Happy New Year to all

Back from the holidays, I am sipping lemon water which is meant to miraculously offset the damage  done to the waistline after a week of binge eating and lying like a dead cabbage on coast of Dubai.

Year 2016 has been rather convoluted, full of surprises and stretched the entire spectrum of the rainbow in terms of its colourfulness. Stories began appearing midway through 2016 asking whether it was the worst year ever.

“Are we slowly entering Armageddon territory?” I  reflect on my year and pose the question to the ‘Man of the House’ . You only have to ask the question to know the answer is a firm “No”. 2016 was not the worst year in British history. It wasn’t even the worst year in the last half century.

I do a quick google search to see of the rest of the planet had the similar thoughts and there were no surprises there, 2016 certainly experienced its share of significant world events.. According to the global peace index  which conducted a survey, deepening conflict in the Middle East and north Africa, the refugee crisis and increased terrorism mean the world is less peaceful now than last year – and has been getting less peaceful for the last decade.

‘I could have told you that without the scientific calculations’ He mumbles while chomping on a stack of homemade ‘aloo parathas‘.  We have seen ongoing global terror, war and famine amongst its worst times in 2016, then not forgetting the zika virus, Brexit and then Donald Trump being given the important chair in the world. We lost many loved icons such as David Bowie, Leonard Cohen and Prince.

However, it was not all doom and black for 2016, we did see a few things that made us smile and think life is not over just yet.

Who remembers the ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’?  Thanks to the ice bucket challenge , and the charity it was running for found the gene responsible for ALS, meaning we are closer to an effective treatment. Let me rephrase that: we are close to getting a treatment for a very bad disease because a lot of people (including really hot celebrities) got wet.

New chemotherapy breakthroughs have increased the 5-year survival for pancreatic cancer from 16% to 27% (and is getting better). And this one really bought a smile to my blue face- Child mortality is down everywhere in the world and it keeps going down. So if that doesn’t make up for the cursed 2016, nothing will.

Dear 2017,

As you creep closer and bring new beginnings, fresh starts, reaffirmations of love and promises for a brighter future, there are the superficial, yet purposeful, promises we make to ourselves. We resolve to get in shape, lose weight, improve career paths, and the like. Then, there are the heartfelt promises we make to others, whether aloud or in our minds. We want to care more, express love more, reverse bad feelings in old relationships or seek out new loving relationships.

We try our very best to put these desires into words. Though New Years can be a time of celebration and cheer, there are many people who are facing difficult circumstances. They may be entering this time of year with apprehension or anxiety. If that’s the case for anyone in your circle of friends or family, you can reach out and be an encouragement by wishing them the best for the upcoming year. If your loved ones are experiencing favorable circumstances, you can wish them continued success.

Whether you live nearby or far away, you can send heartfelt wishes for happiness, health, and prosperity to those who mean the most to you at this special time of year.

Mrs Oddbones

 

Donald Duck, Red and Yellow Goblins and an infamous Chai Walla

6.30am: I wake up to a weary eyed ‘Man of the House’ who has just spent half the night following the American Elections. “Good Morning! Rise and Shine, the early bird catches the worm blah blah blah”

“Talking about birds, Donald Duck is President” he mumbles from under his duvet. Your bird has flown into a Trump Tower, bled to a hemorrhagic death and the worms are now eating her decomposed body instead.

How?’ I reply, ‘Well,  it just goes to prove the old saying ‘Its not what you know, its who you know’. “Hilary Clinton has been in the political world for over 30 years and we have known Donald Trump for just over a year” he replies. “I get he is ignorant, sexist, racist, arrogant and all that but still, I believe in the ability of people to surprise you. And I, for one, am going to give this man some room to prove that”. I give The man of the House a piercing look as he appears to be less skeptical than me over a lame duck becoming leader of the free world, probably because the only thing Trump and Man of the House have in common is neither of them are feminists!

