Wednesday, 7 December 2016

'If a naked mole rat can get pregnant, then so can I.'

In case you were all wondering, it is much harder to write a blog when your life is going well than it is when your life is going tits up. Since I wrote my last blog, I have sacked off my awful job at the bank and started solely working as a creative assistant in a shop in Haworth. Sounds fancy, right? I spend most of my time lasering designs into wood and making inappropriate jokes. Check it out here.

I've recently returned from a small family trip to New York, which was good fun. We primarily went to see Billy Joel in concert - we tried to get tickets for Birmingham, but when that failed my mum just went, 'fuck it, let's go see him in New York instead.' (Well, whatever the 60-year-old woman version of 'fuck it' is. In reality, she probably just turned to my Auntie Sue and said something along the lines of, 'well, Sue, it's just got to be done, hasn't it?')

 I feel my enjoyment of the holiday was heightened due to actually getting travel insurance this time. The last time I went away for a few days was to Budapest and, having just quit my job at the bank, I was determined to have as cheap a time as possible and could not bring myself to spend what I thought was unnecessary money on travel insurance. Turns out, holidays are a lot more stressful when you don't have it. Did you know that Budapest is known as the 'City of Spas' and has more thermal and medicinal water springs than any other capital city in the world? It has 125 thermal springs! That is 125 opportunities to slip in a country that does not have the NHS, so whilst everyone else was marveling at the grand architecture, I was just walking around all day thinking, 'don't slip, don't slip, don't slip,' and hoping I didn't contract the Zika virus. Not that travel insurance would really do a lot if I did contract the Zika virus, but at least I'd get flown home. Can you fly if you have contracted the Zika virus? Do you have to be quarantined? I actually don't know that much about it... I just looked it up, apparently it can be sexually transmitted. Who knew?! It also warns to be extra vigilant if you are a woman of 'child bearing age' - what age even is that? Anything between 14 and... whatever age it is you start getting hot flushes?

My friends and I recently went away for the weekend for Cat's 30th birthday and were chatting about this very topic. We were staying in a fancy barn in the Yorkshire Dales and it was pretty much what you'd expect from a group of 20-somethings - we went for a walk for a few hours so we could say we'd 'explored the countryside', and then spent the remainder of the time lounging around in front of the fire drinking wine and talking about having babies. One of our friends was panicking that she was reaching whatever age it is when society decides we need to start feeling the pressure to have a baby and she hadn't yet found anyone to reproduce with. (Well, anyone suitable, anyway.) She talked herself into a frenzy, however she soon buoyed herself up with the idea that there were plenty of beings more repellent than her that have managed to find a mate and concluded her rant with a confident, 'if a naked mole rat can get pregnant, then so can I!'

Personally, I have no desire for a baby, although it has been suggested by my girlfriend/friendship group/postman that any signals my biological clock has been giving off seem to have projected themselves via my cat. The words 'attachment issues' have been batted around once or twice... In fairness, it's difficult to disagree with them. I once cried for three hours straight because I convinced myself that she had died in the night. (She had not.) I don't know why I have become so attached to something that a) probably does not give a shit about me, and b) partakes in the following activities:

  • bringing dead birds into the kitchen
  • bringing live frogs into the bedroom at 4am
  • weeing on the post (although she does seem to have outgrown this particular behaviour)
  • eating her breakfast at record speed as soon as she is fed by one person, so by the time someone else gets up they think she hasn't been fed and gives her a second breakfast. She does this every morning, and it is premeditated
  • eating the Christmas tree
  • jumping into the fridge whenever it is opened (admittedly, this is quite impressive)
  • leaping onto the shoulders of unsuspecting house guests (which is, apparently, my fault for teaching her this when she was a kitten and weighed as much as a bag of marshmallows. Now she does it with reckless abandon, sinking her claws in for balance. Wearing a sleeveless vest? She gives zero shits.)
She has also been known to bitch-slap the neighbour's cat, but you know what? She's nice as anything, and is by far the cutest cat on the street, and if she is keeping my biological clock at bay (let's not open that can of emotional worms), then it's fine with me. Let's just hope my mum doesn't run her over like she did to our beloved family pet, Shelley.

