Wednesday, May 20, 2015

In Which the Author Almost Gets a Turtle

Hello everyone!

I was going to tell you a story about Horace and the Gambling Debts but then I thought about how I have been talking about Horace quite a bit at work recently, to the point where Button took me aside and said, with concern in her eyes, "Ally, I think you should get a pet."

"I have a pet!"  I said.  "I have Ho-"

"Horace is not a pet," said Button.  "Maybe you should get a turtle."

cover your ears Horace ! she doesn't mean it

I was seriously into getting a turtle for at least a day and during that time Button and I had ample opportunity to discuss his name; I suggested calling him 'turtle', because he is, and then she suggested Mr Turtle (so he can be easily introduced at dinner parties), and then we realised that clearly he would be a fancy turtle - and so perhaps one day soon I will introduce you all to Dr. Sir Prince Major-General (Mr) Turtle.

You forgot the 'Sir' and he is not impressed.

I would quite like to get a turtle.

Anyway in lieu of the story about Horace, most of which I have forgotten anyway, I would like to introduce you all to a thing I discovered today.  How I have got to being 27 and having a grown-up job without having come across this already is an absolute damn mystery, and speaking of absolute damn mysteries, allow me to present: DIY Guess Who?
the baby doesn't look very hard to guess.
image source:

Obviously, I need to create a workplace edition.

"Do you have a beard?"
"Do you have... glasses?"
"Did you try to grope my boob at the Christmas party?"
"Oooh!  Oooh!  Are you Rupert from the Product team?"

I really, really want to make this game.  I feel like it could get me fired, but I also feel like it could potentially be worth it.

I thought I had something else to mention after this, but then I looked in my drafts thing and all that was there is a note that says -

"Pine-apple. Upper lip $2"

- and three stories about Horace.

So I guess that's me for the day.

Sometimes, you google 'spider made of pineapple', and the internet lets you down.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Introducing Horace

Disclaimer: In this post I describe a spider as "large" and "sizeable".  I am completely aware that many of you live in other countries where spiders are genuinely large and sizeable, and that my spiders are indeed eensy weensy in comparison. However, they are quite large to me.

Hello everyone!  Living alone is still going well, the other night I woke up at 2am with a spider on my face.  I feel like this definitely wouldn't have happened if HB was still here, as clearly the spider would have chosen his face.
Also because maybe he would have a stricter policy on spiders.

My spider policy is as follows:

Category 1: Very Small / Daddy Long-Legs
Action: Leave to go about their business.  Probably they are eating flies or doing some other vaguely helpful spider thing. Also they are challenging to put outside because the small ones are fast, and the daddy-long-legs - wow, those legs really are long, fuck will they fit under the glass even? oh god. oh god I've cut its leg off now what do I do - well they are that. 

Category 2: Smaller-than-Teaspoon
Action: Spider 10 Dream Home.  This is where you put the spider outside with the assistance of a glass, an envelope, and a thousand tiny spider dreams.  If you like you can shout "Move That Glass!" before you fling the spider merrily into the foliage while yelling about how much happier he will be in his new location.

If the spider was really rude, like On My Face At 2am Spider, while you walk him to the door in his glass you can give him a little lecture about accepting his rightful place in the ecosystem.

"Young man, this is NOT your natural habitat."

Category 3: Interesting Jumping Spider - Trite planiceps
Action: He would go outside if he wasn't so interesting. Sometimes eats other spiders, sometimes sits on the wall, sometimes falls in the shower and surprises everyone. You never know what's next with a jumping spider. He is like an episode of Game of Thrones.  With less boobs*.

Category 4: Larger-than-Teaspoon, Smaller-than-WOAHHHFUCK
Action: Spider 10 Dream Home, but very carefully.

Category 5: Horace
I was going to include a picture of Horace, but then I remembered that not everyone enjoys unexpected pictures of spiders, so instead we will have a picture of a Category 5 Kaiju from Pacific Rim.  It's similar enough.  Also, damn I liked Pacific Rim a lot.  But now I'm scared to watch it again because I watched it on a plane and I'm worried it just seemed good because it was better than literally everything else on an Air Malaysia flight** and if I rewatch it now it will be a steaming turd and I will have ruined it for myself, forever -



Horace is a spider who lives in my bedroom window and he is sizeable.  He is too large to attempt to put outside, because what if a) he leapt on my face or b) he ran into the bedroom and disappeared, thus forcing me to sleep on the couch for the rest of my time in this flat?  These would not be beneficial outcomes for me or for Horace.