“Exactly!” I exclaim, We have known birdbrain for only 1 year and what we have learnt is that Donald Trump is very much all of the following:

  • Makes fun of the disabled
  • Is a racist
  • Is a misogynist
  • Doesn’t understand why we haven’t used nuclear weapons if we have them
  • Prefers Putin to Obama
  • Enjoys the writings of Hitler
  • Makes most Trump products overseas
  • Won’t disclose his tax returns
  • Thinks it’s funny to joke about presidential assassinations
  • Used lawsuits to stiff small businesses
  • Thinks it’s a good idea to argue with parents who have lost a child to war
  • Thinks women who have abortions should be punished
  • Thinks President Obama founded ISIS- an organisation that started before Obama was a Senator much less President
  • Didn’t realize Russia invaded the Ukraine but when pressed said it was a good thing
  • Is good at business but better at bankruptcy
  • Discussed the idea of dating his own daughter because she’s his type
  • Thinks women who face sexual harassment at work should just find another career
  • Wishes people at political rallies would be allowed to beat one another up when they disagree
  • Doesn’t consider American prisoners of war to be heroes because they were captured
  • Wishes he was black today because being black today would give him an advantage – but doesn’t want a black man counting his money. He only wants Jews for that.
  • Thinks women in the workplace don’t give him 100%.  They give him 84% because 16% goes towards taking care of the kids.

“You forgot to mention how many times he sniffed in his presidential debate”  He laughs out loud, we end our conversation here and depart to our respected destinations.

My colleagues at work are like the Munch Bunch gang and when they all rally up together we get an interesting fruit cake.

9am:”So why exactly are we so scared of the Trump Presidency?” starts off the morning.

“I have no idea what kind of President Mr Trump will be. We can never know these things, all I know is Trump is a chump, seriously. Can I have my coffee now please?”

2pm: On my way home, I decide to call my dad, who I can always trust to have an ‘educated’ opinion. “Dad, you have obviously been following the elections, the American Dream has turned into the American Nightmare overnight”.”Yes beta, did you know Trump was once part of Wrestle Mania?”. “Perhaps it isn’t such a bad idea to have a ‘Kushti walla‘ take charge of the western world?”  I rest my case and put the phone down. What is wrong with everyone?

Speaking of ‘Kushti Walla‘ and following the overnight internet sensation ‘Chai walla’, there has suddenly been an exponential increase in the number of ‘Pakora Wallas, Paan Wallas’ and ‘Rickshaw Wallas’ posting their pictures on the likes of Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, hoping to also get noticed by some forign modelling agency that will give them a career change like Arshad Khan who is now known as ‘Fashion Walla

7pm: Im preparing dinner as The Man of the House will be home any minute after a long day and the slow moving traffic on a match day when all you see around you are red and yellow goblin like creatures chanting away the Watford FC anthem and no else dares to come out of their homes.

He comes homes and our conversation picks up from where we left this morning. We will have to agree to disagree on this one, but something we both agree on is for the Hillary supporters …pull yourselves together. Please. Some of you are embarrassing yourselves. For the Trump supporters …some of you are too. A little grace and humility might be in order. You just elected Donald J Trump as your nation’s president …there are not a lot of choices left.

“Whats for dinner tonight babe?” He asks while plonking himself in his seat at the dinner table. I thought id go with the theme of the moment and cooked up a rather tasty bird with a red and yellow sideline, followed by a cup of ‘desi chai’.

And in case your wondering, Mr Trump sniffed 93 times in the 90 min presidential debate

Mrs Oddbones

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ow I learnt to speak ze French- Oui?

After months of prepping to stretch my parenting patience to its limit, it was finally time to take the leap. I was fully aware of the standard advice from nursery staff, healthcare advisers and even my doctor – “Do it gradually, wait to toilet train your son until he shows interest”.

But I wouldn’t be me if I did things the ‘advised’ way- so off I set, Im on a mission and I have 3 weeks to get boy minion out of his nappies, slash my £30-a month diaper bill and minimise our contribution to the local landfill.

Week 1: Day 1

9:00am: Bye Bye Nappies- Im hopeful but more skeptical. I have read every book on the planet about how to toilet train boys in under a week, yet I am crapping (no pun intended) on how to physically get boy minion into the bathroom to start with. Wee Wee Wee Wee Wee Wee, we’re going for a wee wee wee.

9:30am: Coffee Break

9:30:01- Boy minion pee’s in his pants. He doesn’t even realise he’s peed, let alone the discomfort. Biting my bottom lip, I rush to get him changed, clean up the mess and gulp down my coffee along the way.

9:45 Me: Wee?

