Monday, May 30, 2011

Ah but seriously

I'm worried that I'm boring you dear reader(s) lately with all the talk of pregnancy, due dates etc, but it really is beyond a joke, the other day I quite seriously considered joining the Labour party in hopes that might do something. 8 days late. Myself and Mr VC are hardly ever late for stuff and things, so I don't know where the child is getting this tardy streak, but it seems it's quite cosy and relaxed where it is. The latest plan is that if there's no sign of action by this Thursday, then we'll be taking the law into our own hands - with the help of our friendly medical professionals.

Anyway - thought I'd take this moment to share some few of the memorable learnings and fascinating facts from the journey thus far...

No 1. Nature's mean - ok, I know we knew that from the David Attenborough videos, but at 4 months pregnant, a woman's centre of gravity changes, making women lose their balance more easily, this will cause them to slip and fall on ice wherever ice is available, (sometimes assisted by local snowball throwing hooligans or equally hooliganistic dogs pulling overly hard at their leads with their stupid big claw feet that mean they themselves have the balance of a Vermeer painting subject).
No 2. Pregnancy Vocab sucks - I hate the phrases used throughout pregnancy, maybe it's a lurking prudishness, but I really strongly dislike some of the words and phrases used around and about the inner workings of your body - ie the baby dropping, having a show, losing your plug, getting a sweep, etc etc - yuckity yuck and ick. Oh and there's also a thing called a Bishop's score system that tells you when you're ready to "pop" (- another favourite non favourite phrase right there) - would love to know where they came up with that name.
No3. Maternity clothes rule - they are the most draught excluding clothing known to man, you get jeans with a big panel that goes way up, and tops that go way down - not a sliver of skin will be exposed to a puff of wind - ever! I think I'll be continuing to wear them well into my PostPartum-ness (there's another bit o' the aul lingo)

There was plenty more, but y'know 3 is a good number to finish on... and I'm tired anyways...

Saturday, May 28, 2011


To truly test sod's law - or Murphy's Law as I should perhaps have been calling it, yesterday I donned my favourite light white linen summer dress, with an undercoating of best and worst possible underclothing. I then removed the hospital bag from the car, siphoned off most of the diesel, took my mobile phone and place it carefully in the middle of the front garden before driving off without it in a direction I've never driven before with a buttered slice of toast precariously placed on the dash board.
Still no news.

We did go to a play last night in "The Complex" in Smithfield, a NAMA property rescued by Complex Productions limited, it's basically a big shed with white cardboard walls dividing it up into rooms, and proves too that creative people don't need money (except for the poetry bus - go fund it!!). The play was called Iron, and was set within the bounds of an Irish prison, where Josie arrives to meet her mother after they've been separated by 16 years of her mother's incarceration for murdering her dad. We watch them getting to know each other again through the visits, and get an insight into the realities of prison life. There is some brilliant acting throughout and really great writing too. The whole thing lasted 3 hours but felt a lot shorter. It was perfectly set in the cold cement pillars and stone work of the venue as well. It finishes up tonight, and I can heartily endorse the idea of your attending, if the mood so takes you...

Friday, May 27, 2011

Sods law doesn't apply

I thought being alone, in the city centre, of an evening, and especially going into fancy soft furnishing shops, would surely lead to some kind of dramatic development, but yesterday evening proved me wrong, and that sods law doesn't always apply. I managed to get up and down the stairs in Avoca Handweavers (well known as the worst place in the universe to go into labour since you'd have to pay for all the hot towels and kettles used) without any excitement of any kind.
After that it was over to the cobbles of trinity, and the Samuel Beckett theatre where I had the treat of seeing Kevin Barry and John Butler showing a short film they had collaborated on and then reading from their first novels.
Kevin is a great performer, he knows it too. With mischievious charm and one foot thrown back at the podium he acts his way through the reading, bringing his already rich words even further to life. City of Bohane is based in the city of Bohane, and he read from it in a Bohane accent. The language of the book is a unique patois mixing cork and limerick accents (rubber bandits how are ye) and the book itself seems to revolve around feuding families, violent action and very nice costumes. It was hard to get into it in the 15 minutes that he read for, but Kevin promises great rewards in the interview afterwards, saying he was inspired by "The Wire" and shows like that which are, in turn, structured similarly to 19th Century Russian novels - with alot of work early on, getting to know a wide cast and world and therefore greater returns because "you feel like you've had to earn it" - it seems he's happy for the book to be a lean to rather than a lean back kind of thing, and is already working on the screenplay, drawing the costumes etc.
John's first novel is called The Tenderloin and was just launched last night. The day job for him is film work, directing short films, and before that he worked in IT in San Francisco, during the IT boom. This is where the inspiration for his book arises, although he had originally planned it to be a straight memoir - it was pointed out to him that nothing terrible had happened him, and he wasn't terribly famous - he found fictionalising the whole experience was even more fun. (Kevin told us that John once said to him actors were like "the best toys ever" - this is a guy who likes to have fun). The book got alot of laughs from the audience as he read, and his impression of a big boss giving a speech at a staff BBQ was brilliant. I'd say this is well worth watching out for and it'll be firmly on my wishlist - and one that I'll be pushing for a read in the book club.
The whole evening was fun and inspiring, and I took particular courage from the revelation that most people "Tool around" for a decade before really getting disciplined and getting to work (so what if my decade takes a little longer than most)... A very motivational way to spend a Thursday.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Trashy Thrillers & Margarine