God rest his ginger soul. 

Monday, 26 September 2016

Later That Same... Year

Cast your mind, dear reader, back to the chillier time of January 2016, when I initially wrote this blog post and forgot to post it... Since I wrote this, three of my friends have had babies. It has literally taken me the full gestation period of a human to get around to posting it - quite possibly my greatest procrastination feat to date.  I'm going to reclaim my title, for real this time, as my friendship group's finest blogger, but in the mean time, have this:

I'm thinking of doing another degree. I know this sounds ridiculous and like the absolute epitome of what not to do with my life, but let me explain my reasoning before jumping to any conclusions.

Despite my last degree proving itself to be entirely fucking useless, I managed to get so much cleaning done during the toughest periods of degree related stress. For example, during the last few weeks of my dissertation, my bedroom was the most organised it had ever been; my clothes were all laundered and put away, my CDs were alphabetised, and I had written corresponding stories to go with my collection of stolen objects that I could eloquently reel off should a figure of authority ever question their provenance. It was bliss, and, looking at the current state of my life, I could really use that type of motivation again. Since my last blog post in July (oh, hello again, lack of ambition), my clan and I have moved from our sad excuse of an abode to a slightly nicer one a few streets over. It was a very rash decision that we made in about 7 minutes and we moved into the first house we viewed, which meant that we spent the week leading up to Christmas day forcing all of our friends and family to heave furniture through the village and make sure the kitten we had recently adopted did not escape/crawl into a box and get thrown out/piss all over the new house. As it is, we have been in for two months now and even though the cat is allowed to go outside and has a litter box, she still decides that it's a good idea to wee all over the post as soon as it comes through the letter box. In fairness, the last thing she urinated on was a letter from the council telling me how much tax I owed them, so, to be honest, I can't really berate her for it as it was my first instinct, too

Our new house has lots of fancy features that our old house was severely lacking, such as a bathroom fit for human use, windows that don't have giant holes in the bottom, a drain that doesn't vomit all over the garden path every morning (well, it's done it once, but we'll let that slide), and, most importantly, enough room for us all to actually fit in it. It's amazing how much better you feel about life when you don't have to invite people to sit in your living room-bedroom hybrid, and you don't have to say, 'make sure you don't step on a slug in the kitchen', or, 'if the Haagen-Dazs tub that catches water in the bathroom is full just let us know.'

We're currently in the process of decorating the living room and trying to merge our belongings in a way that says, 'it's not our job, but in our free time we like to practice interior design,' as opposed to, 'most of this stuff was free from work/friends/the street'. We got our sofa from one of my mum's friends with the proviso that we could have it for nothing if we picked it up from her house, which was a task easier said than done, as all seemingly simple things are. Obviously, it would not fit in our little car, so I enlisted the help of a friend whose car it also did not fit in. After thirty minutes of pushing, pulling, swearing, and an abundance of innuendo, we managed to get half of it in and then tied the boot shut over the remainder with string. Not rope. Not bungee cords. Not any kind of suitable binding material. String.

It is currently adorned in a variety of mismatching cushions, half of which have been made by Cat and are beautiful and fashionable and chic, and the other made by my mum. I'm not saying my mum's cushions aren't just as well made, it's just that she made them when she was going through a phase of making cushions out of my old t-shirts, so while half of the cushions are hip and trendy, the other half have either Kurt Cobain's face, marine life (we're a family prone to phases), or some hideous design that wasn't fashionable when I was wearing it and is not fashionable now. But, you know what they say, Rome wasn't built in a day! Even Romulus and Remus probably had to borrow someone else's settee every once in a while.

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Nothing says 'I'm doing fine and my life is exactly as I planned' like three bowls' worth of oats coming out of your outside drain...

