One of my favourite things about Castrophe was the pre/postcoital chat between Rob and Sharon. And my frequent inability to correctly spell Catastrophe. It all came out on the pillow. His tenderness, her insecurities. Their zig-zag spooning curled up around chat. The flipping over of fears from vertical to horizontal evening out the bunched up either downs or ups.

Why couple counselling isn’t conducted by travelling bed-side therapists is a glaring oversight. Why couples don’t just lie down while talking to one another is probably the reason for the proliferation of so many office-based ones.  And the small matter of it being impractical. And the likelihood of the bed-side box of tissues causing momentary awkwardness.

Which is just as well because, in my live u-turn you’re currently reading, I don’t think it’s one of my better proposals. I wouldn’t be able to discuss other critical issues inspired by sitting upright watching TV. People complain about TV being a conversation killer. How else would I have been able to ask my fella if he’d stick with me if I was quadraplegic after a horrific accident. Documentaries (and Eastenders) are handy for bluntly raising these delicate questions. I think that one might’ve been inspired by a man who was paraplegic, so I took it from there and added a few extras (“Even if you didn’t qualify for carer’s allowance?”).

So, bedtalk is best left to releasing whimsical internal dialogue. Only last night, as we lay there basking in the post-Chinese-take-away glow, I casually disclosed I’d convinced myself  I’m going to be given the heave-ho from work next week. For some vague reason (acute paranoia), based on nothing much (nothing much), I’ve reasoned it’s The End. Insert dramatic violin music here. With funding drying up, it’s the perfect opportunity for them to jettison the weak link in their otherwise perfectly well-dressed, if inherently dysfunctional, organisation. And no amount of soothing yawns from my fella convinced me otherwise. Nor could he offer any valid reason why I am trapped by my own perpetual expectation of other folk to expect me to take responsibility for their tattered, threadbare efforts.

Too bad paranoia and socially functioning madness are only acceptable in TV form. And even at that, not by everyone. “Meh”, was the general consensus among The Other Mothers to my stage one grief (comfort eating, bad hair) over the show’s finale. As if they haven’t already given me enough reasons to hate them (e.g. an unwillingness to swear when the children aren’t around, always remembering they have children). So I’m in for a few ropey days of holding it together until Tuesday when I’ve been summoned to meet the boss. Just as well we’ve a few distractions over the weekend.

This evening we have a christening. An event normally requiring rescue remedy and the super-gluing of the left corner of my lip to my teeth to prevent it from curling. It’ll be fine.

Priest: “Do you reject Satan, father of sin and prince of darkness?”

Loudly from the back pew..

“Possessor of grand ego, Godfather of ineptitude, Commander-in-Chief of his one man army.”

Stunned silence from those gathered.

“Oh, sorry. I thought you were talking about my boss”

Mother-in-law narrows eyes in knowing you-had-to-say-something-inappropriate-to-ruin-it way.

Tomorrow, I’m on fake cheerleading duties at a charity run. Not content with doing an impersonation of Forrest Gump round town, my fella’s life is so empty he chooses to run in other places for free, enlisting the child to do likewise. I’ve been practising my proud face all week, which is not unlike my reaction to spotting unsolicited beetroot on my plate.

Race MC: “And lining up in the distance are members of Carlow Athletic Club. Always good to see them. Although, I’ve always doubted the existence of Carlow. Does it really exist? Has anyone ever actually been there? OK, we’ve three minutes to go before the race gets under…” 

MC elbowed aside by dishevelled woman who looks like someone just served her beetroot. She grabs the mic.

“I’d like to give a supa shout-out to Sha Nade O’Connah, rawking it live NON stop. You are tha best Sha Nade, word up.  Sorry, I’ve always wanted to that. But, really, I want you all to give it up for my man, Forest, and our wee one, eh, Forrestine. Without you, I’d be at home watching re-runs of Come Dine With Me. And if it all goes to shit on Tuesday, well so what? You’ll both still love me, right? Even if I don’t qualify for Umployment Assistance?”

Like I say, it’ll be fine.


“Purveyor of stupid fucking jokes in the staffroom…”

So long as I don’t pull a Fran.

Take it away there, MC Lyte like a good man…



“Some of your domains are expiring soon”

Even WordPress managed to get in on my birthday celebrations this week. Kudos to their payment department for reminding me my reign over critical spheres of influence is under threat.

Only this week, mealy-mouthed management shuffled into our office to trigger the act of bad articles in league with Brexit. The bogeyman made real. The pair of us will be lucky to be issued a three-month contract come the end of March. A monthly one thereafter if the mud sufficiently clears on the windscreen of uncertainty. If we get the wipers fixed. If anyone knows where to do that. If anyone knows if they still make them.

Difficult to know how to respond when you’re broke and casually demanded one of them to fire you the other week following a failed attempt at whistle-blowing. It was more of a protest yawn. Self-defeat by osmosis. It’s a thing. Probably. Difficult for them to know what to follow up the news with when their emotional peak consists of a burp after lunch. So they did that compassionate thing management do in a time in crisis and casually uncrossed their legs. And that was that.

Later that evening, I was forced to do the responsible thing and interrupt our wee one screaming protestations at her Da over a minor miscarriage of justice. Actually, sorry love, but that is in fact my role. After renewing our consistent parenting pact, he was forced to agree. Being usurped by a five-year old. The indiginity of it. What next – a robot with unpredictable mood swings and an irrational hatred of Stephen Fry?

Praise be for the kind buys of Merch. Birthday presents for the coping woman round town previously reliant on air-drumming at traffic lights.


