Friday, May 29, 2015

Where everybody knows your name

Somewhat related to yesterday’s post is the fact that I predicted the Truman show years ago.  I was, and still am, the star of the show.  It usually happened when things were quiet, I’d be there, lying in bed, and I’d feel the camera on me, I’d know that there was a close up going on, and I’d try to look suitably thoughtful/ emotional whatever. 
I can’t say too much, but suffice to say, the show is definitely back on, after years off the air – they have decided to revisit somewhat nostalgically – the little girl that used to stare into space – to see how she fares now as the grown up girl who stares into space.  There is no other reasonable explanation for the sudden increase in blog posts – obviously a new producer must have taken over and is going for a “sex and the city” type vibe – giving viewers a window into my inner  (they must have drugged me to induce the writing, thus extracting my thoughts for all to see, here, regularly)  - not only that but they have carefully staged things to make the gas station saga even MORE exciting.  Following on from my last post on this subject - 4 amazing things have happened –
Tuesday – up early – as sunlight (curse it) wakes the kids – so I’m at the old gas station at an unlikely early hour – who else is there – only a colleague from my work – someone I have only ever met up with once before in my home town – who supposedly was heading for Dublin that day.  I received free chocolate but no free newsprint.
Wednesday – up at the normal time (do they have some sort of influence on the kid’s sleep patterns?)– at the old gas station at the normal time – who is there – only an old school mate, someone I made friends with recently again through our babies both being squishy and cute – this was after years of mutual apathy from a time in school when we were friends with very different people despite sharing a name.  Again, I received free chocolate but no free newsprint.
Unknown Day – Domestic Oubliette receives a free newspaper – not sure about the chocolate.
Today – another meeting with a work colleague at a different, but related gas station.

I’m not sure what you all think out there in blog land, about what they could be looking for, what they are telling me, but I am listening…

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Meaning Hunting and Weetalime

A lot of success in life is predicted by how successfully you can predict the future.  And even if you can’t really predict the future – a lot of fun can be had by attempting it.

I predicted the World wide sensation that is Weetalime years back – “weetabix, with a squeeze of lime”, they said, “you must be mad” they said – but then along came Colin Farrell with his brown sauce in tea and suddenly the world of ordinary food with a little tweak opened up.  Fast forward seven years and I can exclusively reveal that Weetabix have developed a cereal with the lime ready embedded, milk activated, to satisfy those crazy morning taste buds, while shops all over Ireland have run out of fresh lime while trying to keep up with the trend.

How do I do it, you ask, how do I know what’s coming down the track years before anyone else has even heard of it?  Well you know – I think I owe a lot to my writing – and in particular to mindfulness when writing.  Seeking meaning in the world naturally opens your eyes to the way things are going.  Two writers during my radio show years encapsulated this perfectly – Mia Gallagher once said to me “You look for what’s going on, then you look for what’s really going on” the deeper meaning – what’s going on beyond the surface actions that you see – is usually pretty interesting, and more important possibly than the noise at the top.
The other one was Peter Sheahan – who said that in order to write – and this was his method – but you basically need to submerge yourself in the scene – ie as if you’re dunking yourself in a swimming pool that is the moment, make it viscous, make yourself be stuck there, and that way you capture it, and find the deeper meaning. 

These wise words from both writers I think have stood me in good stead, or at least they would if I would only sit down and follow them. But anyway – yeah, lime on your Weetabix, check it out.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Commandments for Mammies - a helpful guide

above you will find a link to a competition to find the best mammy in the country – if you want to be the very best by the way – key words from the above are “Others first, herself last – how great, on time.”   All the very best Mammies are in hospital with their nerves from following such ideals. 

So, in homage to this competition and pondering the joy of it all here goes my 10 Commandments of Modern Mammyhood

I am your child, Irish Mammy
Thou shalt have no other children (I will happily use up all your time – but if you do have other children they will feel the same)
Thou shalt not put other children before me
Do not use my name in vain – (ie when I’m watching cartoons and you call me 100 times for dinner, take the hint – I am not interested in dinner on this occasion and I will not be answering you any time soon – now stop assaulting my ears)
Remember to keep holy the family day – a fun filled outing may suffice, or else play with me constantly and messily for the day – be careful what you choose, you cannot expect me to clean up when cleaning up gets old which will be quickly and there will be so very much mess.
Honour the grandparents – without them none of this would be possible
Thou shalt not kill me – even when the mess is really huge and I’m really not listening.
Don’t be all adultery (whatever that is) – sounds boring
Thou shalt not steal – just so we’re clear if you want some of my ice cream that’s stealing, if I want some of your ice cream that’s sharing.
Do not bear false witness – you can’t tell me it’s bed time when it’s bright, or that it’s too early to get up when it’s bright – I don’t care what time you call it – bright = day – everyone knows that.
and last but not least
Do not covet your neighbours kids – they look so mannerly and well dressed and all – but hey – I blame the parents…

