end of a fraying rope and besides, he’s got the functional IQ of a dining room table so they’ll be lucky if they produce kids that can tie their own shoelaces at 15”, what’s ALWAYS said to their face is “Oooh that’s lovely”. The rules of etiquette demand it be so, woman is doing womanly things and so should be praised, regardless of whether an adoption panel considering their suitability as parents wouldn’t get to the end of the first page before filing it under “They must be having a laugh”. When it comes to those of us who have decided we’d rather not tread the path of child-rearing however, the gloves come off and politeness is flung to the wind. In the same way that pregnant women have to endure strangers accosting their bump, women who choose to be child-free are subjected to a barrage of questions and assumptions about their lives and decisions, some of which can be more than a little offensive. A few of those that I have encountered include:

Why on earth wouldn’t you want to have children? -Well I could ask why would YOU want to? I think babies are quite sweet (until they start shrieking anyway) but with a couple of notable exceptions, I’m just not keen on children. I’m not a fan of cats so I’ll not be acquiring one, it works the same for offspring. I like sleep and don’t like vomit, faeces, having no disposable income, children’s parties full of shrieking banshees out of their minds on E numbers and sugar, having my vodka stolen out of the drinks cupboard, being used as an unpaid taxi service, having to spend a fortune on school uniform, nights in the casualty department, having to get new door keys cut every month because some fool has left them on the bus and drunken teens turning up at 3am. My brother and I inflicted all of the above on my parents, there’s no earthly reason to suspect that a child of mine wouldn’t do the same.

You don’t know what you’re missing, there’s nothing like having children – No, I don’t know what I’m missing, therefore I’m not missing it am I? I’ve a sneaking suspicion that there’s nothing like driving a Maserati and if I did so for a year or two I’d be reluctant to go back to my Peugeot but since I haven’t actually driven a Maserati, I don’t miss it. And unlike a posh car, if I have a child and then decide I hate the experience, I can’t hand it back to a man in a shiny suit and tell him I don’t want it any more.  For some people, I’m never entirely sure whether what they mean is “YOU’LL be missing out” or if the real problem is the fear that “I’LL be missing out”. While I’ve no wish to cause anyone disappointment, I don’t believe that a desire for approval is a good enough reason to breed. I can get all the nice bits of being around children by making a fuss of other people’s and it comes with the added benefit of not having to change nappies, clean vomit off my walls or pick sandwiches out of the DVD player.

It’s selfish not to have children. How will we manage if people don’t produce the next generation – Technically, since the planet is grossly over populated, it’s more selfish to HAVE kids than not have them but I’m clearly more polite than you because I didn’t say it. Besides, if the average family has about two kids then I’m fine, because my cousin has had 4, I’ve donated my allowance to him. And why don’t you say what you really mean? What you really want to say but can’t because it’s not PC is that the UK requires more middle class, full time role models like me to have kids because the chances are they’ll work full time as adults and pay into the pot for yours and my pensions. If you’re going to have a crack, at least be honest.

Why did you bother getting married if you don’t want to have children? – I remember the bit about richer and poorer, I recall the sentence about love and respect, I definitely have a memory of some Shakespeare being read by my sister in law and a poem by my brother but I must have been fiddling with my veil when the minister read the bit about “And thou shall definitely pop out some sprogs because it’s what society expects you to do and thou shalt be a horn-toed non-woman for all time if thou decidest thou doesn’t like the idea much” because I completely missed it. Would they ask why I bothered to get married if I were clinically sterile? Doubtful. It’s allowed to be married and childless if there’s a medical reason it seems, it’s just if you CHOOSE not to have them that you become something to be regarded with suspicion, defying nature and the role it designed for you.

You’ll never be truly fulfilled if you don’t have a child – I can live with that. In my childhood dreams I lived in Appleby Castle and looked after animals all day. I don’t and I’m not, I’ve not fulfilled my dream, yet somehow life stumbles on….