When I was younger, I had the deluded impression that by the time I was 25 I would have my life together and I would no longer be that one person that everyone used as an example of what not to do and how not to live. It turns out that my impression, as with most childhood impressions, was wrong. Nothing says 'I've got my life together' like running out of your house in a panic at 6am in your pajamas to put the bin out and then battling to find a good place by the side of the road after all the smug bastards that got their bins out on time took all the good spots. Likewise, nothing quite says 'I'm doing fine and my life is exactly as I planned' like three bowls' worth of oats coming out of your outside drain after being poured down the sink, creating an effect that makes it look like your drain has had a rough night out on the town and has now vomited all over the pavement. I mean, lets be honest, nothing really says, 'we're an upstanding part of the local community' like making all of the other kids in the village walk through your breakfast oats on their way to school, right?

On the bright side, despite my life not exactly turning out as planned, it at least has some consistency in that it is not just the outside of our house that fails to give off the impression that we've got it all together, the inside is also doing a fine job. Domestic duties have never really been my forte, but in my defense there's only so good you can be when your appliances are more of a hindrance than a help. Our hoover, for example, is so disastrously inept that it took me almost an hour last week just to hoover the living room. Imagine what it would be like to vacuum a room using a drinking straw and you would come close to something similar to the frustration I experienced. I spent most of the afternoon picking things up off the floor when the hoover missed them (which was almost every time), examining them, and then replacing them on the floor to give the hoover another chance instead of just accepting failure and placing the item in the bin. I'm not sure where this need to give the hoover another chance comes from, it's almost as though it's in our human nature to root for the underdog - resilience in the face adversity and all that. Not that it did me much good - eventually I ended up just picking them up and shoving them up the hoover until they disappeared. Obviously, by the time I had done this with all of the tiny bits of paper and twigs and other things that accumulate when you live with children, the hoover had been on for over an hour and was starting to overheat. I turned it off because I was slightly concerned that the spider Cat had hoovered up three weeks ago was still alive inside the hoover bag and was growing larger and larger, biding its time until the hoover inevitably exploded and he could rise from the dust and take his place as ruler of our house once again. Thankfully, the hoover never did actually explode, however it did refuse to turn on again (obviously its minimal effort and my bringing things to it had caused it to feel overworked) so I had to go creeping to my parents and ask if one of them would lend me their hoover. I did phrase it in such a way that gave my mum ample opportunity to reply with, "well, I'm never at home anyway so you may as well just have mine and keep it," but she didn't accept the bait so I just borrowed my dad's with the sinking feeling that a multi-pack of straws was going to have to last us until next Christmas when I can ask Santa for a new hoover, a new drain, and a the promise that by 30, I will have my life together. As it happens, my dad ended up telling me to just keep the hoover when it became apparent that he was either going to a) never get it back, or b) get it back in three years, broken, and filled with twigs.

Domestic traumas aside, I had an extremely distressing experience recently whereby I almost accidentally consumed a metric shit tonne (genuine measurement) of cocaine. Here's how it happened in a nutshell: my friends and I went out to a bar and got chatting to some people who were out for their friend's birthday. Birthday boy was too much of a wimp to do the birthday shot his friends had bought him, so being the tough rebel that I am, I volunteered myself to do it. Shortly after downing the entire mystery shot, one of the strange men I had just met and accepted a drink of unknown provenance from says to me, "Amy, do you do cocaine regularly?" to which I reply, "no, I've never done cocaine in my life. Why?" He looked sheepishly at the ground and went, "oh, it's just... there might have been a shit load of cocaine in that shot you just drank."

You know those moments in life where you just suddenly think, "oh shit, I have just accidentally consumed all of the cocaine in the world and now my eyeballs are probably going to start bleeding?" Suddenly oats spilling out of your house seem like a treat. As it happened, there turned out to be no cocaine in the drink, which I was extremely relieved about. I've never coped well with drugs - I once left the lid off the glue stick for too long and thought my house was a Hungarian Horntail, can you imagine what cocaine would do to me?

