Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Paradise Sloth

I've now moved in with the Sloth, who probably began to regret that decision around the time she saw my scarf and shoe collections, and definitely regretted it after we threw out at least 40 bin bags of assorted crap (including, amongst much else, my large Warrior Cat book set and my Cheryl Cole 2010 calendar), and surely must have wanted to kill me (and possibly my ancestors by way of a time machine) after the epic bout of cleaning we did last weekend. Yet she did it all with a smile on her face (or possibly a grimace) and for this I am very grateful. However, things came to an unfortunate head during the first few minutes of unpacking my books, while we stood in the living room surrounded by - and I do not joke in the slightest - mountains and mountains of my possessions.

Sloth: What are you doing?

Me: Unpacking?

Sloth: You're putting the books on the shelves already?

Me: Yes? I'm putting them on in order, obviously. I'm not crazy.

Sloth: *slow but horrified expression* What order would that be?

Me: Genre. Of course. Then size.

Sloth: *looking extremely pained* Not... not in alphabetical order?!

Me: What? No! Who does that? How the bloody hell would I find anything?

Sloth: You'd find it by knowing the alphabet.

Me: No way! They're going on by genre. I don't even... if you put them on alphabetically, they'll be all higgledy-piggledy! Small books next to tall books! That's chaos. It's aesthetic vomit. I'm not having it.

Sloth: What's the problem?


Sloth: Yes, I have eyes. Eyes that can see the alphabet. I'll buy another bookshelf if I have to, I simply won't subject my books to this horror.

Me: I don't even know you any more!

There was a brief pause.

Sloth: Still love me?

Me: Of course. But you're a barbarian and there's no saving you.

Sloth: Okay. I'm still right, though. You can blog about this and see who agrees with who.

Me: Fine. I will.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Two Slotters Are Better Than One

On the recently published list of "8 animal hybrids that could break the internet", the top picture featured was a Sloth + Otter combination aptly, if somewhat worryingly, called a Slotter, and would look like this:

This led to a rather disturbing conversation between myself and my vegetarian girlfriend.

Me: Slotters! Our babies will be so cute and perfect and will apparently break the internet!

Sloth: That IS adorable.

Me: But what would they eat?

Sloth: Seaweed.

Me: (glazing over) I imagine that the Slotters would hunt in large packs. Hundreds of them hunting a single whale, hugging it to death while it sinks into the abyss because of the extra weight, and then they'd nibble on its delicious blubbery carcass, feasting for days and singing of their triumphs.

Sloth: Eww, no. They'll eat seaweed.

Me: But-

Sloth. (sternly) Seaweed!

Me: (whining) But honey, they want to drown whales!

Sloth: (stern look)

Me: Fine, fine. Seaweed. What about a nice diet of seaweeds and crabs?

Sloth: No crabs.

Me: Why the hell not? Crabs are tasty.

Sloth: Because they have eyes... and plans for the future.

Me: (gaping in horror) Oh. Oh god. I never thought of it like that. Fuuuuuuuuuuuck....why would you phrase it like that?

There was a brief pause.

Sloth: (innocently)  So, seaweed?

Me: (broken) Seaweed. *sniff*

Thursday, 24 October 2013

The Mass(ive) Effect On Me

Greetings, sweet otterlings! I realise it has been a very long time since I posted anything - please accept whiskery internet kisses as consolation for my absence. I was in Poland during the latter half of September with my Sloth, which managed to be both a fantastic holiday and a truly exhilarating ride through the magical world of  Conversations With Your Partner's Non English Speaking Parents. As previously noted in this blog, I had learned some of the most important words beforehand (such as 'yes', 'no', 'please', 'thank you', 'beef', 'kitten', 'now', 'is possible', 'is not possible', 'small potato') so I believe I did manage to get by without incident. Sloth's parents appeared to approve of me, so I achieved my goal, and will ignore that this was in all likelihood due to the fact that they couldn't understand 98% of what I said. Challenge accomplished.

Lately I've been rather busy with other things - I have a new story appearing in an anthology by Dreamscape Press (link coming shortly) which is available on Amazon US, and of course, playing Mass Effect 3 for the first time.

This has not been an easy journey. Mass Effect 3 has sucked me in, masticated me like a piece of week-old pork and spat me out on the floor, a shell of the person I once was. Okay, perhaps that's a slight exaggeration, but I'm not kidding when I say I've become rather involved. Sloth has become quite involved as well, but then since she's been reading/browsing the internets beside me while I play, and has had to listen to a constant stream of  my rants, my giggles and my detailed explanations of what's going on, I can't really see how she could have avoided it (short of going all David Blaine In A Box). A typical conversation follows:

(Me: (button mashing furiously) Come on. Come on!

Sloth: (peering at TV with interest) Why is that guy just standing there?

Me: (still mashing) Because he's a dick. Seriously, James, we're in the middle of a gunfight. Start shooting people in the head. Please.

Sloth: What's happening now?

Me: Um, well I'm pissed because I needed an Asari artefact to complete my Prothean device, because otherwise I couldn't defeat the Reapers, so I went to this planet to get it but this assassin guy just stole it from me. Which is kind of annoying. As I'm sure you understand.

