Acknowledgement, Annoyances, Commentary, General Humour, Modern Life

My genes have let me down…

I’m not talking about the fact that I have Type 1 diabetes.

Or that I have a mental illness.

Or hypothyroidism.

Or short-sight.

And high blood-pressure.

Or that I’m allergic to cats.

No. None of these are the problem. I have medication for all the physical stuff. I get therapy for the mental problem. I wear glasses and I can take anti-histamines to counter the cats. (Or kick them out when it’s really bad.)

No. The real problem (and one that can’t be treated) is that I’m too tall.

Eh? Almost everyone would like to be taller!

Not if they had my kitchen sink cupboard…

My partner is a bit OCD and likes to tidy everything away. This results in everything I like to keep handy in case needed is ‘stuffed’ in the cupboard beneath the kitchen sink.


Every time I try to find the hammer, or the sellotape, or the bin-bags, or my Marmite… I cause an avalanche of ‘crap’ that takes hours to put back.

Now, if I were shorter, I would be able to see into the cupboard and find the required item much quicker and without creating a mess of monumental proportions. My blood pressure would also be lower preventing an early demise. (Especially considering all the health conditions mentioned earlier!)

The short of it is… I’m too tall.

Behaviour, Commentary, General Humour, Other people, Superheroes

Other peoples business…

Just spent the last half an hour hanging my ear out of the back door listening to my neighbours having the mother of all arguments. (My partner was stood on the bed in the other room with her ear pressed to the ceiling…)

Why do we find others distress so enjoyable/interesting? Because we don’t have such drama in our own lives or does it just make us feel better?

I’ve had bucket-loads of drama in my life so I guess I must feel glad that it’s happening to someone else and not me.

Ever ‘rubber-necked’ on the motorway? Why? Worried that it might be someone you know?

Unlikely. On the motorway (or interstate) every other vehicle is more of an annoyance (like a buzzing fly) that is obstructing your way to the home/office/airport etc. and you probably couldn’t care less about who the drivers or passengers might be.

Is it possible to resist the temptation to poke our noses in? Should we?

Presumably some people do it to see if they can help or sort out an injustice. Perhaps our ‘superheroes’ are the ultimate ‘busybodies’ who make a career out of interfering. Instead of Spiderman, may be Peter Parker would have been better served adopting the moniker, ‘Nosey Parker’?

Many domestic fights are broken up by third parties only for them to find themselves being attacked by the partner that was on the receiving end of their spouses fist to start with. Sometimes it is better just to observe?

But even then you are likely to hear the immortal line – ‘What are you looking at?’ and have to turn away quickly or pretend to be extremely interested in the dry-cleaners behind them else risk becoming the subject of their wrath.

Anyway got to go. The partner has stormed out leaving the man with only the kids to shout at. Never heard such language from a seven-year old…

Commentary, General Humour, Karma, Modern Life, The little things in life

Conclusive proof that ‘Car’ma exists..

If you read my blog yesterday, you would have seen that I mentioned that my neighbours upset me all the time by continuously playing loud music and being generally obnoxious.

This morning, around 8 am, we heard a loud crunch in the road outside and looked out of the window to see what was going on.

‘Oh dear! What a shame!’ – the rear of their car was completely smashed in and the drivers were exchanging insurance details. Our neighbour was not a happy man. Any more proof needed? He he he.


Commentary, Conversation, Free Speech, General Humour, Language, Meanings of words

Is it in yet?

Is it in yet?

Of course the four worst words any man wants to hear. 😉

Got me thinking though. (I hasten to mention, that was NOT said to me!)

In these days when tweets and texts are perhaps the primary method of communication (after speech) and we have to limit the amount of words/characters we use – what are the best/worst things we can hear or read that contain the fewest words?

Here’s a few of my suggestions…

You have 1/3/6 months to live

I love you

It’s not you, it’s me

That item is out of stock

You’ve got the job!

It’s a boy/girl!

It’s twins/triplets/sextuplets

I forgot your passport!

Happy Birthday!