By the way, dad - I know that you're going to read this and then ring me and tell me off for accepting a drink from a strange man in a bar and almost accidentally doing cocaine, so I will fill in my part of the conversation now and save you a job:

You: *ranting down the phone about not accepting drinks from strangers*
... I know...
...I know...
...I know...
...I don't know...
...I know...
...Ok, bye...

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

R Kelly's Body Would Never Have Told Him Yes If He'd Ever Been To Boxercise

Last month marked the one year anniversary of the last time I posted a blog. I realise that this is a significantly long time to be away from the computer, and there have been lots of goings on both in my life and the outside world whilst I have been gone that I feel I should address.

literally the biggest thing to happen to the internet since that time someone leaked naked photos of Jennifer Lawrence. (White and gold, by the way.)

Someone leaked naked photos of Jennifer Lawrence - and it started a big debate about whether it was or wasn't OK for people to search for them, but by the time the verdict came out that it wasn't, everyone had already looked and just had to pretend that they hadn't and agree that it was an awful breech of privacy and the photos should never be searched for again.

Hipsters are out - and, as usual, I have no idea what is in.

I confirmed everyone's suspicions and turned out to be gay - then decided to take things one step further and moved in with my girlfriend and her three kids. Don't feel like you have to pretend to be surprised so as not to offend me - almost everyone I have told so far in the past year has either feigned surprise ("really? No way! But you've always been so... feminine...") or said something along the lines of, 'oh, is that not something that was already a thing?'

I got a new job (finally) - and now I work in a bank and earn a little bit more money and have to wear nice clothes and only work in 8 hour shifts. (Fear not, though - there is still ample opportunity for me to make disastrous mistakes, only now instead of receiving disapproving looks from my superiors, my consequences will come in the form of dismissal and/or a jail sentence.)

So there we are, the internet is all caught up on my life choices and I am now taking it upon myself to pull my socks up and regain my title as Yorkshire's my friendship circle's finest blogger. I'd like to take this opportunity to thank my browser, Google Chrome, for being there when Internet Explorer wasn't. I'd like to thank Firefox for stepping in that time Google Chrome broke and wouldn't stop bombarding me with pop ups of naked cartoon characters - I know it was short notice, and I know it can't have been easy for you, but you did a fantastic job and this blog wouldn't be here without you. I'd like to thank TalkTalk for taking three months to set up my internet when I moved out of my mum's house that time. You showed me that if I really needed the internet, I had the inner strength to seek it (at my mum's house that I'd just moved out of). Nothing sparks determination like deprivation. I'd like to thank my loyal fan base, for always giving me a tonne of hits and then not caring about my well being when I disappeared for over a year... Your lack of e-mails meant a lot to me. Dicks. (I forgive you though. Please still read my blog. I don't have the stature to be picky about the fact that my existence is negligible to you). So thank you everyone, this blog would not be what it is what it once was without you. All of you. (Except you, Internet Explorer, but you knew that...)

As per tradition, I am now going to ramble on about the banalities of my life in such a fashion that is slightly humourous and somewhat embellished, but mostly just cautionary. The first lesson I wish to bestow upon my lovely readership regards the hell-born activity that is boxercise. Understandably, I am assuming that most of you either a) don't know what it is, or b) do know what it is and are therefore mystified as to why I would volunteer myself to take part in such a heinous ritual. As it happens, I was coerced by my former colleagues and, foolishly, agreed to take part. (I'm pretty sure that the name hints at what it is, but I'm just going to quickly explain the art of boxercise here for those of you that are uncertain. Basically, it consists of a roomful of belligerent middle aged women beating the shit out of each other until one collapses in a state of distress and the other is declared victor and presented with a prize of chocolate and a box of Kalms.)** I have only been to three sessions as of yet, but three sessions are enough to realise that my acceptance was a mistake. The first session took place on a Monday, and on the Thursday that followed I was still unable to reach behind me and fasten my bra strap unaided or stand up without crying and causing the people around me to look around in alarm thinking I had gone into labour. I'm finding it difficult to find the emotional and physical strength to go back. In the words of R Kelly, my mind's telling me no, but my body, my body is also telling me no.