Sloth: I'm really glad I paid attention previously, because otherwise I wouldn't have followed a word of that.

Me: Well, that's the kind of horrible but beautiful thing love does to you. I SWEAR TO GOD, JAMES, IF YOU DON'T SHOOT SOMEBODY IN THE NEXT TEN SECONDS I'M NOT BRINGING YOU ON THE NEXT MISSION. 

Sloth: You should have brought Garrus. I'm just saying.

Me: Yeah, I know... I'm going to go look at my fish now. My fish don't judge me and they don't get stuck in corners when I'm being fired on by Marauders. (crooning) Fiiiiiiiish. I love you, fish.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Needs A Little Polish

It's a good day when I come into work and the first thing Wetsoks says to me is not "have you seen this dead guy" or "click this link, it's safe for work, honestly" or "look at what happens when you get eaten by piranhas in this series of increasingly graphic photos", all before I've had breakfast, so in comparison this morning's conversation made me very happy.

Me: Good morning buddy.

Wetsoks: Cào nǐ zǔzōng shíbā dài. Ask me what it means!

Me: Oh good grief. Okay, what does it mean?

Wetsoks: Fuck your ancestors to the 18th generation!

Me: I'm not sure whether to be impressed or affronted.

Wetsoks: I learned it from a fic. It's Chinese Mandarin. I love the Chinese.

Me: What's not to love - their food, their insults... It's all good.

Wetsoks: DONG. It means giggles.

Me: Stop making me dong at my desk  *wink*

Wetsoks: Heh.

Me: Okay, in return let me teach you a word of Polish. Say "vol o vina", spelled 'wolowina'. With a funny little stroke on the L.

Wetsoks: Okay. What's that?

Me: Beef.

Wetsoks: Lol. The important words come first, obviously.

Me: Yep. I also learned the word for 'now'. To impress Sloth's parents when we go over there next month.

Wetsoks: You're going to impress your girlfriend's parents by bellowing "BEEF NOW" at them in the language of their people?

Me: Pretty much. I mean, wouldn't that work on you?

Wetsoks: I guess it would.

Me: I rest my case.

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Caesar 3 Wasn't Built In A Day

My Sloth girlfriend and I were hanging out last night after watching Battle Royale. The conversation began with her favourite new phone game, but tailed off when she tried to explain the rules to me.

Me: (suspiciously) It looks like... Farm Tetris.

Sloth: It's really good.

Me: Uh huh. Hey, you know what you should play? Caesar 3. Remember I lent you the disc because it's for Windows and I, poor soul, only have a Mac?

Sloth: I do really want to try that.

Me: I have no ulterior motive for getting you to install it.

Sloth: (unconvinced stare)

Me: You know what? I bet I could find it for Mac somewhere on the internet!

I quickly Googled this and discovered to my absolute joy that I could purchase the game which made my formative years pass so quickly (well, that and Final Fantasy VIII) for a mere $5.99. The fact that the price was in dollars only quickened my little typing paws, because dollars, especially dollars on my credit card, are mentally sifted into the Fictional Monopoly Money section of my brain, and quickly deleted from the trashcan memory.

Me: I'm downloading! It's alive! ALIVE!

Sloth: (wistfully but pointedly) Remember when I used to have a girlfriend?

Me: Installing...installing...

Sloth: Remember those days? She was lovely. We spent a lot of time together.

Me: (absentmindedly) That's nice, sweetheart.

Sloth: (sighing and picking up her phone)  Okay, I'm fine. I have a new Sims demo. Later.

Me: (clicking frantically) Just get whatever you want, babe.

We ended up playing our separate games in unified joy. It would have been a beautiful scene, except anyone present would have heard us both shouting at our games, which made for some quite bizarre conversations.

Sloth: Right, I'm going fishing.

Me: Could you possibly not collapse every two seconds, you stupid bastard farm? You're surrounded by engineers.

Sloth: I don't want tuna, I want salmon!

Me: Oh, your house can't evolve because you have no pottery? Well fuck you. I decide what your market gets. I AM YOUR POTTERY GOD. BOW TO ME.

Sloth: Get out of my way, Jake! Fine, if you won't get out of my house I'm going to flirt with her again. Oh, is she your girlfriend? Tough. If you'd let me go fishing this wouldn't have happened.

Me: ...What?

Sloth: What?

Me: Nothing. You're awesome.

Monday, 8 July 2013

Army of Duckness

My Sloth is a wonderful person (she'd have to be, to put up with me) but even her patience and tolerance for my incessant oddness can occasionally wane. Therefore it was with some trepidation that I sent her the following text, some days ago:

Me: Darling. Very important question. Which would you prefer - a dead kestrel sewn onto a stuffed pine marten, or an army of taxidermied ducklings? Hint: there is no wrong answer.

Sloth: Uh. None.

Me: I said which.

Sloth; You SAID there was no wrong answer.

There was a brief pause.

Sloth: Okay, I'm swaying towards the ducklings.