We don’t have that size/color

We’re getting a puppy

I’m sorry about this but…

I’m pregnant

Bend over

We need to talk

I’m sorry

It’s too late

We’re out of toilet paper

Last orders please!

Wow. Isn’t it interesting how such few words can produce so much amount and variety of emotion? And how the very same words can be either positive or negative?

Generally you would imagine that the words ‘I love you’ would be great to hear, especially the first time. But for some people it can be the death knell for a relationship if they’re not ready or have a fear of commitment.

‘It’s a boy/girl’ can have tremendous import if you live in a country that allows/practices gendercide because of skewed economics or population problems. Many parents would cry tears not of joy but despair or anguish if the ‘wrong’ sex meant having to terminate the pregnancy or secretly dispose of the baby.

Some words can only mean bad news. I suspect almost no-one will take the instruction to ‘Bend over’ in a doctor’s office as an indication that something good is about to happen. There’s always exceptions to the rule though…

‘Happy Birthday’ will be words that will be great to hear for new 16/18/21 year olds as they are important milestones that open up whole new worlds of possibilities depending on where you live. At last you can go to a pub/bar/club or buy beer on your own! (Bit sad really but I think it’s true that it’s the primary thought in many young people’s heads)

Once you hit 30 though it’s a different story. To the point that you start dividing or deducting years in order to avoid hitting the big ‘tens’. ‘I’m NOT nearly 40, I’m 39 and a half!’ – me personally, I’m 47 and a quarter…

I’d love to hear your comments/opinions. What’s the best/worst thing you ever heard in the fewest words?

Commentary, Conversation, General Humour, Mental Health, Musings, Questions, Therapy, TV

Pointless questions…

I was watching an old episode of Frasier this morning and suddenly got caught by some dialogue between him and Niles (his brother) where his ex-wife (Lilith) has shown up and he is debating whether he wants to reconcile and looking to Niles for advice –

Niles: Frasier, like most patients who come to a 
therapist, you already know the answer to the 
question you're posing.  You just want me to agree
with your decision and support you whether I 
share your opinion or not.
Frasier: Yes, but I don't have an opinion in this 
  Niles: I'm sure you do.
Frasier: But I don't.
  Niles: Well, then I can't help you.

This then made me think about the value of, and need for, therapy and those who practice it.

Are therapists really that knowledgable and skilled in the workings of the human mind or are they just ‘prompter’s’ who ask basic questions and then let us do all the work anyway?

I’ve attended various therapies and had different therapists over the years. fortunately I’ve never had to pay for any of them but if I had would I have seen them for as long or resented having to pay for their (my own) advice?

Here’s my list of the five requirements for a good therapist –

1) Ears (so at least you get the impression that someone is listening to you)

2) Mouth (to ask the occasional question)

3) Sympathetic expression (and box of tissues)

4) The ability to nod at the right time

5) No charge

The need to ‘vent’ is a very strong one. Exasperation at yourself, others, government, your employer etc. builds up and requires an outlet else becomes detrimental to your mental health. Facebook is now a popular outlet for demonstrating unhappiness about things but that can result in being seen as a constant complainer, bringing others down and may even result in your losing friends.

Perhaps the true value of a therapist is that they are not personally connected with you and therefore you can say all the things that bother you without having to worry about hurting anyones feelings (unless of course you’re telling them how crap and worthless you think they are). They also provide the sanctuary of confidentiality so you can really let loose when you need to.

I’m seeing my psychiatrist this afternoon. I actually have a lot of time and respect for him and enjoy our meetings and find them helpful. I also own a punchbag should he prove not to be.

What do you think? Remember, ‘I’m listening…’

Commentary, Education, General Humour, Language

The ironing is delicious…

‘I think the mouses climb in up the ivory’ – a classic line uttered by my neighbour over the garden fence when we were sitting out on a sunny day.

We (my partner and I) then spent a fruitless half-hour trying to tactfully educate her in proper plurals (mice), botany (ivy) and zoology (ivory). She stated at the end of the ‘lesson’ that she preferred her version (because it was funnier) and that she was too old to change (31).