I'm reading Ultimatum just now. 3 quarters of the way through - it claims on the luminous orange cover to be gripping, smart and a persuasive thriller. So far it's been nothing but political meetings and speeches. No action whatsoever. Not that I'm looking for action exclusively, but a little might be no harm. Maybe they put the wrong book inside the cover and somewhere someone is reading something genuinely gripping when they were really only wanting something brainless and slow paced to while away the hours.

In other news - this is the closest thing to a stork sighted anywhere near the Various Cushions environs, so I am busy making hundreds of plans for the weekend - and round here the weekend starts on a Thursday... watch out world!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Entertaining Strangers

See it worked so well yesterday, having the plumber over - he was such a good distraction from other things in life... that we thought we'd invite another stranger to our humble abode - this time an estate agent, and why not indeed. We are planning to rent our Dubland Den in the coming months - since we have, as yet, failed to find one million dollars (pinkie finger at corner of mouth) down the back of the sofa, and will need to rent a place of our own on our return to Corkland (house guests are well and good, but screaming crying helpless ones tend to warrant their own space).
So - an estate agent it had to be. Ladies and Gentlemen, he let us down with a bang. He called in and despite wearing the usual smarmy suit complete with hair molded off a Ken doll and pointy shoes, he was perfectly nice.
I was waiting, watching, notebook actually in hand, hoping for him to do something obnoxious, say something mean or be overly schmoozy and enthused, but as he picked his way through the dog toys on the floor, and talked myself and Mr VC through what we need to do to get it rent ready, I found nothing to not like. He seemed like a nice human being. Is it the hormones? Could it be that we've met a fictional character? a Unicorn? am I about to wake up in the shower in a Dallas moment, where the last year never actually happened?! a nice estate agent... imagine.
Any other suggestions for interesting strangers we should have in our house will be seriously considered...
Also if anyone wants to rent an artist's retreat in Dubland, holes in the garden, toilet fully functional and not leaking through the kitchen ceiling... do let me know

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Plumbers can't hear my voice

It's strange but true.
We had one in our house today... a plumber I mean. I was being all enthusiastic, taking an interest in what we should or shouldn't do to our toilet in order to get it to stop slowly leaking all over the bathroom floor and seeping through the kitchen ceiling, being a responsible citizen and all. And maybe it was the way I said the word "Ball-cock" that made him take offence, especially from a lady of my current stature and medical condition... but he actually couldn't physically hear a word that I said, and consequently didn't answer any of the many intelligent and probing plumbing related questions that I fired in his direction.
Luckily the deafness extended to my maniacal laughter when comment after question met the same non response... I've left Mr VC to "sort him out" - and by that I mean pay him loads of money for coming to our house and treating us like something he stood in, it's a much sought after service in some circles you know.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Today is D-day... here's a little poem of instruction for the little mite, for whenever it might make it's appearance.

Those of you who've read my latest post will get some of the references more than than others. WARNING: SMUSHY ALERT!!!