Me: SWEET. I can line them up for you, with post-it notes on their little chests! They'll be waiting for you to leave the bathroom or trip over them in the hall during the night and did I mention I love you?

Sloth: Sigh. I love you too.

The only thing is that the eBay listing claimed that the ducklings died of natural causes. This struck me as, well, slightly suspicious, given that there were 20 of them. I found myself unable to conceive of a situation where 20 ducklings simply (and usefully, given the nature of this seller's business) keeled over. Then I realised that for the past 15 mins I had been sitting at my desk, pondering how one might best murder baby ducks without leaving any marks, which should have worried me but didn't because DUCKLINGS YEAH.

Now, I know my Sloth, and I believe I know how to target/market to that audience with just the right amount of wheedling, convincing, persuasive non-logic and baffling tangents. Therefore I decided it was wise to leave this topic for a few days, to allow it to marinade in her subconscious. Yesterday after my Sloth finished work, I picked her up with some beer so we could casually hang out in the garden square like the cool kids do.

Me: So, darling. Ducklings.

Sloth: On a related topic, I'd like to point out that your last blog post contained some inaccuracies. I don't nose pinch, I facepalm. Which I believe is an appropriate response to this and many other discussions we've had.

Me: Well excuse me. It's hard to tell exactly what you're doing when your head is in your hands like that.

Sloth: Do you not wonder why?

Me: Mmm, not really. Darling? Ducklings. Focus.

Sloth: (clawing at her face with her hands) AHHHH. Seriously?

Me: Yep. And look, I've had time to think about this, and just imagine the fun we could have!

Sloth: (heaving a sigh) Uh huh.

Me: We could recreate scenes from famous films.

Sloth: Titanic?

Me: YES. And say, the Godfather. And Harry Potter. These ducklings will pay for themselves.

Sloth: I fail to see how, exactly... but... we could do a Lord of the Rings battle scene.

There was a moment of joy while we both pictured this, before her face fell in horror.

Sloth: ...What are you doing to me?

Me: Okay. Just hear me out. What about... A DUCKLING CHESSBOARD?

Sloth: Um...

Me: We could make little hats for them, to signify the appropriate pieces.

Sloth: I suppose. We could paint half of them black.

Me: The only problem with that is the listing was for only 20 ducklings and a chessboard would require 32. I suppose I could buy two cases, but that just seems silly. Or-

Sloth: I am not going to let you supplement my chessboard with stuffed rats. Don't even think about it.

Me: How do you feel about voles?

Sloth: I'm... not totally sure. I kind of want to facepalm again.

Me: What about polecats?

Sloth: I'm not having a polecat on my chessboard. It'll never fit. And please, please disregard the fact that I've now referred to it as "my" chessboard twice.

Me: Even if you don't want to admit it, some part of you has already committed to making our dream come true.

Sloth: (muffled groans of what I can only assume was unbridled joy)

Friday, 5 July 2013

Hip Hop Hooray

Apologies, my dearest otterlings, for my long absence. It's been a busy few months AND I recently celebrated my birthday (despite several 'hilarious' comments by friends, no I have not just become legally able to drink, I have merely become legally able to verbally kick your elderly asses. Oh wait, don't I do that already? Let's soldier on)

More exciting news - I've got a story coming out over at Linguistic Erosions on 19th July, which I will pimp unashamedly as per usual when I get the link. Now on to the catch up, which I'm sure you're simply dying to read.

My Sloth girlfriend came in from work the other night, and started a conversation as follows:

Sloth: Did you see the Metro today?

Me: I did not.

Sloth: There was an article, about hygiene statistics-

Me: NO.

Sloth: ...What?

Me: Don't tell me.

Sloth: But I-

Me: Please don't. I'm bad enough already without sciencefacts backing it up. I barely touch door handles at work as it is. People are filthy, snotty creatures and should be basically sealed in a decontamination chamber for several torturous minutes before being allowed inside the building.

Sloth: Fine, fine. Just thought I'd share.

I had largely managed to forget about this conversation, when a couple of days later I was brushing my teeth, examining my whiskers, and doing all those private bathroom things with the door slightly ajar for entertainment's sake. My Sloth was pottering about in the kitchen, within talking distance.

Sloth: Remember I was trying to tell you the other day about that hygiene article?

Me:  I have erased the memory as much as I am able to do so.

Sloth. Riiiight. Well I read something else, where apparently "scientists" have stated that you should wash your hands thoroughly-

Me: Who doesn't already do that? Gross!

Sloth: For a specific period of time. Like, the amount it takes you to sing Happy Birthday-

Me: That's not so bad.

Sloth: Twice.

Me: What?!

Sloth: I know, right? Ain't nobody got time for that.

Me: (starting to giggle) You know, this could be fun.

Sloth: What?

Me: I could start doing this in public bathrooms. Imagine sitting in a stall, quietly minding your own business, and then all of a sudden, you hear a tap begin to drip in the sink, and a little voice piping up... (singing in the creepiest way possible while rubbing paws together in manner of axe-murderer about to make a kill) Happy Birthday to me... Happy Birthday to me...