This list isn’t exhaustive, there are a hundred other questions and comments we child-free women have heard. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing but respect for those women who have kids, it’s a full time job, hard work and I’m sure it has its ups and its downs but it isn’t for all of us and just because nature endowed me with the equipment to be able to do it, doesn’t mean I want to, should, or would make a good job of it. So I’ll bow out thanks, I’m happy to buy your children presents, to hug them, play with them, share their good times and bad times and commiserate with you when they get their hearts broken for the first time. I’ll give them money if they go to uni and cheer when they graduate. I’ll throw confetti at their weddings and then do it all over again when they have their own kids. I just don’t want to do it all myself .

So to breed or not to breed? These days it is not a given, we can make the decision and the choice, ladies, is yours…

What Twatferret wrote from that will have to wait 4 days because according to the contract I signed, I can’t reveal it it or release any part of it for four days after the first publication date but suffice it to say that she has made me out to be a self-obsessed airhead whose main aim in life is to blow as much cash as I can on pointless consumer goods and enjoying myself. Kind of like a poor man’s Paris Hilton if you like.

Best Friend originally wrote this:

I do not want to have children. I’m not especially career orientated, and as far as I’m aware I’m perfectly capable of having a baby. I just don’t want to be a mother.

You would not believe the number of people who judge me for this. Many people make all sorts of lifestyle choices for many different reasons, but very few come under such scrutiny or in for so much censure as a 30-something happily married woman who makes the decision not to have children.

It never ceases to amaze me that others believe that it’s any of their business when it comes to the decision to procreate, or not in my case. Friends of mine who are pregnant or have children have told me of the perfect strangers who come and touch their swollen bumps, this complete invasion of personal space that they somehow believe is acceptable because there’s a baby in there. Incredibly stitches and fourth degree tears, and the colour and consistency of infant faeces all become suitable topics of conversation in polite company.

All of a sudden everything becomes fair game when it comes to discussing having kids. How do these people not know that I’m trying like bloody hell to get pregnant and it’s just not happening? How do they know I’ve not suffered multiple miscarriages, or that there’s something wrong with one of us that means we can’t have a much longed for baby?

My reply that I don’t plan to have children is usually met with one of three responses:

1. “How can you be so selfish?”

First off, I don’t see how deciding not to have children can be considered selfish. I like my life the way it is and I should be free to live it the way I see fit. I’m not doing anything illegal and I’m not hurting anyone, so who the hell are they to judge me because I don’t want the same things as they do? I don’t judge them for having a family. My husband and I have been together since we were teenagers so it was a while before it came up in conversation, but long before we got married I told him I didn’t think I ever wanted children and he was fine with that. Although like many men, if I did change my mind then he’d go along with that too. Anything for a quiet life..

2. “Who will look after you in your old age?”

Well if ever there was a selfish reason for having kids then this has got to be it. Who has a baby so when they’re old and infirm they’ve got someone to come and feed them and take care of them? Why would you want to burden your own child like that? Ridiculous.

3. “Why did you get married if you don’t want kids?”

My particular favourite. What about people who can’t have children, should they not get married either since they’re not bringing a baby into their union? My stock answer for this question is because I wanted to wear a big white frock, get boatloads of presents and be centre of attention all day. Really? No, I married him because I love him and I want to spend the rest of my life with him, you imbecile. Another friend (who has two under two years old) says I should tell them it was to get the passport. I might use that one next time.

Truth of the matter is I don’t really like children. I never really know what to say to them and I find them boring and self obsessed. They say it would be different when it’s my own but I don’t see how. I love babies, I could play with babies all day and am thrilled for any of my friends who announce they’re pregnant, because it’s what they want to do with their lives. I could spend ages in Baby Gap cooing over tiny socks and hats and have already promised the entire works of Roald Dahl to my friend’s little boy when he’s old enough. I’m fortunate that the friends I have who have children don’t judge me for it, they know how much hard work it takes and they don’t make any attempt to impose their lifestyle choices on me. I’m also lucky to have a broad mix of people I call friends, and my two closest female friends both agree with me – it’s just not what we want for our lives.

