Lovely Feet

<a href=””>Toot Your Horn</a>

I have a myriad of good points:

I am old and wise and witty.
I wouldn’t say I’m pretty.
I write a lot of verse,
Some fairly good, some worse.
But today I had a treat
I was told I had nice feet
By a chiropodist no less.
My face may be a mess
My dress is far from neat
But at least I have Good Feet!












Never Again!

<a href=””>Never Again</a>

“I’ve won!” I shouted.

“All right, no need to deafen us,” said Dad.

“What have you won?” asked Mum

“Not sure, till take the ticket in and get in checked. “

Some of the prizes in our school fund-raising raffle were really good: a day trip to London, a slap-up meal at a posh restaurant, that sort of thing. Even if I only got a book token or a box of chocolates I’d be pleased. I’d never won anything before.

“So what did you win? “Mum asked next day.

“You’re never going to believe this: two tickets for the opera.”

“But you don’t…you’ve never…”

The prizes are given out in turn. The holder of the first ticket drawn gets to pick whatever they chose, the second picks from what is left. By the time my turn came there were only a small selection of prizes, mostly things I didn’t want – a tickets for rugby match, a day’s free access to the local gym. (I get enough gym lessons at school.) A pair of tickets for the opera sounded grand. Anyway I could take my boyfriend Dan and it would be a nice romantic evening. We might even be able to go on Valentine’s Day.

Things don’t always work out to way you’ve planned. Dan sounded enthusiastic until he discovered that the opera season clashed with the school cadet force’s summer camp, something he’s been looking forward to all term. The only solution was to take someone else and the only person available was my Dad.

I’ve never appreciated opera. Yes, the costumes are splendid but the whole thing was in Italian and I hadn’t had time to read the story so hadn’t a clue what the characters were talking or rather singing about. Disappointing was my verdict and I came home with a headache from all the loud music. (I’d be told off  if I played music at that volume in my room.)

“So did you enjoy yourselves?” said Mum when we got home.

“Well,  opera isn’t really my sort of thing.”

“And you?” she asked Dad.

“Oh I quite enjoyed it,” he said, “Once I’d switched off my hearing aid.”

So now you can understand why I have vowed never to go to an opera again.

Note: This is fiction. But it is true that I don’t appreciate opera – or most other form of musical entertainment.




Life Without Computer ?

<a href=””>Life After Blogs</a>

I admit I am old enough to remember life B.C. – before computers. I even once wrote an article in my local paper called “No Micros for Me” in which I explained why you really didn’t need to have your very own computer! Incredible isn’t it? A bit like something I read about the really early days of computing when some portentous person said he didn’t think computers would really catch on, but if they did England would need perhaps 4 or 5 machines in the country! Now if you count laptops and i-pads and smart phones I think most households – at least those with children – would be able to come up with 4 or 5 computer-type devices.

But now I really find it difficult to imagine what I would – or more likely could – do without a computer. Writing is the first thing: I can no longer produce legible handwriting.    I do virtually all writing on the screen.  Some time since, quite a long time, if I’m honest, I began to work straight to the screen – and I found I could do it! Easy-peasy. And I can alter and edit and change and correct so much more easily.

But it’s not only writing that I use my computer for. If it were only writing, I could replace my computer with a word processor or an electronic typewriter – with a memory function of course. No, I also use my computer to look things up, check facts, not only stuff like the date of Rabbie Burns’ birth and death, but personal things like details of appointments with my doctor or dentist, family birthdays and contact details for all sorts of people.

If I want to know what tomorrow’s weather will be like, I consult the metrological office website, if I want to go to the theatre or cinema I look for details of what plays or films are on. I can then book tickets online.

I shop online – from the ubiquitous Amazon – but also other places too.  For me email has replaced snailmail whenever possible. Why type or write a letter, print it out, find an envelope and stamp and walk in my case half a mile to the nearest letterbox? I can put my words on screen, edit them and press send and off they fly. The recipient will receive my letter immediately and can read it at their leisure. I even have the advantage of a copy in my “sent” file so I can check what I said and whenI said it.

No life without a computer -now – would be going back to the dark ages.





New Year

New Year Resolutions

So why do we make them?
We’re certain to break them,
They are one of our worst institutions.
My New Year’s plea
 and I think you’ll agree

Is to ban all New Year Resolutions.



So I wrote a year ago and I still feel more or less the same. There’s no real reason why a new year should be connected with promises to do all sorts of things that are good for you: giving up smoking; losing weight; exercising more; being kind to your elderly mum or dad – if you’ve got them; doing more for other people; helping in charity shops or the like. The list is (almost) endless.

But there’s no real reason why it should be connected with January 1st. You can just as easily start a diet or give up cigarettes on 14th June or 29th October. But there we are and once again I start thinking about what I want to improve in 2016.

I want to write more. OK. Shall I try for a blog a day? Not very likely to keep at it, certainly not after the end of January – even if I manage that long!

There’s also the nagging thought that brilliant pieces scattered randomly in my blog aren’t really acceptable for comp entries as “unpublished” stories/poems/articles. Stuck. Up against a brick wall.

Probably the best way is to try to write: 
1. Something every day – however short or however silly
. 2. Blog entry at least twice a week – using Daily prompt if necessary
 3. One larger project – story/play/new poem each month
 4. say, half a dozen fillers/letters/bits and bobs each month

Might not achieve this but at least I have set a few goals,












<a href=””>Flawed</a&gt;

Remembering – my worst – I might say my only – fault.
If I don’t write things down, I forget them. If I don’t make a shopping list I come home without the things I meant to buy. Sometimes I forget to take my list…or lose it.

Remembering names, people’s names, place names, where we are going, when we are going, it’s all just too much.
Yes I use diaries and calendars and computer reminders and tick lists, but….Now just remind me, what was  today’s prompt?






Sorry, I’m busy. I’m writing.

<a href=””>Sorry, I’m Busy</a>

This is one I made earlier -several years ago. But the thoughts re interruptions when writing still apply!

Persons From Porlock

“Can you give me a hand with my homework?
You’ll do it much better than me
It’s taking me ages, I must write three pages
On ‘Betjeman’s thoughts on the Sea’.
Please can I have a few biscuits?
I’ve had nothing since well before three
And Mum, can I try just one more mince pie?
It won’t stop me eating my tea!”

“All right, but stop pestering me!
I’m writing just now, can’t you see?

“Hello dear, I see you’re not busy
Could you bash out a letter for me?
To this firm in Leeds an order for seeds
And be sure they are sent c.o.d.”

“But why should it always be me?
I’m writing just now, can’t you see?
There’s a half-finished story I’m drafting
A report for the local rag too
That I really must write and send off tonight
The deadline is long overdue.
I’ve a poem that needs some reworking
And one where I’m stuck for a rhyme
I’ve pieces emphatic and epigrammatic
On medieval theatre and mime
That I’d write if only I’d time
If only…if only…I’d time!”



Unplugged? Unconnected?

Sometimes, we all need a break from these little glowing boxes. How do you know when it’s time to unplug? What do you do to make it happen?

<a href=””>Bloggers, Unplugged</a>

I don’t have a chance to “make it happen” so I can have a rest from writing – heavens, a rest from writing would be like a break from breathing.

Seriously though, I get enough unscheduled breaks courtesy of my Internet provider. Little billets-doux saying, “You are not connected to the internet” or “Safari can’t find the URL – check your spelling and try again”.

Then of course there are the umpteen other things that need to be done; some of them need to be done at a particular time. Outings and shopping and meetings and rides, not to mention meals and snacks and household chores – washing and ironing, baking and cooking. I’m now retired: how did I ever find time to go to work?