Saturday, July 30, 2005

R.I.P. Wise Father

I learned last night that Eolath Magee has died. Eolath was a psychotherapist that I encountered when he led a short course for teachers in pastoral care a few years ago. It is the only time a training course has directly affected what I do in the classroom in a positive way. And because of the sort of person he was it directly affected my life in general as well.

Eolath had recommended a book to one of the teachers who was pregnant. He said it was good book but not to worry if it made you feel guilty as a parent. You can't escape the guilt, he said.

When I was pregnant last year I read the book. It is wonderful. And I did feel guilty when I couldn't exactly live up to it. It is worth reading though. Definitely.

Eolath was right - you can't escape the guilt. To give birth made me feel as if I had touched God. For a split second maybe I felt like a god. It didn't take long to remember that actually, I had no idea how to make a baby work. That's some fall let me tell you. Immediately you encounter something of perfection and simultaneously you screw it up. You can't escape the guilt. To recall Eolath's words in the days following Ana's birth was ironic and comforting. I almost wrote to tell him but I didn't. I wish I had.

Next time.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

If I Were Queen of Narnia

Thanks to whoever made the drawing that now adorns my profile. I think you might be called Suzanne. Cool picture Suzanne. Hope it's OK for me to use it. If not, drop me a line.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

You Just Jealous Cos You Ain't Got No Ass !

I fear I may never lose the weight gained during pregnancy while this stuff exists. The best best one is cherry. And it's fairly traded so you're not allowed to feel guilty. If you've never tried it go and get some NOW ! Join me ! Join me ! You know you want to !

If I Could Stir

Our mini-heatwave and the one in NYC which has been on the news recently reminded me of this poem by HD. There seems to be more than one version of it but this is the one I know.

The Garden


You are clear
O rose, cut in rock,
hard as the descent of hail.

I could scrape the colour
from the petal,
like spilt dye from a rock.

If I could break you
I could break a tree.

If I could stir
I could break a tree,
I could break you.


O wind,
rend open the heat,
cut apart the heat,
rend it sideways.

Fruit cannot drop
through this thick air:
fruit cannot fall into heat
that presses up and blunts
the points of pears
and rounds the grapes.

Cut the heat,
plough through it,
turning it on either side
of your path.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Amos Michael Oman

Brilliant picture guys. He's a wee pet !
And you two look far too fabulous to have just been through a birth. Did you stage this photo months ago ?

congratulations !

To Lucy and Tudor Oman. They had a baby boy, Amos Michael. 8lb 3oz and everyone is well. Pictures will follow once I get permission.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005


I recommend doing this everysooften. Feels great. Some day I might go the whole hog although I fear I might look like Phil Mitchell rather than Sinead O'Connor.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Dance on, Gypsy Queen

The library is loud. It is always loud. Luckily I have my GNIPS with me and Van Morrison is the only person I can hear. It is hard to imagine Van at this age, doing this stuff. I can only remember him as a middle aged man really. I saw him supporting Bob Dylan one time. He was great but the whole thing was a bit of a downer as he was so grumpy. It was a bit of a relief when Bob came on to liven things up...

I was going to post a picture of him but I don't know if you're allowed to do that sort of thing and he's a bit litigious I think so I'd better not. I am a bit scared of Van Morrison. Here's a nice picture of Bob instead.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Hey I Can Do Titles Now !

How exciting. I still can't make the title a link tho'. Must try harder.
oh for goodness' sake !

would you believe after my boastful claim that I was doing pretty well having avoided finding out the plot of the last HP, I went and stumbled across it about 20 minutes later ? d'oh ! Mesmerised by the new shiny HP book sitting on the shelf I took a look inside the dust jacket. The first sentence tells you who dies in the last book !!! I can't believe it. Fate bites my bum once again. Serves me right for being so smug I suppose.

