For two of those days, the actor, Mark Ruffalo, was referred to twice in one post as Mark Gruffalo. I guess that has been the least radioactive of my blushes here, but for someone unable to fit comfortably in to a parent-size blog, the signs of having a child will continue to give themselves away unwittingly. Our bedtime reading has since moved on to Hugh Jackman and The Beanstalk.
Not that I embarked on carving out a parenting blog. Good luck to all those brave folk who maintain one. I salute them with the leftover gusto from cheerleading those willing to walk down an aisle in the company of more than three people.
It just happened to be an idle afternoon in my mean abode when I followed my fingers round the keyboard until they took out a mortgage with WordPress and moved into a surprisingly familiar neighbourhood.
For a woman on the perpetual hunt for escapism from where I live, one would’ve expected me to dive headlong down the portal to freedom. But instead it banged loudly on the keyboard. Northern Ireland doesn’t do touchy feely, so there won’t be an open love letter to it anytime soon, but I might go halves on top ten things about it by chipping in five eventually.
Tops fives. The cornerstone of any topic worthy of a stroked chin. Blogillions of blogs are buoyed up on them; scores more boast cheap imitations (top 7s, top 9s, top 15s.) . Given my dependency on them as a mechanism for coping with conversation, combined with the availability of an edit button to quell the corresponding OCD, they should be all over my shop. Top five reasons why they aren’t…
1. Top 5 signs that blogging is a middle-class pursuit wasn’t really going anywhere after number three
2. Ditto Top 5 kinds of parents I’d like to see start a blog but could probably never do so
3. I just thought of one now that probably won’t ever be written either (Top 5 reasons my fears of hanging out with Irish bloggers overlap with the reasons I avoid them abroad)
4. Top 5 reasons I like hanging out with Irish bloggers would inevitably lead me to expose my favourites and I’m too Irish to risk someone not liking me for not loving them even when they couldn’t give a shite. Especially when they couldn’t give a shite.
5. It’s just so exhausting being Irish. The anxiety. The chip on my shoulder. The killjoying. The endless comparisons. And that’s just the blog themes.
I went through more theme changes in the first week than Garth Brooks’s estimated income for this year. Those sheep are authentically Donegal by the way, The Fonz of the local animal kingdom. They can been seen hanging precariously off cliffs, and playing chicken on the roads.
The photo replaced the one of my wee girl and her Da that briefly loomed large at the top of this page. It’s a lovely photo but by day three I couldn’t take their heavy presence on the screen. Even with their backs to me. I can’t swear in front of her, and I can’t be freely cheesy about him while he’s within earshot. Third cousin of your-deceased-Granny-popping-in-to-your-head-while-you’re-in-the-sack-with-someone syndrome.
Living with them is one of the few forms of exercise I actually enjoy, but we need a break from each other sometimes. Because I work occasional evenings, I tragically never get to avail of that most popular mythical method of meeting others – the night class. If I did sign up to a ten week course on how to grow your own willpower, I’d probably produce top five perfectly justifiable reasons why I should quit after two.
But waffling on the internet rarely feels a chore. So here was my chance to make it appear like one. It’s already compatible with sitting on my generous behind, watching TV, talking shite, and enjoying the occasional slice of cheese. A blog: half-way between a hobby and a discipline with your own terms and conditions attached. The deal I made with myself: write with some regularity for 100 days and she how she goes.
So I’ve made it (buffs fingernails on lapels). 100 days today. This is the part where I get to tell you about the enjoyment I derive from writing, and the ambitions I’ve had for my little words since I was a nipper (poignant background music here).
Bollocks to that. Tonight, I want to say farewell in the style of a successful comedian who hasn’t sold out, about to announce an interval in his own show. Like Dylan Moran, trailing off mid-majestic monologue, unsteadily raising a glass in a faux drunken gesture to his audience while imploring them to get a drink. If I have any ambitions for my words, I should at least treat their trail-offs to an occasional dress-up game where they get to inhabit the mere moment of coming up for air of someone who is a master of them. Fantasy. It’s everywhere. And I’m paying for this.
I’m off now to fill up my glass with some holidays, and other stuff. Hope to see you after the interval in another 100 days or so.
Thank you all very much for coming.
Now go get a drink.