Listen up


The longest wait

Is almost at an end

You, squirmy home-grown friend

are near ready to descend


Shiny plastic stuff we’ve bought

And soft things for newest skin

Pastel things for swaddling in

When elastic sleep is caught


A starling chick on beaded grass

Distracted yesterday

A while of trials enacted

Rang back to something like ok


Candy sweet in flashing darkness

With a Chemical Brothers beat

You dancing in your seat

Kick at ribs with tiny feet


Meeting you will be a moment

But before that there’s a bit

Of uncertain flight to flit

Let’s keep close and safe through it

Friday, May 20, 2011

Long Grass and Hanna

The down side of having long grass is that teeny tiny downy little baby birds can get trapped in it and you feel all responsible, especially when you're empathising with the parents who are trying to feed their starving starling chick, and by then it's surely too late to get the lawnmower out - twould only make things worse, and your dog is forced into the indignity of performing toilet duties whilst on a leash.
Went to see the film Hanna last night. I have decided only to go to see films that the Chemical Brothers have done the soundtrack for from now on. Bloody, but brilliant (and not actually that bloody - you got good warning when to look away - ie whenever anyone held something fairly pointy aloft - twas time to examine the popcorn bucket)
And an extra bonus point not included in the title but which you, lucky persistent reader get to read as your reward for reading this far... (reading rewarded with more reading? how could that possibly work)... I feel like someone who has PO'd a school bully, and the bully has promised to beat me up this Sunday, but they may or may not hold true to the timing, and it may hurt more than anything has ever hurt before, or it may turn out that the bully is a wooss and I barely feel a thing. There are drugs I can take to make it more bearable too, but they may or may not work, and might or mightn't be available if and when I decide I want em. Nothing is definite, all that's for sure is something will happen in the next few weeks, if the world doesn't end tomorrow.
I'm a bit of a control freak y'know, even though I don't seem that way sometimes, I am... so that's making all this extra extra nerve-grating-licious - and no - the control freakery hasn't yet resulted in nesting (unless you count trying to save the baby bird out the back)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

So anyway

So just in case the last post's lawn picture misled anyone into thinking that we have found a lawn mower that works I thought I better confess with the above update pic taken less than 3 minutes ago - it also shows that the dog too is not immune to the ravages of time and has definitely got a little greyer in the year that's passed. (and ably demonstrates how a messy lawn can lead to a tidier looking garden overall - since you can no longer see the holes she has dug - having said that - it also makes you more likely to break an ankle if you attempt to negotiate around it - there's plusses and minusses to everything)

A close up of Doggy's messy do - maybe I should take the shears to her? Internet voting time - leave a comment if you think I should tidy up her eyebrows, ears etc... or not.

In other news, someone rang Joe Duffy this week to say they had applied for a 10 day turnaround passport 8 days ago and it still hadn't arrived and they were getting worried about it, even though it wasn't technically late... yet. I can't think of any parallels to that in my life right now, but if I do - then you can expect to hear me on the national airwaves, and not a minute before.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Sale on Luminous Jackets

There must be someone doing a special offer. Them luminous yellow jackets are everywhere. I counted over 40 of them, worn by defenders of the laws of our land - lining the local roads earlier on this evening. I appreciate that there is a need to bolster security around the city with the important new arrival coming soon - and the mania and excitement that is sure to follow any new member of the cushions clan, but really - those poor feckeens, standing around in the rain, looking like they're ready to re-enact that bit in Lord of the Rings with the fires on the hills, except without the hills and the fires... really I can't help feeling it's slightly over the top.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Got my lipstick on

Ok, not really, no lipstick on... but I am more than half hoping that Jedward do alright at the Eurovision tonight.
I went to the Eurovision once - the year Lordi won, wanted to see Athens anyway (she insists).
I might update this as the competition rolls on, right now I'm on the couch awaiting the beginning after a tough day wrestling with Saul Bellow...(Saul is seriously evil - I read and read for hours and still feel no closer to the world of the book, and yet there's something there pulling me on through it) the sun is shining in Lucan.

First ad break - and the light is beginning to dull outside - in summary
Finland is an old sweety pie
Bosnia were bouncy, friendly wavy people
Denmark had a nice song, but the image didn't fit
Lithuania were looking for the deaf vote with sign language - interesting strategy
Hungary - mecentric song, light up clothes on backing singers is always good
Jedward did as well as could be expected, fingers and toes crossed for em
Sweden - a bit bland
Estonia - I like the song and the acting and boxes, can't go wrong
Greece - creepy deep voice, not great
Russia - creepy lyrics - "Put my mind in a dirty zone" - with light up clothes almost making up for it
France - slightly out of tune - dog was snoring
Italy - jazzy and cool - I enjoyed it - woke up the dog with the trumpet

Ad Break - for about 10 seconds, deep breath, back into it

Switzerland - bouncy happy disney background and smiley singing
UK The band Blue flash up fleshy nudey shoulder upwards pics of themselves that make me kinda wish they hadn't
Moldova - funny hats, funky laughing going on, definite circus atmosphere, not bad at all
Germany - cool and sexy, a little bjorky - Lena has a good chance of winning back the title with her alien friends
Romania - change the world - cheesey grinny pop, have to say Finland's world saving ballad convinced me alot more.
Austria - quiet song that builds a bit but ultimately choiry and slack (ooh I'm getting tougher as the night wears on)
Azerbaijan - very sticky song - understandable that it's a favourite. Mam says she's sewn into the dress.
Slovenia - a leathery slinky song - not brilliant by any means

Only 5 more songs to go!!
Iceland can't wait till tomorrow - well at least that'll mean the song will be over - bland pop
Spain - pink bridesmaid dress, chirpy - no marcarena though
Ukraine - sand picture and goldy feathers - me love - so transfixed by the performance I can't hear the song tho.
Serbia - 60's happy chirpy song - v strong effort - colourful tights

One last song - at this rate I'd be happy to see Jedward get into the top 10 - very high standard
Georgia - heavy metalic, with a quirky dress... not threatened by them.