I don’t get too much pressure from my parents. I’ve already informed them that they’ll have to speak to my sisters when it comes to grandchildren. I know my mother would be delighted but it’s not a reason to have a baby. My Grandad used to tell me he hadn’t got long left, that he wanted to see his great-grandchildren before he shuffled off his mortal coil and that I was to get a bloody move on, but he’s still going strong at 90 (well preserved with whiskey God love him) and even he’s given up. The scrutiny comes from friends of parents, or people I work with, people who don’t know me that well, people who it doesn’t concern one way or the other. If I had a fiver every time someone asked me when I was going to have a baby I’d be able to buy a pair of Louboutins every month.

I like being able to make choices based on what we want to do, and not have to consider when we do it. We have date nights where we go out for dinner and drinks, we don’t have to plan babysitters or cancel long held arrangements because someone got chicken pox. We’re free to go on holiday whenever we please, roll in drunk whatever time we like and not be concerned with getting up early with a baby or taking someone to football practice / ballet recitals / Mandarin lessons. We get up, we go to work, we come home, we’re more than happy in each other’s company.

I’m impatient and intolerant, I can’t keep so much as a houseplant alive for more than a couple of months so what on earth makes anyone think I’d be any good at raising a child? I don’t want to be one of those stressed out harridans shouting at their brood in a supermarket. I’m the eldest of three girls and my parents divorced when I was 11, I’ve seen first hand how hard it was for my mum to raise us on her own, I don’t think I could do it and I genuinely admire those who can. But I don’t envy them. I’m happy in my marriage and don’t think for a second that my husband and I are going to split up, but who knows how we’d change if we had kids?

Another thing I object to is when I’m applying for jobs. They’ll see my age and marital status on my application, assume I’m going to disappear on maternity leave for a year then only want to come back two days a week and off it goes to the bottom of the pile. I’m going to start putting it on my CV soon.

Saying all this, I’ve never been pregnant, and I don’t know how I would feel if it happened by accident. Believe me, this is the only way it’s going to happen. I had a minor scare about four months before my wedding and I spent that couple of days in a state of abject horror at the prospect, but of course this could have had something to do with wanting to still be able to fit in my wedding dress. I couldn’t breathe all day as it was, I didn’t need to be trying to wedge a baby bump in there too.

The single most terrifying thought for me is that I get pregnant by accident, decide to keep the baby, then when it’s too late realise I was right all along and it’s not what I want. Or what about those women who got to the loo and out pops a kid? You can’t do anything about that then can you? I can’t send it back or cram it to the back of the wardrobe like an ill advised pair of jeans, once you’ve got a child then that’s it. This is a decision for life and you need to be absolutely certain it’s what you want because there’s no going back. I’m willing to bet there are more women out there than you’d think who’ve got kids who, with the benefit of hindsight, would choose a different path if they could.

I’m 32 now and I’m still waiting for my biological clock to kick in. Maybe the batteries are dead, I don’t know. All I DO know is that I don’t have any maternal urges whatsoever at the moment. Perhaps in a few more years when I start pushing 40 I’ll change my mind, and by then it could be too late. But I’m prepared to accept the consequences of the decision I’ve made now.

You want to see what they did with what Best Friend wrote, they trashed her even worse than they did me. If Twatferret is to be believed, Best Friend is the type of person who is likely to be found lurking at the back of Mothercare armed with a grenade, a can of diesel and a large box of matches.

The ironic thing is that Best Friend and I don’t require the help of the witch that is Alice and her vile trash-writing friends to make arses of ourselves, we can do it perfectly well ourselves although I will give her the fact that she’s manged to up the scale somewhat. Usually Best Friend and I only manage to make twats of ourselves in front of a few family and friends, sometimes work colleagues but this week, with the help of Alice The Horn-Toed one we will this week be looknig like nutters in front of a quarter of a million menopausal child lovers, who now regard us as some horrifying genetic freaks who are dead inside and who should be put in the Scold’s Bridle to stop us from polluting the minds of ordinary woman. And even by our own impressive standards, that’s quite special.