*Not technically the definition. There is no prize. There is no winner. There are only losers.
**Also, no one actually gets hit. We just hit at pads like kangaroos with PMS until we collapse in genuine distress.

Monday, 3 March 2014

No, girl I have never met in my life, the noise from downstairs is not bothering me. The fact that you are now crawling underneath my duvet at 3am is.

People are strange, aren't they? One minute, they're complete strangers to you, your paths never having crossed and greetings never exchanged, and then the next minute, it's 3 o'clock in the morning and they're lying uninvited in your bed (whilst you are in it) talking about their work photographing pigs and explaining that, despite never having met you before, they really like you and would very much enjoy being your friend.

 Wait... That's not normal behaviour? Oh. Right. Maybe someone should have explained that to the girlfriend of the housemate I have only met once when she decided that it was acceptable to do just that one night after getting in drunk after a work's Christmas party. There I was, trying to block out the noise of house music emanating from downstairs so I could get to sleep, when my bedroom door opens and in walks a girl I have never seen in my life. Groping her way across my bedroom in the dark, she sits down on my bed and beams at me. "Hiya! I'm Kate! Is the noise from downstairs bothering you?" I stared at her. No, the noise from downstairs is not bothering me. The fact that you are now crawling underneath my duvet is. Of course, that's not what I actually said, because I am too ridiculously polite to tell a stranger to get out of my bed, even if it is completely justified. Instead, I made small talk for an entire quarter of an hour, gave her a courteous pat on the back when she leaned in for a very uncomfortable (for me) and intimate hug, and then told her to go next door and meet my other housemate Nathan, as I'm sure they would get along great. (Nathan was asleep at the time and was somewhat less welcoming than I had been. He has now put a bolt on his bedroom door.)

In other news, I have a new job! Don't get too excited, it's still in the same work place, only now instead of slicing up ham and being patronised by customers, I am in a nice warm office (read: roasting) doing things that fall under the category of 'marketing'. Sounds profesh, right? Part of me (worryingly, the dominant part) wanted to turn up on the first day carrying a briefcase and wearing a power suit, but I didn't want to send a misleading message (the message that I am in any way competent and/or professional.) At first, I was surprised that I'd got the job, but on reflection, I can see why. I mean, who wouldn't hire someone that had created a slide that said 'pause for applause' at the end of their interview presentation? It's understandable. My first week ran as smoothly as can be expected. I spent most of my time (and am still spending most of my time) Googling marketing buzzwords, listening to instructions with a vacant expression on my face and wondering what the hell a spreadsheet was. Even if I had listened in GCSE I.C.T., that was eight years ago, and in the period of time that has since passed I have consumed copious amounts of alcohol and killed a worrying amount of brain cells. After some in-depth internet research that consisted of me doing a Middle Aged Woman search on Google (different to a normal Google search in that instead of searching the words relating to the topic one wishes to explore, one simply asks Google a question. For example, "I am at work and someone has said the word spreadsheet and now I am possibly having a stroke. Can you help me?"), I eventually managed to scrape together enough knowledge to open a new page on Excel and start inputting some data. I always thought of Excel as being like algebra or French - something teachers tell you will come in useful during your life, but deep down you know it really won't and consequently feel it is acceptable to pay no heed. Up until now, I thought I had made the correct decision.

