Monday, December 31, 2012

Sex, Tats and Frock'n'Roll

... My most popular posts of 2012 

1) Sex (Mum, please don't read this)

In which I talk about my sex life. This post that gets hits every single day... although when I look at the search terms in my Google traffic I suspect that some of these hits were wrong turns...

Also, despite my request not too, my mother did indeed read this post. Grr you Mum!

2) The girl with the Prawn Tattoo

In which I confess to having a tattoo of a prawn on my foot.... 

3) Getting naked. In public. 

In which I talk about stripping off to pose as a model for a life art class. A typo (or was it a Freudian slip?) in this post left me blushing... did you spot it?

4) Sobbing my heart out.

In which I sob my heart out at the supermarket. I wasn't even going to publish this, it certainly didn't make a very jolly Christmas post. 

5) Frock me! 

In which I go all feminine like and dress up for Frocktober.... which for me turned out to be much more than putting on a dress.

Funnily enough, none of my favourite posts appear in my top five, or even my top ten! In fact, some of my favourites were hardly clicked on at all. But that's the way the cookie crumbles... See you in 2013!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

The four 'F's of Christmas...

Fun, friendship and food... lots and lots of food.... 

Oh! and one failed gingerbread house... 

Friday, December 28, 2012

A CRAP Panto

When I was a child, going to see the Christmas pantomime was one of the highlights of the festive season. It was a chance to see friends, to wear new clothes (typically something from the knitwear family) and there was always ice cream in the interval.

The theatre would be packed out with excited children clutching programs and ever so slightly tipsy adults who had enjoyed the offerings of the pre-theatre bar.

I remember carefully navigating the plush red seating until we found our spot taking in the elaborate decorations and soaking up the joyful atmosphere.

There are several key elements to a good pantomime – the Dame (such as Widdow Twankey), always played by a man (of course!). The principal boy (such as Aladdin), always played by a woman (well, der!) and a massive amount of audience participation in the form of booing, cheering and most importantly ‘He’s behind you!!’s

Inevitably, the story would reach a pivotal moment in which the audience must save the day. I remember yelling myself horse trying to convey the location of the ‘baddy’ (er, “He’s behind you!”) and the shear relief when the ‘goody’ rides in to saves the day.

My dad loved Panto so much, that together with some other parents from our village he formed the ‘Chigwell Row Amateur Players’ (yes… that is CRAP) and put on an annual production in the Church Hall.

Everyone in the community would get involved; the children would help paint sets, the local PTA (Parent Teacher Association) would help with refreshments (also raising money for the local school) and on the day of the show all and sundry would turn up to boo and cheer and ‘he’s behind you!’

One year, fancying myself as a budding actress (er, or perhaps a bit of a drama queen) I begged my dad to give me a role in that year’s production, Aladdin. I was cast as the Genie (a speaking part!) and diligently attended rehearsals, which took place in the chilly hall on Monday evenings. I think I was about 14. I would take along my art homework and sit sketching various things as the rest of the company read lines and larked about on stage.

I wasn’t allowed to go to the pub after rehearsals (which I now suspect was the whole point of CRAP), my dad would drop me off at home and more often than not I’d go straight to bed, exhausted from my performance and all that sketching.

I had a pink silk costume and gold shoes. I appeared in a puff of smoke and stood with my arms crossed before me. I don’t remember my lines… (If I were to hazard a guess I reckon I said something about three wishes) but I do remember the butterflies in my tummy and the smell of the stage make up and the sound of applause.

I wont be attending a Pantomime this year (er, because it’s not a thing here in Australia… grr you Aussies!) but no doubt I’ll get my fix as I chase G round the changing rooms of our local swimming pool with twenty or so ladies yelling “She’s behind you!”

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Cup of Tea and a Christmas Quiz!

Just for fun, enjoy with a cuppa and feel free to post your score in the comments! Scroll to the bottom for answers... Good luck!