Do you ever correct people on their use of english or just remain increduously silent preferring not to rock the boat or annoy/embarrass them?

I’ve often been told that it’s a very annoying habit of mine. I suspect it stems from when I taught English As a Foreign Language to bored, middle-aged Chinese housewives in Hong Kong. I did this in my late teens when living there as a way to make some extra dollars. My primary employment was as a swimming teacher where the students where advised NOT to open their mouths unnecessarily or suffer the painful consequences.

With more advanced students we taught the use of idioms and proverbs such as ‘Let sleeping dogs lie’. The lessons were often not very successful due to the cultural differences. To my recollection the Chinese version is more similar to ‘Don’t step on the dogs tail, he’ll bite you’ – probably more pragmatic. I think the Chinese generally think a bit bigger and worry more about waking dragons up rather than puppies.

We are often regaled with stories of the funny things children say (I seem to remember a TV series being made on that particular topic) but why do adults ‘cock it up’? (Do you know where that expression comes from? – check here for a list of possibilites – – it’s fascinating)

The obvious answer is that poor education/upbringing is to blame and that’s certainly partly true but could there be other explanations? Some people will say things ‘wrong’ to get a laugh and I wonder if perhaps others do it either to see if people are actually listening to what they’re saying or to test the intellect of those they are talking with/to.

Anyway I’ll leave it there, I have to get on with the irony…

Age, Commentary, General Humour, Getting Older, Language, Philosophy

Are you a fuddy-duddy?

I like to think of myself as being generally tolerant, young at heart, fun etc. etc. but there is another Carl and he’s a grumpy old sod.

Are you actually getting/thinking/behaving older than you think you are? Do you find yourself ‘sounding’ like your parents? Check my list below and see if you can tick any of the boxes…

1) Doctors and policeman look too young to be doing their jobs.

2) You say hello back to the news-readers and weather forecasters on TV when they introduce themselves.

3) You’re glad you’re short-sighted so you can’t see all the grey hair on the floor after it’s been cut.

4) Car stereos and loud music (played by other people) drive you crazy.

5) You will make any excuse NOT to go to a night-club and if perchance you should find yourself in one you actually go to the toilet often to pee rather than ‘do a line’.

6) You are prescribed statins and/or blood pressure medication.

7) All your t-shirts are too small/tight.and no-one knows who the bands are.

8) You still own VHS tapes (and occasionally watch them)

9) You won’t eat a donor kebab

10) Instead of rushing to the cinema to see the new release by your favourite franchise/actor you’re prepared to wait until you can download it and watch in the comfort of your own home.

11) Neighbours holds no interest for you but you won’t miss an episode of Coronation Street.

12) You play Words With Friends rather than Candy Crush Saga.

13) Shoes – you go for comfort rather than style. (I actually wear a pair now handed down by my father and I love them)

14) You think almost all new music is crap.

15) You have to keep using more seasoning and spice on your food else you can’t taste it.

16) Hair grows in weird places.

17) You think about writing a ‘Letter to the Editor’ of a broad-sheet.

18) You actually look at the supplements in the papers.

19) You consider booking a cruise instead of Ibiza and consider the advantages of an onboard doctor and pharmacy should your bunions/piles play up.

20) You start eating All-Bran instead of Sugar Puffs.

21) You see more sunrises than sunsets. (Because you’re getting up earlier instead of staggering home and struggling to put the key in the door)

22) You’re not upset about being the ‘Designated Driver’.

23) You’ll buy slippers and socks rather than waiting until Christmas.

24) You worry about EVERY ache and pain.

25) The garden actually has flowers in it instead of vomit.

How did you score? Of course these things do not necessarily mean you are stuck in your ways or old-fashioned or conservative. They’re merely the consequences of growing older and fighting it can often result in looking silly and/or cause you great physical pain.

I might be wearing my dad’s shoes and have to pluck my nose hair but I still enjoy a good Batman comic too.