Boy: Blanks me

This one way conversation takes us through the morning and in total we have had 6 wee’s and a poop, not once on the toilet. By midday we have run out of clean pants, jogging bottoms and motivation.

The following week has been little different to the first. Its been two whole weeks and he’s not even realising, let alone announced, that he’s peed. I’m totally crashed while the local Tesco is doing great business on carpet and upholstery cleaner. I have even lost 2 pounds chasing the maggot around with my antibacterial spray and microfibre cloth shouting “We Wee in the Toilet”. He thinks this is some new fun game The Mother has invented and is enjoying his new found nappy-less freedom.

Week 3:

Drained, Bruised and Exhausted, I sit on the floor staring at Boy from across the room. He gives me a cheeky smile back and suddenly shouts “mummy…….? Wee Wee”! I fly over to him with the last drop of adrenaline I have left and whisk him off to the bathroom, slump him on the toilet seat and wait eagerly for the first drop of wee to flow.

Alas, we have prevailed our fears and managed to do a wee in the toilet. This miracle extends into the day and then the next and so on and before I know it- the week is over! woo hoo yippee! I declare boot camp over! Little Man has earned his stripes!

I ponder about my boot camp with Little Man over the last 2 weeks and look back over what I could have done differently. My early and all-at-once approach is the least favoured by many experts who prefer to wait and take cues and then proceed slowly. There is sufficient evidence to suggest that when a toddler is between 2 1/2 and 3, there is enough language and cognitive skills to make this task a smooth ride as it is much easier to train children to use the toilet.   It’s hilarious for boys and girls as they attempt to understand how their bodies work. Ofcourse, there is a great deal of tension in this essential developmental task, but the end result is a great relief.

Mrs Oddbones

A ‘3-Parent Baby’

It was a strange malady that struck without any warning.

One day I was running around in circles faster than light and the next day I can barely lift a foot out of bed. After ruling out all possible terminal conditions suggested by Dr Google, I decided to take the dipstick test. My life was turned around by a simple colorimetric reaction where the presence of a teeny tiny amount of the HCG hormone sent all my other hormones on what felt like a Nemesis ride at Alton Towers.

From this day forward, my life had changed. Everything I ate, every movement I made and even the position I slept in was going to have a direct influence on the bun in the oven. I began drinking more milk and eating more greens to ensure the little creature was getting its fair share of calcium and iron without leaching it out of my very bones and blood.

And yes, though this bundle of cells was currently a farrago of my gene code, it was also carrying some dominant genes from ‘The man of the house’ and thus while he dominates my life from the outside, a miniature version of him could be doing the same to me on a cellular level.

Time passed and I gained inches while losing my mind. After months of this torment it was time to push this cantaloupe through an eye of a needle. I strained, I screamed and finally when I thought I had been shot with an Izhmash AK-47 assault rifle- it was all over.

A few hours later when I was lying on my hospital bed beyond comprehension, the man of the house was trying to get comfortable by strategically adjusting my bed at a level which provided the most comfort for his feet. He rested his head on a chair which served as his bed that night, he mumbled ‘This is so difficult!’ I gave him a faint smile and reassured him I was OK. ‘No, its so uncomfortable to sleep on a chair’ he replied instantly. If I wasn’t hooked up to IV fluids I would have smacked him over the head with the pole.

A few weeks later both baby and I have been given the all clear. Coincidently I come across an article which looks into not so fortunate couples who have been trying for a family for almost 20 years. Due to a genetic mutation in the mothers mitochondria, the couple have had the heartbreak of four miscarriages and the loss of two full terms.

A controversial technique which involves DNA from three people, the spindle nuclear transfer technique consists of two women, one man resulting in one baby.

The technique involves fertilising both women’s eggs with the fathers sperm and before any cell division takes place the nucleus from the donor woman’s eggs is removed and replaced by the nucleus from the mothers fertilised egg. This eradicates any faulty mitochondrial replication in the fertilised egg, therefore eliminating the risk of the disease being passed onto the baby.

Nine months later a healthy baby boy is born with no sign of the faulty mitochondria in his genetic make up.

Obviously there have been numerous ethical outcries to these complex procedure as one woman’s pain is another woman’s pleasure. Literally. Science is revolutionary at providing  answers and cures but can often open up an unlabelled can of worms. Where is the line, who draws the line, who can step over the line so on and so forth.