So now - time to relax till the votes start rolling in... and see how wrong my instincts/ judgements are (call them what you will)

And the votes are rolling in - neighbours are voting for neighbours - the usual yawn... funny that the audience are absolutely hating it tho - I predict a riot!!

Even Marty has given up hope. Yerrah, they did well, with all the pally votes we're lucky we broke 100 points really!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Stuff and Things

I am trying to read Herzog at the moment. It has some true gems in there, but is very dense and the book itself keeps getting lost every five minutes, making progress difficult.

In other things cultural, watched "Le Bonheur" and "Mighty Aphrodite" over the last few days - both films with very different takes on life and love, both worth a look. Be prepared for huge escapism in both, some serious laughs, and in the former - one of the best head wrecks seen in ages...

In still other things cultural - Finland was my favourite in the Eurovision last night. It was tough to miss out on fair city for the evening, but singy cheese tops soapy cheese in my house.

I'm still a week and a half away from the estimated arrival date, so no panic there and have done a bit of sorting out of things so that we can impress new family member with our ruthless organisation and cool efficiency. Ordered a slingy thing too on the internet last night (so that I can get on with watching films, blogging and reading while still being a good parent) and it arrived two hours later - powerful service here.
Have noticed that drivers are more aggressive in the capital tho - something I hadn't really copped before - they are impatient, not that it's me they're beeping, but it's true that once people are inside their tin boxes on wheels they stop seeing other people as people - well at least you would hope most of them when walking up a busy path wouldn't scream at someone who was going slightly slower than them to get out of their way.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Returning in May

So now we're back. Dubland is a nice place to return to in May. We've a blue flowered tree in the garden that goes mad to welcome us. The rest of the so called "lawn" laughs at the very thought of a mower, it safely murdered our last one in 2010, and has no fears of reprisal almost a full year later. The dog is still trying to relocate the craters that she had worked so hard to create in the landscape, now they've completely grown over.
Finished for maternity leave on Friday, got a lovely bunch of flowers and a card that says "Sorry you're leaving" - hope they realise I plan to come back! They won't get rid of me that easy.
I haven't got my head around the new poetry jam type thing yet, but maybe in another few weeks... tisn't a big loss for the jam as I've been writing very little, ok nothing, of late, not even the blog - the observant among you may have noticed.
Today we're going to try and find something with wheels to move a mini cushion around in, as well as something for the newbie to sleep in (having finally agreed the fish's aquarium will not do - the fish are staying in their holiday home type bowl in Cork for the Summer, for a change)
Whoever hasn't seen the following video hasn't lived...

They're from the same part of Cork that we're gradually making into our new home. Mr VC even saw them live during our stay down there, in fact he was paid to see them, as they were doing a gig at the school he was subbing at... anyway - I'll leave on that high point, and hopefully it won't take me another week to get back online!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I miss the bus today


there's only 4 working days left, and then there's an upheaval of packing and moving back to Dubland where, it is planned in another 20 odd days or so, a new human being will be arriving into the air, from the water, and then myself and Mr VC and the dog have a few months to get it all trained in to how life in our fambley works before a routine has to be established (Routine seems to be like a drug for babies - it's all any of the experts go on about on the interwebness).

I'm working on a contract just now, to be signed by junior no later than 24 hours into life, to help us evade all the pitfalls of parenthood and to be clear from the beginning on what is expected from everyone - this should avoid all confusion... Some of the clauses will include:

I will only release waste material while wearing the correct protective clothing or using the proper equipment.
I will sleep when management indicate the timing is appropriate for such activity by their turning down of lighting or closing of curtains.
I will cry only when salesmen and other undesirables call to the front door, and will cease wailing when they have been scared away.
I will not get gromits....
or wallaces or colic or cauliflower.
I will try to be especially quiet during Fair City.
I will giggle whenever anyone needs cheering up.
I will not spit or otherwise expel anything solid or liquid through my mouth, (or nose or ears).
In return for the above - management will provide me with a place to live and their best interpretation of moral support for the next 18 years.

Signed________________ etc

Anyway - there's more work to be done on it, but still a bit of time for that.... any clauses you'd recommend I should add?

Yes - I really miss the bus today, even though I haven't been writing much...