Game of Thrones Exhibition

15 06 2013

Iron Thone

Dear Game of Thrones,

I am terribly sorry that I had to do this by letter and please realise that this is harder for me that it will be for you; but our relationship just isn’t working out for me. It didn’t have to end this way, but due to your conduct lately I feel it needs to be done. If I am totally honest I feel betrayed and your latest screw up is the final straw.

I take none of the responsibility for this, as it is entitely your fault that we must go our separate ways. To be honest I have always felt like second best. After all, you only ever came to me after being with your American viewers – yes I do know about that, and I have always known, but still I forgave you because I always felt so good when we were together.

I feel you have neglected me and that is what is keeping me from being able to continue this toxic & obsessive relationship. Of course it will not take you long to move on and find a new conquest – probably from Toronto, New York, Sao Paolo, Amsterdam or Belfast, someone that can deal with you standing them up; like when you disappeared for a whole week mid season. And don’t think I have forgotten your cruel practical joke on April 1st, when you lied to me and said that Peter Dinklage was to be replaced by Warwick Davis. In fact it seems that you always disappear for months on end and expect to find me waiting for you when you eventually return to grace me with your presence.

But the final straw was when I learned of your G.O.T. exhibition, you cannot begin to understand my disappointment. Oh yes, I’ve seen the photos, they’re all over the damn internet. It looks like a fabulous time was had by all – including my little sister – how could you? Yes I have seen the pictures she posted on Facebook; looks like she made herself quite comfortable on the Iron Throne when you were in Belfast.

But I am not a jealous person, I applauded your success and immediately after discovering the existence of the exhibition I happily tapped away at my laptop trying to find out how I could attend to show my support, only to discover that I was to be excluded.

I will miss our Monday nights together. Remember the time you introduced me to Drogo? Or the Whitewalkers? I was there for the birth of the dragons and of course there was the time that you took me to the Red Wedding.

I am glad we are going in our separate directions. In time we may be friends again – perhaps in time for the next season. No doubt you will not struggle to find someone new who will love you as I have done.

I wish you happiness and success.


If you want to read about the G.O.T. exhibition look here:

If you need to draft a break up letter to someone look here:


10 Steps to amazing weight loss in under 6 months!

19 04 2013

drop a dress size

Just follow these simple steps to drop a dress size in just under 6 months and you to can look and feel as good as I do!

STEP 1: Arrive at work after your summer break only to discover that your line manager, (who has been successfully running the department with OUTSTANDING results for over 30 years), has been signed off ill and will be absent for a minimum of 4 months.

STEP 2: Foolishly agree to step into her shoes and take on her job role on a temporary basis.

STEP 3: Negotiate for several months before receiving any financial recognition that usually accompanies the additional responsibility, stress and workload.

STEP 4: Wave goodbye to any sensible or managable work/life balance.

STEP 5: Recognise that all of the paperwork you had previously rejected as an arduous and pointless waste of your personal time, is in actual fact – the SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT aspect of your job role.

STEP 6: Accept that it is your destiny to remain on your laptop until midnight EVERY night. To maintain this you must be prepared to substitute you preferred (expensive) energy drink with a low quality, store only brand, that is inexpensive – but extremely high in caffeine.

STEP 7: Invest the money you save by buying additional vitamin suppliments and high quality concealers in bulk as you will need these to disguise your general ill health, pasty complexion, skin blemishes and constant exhaustion (evident because of the ever growing bags under your increasingly sleepy eyes).

STEP 8: Ditch your entire wardrobe as your waist-line will decrease at an alarming rate.

STEP 9: Check out upcoming job opportunities for malnourished size zero models.

STEP 10: Realise that without noticing; you have dropped an entire dress size and at least a stone in weight without even trying (in the process, rendering your entire wardrobe virtually useless). As everyone you come into contact with will tell you that you are looking extremely well, you will of course accept your new svelt figure. Pacified by this, you will spend an increased amount of your morning attempting to hide your sunken cheeks, ignore your contast hunger pangs and find the (previously) tightest fitting outfit that you own, all the while expending a lot of energy trying to remember how on earth you ended up in this position.

Or otherwise: Live healthy, be strong and realsie that there is more to life than work!

Happy Birthday Buttercup!

11 04 2013

Lynne and Buttercup

My gorgeous car Buttercup is a year old and in for her first proceedure today.