Since ‘DNA tampering’ methods have been approved in the UK, it has since increased the demand amongst the elite for ‘designer babies’. Surprisingly, these methods are still illegal in America, so successful candidates travel down to Mexico where ‘there are no rules’.

As I carefully analyse my postpartum body, the man of the house declares I need to lose 10 kilos in the next 2 months. I merely reply ‘of course dear, I can achieve this target by next week- I just have to chop both my arms off.

I walk out of the room with the chain of thought that all these advanced scientific  techniques are quite frankly experiments on human life, how many births do we need to wait for until we realise that we have simply chopped too much.

Mrs Oddbones

 

Au and a Rainbow

Pakistani’s are obsessed with Gold, be at My Big Fat Pakistani Wedding or the Olympic games. You most certainly will not see a shortage of gold at our weddings as it is one of the many things that are religiously observed by our lovely aunty ji’s, so much so that it quickly becomes an observers jealousy and owners pride within minutes of walking into a packed hall of eye gazing spectators.

On the contrary, the olympic games had been pretty disheartening bang on the head for the Pakistani team since they left a week before the games officially ended with no precious metals in hand. It didn’t help that the nation sent the smallest possible team (7 athletes in total with 4 men and 3 women, competing in a total of 4 sports) who were unable to advance into further rounds when Najma Parveen failed to pass the preliminary heats in the women 200m. The team couldn’t run faster back to their homeland.

In my opinion, the Olympic games are just another drop in the ocean of ‘fix hai‘. Let me explain- see if the Summer Olympics games committee picked games that us Pakistani’s were any good at, then maybe we would stand a chance against our western counterparts.

They cunningly rank ‘Running’ as a major event. Now, tell me- when has any resident of the Sub-Asian continent ever turned up at their destination on time?  When the whole of South East Asia is known for their ‘Indian standard timing’ by turning up 2 hours later than the suggested time- how are we supposed to ever reach the finish line before anyone else?

The second most anticipated wait at any Pakistani wedding is the Food. Especially at our Punjabi weddings, food is one key and probably the most important ritual (esp if your not related to the bride or the groom) as we devour a Tandoori Chicken cooked to perfection, ignoring our Blood Pressure, Diabetes and Cholesterol problems. For the duration of the wedding period, all health problems and doctors advice are thrown out of the window while we bust those killer moves on the dance floor heading towards a repetitive strain injury the following morning.

Last week I attended my cousins Big Fat Pakistani Wedding, and in style it was an affair of true class. As each ceremony was meticulously planned by the event management, even I found my usual rollercoaster journey with multiple buggies and backpacks a smooth ride- as a group we were up beat and full of excitement until my son decides to take me on a 3 mile detour in the opposite direction of the wedding venue. For the record- Boy Minion is only 2 years and 8 months- but knows exactly which string to pull to get mama following his little pitta patter footsteps into trouble.

That evening, I slump on the couch with a book I’ve picked off my cousins shelf (she’s away on honeymoon to even notice a book thief!) and read it slowly because I don’t want it to end. The Man of the House is polishing off some Gajar Halva we have bought home with us. I ask him to decipher a love triangle situation from the book. He looks up and laughs gleefully ‘I have never read a book in my life, you’ve read a thousand- yet you still come to me for advice’. My jaw drops and I am speechless for once, but come back with an answer instantly. ‘Im not seeking advice dear, all the reading has given me the wisdom to view situations from more than one vantage point.

10pm: Minions asleep and The Man of the House blowing his trumpet to someone on the phone, I wonder why us Pakistani’s fail so miserably at the Olympics. When Amir Khan took Silver in Athens 2004, it gave hope to many young fellow countrymen to build a name for themselves and their country. Where Khan became an overnight British Superstar, the athletes of Team Pakistan will go back to their usual day jobs of selling Paan leaves in the streets of Karachi, the country simply does not appreciate its athletes. These hardworking athletes work so hard for a once in a lifetime chance and what does the Pakistani government do? It tells them there is a pot of Gold at the end of the rainbow and makes them run innumerable miles to attain glory for the country, they discover that a rainbow is nothing but a trick of light.

