January 31, 2005

Bit embarrassing really... 

The Ginger Nut (cooking pasta): Hey Rizzo, what happened to your eye? What's with the graze?

Rizzo (casually drinking wine): Got into a fight. Bit embarrassing really.

Jonesy (shocked, eating twiglets): No! Really? You got into a fight?

Rizzo (still casually drinking wine): No, not really.

The Ginger Nut (holding spoon in mid-air, spilling pasta sauce down her top): So, what happened then?

Rizzo (still casually drinking wine): A sex act that went wrong. Bit embarrassing really.

Jonesy (shocked, eating twiglets): No! Really? A sex act that went wrong?

Rizzo (slightly uncomfortable): No, not really.

The Ginger Nut (hands on hips, sauce everywhere): So, what really happened then? Spill it!

Rizzo (sheepish): Had my eyebrows waxed. Went a bit wrong!

Jonesy (spitting out twiglets): HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

The Ginger Nut (sauce flying everywhere): HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Rizzo (even more sheepish): Bit embarrassing really.


January 29, 2005

Nothing lives forever 

LinkWe've got Homechoice, which means that while we don't have any sports channels we do have Video on Demand, one of the best things ever. Take this morning for example. Jez, Dutchie and I took our tea and toast to the sofa and had a sleepy browse of the VOD channel.

It is no understatement that I nearly fell off the settee when I saw that the first series of Fame was available. In fact, if I'm being honest, I may even have shrieked a bit. You see, I grew up with Fame. It was on just after I got back from school and just before mum got home from work, the time when I was supposed to be doing my homework but never did. I watched it religiously. I wanted to be Coco, hang out with Bruno and "go steady" with Leroy.

Today, though, I have learned a valuable lesson. That is to never, under any circumstances, look back! It was an awful, cheesy, angstridden show that made me cringe almost (but not quite) as much as Dawson's Creek does. Coco was too thin, too talented, too perfect. Bruno was too sensitive, too deep, too righteous. And Leroy? Well, his shorts were just too, too, too short!

Worst of all, though, it reminded me of the electric blue legwarmers I used to wear to ballet class, and just like Fame, some memories should never live forever!


January 26, 2005

Hope Springs Eternal 

It's a funny old world. As one blogger writes her final post, another tentatively dips her big toe into the blog-pool and gently begins to flex her writing muscles. Yes, it's the moment that many of you have been waiting for. Ladies and Gentlemen of Blogland, I give you...

... Hope!


January 24, 2005

The Girls Who Never Grew Up 

With our manager away on a ski trip yesterday I was in charge of the first team. 60 minutes into the game and our right winger, Rizzo, scored her first goal. She tore away to celebrate and I turned to write her name down on the scorecard. I heard laughter from the pitch and various players started calling my name. I looked round to see her running towards me pulling her shirt up over her head. Underneath her strip she was wearing a white t-shirt emblazoned with the words:


I sighed. It appeared my new nickname had stuck.

A couple of weeks earlier The Ginger Nut had thrown a party for the team. The fall out the next morning was impressive. One manager had passed out on a bean bag, the other on the sofa. The Ginger Nut, Ms Millwall and Ms Dynamite had crashed in one room and I woke up next to Rizzo in the other. My head hurt and so I reached over to pinch her water while she was still asleep. Imagine my confusion when instead of a nice refreshing glass of water I found a small yet perfectly formed pork pie on the bedside table next to her. I stumbled to the bathroom, filled up my own glass and fell back into bed.

An hour or so later, The Ginger Nut came in complaining that Ms Dynamite had pushed her out of bed in her sleep. She got in with us and they began talking about the previous night's antics while I listened sleepily. After about twenty minutes I'd woken up enough to attempt conversation. I sat up and looked with confusion towards the bedside table.

"Rizzo," I asked, not without trepidation. "Why did you bring a pork pie to bed with you last night?"

Quick as a flash The Ginger Nut turned to me.

"Awwww, Jonesy," she said with a cheeky glint in her eye. "You really shouldn't put yourself down like that!"

I guess you had to be there. I wished I wasn't!

Editor's note: If this post appeared terribly confusing it is because I messed up my editing. Try reading it again. Hopefully it will make sense this time!


January 19, 2005

Blog hounds 

I met Les Trois Madames today. These are my friends from school and I've known them for years. We have very different lives that take us to different places but we try and make sure we catch up every six weeks or so.

First off there's Madame Musicality. We were in the same class from the age of seven. She got to grade eight in piano. I failed my grade 3. She was also better at ballet than I was, but I don't hold it against her. Much. Then we come to Madame Hilarity, an exceptionally funny woman who makes me laugh about every seven seconds. She had a Saturday job in the shop where my mum worked. I always had a hunch that my mum preferred her to me! Finally there's Madame Binary whose ability to compute and calculate is second only to my father. Sadly, her calculations aren't always that relevant. Apparantly, as you talk, her mind calculates exactly how many letters you use in each sentence. Don't worry though, she's not that weird really!

So there we were, waiting for our starters. The three of them were looking at me. I felt trouble brewing.

Madame Hilarity: So, what's going on Jonesy?
Madame Musicality: Yeah, what's the deal here? You've got an audience to amuse.
Me: Eh?
Madame Hilarity: Don't you realise I'm a professional procrastinator?
Madame Binary: How's the wallpapering going?
Me: How do you know about that?
Madame Binary: The blog, of course!
Madame Hilarity: Yeah, the blog. The one that you're hardly writing any more.
Madame Musicality: And is your back still bad?
Me: How do you know about that?
Madame Musicality: How do you think? The blog!
Me: Of course
Madame Musicality: And the job sounds good.
Me: How? Oh right. The blog!
Madame Binary: And just how long has your sister been taking driving lessons now. I feel sorry for her poor thing.
Madame Hilarity: And she's hardly been blogging either! What's up with the Jonesy sisters, eh?
Me: Well, you know, we've been a bit busy.
Madame Musicality: You know what? I've never quite plucked up the courage to write one of those commenty things. I don't really feel part of the blog "in-crowd".
Madame Binary: I know what you mean.

Mesdames... ever thought about getting blogs of your own? You'd all be very good and it would give me a chance to ask you random blog related questions.


January 17, 2005

The first day of the rest of my life 

I woke up this morning with a knot of excitement and anticipation nestling comfortably in my stomach. I showered, gulped down some tea and headed out to begin my first day in my new part-time job in Greenwich. On the way I thought back over the past few months. Last year was The Year of The Turd but I seem to have turned it all around for 2005.

My role consists of 2.5 days a week working for a small charity that supports non-abusive parents of sexually abused children. I have been given the slightly daunting task of running a helpline that parents can call for support and advice. The money isn't much but it's enough to cover my mortgage and bills freeing up the rest of my week to focus on my freelance work. It seems I have the lifestyle I have been dreaming of at last!

This morning, coming up the escalators out of Canary Wharf tube station, I could hear a busker playing an instrumental version of Nothing Else Matters by Metallica. I was surrounded by stressed out business types, heads buried in the Financial Times, their pin-stripe suits neat and crisp. They looked tired and drained. I felt alive and refreshed.

I passed through the barriers and headed for the exit. I spotted the busker absorbed in his music, a look of peace on his face. Next to his cap he had put up a fluorescent green sign.

"Smile", it read.

I already was!


January 14, 2005

Papering over the cracks! 

In hindsight it would probably have been better if one of us had actually known how to put wallpaper up. Sadly neither of us did, and yet we were confident. I mean after all, The Gaffer and I are bright, practical, solution driven individuals, or at least we were when we both held down "proper jobs".

Let me recap. Hope, The Gaffer and I have started a DIY collective. I help them work on their place and they help me work on mine. Yesterday was my turn and The Gaffer came round to give me a hand papering the living room.

I won't bore you with all the details but here are a few things I have learned:

1. Don't listen to XFM while you work with The Gaffer as he'll end up playing air guitar all day.
2. Always, always ask people who've papered before exactly what to do. Don't rely on information you're "sure you've heard somewhere before, perhaps down the pub or maybe it was your dad that told you".
3. The quiches from Sainsbury's Deli are made with wholemeal flour. Minging!

The result? Well, not as good as we'd hoped really. After papering an entire wall, I came to the conclusion that "the thing I'd heard somewhere or maybe it was my dad that told me" was actually a figment of my imagination. We had to tear all the paper down and start again, only when we did, we pulled some plaster off the wall.

Still, as The Gaffer said in an effort to stop be from bursting into tears, at least we know what we're doing now!


January 06, 2005

Pose of the what? 

If someone called Barbara Currie ever approaches you in the street, run away. Not that I've ever met Barbara Currie in person, mind, but my mum gave me her Yoga DVD this Christmas.

"It's amazing Jonesy," she said. "Worked wonders for me and there's a whole section on lower back pain. Could be your ticket to recovery. Give it a try."

And so I did. I gave it a try. I tried "Pose of the Mountain" (???), "Pose of the Warrior"(?!*?!??), Pose of the Heron" (???!?!???*%?*!?!?**?!*?), and now all I can manage is "Pose of the 29 year old cripple who nearly got better and then listened to her mother".

Booked myself to see the physio tomorrow. Not impressed at all!


January 04, 2005

Mathematics 1 : 0 Ms Jones 

And so my DIY efforts continued... in a blaze of mediocrity. While Superdad built a kitchen out of an old cereal packet, a kitchen roll tube and a sheet of sticky back plastic, all the plaster I had lovingly applied to the living room walls fell off, crumbling into a pile of dusty muck that I then trod into the carpet. It was clearly all going to plan. Unfortunately it was someone else's plan!

"Nevermind," said Superdad as he picked up the bucket of plaster and set about fixing the mess I'd made. "You put the kettle on."

I went to the kitchen feeling about as useful as a blind guide dog.

"All done," said Superdad as he came to join me. "I know what you can do. I've got a few things to finish up in here but we need to measure up the living room for wallpaper." He handed me the tape measure. "Off you go."

At last, a chance to prove myself, a chance to demonstrate that not only could I fill my Dad's DIY shoes but the mathematical dyslexia I've suffered from all my life would no longer hold me back. I grabbed a pen and paper and got busy.

My living room has a classic Victorian lay out: a bay window, a chimney breast and a couple of alcoves. All these separate nooks and crannies had to be taken into account and within ten minutes I had covered a page with various measurements. Having no ability whatsoever to multiply anything with double figures, I made use of the calculator function on my phone and began to work it all out.

Sitting cross legged on the floor, brow furrowed in concentration, I multiplied, added and divided with an increasing sense of satisfaction. However, my confidence disintergrated when I pressed the "equals" button. I went back over my sums twice, but eventually I had to admit defeat.

"Dad," I called. "I think I've gone a bit wrong somewhere."

"Really?" He came into the room and lent up against the wall. "What did you come up with?"

I blinked.

"Three thousand, four hundred and seventy two square meters, thirty four centimeters."

Tea sprayed in an arc from his mouth as he tried in vain to hold back the guffaws exploding from his chest.

"I think you'd better work it out, dad."

"Yes," he chuckled. "You're probably right." He stood in the middle of the room and carefully looked at each wall. I could almost hear his brain whirring and clicking as he processed data and crunched numbers at a rate of knots. A minute later he turned to me.

"Nine rolls should do it. Nine or ten."

It can be hard being the daughter of someone who designs air traffic control simulators for a living.


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