*sniffs* Yep. That could work on creamcrackers 


 Stalking Open at 06:30


Stalking glasses (see above)

Dress: Model’s own


Essential sturdy coffee coaster



Through the chair, if I may

It would be prudent of us to remember that

Should one find a ladder running up the cheap

Nylon covering the legs of one’s exchanges

It is imperative one avoid the risk of exposing

The ghastly stubble on what lies beneath and

Cover the stretch marks on the skin marking

One’s existence thus ensuring one is always

At one’s most professional

Me neither

You know when a Big Fromage appears unexpectedly in work and all foreheads hatch a new crease from over-concentration as they solemnly bow over keyboards? Me neither.

You know when you vow to keep your mouth shut in a pointless work meeting and manage to pull it off without exposing yourself as a deranged hyena? Me neither.

You know when you spot the excessively polite exchanges between school parents on the Facebook group and avoid wading in with a ridiculous wisecrack that isn’t even funny to upset the stepfordium? Me neither.

You know when you finally get a job where there’s not one po-faced commander flights of stairs up the chain who’s always present when you make a monumental dick of yourself? Me neither.

You know that moment when you’re finally persuaded by the self-satisfying break-through logic of that person you’re ‘engaging’ with on Twitter? Me neither.

You know that smug moment when you realise you’re above all social media pettiness and permanently restrain yourself from having the last word? Me neither.

You know how folk should be united in their opposition to despots and unsustainable laws and campaigns through some notion of static ‘communities’ that collectively appoint spokespeople with whom others must never disagree or they’ll be sent to the gulag for tone-policing? Me neither.

You know that feeling of recognition you get when other parents freely talk about ‘mammy guilt’? Me neither.

You know my career, right? Me neither.

You know when you’re ordering popcorn in the cinema? Me neither.

You know when everyone around you is exceedingly polite and it rubs off on you and you don’t break out in an anaphylactic bout of swearing  and disclose the most socially embarrassing stories about your family? Me neither.

You know my savings account, right? Me neither.

You know the way your husband is your best friend? Me neither.

You know that embarrassing incident involving a minor indiscretion from 1995 you’ve finally been able to let go of? Me neither.

You know that job application that’s due in this week? Me neither.

Shit. The family fromages are circling.

*hatches new forehead crease*

My perfect colleague

Now I’ve got a colleague called Vincent

He’s sure to make it to management
Always faultless, green, and sweet
As useless you can get them
He’s got a plastic-lined cheap waste basket
My manager thinks he’s fantastic
She won’t even let me explain
That me and Vincent we’re just not the same

Oh my perfect colleague
What I like to do he doesn’t
He’s the organisation’s pride and joy
His line manager’s little golden boy

He’s gotta degree in shitty comics
Mass, gimmicks, and antibiotics!
He thinks that I’m a savage
’cause I hate butter in my sandwich
Even by the hour of ten
Annoying Vincent is so annoying by then
He always thinks he’s at a rodeo
‘Cause he’s tries to ride our director whenever he says hello

Oh my perfect colleague
What I like to do he doesn’t
He’s the organisation’s pride and joy
His line manager’s little golden boy

His manager made him a supervisor
Got Human Resources into advise her
Now he’s walking with lots of poise
Swaggering along like the MBA boys

Twirls try to attract his attention
But what a shame it’s in vain total rejection
He will never lift them off the shelf
’cause Vincent he’s more likely to eat himself

Oh my perfect colleague…


Dorothy shares one of Vincent’s jokes with the office

Mother inferior

So, wannabe Conservative Party leader, Andrea Leadsom, reckons having children gives her the edge on rival, Theresa May. Apparently, it elevates the status of her stake in the future of Britain to higher worth. It worked for Thatcher, remember?

It’s hardly a surprising assertion given the only comparative differentiation between one candidate and the other is anxiety about getting children into the best private schools. A low point for meaty mud-slinging, but a possible Mexican eye-roll opportunity for women across the Northern Hemisphere who do not have children.

While commentators are foaming at the keyboard, many women will be reminded of how they are regular receptacles for the same assertion made more matter-of-factly along with a number of other assumptions far too frequently strewn around.

If you’re a woman who doesn’t have children, it’s likely you’ll be unsurprised to learn the following:

  • Your capacity to be affected by horrific news stories of children dying isn’t as great as women who do.
  • Sexism and discrimination in the workplace don’t affect you as negatively.
  • Your work ethic is not under the same scrutiny or pressure for reform so you don’t work as hard either. No need for you to prove yourself.
  • It’s your choice to work 80 hours in a top corporate job at the expense of your fertility. Because life’s that simple, and worthy work, or ‘careers’ are only ever to be found in those sectors that require grooming and a third level alma mater.
  • Consequently, you probably haven’t suffered the indignity of participating in ‘low-skilled’ work.
  • If, or when, you ever do have children, it’s only then you’ll realise the need for feminism.
  • You’re constantly hung-over. You lucky sod.
  • You smell of cat wee. Probably.

Did ye get heeled?

Word has reached the dungeon that Price Waterhouse Cooper sent a receptionist home for not wearing the requisite heels on the job. It was only a matter of one phone-call from a lazy radio show researcher before Minister for PR, Terry Prone, was forced to take cover under a cloud of smug from where she instructed us all on the etiquette ways of the workplace.

To summarise:

Flat-shoed + make-up free = disrespectful

Heeled-up + make-up wearing  = respectful

As a crude argument, it was highly impressive.

Sharp intakes of breath ensued across Ireland FM with the rapid reaction force launching sexist-seeking missiles towards nonsensical arguments that fail to support the double-standards women are forced to endure.

To summarise:

PwC policy + Terry Prone defence = pile of sexist shit.

As a sophisticated feminist argument against sexist practices, it was a hard one to challenge.

As an example of the corporate world’s ugly self-regard, the incident was another glaring one that mystifyingly managed to evade attack.


Sheila wasn’t sure if her heels had made her unsteady

or if it was just the feeling of power going to her head