Mrs Oddbones

 

 

 

 

The Eid Creed is Poking around with Kheer

Eid will always remind me of my childhood, growing up in a close network of my natives in downtown east London. I have a clear sensory memory of awakening to aromas of cumin and cloves wafting from my mothers kitchen into my bedroom

Eid is a global Muslim festival yet celebrated differently in each country. The one thing all cultures and identities have in common is the emphasis and attention towards celebrating family togetherness. Eid is a day that revolves around family get-togethers  and is a celebration of food following a month of abstinence and refraining.

As a child, Eid seemed like a pretty profitable and easy business as I would make substantial amounts of money over a span of 3 days without doing any work. These motives of looking forward to Eid seemed pretty shallow but it was the only exciting aspect of Eid for any child, apart from being allowed to eat obscene amounts of unhealthy food. However, growing older has not only sent my Eidi business into liquidation but has started to leave me in somewhat of a deficit year on year.

Food took centre stage, a Kings feast was on the menu following a morning of Eid prayers and a breakfast of ‘Halva Puri Channay’, ‘Karak Chai’ and of course ‘Kheer’. As if this wasn’t enough to fill our stomachs, Eid Lunch was promptly served at midday with a lavish spread of ‘Biryani’, Shami Kebabs’, ‘Koftas’ and more Kheer.

Present Day Eid:

6:00am- Alarm rings and The Man of the House leaps out of his bed straight into the shower. I, on the other hand am desperately trying to get my carcass out from under the duvet and move into the direction of pots and pans detonating.

7:00am- The doorbell rings and I want to shred whoever it is to smithereens. Luckily its my cousins from down the road who I adore, so I take the off my black belt and let them in whilst chanting ‘Eid Mubarak’, ‘Eid Mubarak’.

With their heads hunched over their phones, I realise I have missed out on the latest phenomenon called Pokémon Go. A quick interrogation reveals you have to ‘look for Pokémons with your phone to move from one location to another’.

‘And at the end you receive a….?’ I ask

‘You get nothing’ reply the ambiguous cousins. ‘Its just a play of thrill’

‘What could possibly be thrilling about looking for virtual cartoons all over town without a prize of some sort at the end’ I ask, disappointedly. I mean, there must be some sort of incentive compelling half the world’s population going gaga over these blue, yellow and purple minions?’

‘No, your so greedy!’ reply my prodigal cousins.

‘Kheer anyone?’

I follow them into the garden with a bowl of my aromatic rice pudding, laced with pistachios and rose petals as they prepare for their virtual conquest.

The Man of the House comes in to inform me how crammed the mosque was today at Eid prayers, but a further inspection revealed even the devout Uncle Ji’s have jumped on the Pokémon Go bandwagon. So much so that some had even forgotten to leave their virtual conquests behind at the door along with their Bata leather sandals because apparently inside the mosque lay a Pokéstop. Heading straight for the Imam’s chair while reluctantly greeting each other, another level is accomplished!        Shukkar Allah!

Purely for research purposes, I curiously download this current trend. Ya Khuda.

I catch up with the trend pretty quick and realise how annoyingly addictive yet engaging this game is. Annoying because I feel pretty damn stupid looking for virtual minions when I have perfectly healthy real ones to troll over and engaging because I now feel part of an entire new entity who all seem to be on their way onto early spondylitis by crouching over their phones looking for Pokémon. Nevertheless, I have clocked level one by finding my first midget behind the shed and simultaneously discovered a woodlouse infestation! Woo Hoo.

This game has taken a trip to the local swings ground with my minions to whole new level. Minions bike in one hand and Pokémon catcher in the other I head towards the children’s park hoping to find some more virtual midgets. Conquered- nailed it- bring on level 2!

A quick detailed analysis leads me to conclude this game did not exactly pan out as it was expected to be. I mean, in a world where we are constantly being pushed into spending less and less time in the active world and more in the virtual world, this game has taken me to new and some old forgotten locations that I would not necessarily visit in my daily travels. I even changed my route home to find and catch more Pokémon and discovered a beautiful canal path that I never knew existed!