Public holiday, hurrah! Can we write in and vote when?

According to the Mirror today, the most boring royal that the UK has produced in 730 years is due to wed his equally dull girlfriend in 2011. Normally I wouldn’t give two hoots but apparently, because he is the heir to the throne we get a public holiday so naturally now I do! According to the Mirror, who may well be making it all up anyway, they can’t get married in 2012 because it’s too busy, what with the Olympics in London and the World Cup. Absolutely, I mean the Olympics is a fortnight and the world Cup is a month. So that only leaves another 46 weeks in the year, they’ll never manage to squeeze it in. Romance is not dead. But anyway, it’s set to be next year, in the summer, possibly August. But hang on a sec, the middle of August? Are you on glue people? We already have a public holiday in August, a fortnight after the proposed wedding time. That’s no good to us. We need one in that hideous barren time between the end of August and Christmas, when all we see is gloom, rain, dark and the never ending stretch of work that results in having got all enthusiastic and used up your entire annual leave allowance by July. Plus it’s August, in the UK. I can 100% guarantee it’ll be pissing down. You can spend £3000 on a celebrity hairdresser and a stylist but send her out for a couple of minutes in a British storm and she’ll still look like she’s just crawled in having downed 23 tequilas and gone to sleep in a hedge.  No, we want the wedding in November, when everything is shit, dark and cold and we can’t be arsed getting out of bed to go and defrost the car to go to work. I for one would like Prince William so much more if he earned me a duvet day in November. I’m wondering if we can have some sort of television vote to decide the date. After all, pretty everything else can now be decided by ringing an 0898 number and selecting, why not this?

Wanker of the Week

This is our first foray into the world of wankerdom using the medium of WordPress. For our inaugural wanker, the world of stupidity has presented us with the prize specimen that is PC Alison Doyle. Looks a bit dull doesn’t she? Looks like any other hatchet-faced wench. But she’s not.

Ms Doyle was a police officer and in 2001 she made an arrest. Unfortunately the woman she was arresting attacked her and she wasn’t able to return to work and spent 8 years on sick leave from Northumbria Police. She was off sick for 8 years but was a registered PC until August last year, so technically employed by the police although not on a salary for all of her time off ( as in the UK after a certain amount of time the employer is not required to pay you and you receive statutory sick pay from the government). She argued that she should be signed off as permanently disabled, meaning she’d get a medical pension but Northumbria police argued she could work for them in a different capacity, perhaps in admin. Nope, Ms Doyle wasn’t having that. She argued that she hated Northumbria Police so much that she couldn’t perform admin tasks for them. Now don’t get me wrong, I understand the concept of disliking the boss, I once worked at a golf club where a good 80% of my breaktime was spent smoking cigs behind the bins and fantasising about what it would look like if someone accidentally dropped a piano from a jumbo overhead and it landed on the fat, angry bastard, whose main form of entertainment seemed to be enquiring at the top of his voice whether I was a moron. I understand, really I do. But I don’t really think taxpayers should be asked to foot a medical pension because Ms Doyle is pissed off with management. Hating your employer is part and parcel of the everyday work experience, if hating the boss was classed as a disability 80% of the UK would be on the sick so take your biro and your stack of filing and go do some fucking work you lazy bitch.

She’s also claiming for a few other little items such as failure to provide holiday pay: Now don’t get me wrong, but if you’re signed off, as in you’re not working, you don’t need holiday pay. Holiday pay is what they give you when you don’t go into work for a few days, perhaps to go caravanning, or maybe even venture abroad for a bit of sun. If you aren’t receiving a salary because you’ve been on the sick and an employer isn’t required to pay your salary once you go past the point when statutory sick pay kicks in there’s no earthly reason why they should suddenly pay you to take a holiday from the job you’re not doing.  