Week two was also not without its trauma. On Monday, as I was taking a stroll around the outside of the shop, treating myself to some fresh air and giving my mind something to think about other than how difficult it is to work at a computer and not play Tetris, I happened upon the goat pen. Noticing one of the goats had only one horn, my sympathetic nature took over and I hung my hand over the pen to pet the unfortunate beast, thinking that his life must have been a hard one, filled with the bullying and the stigma that comes with being a little bit different. The goat (George, if you're interested) came to me like a moth to a flame. He nuzzled the palm of my hand, grateful (it appeared) at my friendly gesture. He soon began to let himself be vulnerable, allowing me to run my hand over his rough fur. I have trouble letting myself be vulnerable with new people too, and George and I definitely had an emotional connection. Before long, he was licking my hand affectionately as I chatted to him about spreadsheets. It was like we'd been friends for years. I was just about to suggest we do something fun over the weekend, maybe eat some cardboard from the warehouse, or perhaps he would let me braid his fur, when out of the blue I felt a sharp pain in my finger as George sunk his teeth into my flesh. My world collapsed. This four legged beast, the one soul who had listened to my Microsoft woes, had comforted me, had let me in, shown me the side of him so often hidden, had bitten me. As the heavy tears, saturated with hurt and betrayal, threatened to cascade down my face, I gave George one last pleading look. I was destroyed. But I was a survivor. I could get over this heartbreak. I took solace in knowing that the friendship we shared was special and would always be a part of me, regardless of the events that just occurred or any that would inevitably follow. (I also took solace in the fact that he was standing in his own shit. Not so tough now, are you dickhead?)

I am into week three now and, so far, things are not looking too bad. I have not broken the printer or caused the entire floor to stink of burning plastic after accidentally melting a whole sheet of plastic in the laminating machine. In fairness, it was a slight improvement from the first time I used to laminating machine when I just put a piece of paper in and expected it to come out the other side laminated. Apparently the plastic is not in the machine. Who knew?

Friday, 13 December 2013

"While I’m sorry to read that you’ve made a number of disastrous life decisions, I can’t see how our letter is responsible for these." People just won't take responsibility for anything these days.

I know it has been a while since I blogged and you're all probably wondering what I've been doing with my life, but you can stop worrying about whether I have finally given up on modern technology, thrown my new phone to the dogs and gone to live in the wilderness without a computer, because here I am. (I know this is probably not the case, and you have probably just been getting on with your own lives and my blog has crossed your mind only once, possibly twice, in the past month, but there are certain things that I need to cling to in order to make it through the day, and the fact that people on the internet might like me is one of them.)

This blog is going to mainly consist of a letter of complaint I wrote to a big company who accidentally sent me a letter about life insurance that was meant to go to my mother. I was extremely proud of it when I had finished until someone brought up the good point of how successful my life could be if I put as much effort into doing something productive as I put into being a dickhead, but nevermind that. To my joy, I received a letter back the following week from a man that I can only assume wears a suit and hates his job but was marginally cheered up by my amusing (distressed) letter. Here they are:

From: Me
To: The Big Company 

Dear Sir/Madam,

I recently received a letter from your company suggesting that I invest in your improved life cover to ensure my loved ones will receive a cash sum should I come to my untimely demise. At twenty-three years old, barely reaching my prime in life, you can imagine the distress and unease receiving this letter has caused me. There is enough pain and suffering that comes with beating a path through the ever thickening forest that is the life of a twenty-something without being forced to think about the possibility of one’s death and it is a pain and suffering that cannot be minimised by your promise of £75 worth of Marks and Spencers vouchers. A new pant suit is not quite the comfort you think it is. 

As a consequence of receiving your letter and your insistence that ‘every day matters’, I have felt an obligation to reassess my life choices and have subsequently made a chain of rather disastrous decisions regarding my career, my lifestyle, and my now somewhat tangled love life. By suggesting I dwell upon the fragility of my mortality, you have caused a significant amount of emotional upheaval in my once calm and collected life. Not only have you caused distress to me, but my elderly mother, who was sitting with me as I read your letter aloud, was pained to think of the death of her youngest and most intelligent daughter. 