1)    Which of the following names does NOT belong to one of the Three Kings?
a)    Balthazar
b)    Teleost
c)     Melchior
d)    Caspar
2)    On the tenth day of Christmas, what does my true love give to me?
a)    Ladies dancing
b)    Lords a-leaping
c)     Lovebirds flying
d)    Maids a-milking
3)    December 26 is known as Boxing Day in the U.K. and throughout the British Commonwealth. Why?
a)    Fathers took their sons to boxing matches on the day following Christmas Day.
b)    All the Christmas decorations are taken down and put away in boxes.
c)     From 'dole boxes' placed in churches
d)    From boxing up unwanted gifts for return
4)    What is Frosty's nose made of?
a)    Carrot
b)    Button
c)     Coal
d)    Orange
5)    Bill Nighy plays an aging rocker in Love Actually who tries to resurrect his career with which seasonal reworking of a classic?
a)    Stairway To Christmas
b)    Christmas Is All Around
c)     Everything I Do, I Do It For Christmas
d)    You Shook Me All Christmas Long
6)    A Christmas classic of recent times is Do they know it's Christmas? by Band Aid. How many times has this song been Christmas number one?
a)    Once
b)    Twice
c)     Three times
d)    Never
7)    A service of Nine Lessons and Carols is held in churches across the country on Christmas Eve. Which carol is traditionally the first to be sung?
a)    O Come All Ye Faithful
b)    Hark the Herald Angels Sing
c)     Once in Royal David's City
d)    Away in a Manger
8)    In the Australian Christmas carol 6 White Boomers, what is the word Boomer relating to?
a)    Goannas
b)    Koalas
c)     Tasmanian tigers
d)    Kangaroos
9)    British tradition says that eating these during the twelve days of Christmas will bring happiness through-out the next year.
a)    Fruitcakes
b)    Mince Pies
c)     Christmas Cookies
d)    Candy Canes
10) What might have been served at a Christmas dinner in early Britain?
a)    A mustard-smothered pig's head
b)    Black pudding
c)     Lambs feet
d)    Umble pie
11) Which popular Christmas song was actually first written for American Thanksgiving?
a)    Jack Frost song
b)    Jingle Bells
c)     Pumpkin Pie
d)    Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer
12) Which American government agency tracks Santa’s sleigh on Christmas Eve?
a)    Central Intelligence Agency (C.I.A.)
b)    National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
c)     North American Air Defence (NORAD)
d)    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
13) If you received all of the gifts listed in the The Twelve Day of Christmas song, how many presents would you get?
a)    1
b)    12
c)     118
d)    364
14) Who did Grandma Get Run Over By as sung by Elmo and Patsy?
a)    A sleigh
b)    A bus
c)     A reindeer
d)    An elf
15) Which country did the gingerbread house come from?
a)    Austria
b)    Switzerland
c)     Germany
d)    United States
16) In what year was A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens published?
a)    1765
b)    1843
c)     1860
d)    1906
17) Which Christmas movie has been played more than any other?
a)    A Christmas Story
b)    Love Actually
c)     Frosty the Snowman
d)    It’s a Wonderful Life
18) Which ocean is Christmas Island in?
a)    Pacific Ocean
b)    Atlantic Ocean
c)     Indian Ocean
d)    Arctic Ocean
19) Which continent is the turkey from?
a)    South America
b)    North America
c)     Europe
d)    Australia
20) What is the best selling Christmas song ever?
a)    Here Comes Santa Claus
b)    Jingle Bells
c)     White Christmas
d)    Silent Night


1. b. Teleost
2. b. Lords a-Leaping
3. c. From 'dole boxes' placed in churches
4. b. Button
5. b Christmas Is All Around
6. c. 3
7. c. Once in Royal David's City
8. d. Kangaroos
9. b. Mince Pies
10. a. A mustard-smothered pig's head
11. b. Jingle Bells
12. c. NORAD
13. d. 364
14. c. A reindeer
15. c. Germany
16. b. 1843
17. d. It’s a Wonderful Life
18. c. Indian Ocean
19. b. North America
20. c. White Christmas