Archive for the ‘Beardieboy’ Category

I’m Back, Did You Even Notice I was Gone?

Wednesday, May 17th, 2017

It’s been a while. Lots of things have taken place, which I will expand upon another time, as if I told you all of it now you would weep for me. I will summarise, however, because I feel I need to justify my particularly long absence. We have had cleft-palate ops, experimental diabetes treatment, break ups, new relationships, three graduations, a serious motorway accident, aspergers, dyslexia and dyspraxia, deaths, illness forcing change of work pattens and tests for auto immune disorders. I wish I was joking. not that one jokes about much of that. It’s been a tough couple of years and we’re starting to slowly have longer and longer spells between shouting ‘FUCK YOU GOD’ very loudly. Yes, there’s at least a day between curses now.

My favourite gardening supervisor – one of far too many losses for us this last couple of years.

I remember back in 2014 making menus for the week and cooking almost everything in one day because i had so little energy by wednesday but even that was utterly miserable and unsustainable. I’m now working part time, I get chance to rest more and have spent some very important time focussing on trying to be active in a measured way. I took up gardening after years away from the soil. My lovely beardie bought me some raised beds to grow veg in and it’s like riding a bike (although I’m guessing that because I haven’t riden a bike since I was 12 and I don’t think exercise bikes count). I’ll be doing some fairly regular gardening posts as a result. I’m waiting patiently for a large greenhouse and potting shed. I’m told it’ll be between this growing season and the next so we’re busy digging out the ground to extend the shed base. When I say, busy digging,  it’s more like poking at the ground with a spade, grimacing with back pain, saying ‘FUCK YOU GOD’ and pushing all my grief into the soil. I pointed out that the next growing season will start earlier IF i get a greenhouse. That’s its job. If anyone has any new and interesting varieties of veggie seeds that they’d like field tested, feel free to get in touch. I’m not a novice more of an enthusiastic grower with something new to learn every day. I was taught a suprising amount of stuff that I remember now by my grandmother, late father in law and my dad, who now grows his own on a small scale after being an apprentice gardener many moons ago. There’s always the more experienced growers willing to share their knowledge. It’s like being a green geek.

Faint Praise (shhh)

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

I regularly roll my eyes at Beardieboy for his lack of insight, inability to understand women and self confessed disconnection when he’s preoccupied. He leaves me curling my toes with his tendency to sleep in his day clothes; distresses me incredibly with his lack of ability to have a meaningful conversation. We have the most challenging relationship I’ve ever had in my life, in both good and bad ways. He drives me to total distraction, hurts my feelings and makes me feel isolated at times. At other times he is so caring, loving, and thoughtful I feel mean for ever having had a negative feeling about him. We work brilliantly as a pair of musicians, and wonder now why we waited so long to ‘get it on’.  He’s also pretty hot, for my money anyways.

The last few weeks I’ve been ill and had an operation on Monday. In all that time he’s been obscenely hard working. Up to 60 hrs a week at work, rehearsing, practicing his German (he’s now better than me – crapsticks) and on top of that he’s done ALL the cooking, virtually all of the cleaning and entertained the troupes. Even preparing the house for viewings, which means folding towels neatly and actually closing drawers.  He’s stepped up to the plate and he’s been the best husband a woman could hope for (apart from his infernal snoring). I’m not normally a sappy chick but when, in the past,  I’ve thrown my wedding ring at him for his utterly shittastic behaviour I’m now rather glad that he didn’t pawn it for guitar strings.

Don’t you dare tell him I said nice things about him. His head is frigging enormous.

in the next photo he sticks his tongue in my ear...this is sexy stuff girls

Dying on Your Arse

Monday, December 6th, 2010

Did you hear about the comedian who couldn’t tell jokes because he was too busy dying on his arse?

We are in a comedy zone at home. Beardieboy thinks he’s fucking hilarious. Every moment of my home life is a pallet for his art, every intercourse is an opportunity to build a story, try out a story, check his comic timing. Sod. I mean, when you’re on the loo and someone’s standing outside saying ‘are we nearly there yet?’ you’d like to hope it’s not a 38 year old man shouting through the lock.