I hope I shall never receive a letter like this again and that similar letters have not been sent out to others my age. We are already a generation fighting our way through a swamp of tiny electric radiators and beans on toast, the last thing we need on our innutritious plates is companies like yours forcing ideas of death down our still youthful throats.

Yours faithfully,

Amy Rooke

From: The Big Company
To: Me

Dear Miss Rooke,

Thank you for your recent letter, which we received on 12 November 2013. I’m sorry you’re unhappy because you’ve received a letter from us asking you to invest in life cover. This has caused you distress and emotional upheaval, as our letter has caused you to consider your own mortality. You read our letter aloud to your mother, who was pained to consider your life ending. You’re 23 years old and feel there’s enough pain and suffering at your age, without being forced to think about your death. You feel our offer of £75 worth of Marks and Spencers vouchers doesn’t minimise the pain our letter has caused. Following our letter and our slogan, Every Day Matters, you’ve reassessed your life, which has resulted in a chain of disastrous decisions. You’ve asked us not to send you similar letters and hope other people your age don’t receive anything similar. You’re concerned your generation has enough to deal with, without having ideas of death forced down your throats. 

I’ve looked into your complaint and I can’t see we’re at fault. Although I’m sorry for any unintended upset or distress our recent letter has caused you or your mother, it was sent in good faith. We had no way of anticipating your reaction, or that you’d read it aloud to a family member. All our marketing letters are compliant with guidelines provided by the Financial Conduct Authority. They’re also prepared with guidelines set down by the Advertising Standards Agency in mind. Please allow me to respond in more detail below.

You mention our letter asked you to ‘invest’ in life insurance. However, it’s important for me to point out that like most insurance policies, there’s no investment element attached. Unlike a conventional investment, our life policies have no cash value unless a claim is made. Our marketing letters therefore don’t promote life insurance as an investment. 

Our letter was intended to prompt you to consider and need you may have for life insurance. It wasn’t our intention that you’d consider the wider issue of mortality and we certainly didn’t recommend or advise you to make any changes to your life. While I’m sorry to read that you’ve made a number of disastrous life decisions, I can’t see how our letter is responsible for these. We’ve many customers aged 23 and younger who have life insurance policies and it would be unfair for us to assume that younger people have less of a need than older people. This is why we send marketing mail to a wide audience. 

Our ‘Every Day Matters’ is the slogan we’ve chosen to represent our brand. It embodies what we believe in, care about and stand for as a company. Most companies use a company slogan to represent what they stand for. However, the intention of ours isn’t for customers to completely reassess the way they live their lives. Any changes or decisions you’ve made following our letter have been your decisions and I don’t feel it’s reasonable to hold ‘Every Day Matters’ responsible for this.

Our offer of £75 Marks and Spencers vouchers is a promotional offer for customers agreeing to take out the advertised policy. The vouchers are intended as a ‘thank you’. I’m sorry you’ve interpreted this differently. 

Our Marketing Department have suppressed your details from our mailing lists and Transactis have done the same. However, you may receive one or two more marketing letters, as they’re prepared in advance. I’m sorry for any further unintended distress these cause and if this is the case, please feel free to destroy them. 

Thank you for allowing me to respond and I hope my explanation addresses your concerns.

Yours sincerely,

Big Man in Suit

He didn't really sign it Big Man In Suit, but I think he would have done if he'd been allowed. I think my favourite part of the response is the bit when he says that my disastrous life decisions are not his fault. People just won't take responsibility for anything anymore, will they? And the worst part about the whole ordeal is that I didn't even get £75 worth of complimentary Marks and Spencers gift vouchers. I guess I will just have to continue trudging on through life, eating beans on toast in a decidedly average pant suit and wondering if I can make a living from writing complaint letters. 