And yet, I do not wish to kill Horace.

The bedroom window is a long way from the bed and in my direct line of sight, so I can see what Horace is up to.  He's usually not up to much.  Neither am I.  Friendships have been based on less.  Romances have been based on less!  Movies have been based on a lot less.


ANYWAY, in the interests of me not having to kill Horace and Horace not having to climb onto my face in the night, Horace and I have become friends.  He isn't a pet, because having a window spider as a pet would be crazy person behaviour, and also because the tenancy agreement doesn't allow pets.

To complete your introduction - so you can say hello next time you see him - here is a brief list of

Things Horace Does:

1)  not reply when I say, "Good morning Horace"
2)  not reply when I say "Hello Horace did you have a good day?"
3)  hide when I close the blinds too abruptly
4)  come out and catch insects and then carry them back into his house
5)  not reply when I say "Goodnight, Horace."

stop judging me you all thought this was perfectly reasonable


It is now five minutes later and I have opened a cider and informed Horace that I am about to share him with the internet.

He looks impressed.

*No, spiders do not have boobs. 

**Air Malaysia's flight attendants are the worst.  You're all "Hello, I will be the polite, nice passenger today on this long-haul flight" and they are all "god fucken damn it I don't care if you are Saint Francis I just wish that every one of you ridiculous flying motherfuckers would hurry up and eat your dinner so I can get back to clumsily attempting to bone one of my appalling colleagues in the business class seats that we will never, ever upgrade anyone to."  If it had been a bus the flight attendants would have pulled over at the next stop, made all the passengers get off, and then driven the bus to the pub while mooning us all out of the back window.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Meetings. Trousers. Easter.

Accidentally turned on Voice Control on my phone just before.  It looked at me I and I looked at it and it said nothing and I said "" and it said "NO MATCH FOUND" and then I said "yes there is" and it said "NO MATCH FOUND" and then I told it to fuck off.

Them I opened my email and observed with some interest the 173 Starred Items and closed my email again and opened a cider instead, and then I sang the cider a little cider song, and I am just as concerned about my mental health as you are.

ooooh, are you cold enough / are you cold enough

(It was not, I should have put it in the freezer for a bit.)

My meetings today went well, which I'm sure you are pleased to hear.  The Events one (the one where I spend most of the meeting trying to distract people from the things which I have not done) was particularly good.  We discussed Easter deadlines.  I looked enthusiastic and serious and like someone who would certainly not miss an Easter deadline, and if they did it would not be on purpose.  

To help with the seriousness I made many notes about Easter deadlines, and one note which was a small picture of a house.  I considered discreetly showing the house picture to the person sitting next to me, but they were absorbed in their own note-which-was-a-picture-of-a-rabbit, and so I did not. 

And right before the meeting ended the Meeting Leader said, "with these deadlines, we won't be able to be flexible on any late entries," and everyone looked at me, presumably because I am very busy and important.

find your spirit animal, they said

In completely other news, are you guys aware of PlayPants?  My colleague Picnic introduced me to these at work today and basically they are pants with stealth inside unzippable pockets which allow you to escape detection while publicly fondling yourself or your significant other.  

Here is a picture from their successfully funded to the tune of 10,000 pounds Kickstarter:

of course she is doing metal horns

The Kickstarter page asks the question all of us were thinking: "Why do you need PlayPants?"

And then, as Socrates would do if he were plugging filth trou, it answers it with some other questions.

"Itchy private parts in public?"
"Lonely single night at the Cinema?"
"Dull love life?"
"Boring corporate meeting?"

If we are being honest, Kickstarter, you can have as many topless pictures of beautiful people as you like, but I think we all know that the main purpose of these pants relates entirely to the first question.  And maybe the last one.  Although that could be just me. 

I don't know whether to be impressed by the ingenuity of this or horribly embarrassed.  Imagine future historians, standing behind their lecterns and declaring in serious tones:  "The people of the 21st century made some solid advances in technology and space travel, but also... this."  It'll be like when someone says "can you believe in the Middle Ages they thought the plague was caused by evil spirits?" and everyone goes "oh those crazy old-time folk, we would never do that now, ha ha ha, now let's spend ten thousand pounds on rude pants." 