Sloth: (slow realisation dawning that she has created a monster) Wait. No. I didn't-

Me: YES! And it's my birthday in mere days! What better opportunity to test it! Happy Birthday dear Otter... Happy... Birthday... to.... me...

Sloth: Could you not?

Me: No. I must. For Science.

Sloth:  (squinting suspiciously) You do an awful lot of things in the name of science.

Me: I'm a firm believer in progress. Thank you for this gift of knowledge.

Sloth: (sighing and pinching nose) You're... welcome.

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

She Sells Sea Shells

A few months ago, when I first started seeing my girlfriend (who will be referred to from this point onwards as Sloth, for reasons that I will probably go into at some critical point for maximum embarrassment) I had stayed over at her flat for the first time. I had been slightly intoxicated the previous night. I believe we had taken a taxi there; add to this my general inability to process geographical locations even in Edinburgh (a city I've lived in for over a decade) which culminated in a slight confusion and hangover as I stood at the bus stop the next morning and unwisely decided to ring my parents for a quick catch up.

Mum: (far too brightly for that time of day) Good morning!

Me: (trying not to make noises like a bison being sick) Good morning.

Mum: Oh.

Me: What?

Mum: Where are you?

Me: I don't know.

Mum: What?!

Now, I realise that I should have taken a moment to think about this, because no parent ever wants to hear that answer from their child, but the previously mentioned slight geographical confusion and hangover had cruelly robbed me of my fragile mental filter and common sense.

Me: (flustered) I mean... I know where I am! But not exactly! I mean!

There was a brief and awkward pause.

Me: (muttering) Goddammit.

Mum: I just wondered. Because the traffic sounds different. That's how I knew you weren't near your flat.

Far from this being a horrendous and inexplicable statement unto itself, I would also like to query that surely given the nature of the beast, traffic always sounds different. No? Fine. Let's move on. Last weekend I visited my parents, and the topic of new Sloth girlfriend came up again.

Mum: And where does she live?

Me: At the shore.

Mum: (uncomprehendingly) The...?

Me: The shore.

Mum: (continuing blank face)

Me: The shore. The shore. Where the sea lives. Um. I can't really make that much clearer. The sea? You know what the sea is, right?

Mum: (hesitantly) I've heard of Ocean Terminal?

For those of you who don't know, Ocean Terminal is a shopping complex in Edinburgh, situated... you guessed it. Near the sea. JESUS CHRIST THEY DIDN'T BUILD IT ON A MOUNTAIN AND THEN CALL IT OCEAN TERMINAL.

Me: (gaping and speechless) Uhhh?

Mum: Is that in the sea?

Me: IN the sea? No. No, it isn't IN the sea. How... I can't...

Mum: Well, I don't know. (giggling) I know there's sea there, I just didn't know where.

Me: I give up. You know we live on an island, right?

Mum: What?

Me: (pinching nose) Nothing. Forget it. I'll put the kettle on. Tea?

Mum: Sea?

Me: NO.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

A Place Called Vertigo

My friend and colleague Wetsoks, who features a lot in these posts due to our ridiculous but often amusing conversations, has not been feeling very well recently. On several evenings, I received texts complaining about the increasing amount of daylight (something that obviously falls under my responsibility and control) which have not helped to calm her headaches. So when I received the following texts, I was not immediately panicked. This quickly changed.

It is necessary to know that she does not deal very well with bleeding wounds for many medical reasons, and I have in the past been known to shout "clot" at her over and over, in a verbal attempt to assist stemming the blood flow from whatever accident she has just had, while she stares at me with barely concealed irritation. We apparently hold differing opinions as to whether this method improves or disrupts the healing process.


As a sidenote, Woah Bear is the international symbol, among my friends, for (flirting) distress - link here http://witandpendulum.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/in-case-of-bear-attacks.html for those who haven't read this.

Me: Woah... blood?

Wetsoks: Don't freak out, but the paramedic is here.

Me: Are you kidding me? What the hell?

Wetsoks: I'll call you in a bit. It's okay, no panic. Just a Nosey Bleedy thing.

Me: *uncertain ears*

Wetsoks: It's okay buddy, I'm not even going to need to go to hospital!

Me: That is a totally unreassuring sentence. What brought it on?

Wetsoks: I don't know. A cold? Stress? Bad blood? My colleague's cologne? It's cool, the nice man shoved loads of stuff up there. That's not a euphemism. Or is it?

Me: It's probably the alignment of the planets. Looks like you're a prophet. It's a terrible job but it's probably better than the one you have. PS. At least make the nice man buy you dinner first.

Wetsoks: God has spoken to me and his message is that the world should bleed. It's already doing that so let's go to the pub for a drink. Oh wait. I don't like drinking. Or people. Or being outside. Or awake.

Me: Please don't start the list again.

Wetsoks: I'm thinking of texting my boss to say I can't go to work tomorrow because a paramedic inserted a nasal sponge. Yes, that is a thing. I look ridiculous.

Me: Can we start a band called Nasal Sponge?

Wetsoks: Absolutely.