The new Harry Potter is out today. I got it for Ian for his birthday. People are talking about going into hiding for a few days to read it. I will have to go into hiding to stop people telling me about it because I’ve only just started the last book. I successfully managed to avoid being told what happened in it which I think is pretty good as I’m an English teacher. Actually maybe that’s why; the students probably either figured I’d already read it or they didn’t want to appear too enthusiastic in case I got all excited and proposed a project based around it or something. One girl had read it within two days of it coming out and told Ian the ending. One time I was watching Jack Dee on TV and he told the audience the ending of The Sixth Sense. I have never quite forgiven him for that. It made it impossible to watch the film without thinking that I would have worked it out anyway. So no spoilers on Potter please ! (Even though it will be a really long time before I read it and I will probably have forgotten about Dumbledore’s death, or whatever….)

I love Patti Smith. My great new ipod shuffle (which I shall refer to as my GNIPS from now on) has made me fall in love with her all over again. As I look through my cds I keep on thinking I have a Franz Ferdinand album. I don’t- it’s just the box. I lent the head of our school David Gray’s last album and he gave it back to me in a Franz Ferdinand box (probably to demonstrate that he is cooler than me, which he is). I wish it was the Franz Ferdinand cd. I like the David Gray ok but much preferred his older stuff, particularly ‘A Century Ends’. If I had a Franz Ferdinand cd I could pretend I was cool as well…. Actually, I could just wait until someone lends me a cd and then return it in the Franz Ferdinand box! I bet that’s what my boss did actually.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Ian returns from Spain today. I am glad. The cat has missed him. He has chewed through three phone/modem connection wires this week, twice when I was on a call. He was probably trying to save me from the impending doom which is our phone bill.

We got a new/old computer as our last one was dying. It is cool. I didn't know that Blogger was different on different computers. There appears to be a basic version for people who have a duff computer. This is why I wasn't able to post pictures before. We had to get a new computer because I bought an ipod shuffle and Windows 97 wouldn't let it work. It was the last straw. So the ipod shuffle is great, not in the least because it is much cheaper than an ipod. Unless you also have to buy a new computer to make it work of course.

On my great new ipod shuffle at the minute:

Steve Earle
Patti Smith
Van Morrison
Tom Waits
Maria McKee

And, since I can, here are some more photos featuring me, Ana and Ibid.

of course, when i said 'since i can' that was an obvious cue for me to screw it up. the tiny little lines at the top of this post are photos that i have shrunk down so you can't see them because i don't know how to delete them once they're there. hey ho !

Monday, July 11, 2005

Ana wanted to sit in her cot today. That was all. Sit. In Her Cot. She did not want to sit in her buggy in the pub. She did not want to be held. She did not want to be wheeled about. And she certainly did not want a large lorry to drive past. She did not want to sleep in her cot, or suck a dummy, or drink any milk, or sing a song. She wanted to sit, was all. Sit and practice her David Gray head wobble. Fair enough.

It is 26 degrees inside our house. I am wearing a maternity dress and wondering why I ever bought it in the first place. It is one of those princess-Di -style floral-nightmare-tent efforts. Hope no-one comes to the door. I won’t answer it if they do.

Friday, July 01, 2005

have just had two glasses of red wine.
I am eating toast and feeling mildly guilty. Last night I spoke to a friend who had lost a lot of weight recently. 'How'd you do it?' I asked. 'Give up bread, rice, pasta, sugar and alcohol and don't eat after 7.30pm'.


Yeah right. Why not go for a spot of self-immolation while you're at it ? 'I don't think I could give up alcohol,' I said, 'It's the summer ! I have to drink gin in the garden !' 'You can't have everything,' he said.

So here I am, eating toast with the voice of HAL from 2001-A Space Odyssey in my head ('I don't think you should do that Shirley, I really wouldn't do that if I were you..') contemplating making a lasagne with aubergine strips instead of lasagne sheets (wouldn't it just be called 'aubergine' then ?).

I don't know. I am sure I could invent ways to retain the pounds even if I did give up all that stuff. Eating nothing but goats' cheese for example. (How does the apostrophe work for goats' cheese ? I mean, if you said 'My goat's cheese' or 'My goats' cheese' it would mean 'The cheese of my goat/goats'. It is probably 'goats' cheese' all the same.)

And not-eating after 7.30pm is right out since sometimes I have to have my breakfast at 8pm when bubs goes to sleep. I might try giving up alcohol though, just for fun.