So, in my opinion its not such a bad game, if you play responsibly. By that I mean ‘Watch where you are going!’. There have been numerous stories over the last few weeks about people ending up in death traps whilst chasing their virtual minions. One recently about a hapless man who drove into the sea chasing Pokémon. Witnesses described a car ‘flying’ off the esplanade into the high tide as the man was convinced there was a rare Charizard somewhere in the area. Idiot!

Therefore, play sensibly and yes , it is dangerous if you don’t watch where you are going — that’s a given with anything including texting — but you can put your phone onto ‘vibrate’ mode, keep the app open and be notified when a Pokémon pops up in your area instead of peering at your screen constantly,  avoiding any fatal incidences like the idiot above.

For now, the remainder of my Eid will be spent finding, catching and feeding my new virtual children. Unfortunately my real life minions think The Mother has gone bonkers walking around the garden with a bowl of Kheer and a newly developed compulsive disorder which involves a sudden leap and catch notion. They will, in time come to learn the old saying ‘If you can’t beat them, join them’.

Happy Eid

Mrs Oddbones

 

 

 

Brexit entering a spiritual journey

2.00am: my alarm rings and I want to smash it to smithereens. As blessed as I am to be on this spiritual detox known as Ramadhan- I can’t help but fall out of my bed and wander around the house looking like a homeless tramp at this unearthly hour reserved for owls, bats and the man of the house.

The last 3 weeks have been a spiritual healing and triggering a magical bond with God. As it turns out, Ramadan is not simply an exercise in fasting during the day, binge-eating during the night and setting the clock to the morning’s small hours for those inclined to rise for the predawn meal. Neither is it about lacklustre employees who see the month as an excuse to slack off and overworked women slaving over a stove every day in preparation for the sunset meal. Ramadan is none of those things, if done right, and instead, is the chance for a spiritual boost, with lessons to be applied long after the month is out.

I have tried to protest that the newspaper status sunrise is at 4.48am, so technically I could get up at 4.45am and gulp some food before the spiritual detox begins- but to no avail. Instead I get a sharp nudge in the ribs from the man of the house which is my cue to shut up and begin munching on my meal.

7.00am: alarm rings again. This time I hit the snooze button as I should be grateful for having at least 4 hours solid sleep before the minions come screaming into my bed.

9.00am: I need coffee….

11.00am: I need coffee….

Pre Sunrise meeting with man of the house and I cannot help but moan.

“The UK has so many problems: Drug abuse, violent crime , teenage delinquency, welfare dependency and most recently being kicked out of Europe twice in 1 week (we do tend to go the extra mile) and now the Tories are dead”.

I mean, bless them for trying. They are like a patient in AnE stabbing themselves repeatedly and fountaining blood all over while chatting happily to the doctor about booking a package holiday.

The Scots reaction, to the referendum was seriously imbalanced towards the ‘remain’ side and something tells me they would want a second referendum on the Scottish independence now that the national vote turned out to Leave. Our counterparts up north may even join the Euro since it supported smaller countries, which could possibly lead to a new super power made up of all the EU left overs. Not exactly the situation our Brexit supporters were hoping for.

Don’t get me wrong dear, I don’t hate politicians but I would happily unplug their life support to charge my phone, I look up at his face for a reaction…

Before his look of horror has had a chance to reply I quickly burst into another musing moment where I discuss the level of education and intelligence of the British Public.

During my last insomniac moment when I was randomly browsing on the web and trying to look for something useful to do with my time at 3.30am because all the pre dawn parathas and lassi I had had has only left me suffering from indigestion and unable to sleep, I began reading political tweets that pop up on my iPhone- beep after beep as I have programmed for notifications to wake me up at nautical twilight hours – I have come to the conclusion that Education and Intelligence are two completely different substances.

Firstly let me make clear, I would never say this in front of the minions: a good school and a good university are very strong foundations for our brains to exercise, but intelligence is an inherent trait . Learning, reasoning and understanding is a manifestation of a high mental capacity that they must build for themselves through retaining and applying information. Intelligence involves combining experiences of the world and forging mental connections with the facts at our disposal. We can and must provide our children with the means to a great education but creating this cohesive amalgamation of information is something they must do themselves.”

I turn around and hear the man of the house snoring away with his ear plugs in. I give up, its like rewriting the laws of physics with water flowing upwards with him.