Me: Are you sure you're okay though?

Wetsoks: Oh, sure. You know how I like all the attention for my mad bleeding skills.

Me: Your nosebleeds bring ALL the boys to the yard. As proven.

Wetsoks: My life is better than yours.

Me: Could you teach me?

Wetsoks: I'd have to charge.

Me: What about friend discounts? Mates rates?

Wetsoks: I don't know... will you come over and get me ice cream from the freezer?

Me: Sure, but I'm miles away. I'll be there in, say, 24 hours.

Wetsoks: We're supposed to be friends!

Me: Dude, you know I move slowly. You've seen me date.

Wetsoks: True.

Me: Okay, so I'll check in with you later. Try not to set fire to anything or concuss yourself in the meantime.

Wetsoks: I'm fine. I'll probably be sleeping. You know how I like to sleep. Don't freak out if I'm sleeping.


Wetsoks: Buddy, I'm allowed to sleep. Nothing is on fire.

Me: Yet.

Wetsoks: Well, I can't argue with that.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Griddle Me This

It was Canada's birthday last Saturday (my flatmate, not the country itself) and thus we partied as usual, in a fashion that Lionel Richie himself would have undoubtedly blessed. There were a number of conversations during the course of the night which have stuck in my brain, so I'll do my best to recount them here.

Please bear in mind that by this point in the evening, we had partaken of "brah-bombs" which were basically Jaegerbombs but in small wine glasses (the only clean receptacles left at this point) and so we cannot be entirely judged on the below. In addition, more than one person present was wearing an animal onesie.

JohnBoy: So, there's a guy who walks around Edinburgh dressed as a giraffe.

I confess that this may not have been the start of this conversation but it was certainly the point at which I started paying attention. I believe that it might have been suggested that the tallest person in the room should be wearing a giraffe onesie in order to fit in with the rest.

Alana: What, like... he's wearing a giraffe print shirt or something?

JohnBoy: No, actually dressed as a giraffe. Like, a giraffe costume. Er. His face is in the neck and the giraffe head is sort of... up there (gesturing vaguely above his own head). And he wheels a little suitcase around behind him.

Alana: Huh. I see a guy sometimes - nice briefcase, expensive dress shoes, and a Pikachu onesie.

Me: (chomping through my second toasted crumpet, because Jaeger makes me crave snacks) I am clearly working in the wrong end of town.

JohnBoy: You've got to wonder if they change for work into business clothes. And if they do, why not wait til they get home to change back into the onesies/costumes?

Me: (through a mouthful of crumpet) I really want an otter onesie. With a clam upon the tummy!

JohnBoy: With a what?

Alana: A clam. On her tummy.

Me: (spraying crumbs everywhere) A CLAM!

JohnBoy: ...I see.

Another friend entered the kitchen at this point and innocently headed towards the sink. In hindsight, this next remark might have been a little over-aggressive, and various bystanders have assured me that she did not even see me standing there, hunched over the toaster like the Gollum of baked goods.

Me: (laser-eyes of death, like those statues in the Neverending Story) HEY. YOU. STAY THE FUCK AWAY FROM MY CRUMPETS.

I'm assured that a protective barrier was formed at that point to shield me and my ever-increasing crumpet rage from the rest of the party. Luckily (for everyone else) this worked until I ran out of crumpets, at which point I simply left the building to go to another birthday and forgot about all of this entirely until the Honey Brahdger reminded me a couple of days later. This in itself is unusual, since the Honey Brahdger rarely remembers anything while drunk, therefore I can only assume that Fate required this blog post to be written, and who am I to argue (or even casually debate) with Fate?

Now please excuse me. I have crumpets to attend to.

Thursday, 28 March 2013

A Birds Eye View

Good afternoon, otter minions!

I should possibly begin with an apology for this post, given the subject matter, however by that logic I should have probably have begun most of my inappropriate posts with apologies and clearly did not do so. In this case, I not only refuse to give an apology but retract all previous apologies (even the ones which were not given). Lawyered. And now, onto the point.

I found the perfect photo the other day, and proceeded to gleefully post it on the Fleetch's wall. The Fleetch, avid readers may recall, was my former flatmate who is now living back in Americaland. The time difference combined with our busy lives means we rarely get a chance to speak properly, but when we do, it really does feel like she never left.

"Uh. It's not what it looks like. They were like that when I got here. I swear. I wasn't even hungry. Uh. Yeah." 

(As an FYI - this picture is from Reddit, I have no clue where it came from originally and I'm not about to google "raccoon eating dead bird" since I just ate lunch)

Fleetch: This is the perfect raccoon-sphere. I knew it could be done. I KNEW IT!

Me: And this is why CERN built the Large Hardon Collider. Yes, I said Hardon.

Cublet: I told you not to get my fat side!

Me: I wanted to tag myself as the raccoon and the Fleetch as the dead bird, but Wetsoks said that was "too far". No idea what she meant by that.

Fleetch: Ah yes, Too Farville. It's right past the Line Bridge in Don't Go There County.