I experienced the trepidation of any parent entrusting the care of their baby to a stranger as I reluctantly handed over my keys and I reflected on our first year together. Between you and me, she wasnt planned, she was an accident. The product of a foolish impulsive decision to go shopping – I have only been in a car showroom once in my life, I promise! And I only ended up there because it was sunny and I didnt want to stay indoors. But truth be told, when I look at her now I feel no sense of regret.

From her first hesitant stutter as we pulled out of the forecourt together – we had a special bond.

She has been good for me. She asks so little in return. She does not guzzle petrol. She does not feel like a tank where she turns a corner. She does not splutter and groan and whine for the duration of every journey.

Lately she has been a little grizzley, so despite my nerves as I watch the clock waiting for news, I am lifted by the hope that the underlying cause will be discovered and corrected – however painful the cost. In the last year she has had her knocks and mishaps which were hard for me to bear witness to and brought a tear to my eye. Recently a small chip on her windscreen had to be treated and a confrontation with a brick wall some months ago has left a scar on her right hand side door. But to me she will always be beautiful.

As I waited anxiously for my taxi to return me home while I wait for news, I witnessed a strange man behind her wheel, steering her into the operating room and I uttered a quick prayer “Please be gentle with her”.

My husband only has limited access with her and must be supervised at all times. I am concerned that when he eventually passes his driving test he will want to have a car with me, something that is ours and not just mine, and Buttercup may end up being neglected and sidelined. I cannot imagine allowing this to happen but we will cross that junction when we come to it.

Happy Birthday Buttercup. May you be returned to me with a clean bill of health and your flawless service history intact.

The Future father of my children…is an amazing cook!

27 03 2013

Daddy Chef

I have been reviewing FFOMC’s suitability for parenthood and I realised that it would be remiss of me not to mention his talent in the kitchen, and yes I am talking about cooking!

Before he met me he had several jobs that involved cooking. For example, he worked at The Little Chef when he first quit college, followed by his pub job which included some time in the kitchen, he even held a position  Fish restaurant which offered him the chance of taking an NVQ and other training which may have resulted in him making his role as a chef a more permanent career choice but retail beckoned and has ultimately led him into a 9-5 position at head office at long last!

For as long as we have lived together we have shared the responsibility of cooking. We rotate, taking turns to cook every other night; and I must say he is pretty damn good at it!

While I rarely have any complaints about any of his food, my favourite dishes would definitely be his amazing fried breakfasts, his fantastic roast dinners (particularly his roast pork), and recently he has experimented with delicious dauphinoise potatoes when he discovered I had a liking for them.

It is wonderful that we can share this task and FFOMC definitely has a talent for preparing good food. In fact he takes great pride in his cooking.

When I started my current job and discovered that my boss, who quickly became an amazing friend, did not cook at all and prefered to use her oven as a storage unit for past coursework. She lived alone so FFOMC started to cook a little more than we needed and would make her up a plate for me to take to her at work the next day for her to heat up in her microwave. She always seemed to really appreciate this and he beamed with pride everytime he wrapped up a plate in tin foil and presented it to me to give to her at work in the morning. He knew how much I valued this woman and when she became ill last summer, he scolded me when I made a bolognaise one evening only using half a packet on mince as it would mean there wouldn’t be enough to take her a portion – he was deeply disgruntled to discover that she was on a restricted diet during her recovery and his efforts in the kitchen would have to take a leave of absence.

His skill does not however, come without its problems.

We have different attitudes towards cooking. I tend to cook things so they are as I like them rather than as they are supposed to be. Thinking back to my childhood I remember my Dad’s burnt offerings on the BBQ, the only option for steaks being the ‘well done option’ and vegetables were always overcooked and soggy. I remember this with a warm fuzzy feeling in my tummy – a positive one though not memories of food poisoning! When I cook this way, FFOMC transforms into a less likable and more irritable Gordon Ramsey, issuing instructions and offering ‘helpful’ advice that I promptly disregard and continue with my tried and tested methods learnt in my childhood.

FFOMC and I enjoy watching the odd cooking related show together and have particularly enjoyed Hell’s Kitchen, all things Heston Blumenthal and the personable Jamie Oliver’s attempts to resolve all the world’s problems through the medium of cooking on Fifteen – although I was less enamoured with his attempts to FIX education with his ill conceived notion that non teaching, subject specialists could do a better job than qualified teachers.

The problem with watching cooking shows is that FFOMC resolves immediately to sign up as a contestant thinking that he would clearly do a better job than the shortlisted candidates selected to participate and even worse he starts to do weird and unnecessary things when he is preparing food that elongates the process and as far as I can tell does not improve the quality of the meals he serves.