Monday, May 25, 2015

Further adventures in the Premier Service Station

So I went there again today.  I couldn’t face the free sugar, the free newsprint, the pressure to carry a card and therefore get a free sandwich once a month or feel bad for not getting a free sandwich, and to win a trip to new York or feel bad for not winning a free trip to new York*, so I went to the other place.  The place that is a cover for illegal activity.  A key difference about the new place is that it’s on the other side of the road.  This means it’s on the way into town, as opposed to being on the way out of town and therefore on the way to the city.  The type of people stopping on the way to town, coming from the country, or another smaller town, are a different type of person to the ones on their way from town.  I am probably being a city working snob, but I don’t think town workers have the same expectations, they just want cheap drinkable hot liquid, without bells and whistles and free donuts, with marigold gloves in easy reach while they wait for the machine to spew the black sanity saver, with a hole in the wall (with a mysterious pipe [like something maybe a top trained drug running hamster might use] visible within the hole) with a strange unlabelled red button beside it (if you have to ask you better not press it).  Town workers want a cashier who will have the five cent change warming in their hand so that when you put down your 2 euro** in their palm, you pick up the five cent in the same efficient movement, they want to be impressed by the mind reading magic of the lady with the short hair whose body heat has gone into the piece of metal now in your pocket, they don’t carry wallets (ok I’ve no way of knowing whether they carry wallets – although the only co-customer I saw did drop his coinage from his pockets all over the forecourt).  They don’t expect the coffee lids to fit without major re-engineering.

*my computer has decided to capitalise the York and not the new – it’s not me I swear.

** yes, city readers, you read right.  2 euro and you get change!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Cheating on my Gas Station (or being unfaithful to my garage)*

*Translation of title provided for Irish readers for whom the word “Gas” denotes fun, good craic (really good fun)** etc
**Translation of craic provided for international readers for whom the word “craic” means nothing or drugs  {perhaps I should retitle this post “nothing or drugs” that’s a good title}

But anyway

It all started weeks ago if I’m honest – my garage, that I stop at each morning for coffee and a 1 cent bar of chocolate, they started forcing viewspapers on me along with the chocolate… chocolate is bad enough, well actually coffee is bad enough, but suddenly they were giving away dirty newsprint laden piles of thinly sliced dead trees as well.  I could have said no thanks, in fact one time I did, but after that I was finding that the surplus papers were sometimes handy to have in the car – for drying out wet 3 ¾ yr olds only pair of shoes, or keeping 3 ¾ yr old warm when I forgot to bring a blanket for him and then remembered that the car’s heating wasn’t working… so I took em, for a while, but always with a slight mini cringe inside, especially the weeks they give away tabloids (as opposed to “serious papers) and the headlines are even more depressing – “Sicko killer given a bath”  “Dying Mum said icecream would save her” type of stuff – like hardly ever things like “Cure for cancer found” or “Scientists prove people are getting nicer and happier”
So yesterday they went a step further, not happy with making my car look (even more) like a centre for the homeless, they now want to take up my free time.  “Do you have a loyalty card?” the girl suddenly said, like it had just occurred to her and having already forced the daily paper on me,  “No” I said, “I think you will like it” she said in her exotic accent, “Here” she said in the same tone I’ve seen childcare workers use on the 3 ¾ year old “take this home and study it, I think you will like it and we actually sold a winner recently”   “Oh, what did they win” I asked, because I cannot NOT be polite, for some annoying reason it’s like part of my personality  or something, and she told me “A trip to New York” and I said “Oh that’s great yeah” “I’ll be here on Friday if you have any questions” she said.

So this morning, even though she wasn’t going to be there, I avoided my usual garage, and went to another one.  One that was less well laid out – you had to walk through the whole shop to get to the coffee, and when you were at the coffee machine there were no sweet delicious almost free things around to tempt you, no, there were just cleaning products, sponges and cloths and bin liners, and because I have an insane job that this week requires me to sit through a few hours of presentations from companies who make these things and I know very little about them, I may have become the first person in history to impulse buy some of those products in that shop – In fact I think they were hidden there at the back of the shop trying to avoid purchase, the shop was laid out by someone who wanted to only have to stock the shelves once, and not have to worry about people buying all the stuff and then they’d have to redo it, oh no… in fact the place is clearly a cover for some illegal enterprise, (I should probably check the sponges don’t have drugs actually hidden in them – at least before I wet them for use) now that I think about it, maybe I should report to the authorities…. I’ll have to trust that they are monitoring the situation – perhaps they’re reading this blog even now and will know which garage I mean and will investigate accordingly.  Mean time – I don’t know how long I’ll stay away from the regular place… they know me, their coffee is good, they make it easier to buy sugary rubbish, I must be strong, must stay away….

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Some kind of silly tree

We were discussing apples one time, and how some of them have stems and some don't, and I was telling Danger how the stem connects the apple to the tree, and he came to the genius conclusion that his apple must have grown on some kind of silly tree because it had no stem - a very silly tree indeed.

Another observation - the quietness of the city - got to drive through the city centre last Friday evening - it was around 6.30, mad busy, slow traffic, and being somewhat deprived of city centreness lately I wanted to fully absorb it (car fumes and all) and lowered my window, and muted the radio - and guess what - nothing.  There were no New York style exclamations and shouts going around, no blaring music, raucous laughter - now to be fair - if I'd have come back 6 or 8 hours later there'd probably be shenanigans aplenty, but I was a little shocked by how much silence there was.  I've been repeating the experiment ever since, getting the best results on a splattery rainy day with the water drumming on the roof - heard from inside and out, and with the added water effect of the odd splash on the side of the face.  Something for you to try at home.