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Mess With Me And Your Memoir Mention Gets It

It's here. It's finally happened. (No, I've not started to do something with my life if that's what you thought. Sorry to get you excited if it was). I have got a new phone. It's shiny and modern and takes good photographs and lets me go on the internet when I'm on the bus. On the BUS. Can you imagine? You probably can, because you probably have one of these phones too, but for me, it's all brand new. I have been using the same beat-up Nokia since the late 2000s and have been refusing and refusing for years to upgrade to anything. My reasoning was very much along the lines of, "I don't want to be one of those people who sits in the pub on the phone all evening," and I knew that, should I have the opportunity to, I would probably do that. Because I love the internet. I've not got to the stage yet where I'll sit in the corner all night looking at it, but I did walk into a tree walking home from the pub on Friday night because I was looking at my phone. I've never been hit by a car, but I imagine that it is a pretty similar to what I went through. My glasses flew off my face, my phone flew to the pavement, and my head ricocheted off the tree and into the night. I was so embarrassed that I had to stagger around and pretend to be a lot drunker than I actually was just so the man walking towards me didn't think I was an absolute moron. He probably still thought that, but at least he'll have thought it's because I was highly intoxicated.

The main reason I got a new phone was because I was sick of hearing my friends pipe up with snarky comments every time I got a text. "Ooh, someone just got a message from the nineties!" - Unacceptable behaviour from friends. They should know by now the one most important thing about me: I can dish it, but I can't take it. It's a gigantic problem I have and I'm afraid I've always been this way. I throw a snowball and it gets you right in the eye? Hilarious. I will laugh manically for a good ten minutes, regale the story with mirth for years to come, and still 100% expect us to be best friends forever. You throw a snowball and it gets me in the eye? Oh no. Big no no. There will be a little bit of fake laughter, and then I'll move the conversation away from what just happened whilst secretly thinking, 'oh my God. I thought we were friends. I can't believe they hate me. And that actually really hurt (my feelings).' I will then spend the next week wracked with insecurity and trying to figure out what I've done wrong in our relationship to make you stop loving me. The blood-shot eye from the snowball attack will calm down, but, unfortunately, our friendship cannot be salvaged. I had one of my famous I Fucking Hate X, Y and Z rants the other day about leopard print. I hate it, I really, really despise leopard print, and I will not hesitate to sit there for fifteen minutes solid and list everything that I think is wrong with it. After listening to my passionate speech about the vomit inducing print, my friend told me that she was going to buy me a leopard print t-shirt as a joke and then pretend it was a serious gift. This is the kind of joke that I will happily do to someone else but would never play along with should it be done to me. Even if I suspected that it was a joke, I would never voice my doubt. I would accept it, tell her that I usually don't like leopard print but this is different, maybe it's something about the cut of the collar or the unique fabric that it's made out of? I don't know, but I just love it. I would wear it the next time I saw her. I would wear it even if I knew I wasn't going to see her, just in case I ran into her. I would wear it so much over the following year that people would stop referring to me as, 'that weird girl I always see spilling her pint all over herself in the pub,' and instead I'd be known as, 'that girl that really likes leopard print.' Eventually, one evening as we are cooking tea or playing Scrabble, my friend will say to me, "I can't believe how much you love that t-shirt. I initially bought it for you as a joke, haha!" and then she'd laugh and continue checking the Scrabble rule book to see if adding a Z to pluralise a word counts for points as it's, "how they spell it in the ghetto," and I would sit there, looking like a complete knobhead (not least because I am wearing leopard print), and once again, I would have to scratch another person off the list of people whose friendship I can count on. The moral of the story? I don't really think the moral of the story is not to play jokes on me, I think the moral of the story is probably, 'Amy needs a slap,' but still. Don't play jokes on me. Because I will cry, and we will no longer be friends, and then when I am a rich and famous blogger and I release my largely anticipated memoirs, Rookie Mistakes, that really funny story of us doing something absolutely hilarious will not be included, and the money you could have made from being my friend will be no longer existent, all because of one silly mistake on your part. Think about that next time you think, "wouldn't it be hilarious to do this to Amy?" - because unless you want to be a pauper for the rest of your life, no. It wouldn't be.