Tag Archives: NaBloPoMo
17 Feb

This is me right now. Too much to do, too little time in which to do it!

16 Feb

Image: youandmecharlie.com

 A message for myself as much as anything, as I’ve been feeling a tad uninspired of late!

A Note on Valentine’s Day

14 Feb
Romantic Heart form Love Seeds

Image: epSos.de

With Christmas and New Year behind us, it’s time for another Hallmark holiday: Valentine’s Day. Now Valentine’s Day seems to be a holiday which seems to provoke virulent reactions from many of us, perhaps more than any other day.

Couples love it, using it to shower each other with affection and sicken the rest of the world with their nauseating cuteness (unless one of the pair doesn’t believe in the holiday, in which case they will spend the day feeling smug for refusing to succumb to capitalism whilst their partner sulks). Singles generally hate it, and spend it either partying as hard as possible in an attempt to prove that they don’t need a partner to complete them, or sobbing into a carton of ice-cream so big that they could easily fall into it and be lost for ever. And then there’s those who resent it purely for being a Hallmark holiday, although many of these are probably singles looking for different excuse to hate the holiday or loved-up people who don’t want to fork out a fiver for a card with a teddy and some hearts on the front. Whatever your stance, you’re likely to fall into one of these three categories.

Except…what if you don’t? The fact that I’ve written this blog post may suggest otherwise, but I genuinely do not care about Valentine’s Day. Of course I notice it, but it seems to have taken over Facebook, Twitter and now Google in the last few hours, so I’d have to be fairly stupid not to. I am single (sometimes I even melodramatically exclaim that I am terminally so), but I feel not more depressed about this fact on Valentine’s Day than on any other day of the year. Nor do I begrudge the couples the chance to celebrate their together-ness. I’d rather they did it in the privacy of their own homes, but that’s more due to a fundamental dislike of PDAs than anything else (I slapped my first boyfriend for kissing me in McDonalds, enough said). Maybe this apathy is due to the fact that I went to an all-girls’ school, the kind where no-one even notices the opposite sex until the age of about fifteen, and therefore was never subjected to the humiliation of the Valentine’s card count. Or maybe I’m just strange.

So what will I be doing tonight? Not dating, not partying, and certainly not sobbing into a tub of ice-cream (I live in university halls, I have no freezer). No, my evening involves something far more depressing than Valentine’s Day. It’s called a dissertation. The joys of being in final year…

TV Review: Prisoners’ Wives

12 Feb


Image: BBC

After watching the first hour of the BBC’s new six-part drama series, I was left fundamentally confused. Admittedly, first episodes rarely show any series in the best light, but with this one I wasn’t even sure as to what genre it was supposed to be.

The basic premise is fairly simple: girl living in middle-class paradise, world falls apart when husband is is arrested for a crime that he (as far as she knows) didn’t commit, meets lots of eccentric characters whilst visiting said husband in prison. But will it go on to unravel the mystery of the husband’s crime, or is it just to consist of rather soppy character studies of the wives? From the watery drama which the first instalment delivered, it’s looking like the latter.

I didn’t exactly warm to the main characters either. Emma Rigby does the sweet and innocent act well enough as Gemma, but I quickly grew tired of her constant snivelling and all-round lack of intelligence, which didn’t help me empathise with her plight. Husband Steve does at least have the benefit of being played by Jonas Armstrong (also known as Robin Hood) but he says little and spends most of his time staring moodily into the middle distance, giving me little to go on as to figuring out his character.

It’s the other characters which actually make this worth watching, particularly Francesca (Polly Walker), who practically embodies the phrase ‘fur coat and no knickers’ but is good-hearted with it, driving Gemma home from prison visits and helping her with bathroom emergencies (when she isn’t seeing how much havoc she can wreak during visiting hours, that is). I am also intrigued about Lou (Natalie Gavin), who deals drugs by night, but does everything she can to make life good for son Mason (Oliver Hannam) during the day, including telling him that his dad is away building a top-secret football stadium. It’s these characters, who for the most part remain in the background, who make me think that there may still be hope for this series.

Not too much hope though, as a handful of interesting characters can only carry a dismal plot-line so far. It may not be good for a series to give away too much too early, but Prisoners’ Wives gives away very little at all which leaves me wondering if I will be bothering to switch on again.

#Dear Valentine Challenge Week Two: Remembering

11 Feb

Prompt: a box of chocolates, plane tickets, the Eiffel Tower.


She couldn’t believe that he’d actually remembered. It had been her dream ever since she was a little girl, something which she thought could only happen in the movies, but which she’d fantasised about anyway.

Still, it had managed to remain safely within the confines of her imagination for years, not even shared with her closest friends. Until she had had too must “champagne” (air quotes heavily in use) at the office Christmas party and had, in the space of two minutes and thirty seconds, disclosed her most carefully guarded secret. She hadn’t really expected him to remember though, at least not in such detail.

The box of chocolates in their innocent gold wrapping, a seemingly unimaginative Valentine’s Day gift. The plane tickets nestling beneath the bottom layer, discovered only when the chocolates had all been eaten. The candlelit dinner on the top level of the Eiffel Tower, with the carpet of lights stretching out below them and the string quartet playing quietly in the corner. The ring in the champagne glass (real champagne this time, no air quotes required). The promise of forever.

Her dream proposal. She hadn’t been able to believe it.

Couldn’t believe not only that he’d remembered, and after all this time, but that he’d given it to another woman.

Perhaps it was time to stop believing in fairy tales.


Yet another Theatre Review

10 Feb

Yes, I admit, I have got lazy recently. Tomorrow I can promise you more creative writing, and on Sunday an update on my life, but for today have a link to my review of The Odyssey, which I saw at The Assembly Rooms last night:


(As you’ll be able to see, I enjoyed it much more than my fellow reviewer!)


Theatre Review: FRESHER The Musical

9 Feb

Last night, thanks to Durham Theatre Review, I got to see Tone Deaf Theatre Company’s production of FRESHER The Musical. It was a fabulous evening, and while I won’t write about it here, you can have a look at my review (as well as that of the lovely Hannah Buckley) on Durham Theatre Review’s website: