A Simple bit of Nostalgia

Still struggling with time management here, not least because I spend half of it procrastinating, but hey ho.  It’s made much worse this week because we are having a new kitchen fitted very soon.  In fact they are coming to gut the current one on Friday, so I’ve had to start emptying it out and packing up.

I find it quite incredible how much kitchen related stuff we have accumulated over the years.  Like everyone else, we have umpteen used-just-the-once gadgets tucked at the back of cupboards – a potato peeler, a spiralizer, a waffle maker… you know the sort of thing, the sort that seemed a good idea at the time.  I’ve also got bowls and pots my mother gave me when she was clearing out, and which I can’t believe I have some sort of sentimental feelings over – for goodness sake, they’re just stuff!  But I did find a glass dishy type thing (I have no idea what to call it) which was used to display cucumber slices at Sunday tea-time when I was a kid.  Gosh it did bring back some memories!

Our Sunday teas were sit down at the table affairs, and most weeks would consist of sea food and salad.  Dad would have picked up the sea food from the stall outside the pub when he went for his Sunday lunchtime beer(s). There were always prawns, winkles, cockles and sometimes fresh scampi, which I have never seen since those days. The salads were different then too. Not the mixed up colourful affairs of today, oh nooo.  The cucumber had its own dish, the celery would be standing sentry like in a vase, the lettuce would be in one bowl, the tomatoes in another, and we’d pile our plates with the individual bits and pieces, and no, of course there was no fancy dressings just a splosh of salad cream if we were feeling fancy.

While we were eating ‘Sing Something Simple’ would be on the radio (I should point out this was the year of the Beatles White Album which my sister and I would have much preferred to have been listening to (actually I lie, I would have preferred to be listening to the Monkees :/))Of course, when I recalled that I just had to look it up on youtube (what can’t you find on youtube??)  So now you can grab yourself a boring salad, find a pin to winkle out your winkles (if you don’t know what I mean I expect you can find that on youtube too) settle down, relax, and join me listening to some old tunes from 1968!  There’s no meaningless chatting, no ads, no callers, just a bit of harmonising… quite soothing in the current mad climate!  Enjoy 🙂

Busy doing nothing

‘Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans’

John Lennon wrote these words in his song ‘Beautiful Boy’ and of course, he’s absolutely right.

I’ve got myself a bit of a new job.  Just getting into it, so can’t yet comment on whether it is completely tedious, wonderful, or just meh.  What is, however, immediately apparent, is that I will be expected to attend some meetings.

Meetings are a fact of working life these days.  In my experience most meetings consist of people talking the talk, usually in circles, for hours on end, making a few wishy washy decisions, going home in gungho mood, and then forgetting the whole thing.  In reality nothing much gets achieved apart from a bit of back slapping, bit of naval gazing, bit of ‘thinking outside the box’, and perhaps a bit of ‘horizon scanning’. Could all  be done by email or telephone conference, would save me the two hour trek to London on the smelly train and then back again on the even smellier, rush hour, train.

Of course, there is the lunch.  Usually some curly sandwiches with unidentifiable fillings. Sometimes there is fresh fruit.  Which would be great if I were not such a messy eater who always, always, gets juice down her chin, on her top, on her papers. Worse still… sticky fingers on my ipad. So no, I don’t bother with the fruit.

While I’m on the subject of lunches at meetings, I should mention the horror that is the ‘standing up buffet’ that you get at conferences.

So it’s a hot lunch, usually ‘coronation chicken’ (or ‘sicky gloop’ which is my far more accurate name for it), rice, and a bit of limp salad. You are left holding a plate, your knife and fork, and a glass of cheap wine.  There is nowhere, nowhere, to sit, and you are supposed to be ‘networking’ with what might be important contacts.  How the hell are you supposed to eat without spilling something. Beats me. Sauce drips down your chin, you chase individual bits of rice around the plate until they fall over the edge on to the floor, the wine slops out of the glass, and It really is quite amazing how far a cherry tomato can travel when its mis-forked.

So anyway, back to my original beef.  Meetings.  How much more could we get done if we didn’t have meetings to attend.    Half the time, we are all so busy meeting up that there is no time to do the real work. We end up ploughing through emails in the evening, and catching up on paperwork at the weekends, leaving us no time for living our real lives.  You know, the one that we go to work to pay for.

So John if you’re listening,  these days perhaps the words to your song should be – Life is what happens to you while you’re busy being stuck in meetings.  That’s very sad don’t you think?