Me: I regrettably do not know this place. I've heard of it, but I've never been. Frankly I'm not convinced it exists.

Fleetch: Take the train and get off at I Can't Believe You Said That station.

Me: (recognition dawning) Ahh. I definitely passed through there. Recently.

Wetsoks: If you get to Fuck This Shit then you've probably gone too far.

Me: I think that was where I spent 20 minutes going round the Bitches Be Cray Cray roundabout, trying to figure out where the exit was. Hint: there isn't one, unless you throw yourself off the bypass. That's bad planning.

Fleetch: I miss you guys.

Shortly after, the Fleetch tagged herself as the raccoon and me as the dead bird, restoring the natural balance of things (just not, unfortunately, for the birds in the photo).

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Four Legs Good, More Drinks Bad

My friend and colleague Wetsoks normally greets me on messenger the same way every morning. On the days that she deviates from this, it usually acts as an early indicator of some sort of trouble. This morning was no different.

Wetsoks: Oh buddy.

Me: What?

Wetsoks: Rusty. Nails.

Me: Huh?

Wetsoks: ...is what I drank last night.

Me: Oh. I see. Hahaha!

Wetsoks: I'm too old for this shit.

Me: I doubt the veracity of your "too old" statement - my great uncle drank heavily into his 70s. Of course, he died of alcoholism, but the point still remains.

Wetsoks: Bitch. I had facetime with the porcelain throne this morning.

Me: So it's serious then?

Wetsoks: It's an expensive hangover. The client kept buying me £7 drinks. It would have been rude to say no.

Me: Of course. Your logic makes perfect sense.

Wetsoks: I'm never drinking whisky or Drambuie again. Separately or together.



Me: No, we're on separate floors. Yell louder. Also, you make whisky sad.

Wetsoks: Whisky is Scottish. It can take the rejection. Drambuie will comfort it.

Me: I'm not sure - Drambuie always seemed kind of flighty to me.

Wetsoks: I have bacon. Bacon fixes whisky.

Me: Bacon fixes everything. Except too much bacon. And even then, there is wiggle room.

Friday, 15 March 2013

I've Got To Hand It To You

To say that my friend Wetsoks is rather accident-prone would be a massive understatement. I've watched her achieve things we mere mortals cannot even conceive of - not least of which was bending the laws of physics so that her 2 minute microwavable chips actually burst into flames in the microwave, despite being, y'know, microwavable chips designed solely to be cooked in a microwave. A year later, this particular incident still troubles me and I give my microwave a wide berth when entering the kitchen, just in case.

It's rare that someone can equal me in terms of sheer lack of spatial awareness, but she manages this successfully. The problem is that it comes combined with her ability to bruise and break (which I myself do not possess, being a rubbery sort of otter - despite several attempts by other people/myself/Mother Nature/gravity to induce broken bones, I have yet to succumb) and this has led to various trips to Accident and Emergency for various ailments. Thus it was earlier this week, when I visited her desk to see if she would accompany me to the canteen.

Wetsoks: Ha! It says 'exact change' and I did not in fact give it exact change and yet look! A can of Coke has miraculously appeared! Score!

Me: (staring vaguely at the chocolate vending machine) Mmm. You one, Universe nil.

She reached into the box at the bottom of the machine to retrieve her can, and let out a very soft 'ouch'.

Me: Ready to go?

Wetsoks: Yup.

We spent all day doing our usual busywork, in separate departments, and so it was not until later that evening that we spoke again. Wetsoks text me unexpectedly after dinner.

Wetsoks: Remember this morning in the canteen when I bumped my hand getting my coke?

Me: No. Why?

Wetsoks: The doctor said my finger is "probably broken".

Me: Jesus tits, woman! Probably?!

Wetsoks: Weeeeeell. I could sit in A&E for 6 hours to confirm it, but I like a little mystery in my life.

Me: Don't we all (pinches nose) Did they bandage you up at least?

Wetsoks: My gimpy finger is taped to my middle finger.

Me: Dude, seriously. You only picked up a coke can. How does a person even manage this?

Wetsoks: It's probably fine. You know what will fix it?

Me: I know this is going to sound weird coming from me, but I am not convinced that a good night's sleep is the answer to this one.

Wetsoks: It is! The doctor said so. And it doesn't really hurt, it's just swollen and bruised.

Me: I honestly don't know whether you're an idiot or a total badass. Or both.

Wetsoks: I have a purple line up my knuckle! Body bling! Natural make up!

Me: I see. I have my answer.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Honey Brahdger Don't Care

Saturday night was a rather drunken one for all concerned, and in fact when I arrived home I discovered my flatmates sprawled hopelessly on the couch together, and the first thing Canada said to my relatively cheery "good morning" was a desperate, apologetic "I threw up in the bathtub! I'm sorry! I cleaned it!"  I possibly shouldn't have been as pleased with this news but frankly it needed a good scrub anyway, and I prefer to find the silver lining where I can.

I'd like to relate a small conversation between myself and a friend - we shall refer to her henceforth as the Honey Brahdger, for reasons that make me sigh and pinch my nose. In any case, the Honey Brahdger called me in the morning to basically moan incoherently like a beached, drunken whale.

Honey Brahdger: Oh my god, brah, seriously.

Me: Feeling rough?

Honey Brahdger: I have had many, many hangovers in my life, but I am currently redefining what the word means.

Me: (wincing in sympathy) Oh dear.

Honey Brahdger: You know when, when.... when you're crawling around on the bathroom floor, and vomiting, and crying and wishing you were dead?

Me: Um, sure.

Honey Brahdger: I'd give anything to feel like that right now.

Me: Oh, wow.

After a few hours, when I'd had a chance to shower and eat and generally start to feel like a normal human again, I text her to check in.

Me: How are you feeling now, brah?

Honey Brahdger: I'm dying on the couch. I feel like someone has violently ripped me open and fucked every organ in my body.

I paused for a moment to consider my response.

Me: So is that... like... better....worse....what?

Honey Brahdger: Yeah actually it IS better.

Me: Good. Good. Maybe you should drink less.

Honey Brahdger: LOL.

Me: Yeah, I thought so. You know I'm going to blog about this.

Honey Brahdger: I expected nothing less.

Friday, 1 March 2013

Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel (I've Seen Wanted Posters Everywhere)

Sarahnator: Guys - how about Hansel and Gretel on Saturday? Famke Janssen!

Wetsoks: I'm good for that.

Me: Um, I may have to decline such a tempting offer. However, what about Cloud Atlas? Do we have any idea when we are all free to go see that?

Sarahnator: I can honestly say I have no idea when you are free to go see Cloud Atlas.

Me: God. What don't I pay you for? Seriously.

Sarahnator: If Wetsoks is okay with going out on both weekend days, then I would propose we see it Sunday afternoon.

Me: I may be (read: will be) hungover, but I can probably make that.

Sarahnator: Let's wait to see if Wetsoks confirms. I heard her and Liara might be breaking up so she might not want to go out much this weekend.

Me: BUT THEY WERE SO GOOD TOGETHER. Also, you know, she's a fictional character from Mass Effect, but whatever. Small details.

Wetsoks: Just because we have an argument doesn't mean we're breaking up. God. Stop being so dramatic!

Sarahnator: I like how you have both referrred to me as God today. From now on I demand to be worshipped! I will reward you in the next life. Maybe. Oh and come on - she is cheating on you. With me.

Me: *gets the popcorn* This is better than the telly I don't have. Anyway, you can be the God of Crocs. And I shall serve your nemesis, the Devil of Fashion. I SHALL NOT REPENT.

Sarahnator: I've never worn crocs in my life! I declare myself the God of Sweat Pants and Trainers. All who worship me and obey my rules shall be comfortable in this life and the next.

Wetsoks: I am the God of Busywork... which I am preoccupied with right now.

Sarahnator: Party pooper! The God of Sweat Pants and Trainers has spoken! There shall be no more hard work!

Me: From this point on, I may refer to changing when I get home as "putting on my church clothes".

Sarahnator: You need to get permission from the God of Sweat Pants and Trainers for that.

There was a brief pause.

Sarahnator: Permission granted. No one can say I am not a kind and generous god.

Me: Allow me to praise thee by doing as little as possible while remaining as comfortable as possible. If that's not devotion, I don't know what is.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

If You're Gleeful And You Know It

It's been a while since I blogged about Glee, ladies and gentlemen. This is pretty much because I've stopped watching it - the Cublet recently moved to England and only visits occasionally, and short of chaining Wetsoks to the radiator there is absolutely no way I could convince her to stay in a room with it playing on the TV. I do have other friends, but I prefer that they think of me as suave and debonair (which they almost certainly do not) and not a Glee fan. Thus it was on this surprisingly sunny Wednesday morning, when I emailed the Cublet in a lather of excitement.

Me: Have you heard the Glee cover of 'Love Song'?

Cublet: No. I've stopped caring since I saw Pitch Perfect. It brought home how shit Glee actually is.

Me: Well 'Love Song' isn't bad. It's Santana, Rachel and Quinn. It would have been better if they'd taken Quinn out though. And, er, Rachel. Santana kills it. I miss the way she doesn't overwarble a song.

Cublet: I've heard there is a Quinn/Santana kiss coming up.

Me: What? You're kidding. There never is.

Cublet: Allegedly.

Me: Let's construct a potential storyline for this ridiculous moment to be shoehorned in... Santana finds out about Brittany and Sam's blossoming relationship (I assume that's where that is headed although I haven't seen much of season 4) and gets jealous. Quinn is all "you know, I used to be super mean to Rachel for no reason and I wonder if I repressed my gayness by bullying her and then getting pregnant by some dude I didn't love". Santana offers to 'help'. They kiss. Quinn decides that actually as it turns out she's not repressing anything, she was just a badly-written bitch.

Cublet: Sounds about right...

Me: In the interim, Kurt wears something hideous and Carrie Bradshaw puddles about how contemporary and cosmopolitan it is, while Kate Hudson plays Kate Hudson. Old Rachel sings a song about how hard it is to be her, New Rachel sings a song about how hard it is to be her. The world weeps in despair. The End.