Some examples of successful people in the world who have not even near nearly finished their education but allowed their intelligence to achieve greatness. My favourite comedian Micheal McIntyre dropped out of The Merchant Taylors School and then left University of Edinburgh after one year for a future in script writing. He resides in Hampstead and is reportedly the highest grossing comedian in the world. He is now laughing all the way to the bank.

Following last week’s Brexit and England’s departure from Euro 2016, I suggest each and every member of the Tories and England’s prized football team (including Roy Hodgson) join the world’s fellow muslims on their spiritual detox to help mend their wounds and rebuild their broken self esteem.

In return they will come out the side with more patience and mercy, which, let’s face it, we all need more of in these harried times. Ramadan is viewed as a month-long school where graduates leave with a developed sense of self-control in areas including diet, sleeping and the use of time.

The Scots on the other hand will be all guns (or bag pipes) blazing for a second referendum.

Mrs Oddbones

Sweet Land of Liberty

I fall out of my bed at the crack of dawn because the man of the house can’t find his dumbbells- why he needs them at this unearthly hour is beyond mine or any other sleep deprived mummy’s knowledge -we would much rather be catching up on the few hours of sleep before the babies wake up and the meticulous details to our day begin.

But alas, somewhere in between my marital vows of Love, Honour and Respect was ‘help husband find lost items at stupid o’clock’ as a deeper translation of wife includes ‘run a pre dawn wild goose chase when husband loses his dumb dumbs’.

I eventually fall into work, where I uncouthly yawn at every opportunity. I don’t even get offered a coffee, instead they hand me a mug of the strong shot and I hibernate under the pretext of educating oneself.

Great Britain is Great. Our respected politician’s sure know how to bring down the inevitable, whether it be Wellington’s last gamble for victory during the battle of Waterloo or Lady Thatcher’s monetary and fiscal squeeze to control inflation- we have it sussed… or have we…?

The National Health Service is our most recent forfeit. My crystal ball and multicoloured rings continuously tell me our nation could be renamed ‘State Britain’. Given the rate at which GP’s are leaving the country and settling for Sun, Sea and well everything else that goes, I predict we will be a state run blood sucking mosquitos with a Google Glass taped across their heads and some kind of telepathic device to communicate with the vulnerable.  Medicine will have surged forward in unprecedented speed and accuracy and our universal handout system will have turned into  fantastic business. Joy. Not.

The true patriot I am and anything to save the NHS, I would like to make a business proposal to Mr Cameron. My proposal consists of brawny men standing at the entrance to every GP practice in the country, with dumbbell’s in each hand waiting to clobber any service abuser who turns up for ailment’s that their granny could have easily brewed up for them at home. Mr Brawny will become a national icon- so my crystal ball tells me.

I even have such a volunteer at home that I could lend Mr Cameron, who is willing to do the pre-dawn shift. At least this way I get my sleep and dream of living in a country that isn’t treated like the vending machine that everyone kicks to score a free Mars bar.

Mrs Oddbones

 

 

A real life Mr Tumnus

May 5th- Election day in the UK. Where most parties are setting their agendas and promising the biggest badest revolutionary change since Winston Churchill’s World War 2 victory, I have a very simple and sophisticated opinion: Politicians and Diapers have one thing in common, they should be changed regularly as they are both full of the same thing.

While I should really be drafting a Safeguarding Adults policy, I am actively procrastinating because another news has curiously caught my attention. Simultaneously wandering why on earth this has pinged up on my news feed and loading it at the speed of light I want to read this faster than a fat kid chasing an ice cream truck.

Coffee in one hand and news feed in other I stare in disbelief at a what seems like perfectly  legitimate photo of a Goat that gave birth to a hybrid of wait for it…..Goat and Human. Yikes! I fall out of my chair with coffee dousing my freshly blow dried hair. My grey cells begin to swim against stream as to how this is even physically possible?

In times where almost the impossible is the only possible, it reminds me of how as humans we are largely indifferent to things when they are alive and only pay tribute when they are dead. This poor creature that has been created against the law of science is the product of violation between the mother goat and a human. The owner of this mythical creature is a farmer from Malaysia who is now inundated with hundreds of offers by overseas billionaires who want to show Mr Tumnus off in their extravagant parties and use his lifeless carcass to entertain. Disgusting.

It seems like a good time to get back to Safeguarding Adults because we are far from safeguarding all the other animals in the world.

