Amy Winehouse – a Tribute

I remember the first time I really got Amy Winehouse. I was standing in my kitchen when Rehab came on the radio.Turning it up, I asked Mr P if he had heard it. He said he hadn’t but we both stopped what we were doing and listened; how refreshing, I thought, a female singer with balls. I was amazed when the DJ announced that it was Ms Winehouse. I recognised the name but had slotted her into the unflattering (and untrue) Katie Melua pigeonhole.

A year or so later, we went to see her at Rock City in Nottingham. The roadies came out prior to her performance and moved her microphone down its stand by about a foot. We guessed that it was for a trumpeter but no, it was for Amy herself. She was teeny, balancing that nest of hair on her head. She was wearing a cropped top and tight jeans.

She was unbelievable that night. I think I just stood there with my mouth open for two hours. She blew me away and to this day, Mr P and I both agree that it’s the best gig we’ve ever been to.

Somehow though, we both seemed to know at the time that we would never see her again. Whether self-consciously we meant in such a small venue or whether she just had one of those doomed destinies like so many of history’s great talents isn’t clear. It was just a feeling.

And now she is gone at the tender age of 27 – the same age as yours truly. I just hope she is remembered for her talent rather than her bad habits. I would like her to be historically listed with rock and pop’s greatest singers rather than lined up next to the more legndary hellraisers.

She was unique, unforgettable, a heroine to me and many others.

RIP Amy.

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And Then There Was One…

The other day, my very good friends Mr and Mrs G announced that they were expecting a baby. This was wonderful news; after two years of trying and failing, they had managed it. I was chuffed to bits for them.

One of Mrs G’s mates, Miss A, wasn’t so happy though. Tongue firmly in cheek, she moaned that Mrs G was the last of her single mates to procreate and the only one she could have a conversation with that didn’t revolve around breast-feeding or Calpol.

I know she was joking but Miss A had a point; people do inevitably change when they have kids – it’d be weird if they didn’t. When I see my babied-up mates, we always end up taking about their offspring, no matter how hard they try to steer the subject away or promise themselves that they won’t become one of ‘those mothers’.

The other day, I got a text from my last single girlfriend announcing her pregnancy. This was completely out of the blue; I thought she was in my childless-and-lovin’-it crew. Evidently not. Of course, I sent her a long, congratulatory text but it made me realise how Miss A must have felt; that sensible, fun, relevant conversation is fading to be replaced by news of nappy rash and teething rings.

Better make the most of her while I can.

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It’s a Girl Boy Thing



In A Nutshell: DON’T JUDGE ME, OK? I was alone, bored and this was the only thing showing on the  iPlayer. Honestly. Basically, a jock guy (Kevin Zegars) and a swotty girl (Samiare Armstrong) are sworn enemies. One day, they find that they have somehow inhabited each other’s bodies and set out to wreck one another’s lives.

Good Points: Some of the acting is rather good actually.

Bad Points: It’s daft and childish. I SAID DON’T JUDGE ME!

Good For: A girly night in when there is literally nothing else on.

Overall: 2/5

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Random Work Irritations #6

I have worked with one half of The Two-Headed Idiot (see Who’s Who) for a couple of years now. She still gets me confused with another colleague of ours, Patricia Fat-Arse (again, see Who’s Who). As you can gather by her less-than-flattering nickname, being compared to Patricia Fat-Arse is not a compliment. And it’s not just my ego that says it’s a complete farce to get us confused: for a start she is a good 3 dress sizes larger than me and has red hair. The only similarity – and I must stress the ONLY – between us is that we both wear glasses at work. The Two-Headed Idiot gets us muddled up so often that she once complimented me on how cute my son was. What son? Exactly.

Anyway. I’ve grown to expect this kind of dim-witted behaviour from her so I live with it, take it in my stride and restrict my snacking whenever she gets us confused.

However, the other day, I was accosted by a member of staff wanting to know why I was interfering in her work. When I pleaded innocent (not easy for a girl with Roman Catholic guilt), she said that I had been named by another one of the Gaggle (see Who’s Who) personally. The hen in question was a colleague I respect as having something other than cotton wool in between her ears. When I confronted her, she realised that she had actually meant Patricia Fat-Arse, not Yours Truly.

So. There we have it. It’s spreading. Maybe I should start wearing my contact lenses to work in future.

Posted in Miss Ranty Pants, The Curse of the Drinking Classes | Leave a comment

My Lover’s Lover – Maggie O’Farrell


Brief Synopsis: Lily meets and falls in love with Marcus. Soon, they move in together but Lily feels a strange presence in the flat – that of Marcus’ ex-lover, Sinead.

 Good Points: It keeps you guessing right to the end and O’Farrell’s style of writing is beautiful to read.

Bad Points: It’s a bit spooky – not great if you’re reading it at home alone.

Good For: Suspense with added mystery

Overall: 4/5

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My Second Mother

There’s a lady I work with – My Second Mother – who is a lovely woman in her 50s, she never married and never had children. She’s very kind and sweet and absolutely dotes on me but she is very old-fashioned. She is the same age as my real mum and yet it’s unbelievable how different they are to each other. My mum dresses quite fashionably but appropriately for her age. My Second Mother wears those skirts that finish halfway between knee and ankle – the most unflattering, stumpifying length of skirt you can get; floral blouses and sensible court shoes.

To further illustrate how out of touch she is, the other day she came into my office brandishing a Mills & Boon novel.

MSM: Would you read this, Rose?

ME: Not really, no. It’s not really my kind of thing.

MSM: It’s a hospital based romance. Are you sure I can’t tempt you?

ME: No thanks, MSM.

MSM: Ahh, you’re not a romantic then? Never mind.

The thing is I am a romantic. The other thing is I enjoy good writing. Mills & Boon qualify for neither of these things.

Another time, she commented on my top knot.

MSM: Have you seen those lovely, crocheted coverings you can get? They’re ever so pretty, Rose.

Now, I know exactly what she means. I remember seeing similar atrocities perched onto small girls head during my ill-fated acro days back in the early 90s. For those of you who were born after this period, she means one of these:

Lovely, yes?

ME: Oh yes, I know what you mean. Yes, nice aren’t they?

I shouldn’t have said I liked them. I should’ve said ‘they weren’t quite my style’ or something. I just hope she doesn’t manage to find one on a market stall somewhere and make a point of gifting it to me.

Posted in The Curse of the Drinking Classes | Leave a comment

A Lot Like Love



In A Nutshell: A couple (Emily Peet and Ashton Kutcher) are an unlikely couple who meet on a plane and have a steamy one night stand. As the years go by, they meet up a few times and their relationship strengthens.

Good Points: It’s easy to watch, a real no-brainer, and Ashton is pretty hot.

Bad Points: It lacks humour and the resolution seems a bit rushed but the idea is a good one.

Good For: A girly night in.

Overall: 2/5

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