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Showing posts from May, 2016

Reasons why Fran gets through a lot of toothpaste

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I wasn't a spotty teenager. Phew, I thought. I've got away with that. And, until I was 49, I did.

Then, the day after my 50th birthday. BOOM! Mahoosive spots, all over my chin, cheeks and forehead. On a bad day, I look like the Lake District.

But it's not just me. 
Next time you go to see Shakespeare's Macbeth, watch Lady Macbeth carefully. When she does her 'Out, damned spot!' speech, I swear this isn't bloodguilt at all, but a rant about late-onset acne. Granted, last time I saw the play, I couldn't see the spots on her face, but I was in a £7.50 seat in the upper circle and so far from the action that when Macbeth said, 'Is this a dagger I see before me?' I couldn't have helped him out if I'd tried.  
Furthermore, my theory about Lady-Macbeth-the-Menopausal is supported by the fact that she has ripped off her nightie in the small hours and is wandering about naked, spouting nonsense. Any woman over 45 knows what that's all about.

Evidence that Fran may soon need a permanent carer to get her through the day

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I caused a panic at school on Friday.

I went to my classroom, expecting to teach a class of 14 year olds. They were late arriving.

I laid out on each of their desks their marked books and an A4 resource page for the lesson. I turned on the projector and put in my password to display my lesson notes.

Where was the class?

I peered into the corridor, sure that I would see them come hurtling round a corner, puffing and panting, worrying about being late dawdling along from Art or Science as though on a beach in the Algarve.

But, no. Not a fourteen year old in sight.

I waited another few minutes. Perhaps another teacher had lost track of the time or not heard the bell.

When they were ten minutes late, I scurried along to the school office to see if I had missed a newsletter item saying they were on a school trip or having immunisations in the hall. Perhaps they had voluntarily signed up for immunisations in preference to learning about irregular sentences. It was possible, and reasonable.

Reasons to resist library closures

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I keep hearing more news about library closures or libraries having to cut their opening hours/staff/stock/costs/losses. Arrgggh.

I wrote this poem a couple of years back. I wonder whether, in ten or twenty years' time, some of the images in it will seem archaic and quaint, like something from a previous era.


Towards the exit
I find a book on Shakespeare’s life, misplaced in the Cookery section.  No worries. Here’s a blue corner chair, a vase of optimistic daffodils on a windowsill and an hour to laze through glossed pages.
A woman with a stick and a wheeze tugs herself up the ramp to Fiction.  She smiles to find new romance in ‘Recently Returned’. She leans against a pillar for the first pages in which Marion flies to Morocco with a sad heart.
A young man, tall, unshaven, taps his dreams into an online form. He bends towards the screen as if in prayer to a fickle deity, scrolling up and down for errors, for slips, for what he's missed.
A child in denim dungarees perches on th…