Cublet: ...is a better storyline than whatever they will inevitably go with...

Me: I'm done. I'm sticking to Don't Trust The Bitch In Apartment 23 from now on.

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Otter, It's Cold Outside

I made it to work this morning in spite of a mild blizzard. After struggling in, apparently having to do a lot more effort to simply walk than other pedestrians around me appeared to, I was more than mildly annoyed by this.

Wetsoks: Bonjour, Guten Tag, Bom Dia. That's all the languages I know.

Me: Hola menina.

Wetsoks: What?


Wetsoks: Ah. Well done.

Me: The wind blew me off the pavement on the way in.

Wetsoks: Dude.

Me: I know. I need to put on weight. The world owes me a lot of cake.

Wetsoks: I'm not sure if you noticed but its snowing.

Me: Yes, I goddamn noticed.

Wetsoks: It's windy here too. But that might just be me *cymbal noise*  And something I use digitally for work is broken so I'm using pen and paper.

Me: Ah, the Amish way.

Wetsoks: Oppum Amish Style!

Me: Heeeey, puritanical laaaady! *bonnet dance* By the way, I despise that song. Can we relegate it to 2012 and not speak about it again?

Wetsoks: No.

Me: I thought as much. The world owes me more cake for this. MOAR. CAKE.

Friday, 18 January 2013

To Mars And Beyond

My good friend Wetsoks sent a link to me today. I clicked with some caution, because previous experience has taught me that links my friends send are often not safe for work, not safe for lunch, not safe for otters, and occasionally all of the above. It was to my delight and slight bafflement that I discovered it was a link to the Mars One astronaut application process - see here http://news.yahoo.com/wanted-mars-colonists-explore-red-planet-204754693.html

Me: I actually kind of want to check this out.

Wetsoks: I know, right? The future is now.

Me: "No plans to return the pioneers to Earth" though. No more McDonald's for you, brah. No more Mass Effect. Limited coffee. I'm just saying.

Wetsoks: Yes but we will be beaming people there in 20 years anyway.

Me: No. No, we won't. Sciencefact: no one is getting beamed except your mum.

Wetsoks: I wanna beam YOUR mum.

Me: Sounds like a Blink 182 song.

Wetsoks: I'm going to Mars! All I need is a can do attitude.

Me: I think they're looking for a little more than that. Plus, you know, 8 years of astronaut training.

Wetsoks: I looked at the requirements. I can do them all. Wait, let me do my John Locke impression. DON'T TELL ME WHAT I CAN'T DO!

Me: You don't even like people! Or change! Moving to a different planet with three strangers encapsulates two of the things you hate most in the world!

Wetsoks: Yes but I'd have the whole planet to get away from them.

Me: (pinching nose) I... I don't think that's how it works. Anyway, this is like me announcing I'm going to join the army. I technically COULD but I don't like running or mud or obeying authority. And you'd all laugh at me. Do you see where I'm going with this?

Wetsoks: Do you see where I'm going? TO MARS.

Me: (*sigh*) Very well.

There was a brief pause.

Wetsoks: What do you reckon the wifi is like up there? Like... three bars? Two?

Me:....Goddamn it.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

In Case Of Bear Attacks

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you, otterlings! I apologise for my long absence. The tail end of 2012 was a busy time in many ways, and required my full attention. I will endeavour to make this up to you with a brand new post, partly courtesy of my temporary new flatmates (one of whom in Canadian, because I miss the Fleetch and if I close my eyes it almost sounds like she's back).

Canada: In our physical education classes in Canadian schools, we get taught how to ward off bears. You know, like for school trips and stuff.

Me: (intrigued) Really? How?

Canada: (demonstrating) You're supposed to hold your canoe paddle above your head and shout WOAH BEAR.

Me: (mimicking) WOAH BEAR! And does that work?

Canada: Well... it makes you look bigger, I guess.

Me: I'm actually disappointed that Scotland has no indigenous large predators on which I could test this.

Canada: That's a... shame?

Me: (thoughtfully) I could always use it to fend off sexual predators! In fact, I demand that we immediately introduce this into our group of friends as a helpful alternative to the current code, which mostly involves making panicked eye contact with someone and hoping that they telepathically hear your SOS call.

Canada: Um?


When I was cleaning the flat in preparation for said new flatmates, I realised I'd lost one of my awesome Harry Potter coasters. In truth I'd vaguely acknowledged that it was missing some time ago, but hadn't yet done anything about it. One friend questioned me on this.

Alana: So where is it?

Me: (vaguely) I think the cat took it.

Alana: (pinching her nose) The cat took.... Okay. And did you search for it?

Me: Yes.

Alana: Did you really?

Me: It depends what you mean by 'search'. If you mean, did I gaze upon all the visible surfaces including those parts of the carpet I can see without bending then yes, I 'searched' for it.

Alana: I see. It's probably under the couch, you know.

Me: That seems like a lot of effort. WOAH BEAR!

Alana: What?!

Me: Nothing. I'll send out a memo.