Top Ten Bugbears


1.    A Compliment Sandwich:

A marvellous way to say something lovely followed by an insult then an attempt to clumsily retract with a further kind comment. 

“You look gorgeous in that dress, you’re not wearing those clumpy shoes with it are you? I like them but they’re quite high for your flat feet.  Lipstick? To light up your beautiful face? I’ve got some amazing cream for blackheads you know, is that a stye? Hey I bought these tweezers for you, do you know you can get a template to give you a decent brow shape? Cup of tea my love?”

2.    Passive Aggressive responses:

“Hi darling, I’m not being funny or anything but the way you spoke to me earlier could have been seen to be offensive, I’m not saying it was or wasn’t; simply that it could or could have been conceived as shitty or twat-like. But hey I understand you, I get your ‘way’, you know, but others might not and you could be perceived as a turd.”

3.    Making a children’s packed lunch:

I don’t know why this appears such a mammoth task to me.  To simply make one cheese sandwich; wrap in clingfilm then add several pre-packed items into a lunchbox, but it does.  I’m as happy as a dog licking a Chum lolly when on a Thursday night I realise the small fry doesn’t need one on a Friday.  Boom!  Like I’ve gained an extra hour and no longer got the soul-destroying task of finding the end of the cheap cling film or slicing cheese.

4.    Finding there’s no toilet roll:

Yeah, you’re sitting pretty, you’re all done and you turn to finish the transaction and find nothing but an empty toilet roll.  A cardboard tube devoid of all absorbent properties; a sign of man’s lazy attitude and thoughtless nature.  But what to do?  Call out?  Then have the awkward ‘reach’ round a partially open door. Waddle to the cupboard where the surplus are kept praying the window cleaner doesn’t put in a surprise appearance.  Towel/Sock?  Then wash, obvs. Or simply stay there until hell freezes over and you die; pretty sure that’s what happened to Elvis.

5.    A hole in the toe-gusset of your tights:

We’re all irritated when a decent pair of tights bite the dust particularly if they’re barely run in and the crotch is still in premium condition.  But Dear God when you’ve spent a day on your feet with this innate nagging feeling that something, somewhere isn’t right but you just can’t put your finger on it it’s both a blessed relief and horrific discovery when you take your shoe off and your cold, blue toe is the first thing you encounter.  Initially there’s fear; the feeling, colour, warmth will never return. Then there’s relief; the feeling, colour and warmth HAS returned!   You’ll rejoice that both sandals and flip-flops are still a summer option for you and that your balance will continue to be shit but at least you’re not disfigured.  Then you’ll mourn the loss of a perfectly good pair of tights…unless you’re the domestic goddess that will not only repair the hole but also add a reinforced patch for longevity…I’m not her.

6.    A wash disaster involving brand new underwear:

You know that smug feeling when there are several new items of underwear in your drawer; not yet worn?  M & S sale drew you in like adult equivalent of the Pied Piper with a bottle of Prosecco and bag of Kettle crisps?  You managed to spend nearly one hundred pounds on some basics and one fancy set in case a member of the opposite set ever tickles your fancy (literally) and there they sit; with pride in your knicker drawer.  Then time moves on and you finally decide to test drive the fancy set; it’s an occasion, you’re not getting any younger, you’ve been arsed to trim back and therefore there’ll be no ‘hairy frame’ to your new smalls.

You feel good in your grown-up lingerie; knowing your perfectly prepared for an emergency trip to A & E should the evening take a wrong turn or in the case of a right turn; he’s in for a treat. The next day after showering in ‘Solpadeine’ and wondering if it’s too late to write your bucket list you might toss your new set into the machine to make up a load. It’s only later when you come to retrieve the freshly spun garments that you realise your error. 

Your beautiful lingerie set; matching and everything is now grey; not dove or slate but sludgey and shite a bit like your life (you think at this point, as the excesses of the night before have put you into a negative spiral that only Pizza or chocolate can lift you out of…).

7.    Being made into a ‘Nag’:

“I’ll let you know.” 

It starts with a perfectly reasonable comment.  That person has said they will inform you of something that will ultimately affect you; how you act, where you go, what time you get there.  Then as a date or event approaches you’ll wait.  You may or may not see them or converse with them in the meantime.  You’ll attempt to bring the conversation round to the ‘thing’; the elephant in the corner, albatross round your neck but they’ll not be drawn in to comment. 