Its Bank Holiday weekend so the National Health Service is all set for abuse from the moment the phone lines open today.

8am: First case appears in my pool: 6 year old won’t take his antibiotics because he doesn’t like the flavour. Mum is requesting a more pleasant tasting antibiotic.

Contemplating who the real baby is there, my snarky reply to the poor clinician who has requested my help is ‘should I prepare a Nutella flavoured antibiotic for them?’ The overwhelmed clinician doesn’t obviously realise that I’m being sarcastic and curiously asks if we keep different flavours to mask bitter tasting medicines. I continue his naive imagination and say I secretly use ice cream flavouring especially when preparing medicines for kids. He leaves my office in disbelief.

Im nearly half way through the BH abuse and its the usual cocktail of repeat offenders. The day goes on.

I meander down the street after parking 6 blocks away as looking for somewhere to park on my own road is out of the question. Is it really too much to ask for to park your own car in front of your own house.

I enter my house and The man of the house is effortlessly chomping his way through a stack of chapli kebab filled with a Pathan mother’s love for her beloved son. On the contrary, I run around like a headless chicken to get the babies fed, changed and ready for bed- Punjabi style.

10pm: Babies asleep and the day has wrapped up. I get ready for bed but can’t stop thinking of the unfortunate Mr Tumnus. Where these mythical characters provide endless hours of adventure and fantasy in C.S Lewis novels,  are at most the opposite in this cruel world. Maybe our beloved MP’s should concentrate on behaving more like Aslan the Great to save the helpless from evil and harm rather than be the antagonists they are. Some of our beloved remind me of Jadis the White Witch in their obsession to quickly secure control over the population in the run up to 5th May and after which their true colours emerge. 

I yawn, I snooze and with the fatigue catching up I make my way to the back of my wardrobe. I put on my thick furry coat and step into a magical and mystical world of Narnia……

Mrs Oddbones 

Roses are Red, Violets are Blue- Cinderella finds a wooden shoe

Its our 5 year anniversary this April and I have unhesitatingly informed the man of the house that it would be rather nice if he came home with a substantial gift and a bunch of Red Roses in the evening. After 5 years of matrimony i have discovered that hoping your other half telepathically reads your mind only leads to one wanting to punch the other in the face.

As i waste my time staring at the latest contouring techniques from Huda Kattan on Instagram and practicing every duck face ever invented my attention turns to a programme on channel 4 documentaries about how in some cultures women fast from dawn to dusk in a sanguine expectation that their husbands will have a long and prosperous life as a result of their extreme physical and mental endurance. Lovely.

I couldn’t help but google the statistical evidence behind this belief  and instantly found how not only how far it is from the real world but in actual fact its a vice versa situation out there. I mean, the Arab men have 4 wives each which theoretically should bump up their life expectancy 4 fold – if each wife whole heartedly fasts for her male counterpart with the sheer determination and passion as her south asian analogue- but is that the case?

Lets do the maths: average South Asian male with 1 wife has a life expectancy of 63.9 years. With 150 countries above ours in their average life expectancy the biggest blow comes when the average Middle Eastern man with 4 wives has life expectancy of 67.2 years. Quite straight forward really- i am so relieved i don’t have to deprive my grey cells of food and water in hope of securing a few more years on the other half’s life.

Wouldn’t it be lovely if they fasted for us for a change. It would instantly put all those creams, potions and lotions that promise to make us looking 10 years younger out of business overnight.

In my moments of random musing’s I hear the man of the house screaming ‘Im hungry, lets get some food!’ How can i ever complete a chain of thought when someone is forever asking me to do things- I don’t think this fasting business will ever work for me, especially if who I am fasting for is constantly bugging me to pass the pita bread.

So I follow an old controversy which goes something like ‘a wise woman firmly keeps her hands in her pocket and doesn’t accidentally unzip anything, including her mouth’

With that thought in mind- the doorbell rings and i find a suspicious looking package wrapped up in paper, plastic and then sealed with string…wondering if it contains some kind of radioactive isotope- i open it cautiously only to find a block of wood carved with the 5 year milestone. The tribe that the man of the house belongs to doesn’t follow the crowd, but in a weird kind way never fails to surprise.

Mrs Oddbones