He is quick to criticise my efforts in the kitchen and warns me that our future children will prefer his cooking to mine.

For what it is worth – I am happy for him to never suffer the indignity of choking down another meal I have prepared for the reat of his life if that is his wish. Unfortunately he in turn seems to feel I would benefit from more practice.

We have reached a deadlock.

But I suppose if someone is going to critic my culinary skills it is preferable that it is someone who actually knows what he is doing in the kitchen.

If he does achieve his goal of becoming a house husband I imagine that cooking is one skill that will come in handy for him.

Then again – how challenging is it for a master chef to heat fish fingers, potato waffles and heize baked beans?


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I'm part of Post A Day 2013

Fantasy Cast List – my department

26 03 2013

Ok my job is a bit weird. Taken at face value I work in education, I am what is known as a pillar of the community and a role model.

But in reality…I teach Drama and I say sentences every day that no one would ever expect to utter aloud! I currently work with two of the most wacky and wonderful women I have ever met and a bloke who defies description!

So the actors charged with the responsibility of re-enacting my working life have a tough job.

Head of department - dearest Jane - is my very own hell hound and I wouldnt have her any other way.

Meryl Streep is the only choice for my Head of department – dearest Jane – she is my very own ‘hell hound’ and I wouldnt have her any other way.

Quirky Emily is believed to have starred in Hot Fuzz by the students - a rumour we have neither confirmed nor denied! My working life would be empty without my partner in crime!

Quirky Lucy Punch would play my sidekick Emily who is believed by many of our students to have starred in Hot Fuzz. It is a rumour we have neither confirmed nor denied! My working life would be empty without my partner in crime!

Collectively we have on occassion been been known as “Oddies Angels” but ‘dearest Jane’ definitely would not approve of this label!

Eddikins has only joined us on a temporary contract this year and was compared to the lovely Jeremy Kyle. TBH I can sort of see it but only if Jeremy had recently consumed 6 cans of red bull and a sherbet dip!

Eddikins has only joined us on a temporary contract this year and was compared to the lovely Jeremy Kyle. TBH I can sort of see it but only if Jeremy had recently consumed 6 cans of red bull and a sherbet dip!


I'm part of Post A Day 2013

Irrational happiness

21 03 2013

I have been a bit stressed out at work lately – its that time of year!

At times like these I have a number of ways of dealing with the blues – things that make me irrationally happy and never fail to lift my mood.

Tonight I brought out an old favourite, I love music and you can’t beat a good parody. I don’t know what it is about this song but I cannot listen to it without giggling like a teenager.

I would be interested in hearing about what things make other people as irrationally happy as this song make me.

I'm part of Post A Day 2013

The future father of my children… is happy to name our child Hamlet

20 03 2013


Like many couples who have been together for a long time FFOMC and I have had the optimistic idealistic discussions about being parents and what our future children might be like. We also have the requisite list of potential baby names.

Creating this list has been a labour of love and I must say the list has seen great improvements over the last 14 years that we have been together.

When this topic was first discussed, FFOMC suggested Brandon if we had a boy and Emerald if we had a girl. As a teacher I come into contact with a lot of Brandon’s and the experience – for me – has been less than positive. Before you lynch me, I am sure there are many fantastic young men with this name! But all teachers have experiences that influence their attitudes towards particular names and I am afraid that for me Brandon is an unthinkable choice for my son. I don’t know anyone named Emerald (I think there may be good reasons for this) but again there may be some wonderful and inspirational Emerald’s out there who I simply have not yet met.

Our list of baby names has matured as we have with more grown up choices like: Katherine, Hannah, Emma and Jessica as possible girls names and Henry, Harry and Nathan for a little boy.

Of course this is all very hypothetical and it is common to feel differently when there is an actual baby or even just a bump to name.

The topic of children’s names was discussed recently in the staff room at school. My boss started giggling like a schoolgirl and when I pressed her on what had her so amused she said “You should so called your future children Hamlet and Ophelia or Romeo and Juliet”. We all had a giggle at this especially when I realised that my parents – who have strong views on the names of children – might actually buy into the idea that I would make these choices for long enough for any alternative I revealed to be a relief.

I was explaining this to FFOMC this evening. Thank goodness I’m not emotionally invested in the name Hamlet because the rest of the conversation went as follows:

“I could live with us naming our son Hamlet”

I almost fell out of my chair…

…”as long as his middle name is…wait for it”

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