You are left waiting.  And it get’s closer, and closer.  And you’re still waiting.  And they’re strolling round like their shit don’t stink, without a care in the world; tossing their hair, throwing their head back to laugh and showing too many teeth.  And you’re beginning to feel really pissed off. 

Why won’t they tell me?  Do they still not know?  So eventually when you can stand it no longer you ask. 

“Shit, yes of course, right let me sort it and I’ll get back to you.”

Sweet baby Jesus, the hour is nearly upon us and you still don’t know.  So you now can’t plan or organise.  You’re essentially trapped.  This person is trapping you with their inability to ‘let you know’; to inform you, make you aware in order that you can make decisions, dot i’s and cross t’s.  You let it go but deep inside you’re furious. 

Another day passes and the ‘thing’ is the next day. You’re not going to ask again…no fucking way.  And then it’s out of your mouth; again.  This time their irritation and contempt is visible; hell they’re not even trying to hide it. 

“I’ve said I’ll let you know.”  But it’s tomorrow; when, when, but frigging when are you going to let me know?

And there you have it.  You are now a nag.  Twisting on and on like a broken record, and who is to blame?

THEM…they have made you into the one thing you swore you’d never be.  Bastard.  A plague upon their house and may God give them persistent thrush until the end of time.

8.    Excessive talking:

I’m not one that needs to fill a quiet space.  I feel the world is a better place when punctuated with moments of silence.  For they allow the brain to breathe; the mind to quieten and the fucking chance to gather one’s fucking thoughts when in the company of noisy fuckers.  I’m happy to sit in silent contemplation; even when sitting next to a friend or lover and frankly it’s only one that can indulge my need for peace that I’ll keep around.  Yes, yes I’m all up for good gas and believe you and me I can talk, but I like to think that what comes out of my gob is either informative or amusing.  When one can offer neither the mouth should remain shut; permanently.

9.    Sodium-lacking chippie chips:

So you’re on holiday perhaps; by the sea the sound of the waves crashing as the tide heads inland chasing away the Seagulls feasting on leftover sandwiches.  Your lover; tall, dark, reasonably handsome except for the nose hairs he appears determined not to tackle walks towards you bearing two paper parcels of lush-ness.

Inside fresh ‘catch of the day’ encased in crispy batter and chippie chips! You open the parcel with the reverence of a ring-box on wedding day and there it is; in all it’s glory, a slice of seaside heaven.  Wielding a tiny plastic fork in blue you stab away whilst simultaneously blowing until your first stack of fishy flakes and chips are perfectly poised and ready for entry.  In it goes…STOP. Where the hell is the salt?  Why in God’s name would I want to eat fresh catch of the day with chippie chips and not smother it in enough salt to induce a stroke?  I’m at the fucking seaside.  The sea is full of salt.  Why is my deep-fried sliced potato not coated in it?  I’ve been known at this point to have a paddy; spoil a perfectly good day/holiday or return stony-faced to the kiosk and raise the shaker dramatically whilst eyeballing all those within reach and mentally double daring them to take me on.

10.    Warm wine:

I’m not talking red or mulled here.  Though red can be too warm if you fall asleep in front of ‘Antiques Roadshow’ with a glassful between your thighs. I’m talking white or sparkling or horror-of-horrors champagne.  You simply can’t serve it tepid.  The bottle must be so cold that it might threaten to stick to your skin.  The liquid a few notches off freezing; cold enough to cut through your palate, awaken your slumbering taste buds and chill your heart.  Imagine; I’m off to a party, all dressed up (I might be wearing my new sale M & S lingerie before it became grey) and I’m excited for a good night out.  I’ve had a very successful fake tan, bought the host a nice bottle of wine and my eye liner’s on point.  The taxi arrives on time, the driver is a handsome fella with good hair, sparkling eyes and a horn-inducing aftershave. My favourite tune comes on the radio, the sun is high on a summer’s night and life is joyous!  Arriving at the house party, I’m handed a glass of Champagne, I take a sip…STOP.

Life’s too short for warm wine; was my overriding thought whilst sipping freezing cold Sauvignon from the screw-cap bottle in the back of the cab heading home…THE END.


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