Man, there are so many other things you could do with ten thousand pounds.  

this you could do this

BRB I gotta go start a Kickstarter.

you guys it has been five years since I made Bear Guitar thank you so much for reading my blog.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

...wasps and boinking*

*when I started this post that is not what I expected it to be about.

Hello everyone!  Not much to report except I just put on ridiculous glittery blue nail polish and now I'm going to have to wear black tomorrow to avoid clashing with myself.  (It'll be good though.  Here is a short summary of me tomorrow: Serious business, serious business, serious business, JAZZ HANDS.  I wonder if I have to go to any meetings.  I certainly hope so).

this quarterly report is FABULOUS

I have checked my calendar and I do have to go to a meeting tomorrow!  In fact I have to go to two!  One is a client meeting that I'm looking forward to (I like the client) and the other is the weekly Events meeting.  This is a meeting where we sit down and go "Ok, we are two days behind deadline for the Horse Accessories Sale* and there does not appear to be anything loaded into the system" and normally I attempt to look at once contrite and adorable, and ask for a deadline extension.  Obviously tomorrow I will turn my nails so they catch the light, temporarily stun everybody, and dash from the room before anyone realises what has happened.  I know how to do meetings.

Here are some non-meeting-related things that have happened this week.   They would be in chronological order but I have forgotten which days they happened on.

1.  I was having my morning shower, washing my hair and keeping an eye on the spider who lives above the shower in case he fell in, when suddenly, a wasp!  A wasp in the shower!  I went "OOOOP" because apparently this is the noise I make when it's too early to wake up the neighbours by shouting "AHHHHH FUCK YOU WASP". And then the wasp fell out of the air and into the shower and went down the plug, which was a good outcome (for me, not for the wasp).

I have so many questions about this.  What is a wasp doing in the shower at 5.30 in the morning?  What is a wasp doing anywhere at 5.30 in the morning?  And why would he choose the shower?  Was he some kind of a wasp pervert?  Or simply a wasp wanderer**?  Why did he just stop flying and fall in the shower?  Was he struck by my nude beauty?  It could have been that.  Or was he simply struck by the water of the shower?   Or - had he been out for a big wasp night and done something he seriously regretted*** and was now very wasp hungover and wished to end it all?

I suppose we will never know.  RIP wasp.

Rest In Plughole.

This hadn't occurred to me before, but I really hope his wasp friends don't gather for a memorial service.

2.  I called one of the female sales reps 'bae' because she called me 'boo' and I thought 'bae' was just the 2015 version of 'boo'.  It turns out that it is not, it is much more serious than 'boo' and generally not something that one would use to refer to one's colleagues, unless one was boinking them. Although you can also boink your boo.  I think.  Fuck I am not down with the kids of today.

Anyway, it was good to learn this about 'bae' before accidentally saying it to my boss.

3.   I was talking to my friend Andrea and the conversation wandered to asking people out, and we realised that this is something neither of us know how to do.  She's married and has been for some time, and even before I was with HB my general approach was more "hello sir, we appear to be intoxicated and in close proximity, do you fancy a boink" than any kind of "shall we perhaps go to a movie sometime, or eat dinner, and then see if we fancy a boink."

sir while it is an excellent font that is not what i meant

I suspect that when you're asking someone out you try not to say boink, or ask them if they would fancy one, even though everyone knows that's the real question.  Would you like to go for a beer sometime?  The beer means boink.

Andrea and I tried to find some non-boink ways to ask people out, to see if we could, and we could not.  Luckily she asked her Facebook friends, and one of them commented with this, which will now be my standard go-to for any pending date situations:

"If you would ask me on a date I could stop wondering."


(Feel free to leave your own top boinking propositions in the comments.)

*unbridled discounts!

**not all who wander are wasp

***I don't know what a wasp would regret.  Wasps don't really seem like they have many regrets.  I can't imagine a wasp thinking "oh man, maybe I shouldn't have stung that puppy, what will everyone think?  I'm never having that much nectar on an empty stomach again.  Oh God I don't want to go into the hive today."   Wasps have always seemed more likely to go "AYYYY FUCK YOU PUPPY IMMA STING YOU AGAIN HEY GUYS WATCH THIS *STING STING STING*" drives away in obnoxious wasp car.