Once upon a time Mark was having an off-day in the kitchen. Everything seemed to go wrong, and the final straw came when he dropped a plate on the floor. He went into total drama-queen mode (never far away at the best of times) and screeched: ‘Oh, no! I can’t face it!’ Everyone laughed their socks off, and now whenever someone (usually Mark, let’s be honest) has a hissy fit over something trivial we all chorus ‘Oh, no! I can’t face it!’
But that wasn’t what I was going to write about. Saturday is International Women’s Day and I shall be heading down to the Donkey for an afternoon of fun, feminism and flatulence (well, after a few pints anyway.) I have no idea whether there will be a moment to read it but I have written a poem about ageing. It’s called A Sorry State and in it a woman apologises to her male date for not being love’s young dream before realising that he is even older than her. It’s a sort of companion-piece to the Lewis Carroll parody ‘To the Looking-Glass’, I guess. And this is much on my mind at the moment; every day I am assaulted by the contrast between the picture of myself I have in my head (and on Facebook, to be honest) and the one I see in the mirror. And not in a good way. In the mirror I look older and – oh, horror – jowlier than I do in my head. And that is not a happy experience.
So – back inside my head it is then… and onwards into Lent. Today is the first day of that festival and, having had an epic failure with the vegan pancakes (gloopy and with too much baking powder) I am launching into forty days and nights without Bad News; ie without Facebook, theToday programme, newspapers etc. So far so good; I’m listening to Radio 4 extra and reading Ian Rankin.
I’ll keep you posted.
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