And my personal favourite, the one that really gains her the prestigious award of wanker of the week…

She has asked the tribunal to order the award of long service and good conduct medals covering her sick leave. Splendid effort you barking mad lunatic, long service medals for 8 years when you didn’t serve and good conduct medals for refusing to do admin jobs and demanding a full medical pension because you don’t like Northumbria Police any more. That shows a sterling dedication to your own self obsession and an almost admirable refusal to grasp the twig of reality. For this I salute you, very carefully of course because were I to touch you by mistake you’d be bound to sue me for something, and present you with the award of Wanker of the Week. Well done you.  Now you can go back to sitting in the corner dribbling and whining about how Northumbria Police is full of big meanies whose sole aim in life is to pick on you.

Random mind dump

Is anyone else having trouble keeping track of the neighbours they used to check out on Vox? For some reason it seems much harder to keep up with everyone now we’re all spread out and I can’t get the hang of google reader, which was spectacularly obvious from the way I failed to keep my password protected post secret on there. Bloody technology and bloody Vox.

In other news, the family, entirely seperately and without consulting each other, have decided to ignore my mad aunt’s email. She’s been bitching about most of us anyway so none of us are really up for playing her silly game and besides, if she thinks she’s going to get sympathy for blowing more money than I earn in 2 years then she’s clearly on glue. A habit that’s going to have to stop now, since she’s got chuff all income aside from the basic state pension, meaning she’s going to be utterly skint once the final dregs of cash trickle away. Looks like she’ll have to cut out the Waitrose shopping. And feeding the dog that bloody expensive stuff in pouches along with imported parma ham and finest hand churned butter. I shit ye not. No wonder it’s fat.

The new job is going nicely. Well apart from the fact that I don’t really know what I’m doing but you can’t have everything can you? And as long as I make enough noise and look busy I’m figuring no one will notice for a while.

I was talking before about adverts, more specifically, how they’re full of shit. Has anyone else noticed that? Sure, the anti-spot cream leaves the improbably attractive, spot-less, airbrushed teen in the advert with a radiant peachy complexion but I’d like to see how it fared with it’s ‘improves skin in 48 hours’ claim against some of the bad boys me and my brother sported in our teenage years. And the shampoo ads are as bad. I’m delighted to see that Cheryl Cole’s extensions have ‘got their mojo back’ thanks to Elvive but since my hair is attached to my actual head at the roots I’d be more encouraged by the results on the hair of someone who doesn’t get it glued in every fortnight. Then there’s hair dye ads. D’you know what, I’m not convinced that Davina McCall dyes her own hair with Garnier Nutrisse, which leaves it ‘SOOOOO Nourished’.  Or mascara ads, that have the little sentence in, ‘styled using lash inserts, enhanced in post production’. Marvellous, so you want me to spend ten quid on a product that you daren’t even show on screen without artificial alteration? Do I look like I just fell out of a tree?

Worst of all have got to be the ones for bodily fuction products. Anyone in the UK will have seen the one for Dulcoease, where a woman with crap hair sits down and announces to her friends in a cafe that when she went to the bog, ‘Bowel stuff, it was hard and really uncomfortable’. Have you ever sat down at a caf with your friends and announced that you’ve just had a really painful shit? Me neither. Try it, see if like the girl on the telly they offer you helpful packets of shit-softener and funny little comments however don’t be surprised if all they give you is a funny look and an excuse about how they have to go home and iron their socks.

Worst of all however has got to be the one for sanitary towels that instructs you at the end to ‘have a happy period’. What the fuck are you talking about? Have a happy period? You spend two days crying if the traffic lights are against you or the paper falls off the desk. This is followed by a day of shouting at people for no discernable reason until they run when they see you coming, unless you are equipped with chocolate in which case they’ll keep their head down and sidle past you while flattened to the wall like a beaten dog, in case you let rip again. Then you get three days of cramps that feel like you got hit in the midriff by a Land Rover, all in the sure and certain knowledge that the same shitstorm will be heading your way same time next month. Have a happy period? Any idiot daring to mention this anywhere near me when I have my ‘time of the month’ had better be a bloody fast runner or very well insured.