The man drives me, quite literally, bonkers. Having said that he is really funny and when he does his ‘thing’ he really does make me belly laugh. He’s not run of the mill, not lazy and he’s studiously hard working (I know because I am there for every bloody joke that he practices and perfects – ‘should I say it or the?’. He did his first gig and was lauded by the regular crowd who see all manner of drivel and shit, as well as all the good guys. I felt like I’d earned that for him, putting up with the constant experimentation at my expense.

We have a friend who decided to become a comedian at the same time as Beardieboy. Given that they started at the same time you’d think they’d be in roughly the same place. Hm, well you’d be wrong. This person got up at their first gig and they were devastatingly bad, having clearly done no work to prepare at all. Tumbleweed rolled through the pub as they struggled to remember even one  line of their routine. Yikes. I felt more uncomfortable than I did watching Bruno, and that’s some embarrassment we’re talking about. At this point most people would pull the wool over their own eyes and make straight for the door. My hat goes off to this person because they didn’t do that, they dusted themselves off and booked another gig. Kudos.

Beardie got on and wrote another routine, to try out some new stuff, to torture me with. The man is relentless. Our friend promised they were also working hard on their routine. It wasn’t true, and before Beardie could do his second gig our friend was up again. We sat there wondering what would happen. Let’s just say that even the tumbleweed were too embarrassed to make an appearance. I sat through the car crash and could barely breathe for ten minutes. Yet again this person came off stage and bold as brass stayed exactly where they were. They did not rush for cover, they did not give up. Knowing they hadn’t done the work they just determined to do it better, differently, more. Well done them.

Beardie did well for his second gig and eagerly anticipated his third. A few days before that gig he started to feel unwell, lavatorially speaking it wasn’t much fun, not much to joke about. I watched him sleeplessly over a few days becoming more and more unwell. On the day the gig was due he was literally dying on his arse. He started bleeding and we went straight to hospital, straight to isolation. He couldn’t speak, he couldn’t cope. They wondered if he had some disease, with long term, life changing implications, or if it was a serious infection, with the potential to ruin organs and ultimately reach the same conclusion as if it were some disease.

It turns out that he did have a serious infection. After over 48 hrs of bleeding thing have started to improve, though I think he has a long way to go. I knew things were improving when he picked up his phone and tweeted about having his ‘needs’ met by a nurse who looked like she was straight out of a bollywood film.  He’s still in hospital and needs some tests to check that the damage isn’t permanent, making sure his kidneys are ok etc but I think he might have been a very lucky man.

I’m in a state of shock still, I’ve never seen so much blood come out of a person who I needed to believe was not mortally ill. I don’t ever want to go through that again. I desperately need to see him home and eating well. He spent today doing his best to piss me off with his extreme views so I doubt it’ll be too long before he is back to business.

What I need now is to get to two third gigs. The third gig that will mark the return of my lovely funny man and the third gig of a friend who will either allow us all to breathe again or who we will be counselling to find a new hobby.

Birmingham and I

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010


This is what you get when you put me to bed with a laptop.

I used to live in a beautiful little welsh valley town with a population of just under 3,500 which swelled to over 40,000 during the summer months. It was a town where 95% of the population is white and about 60% of the population is middle-class with the kind of lifestyle within the working classes that mirrors a few Enid Blyton/Viz stories (depending on your age and alcohol intake). My happiest memories were watching fish jump out of the river, sliding down the mountain into the bracken on pieces of cardboard, then eating my squashed white bread and jam butties and being in ‘clubs’ which were basically corners of someone’s dad’s shed, which we earned by mowing the lawn or picking up leaves. My brother’s favourite moments were catching the fish, punching me in the arm and throwing darts at my Sindy dolls.  Yes, it was nearly perfect (and we were the poor(ish) people).

In the next picture my brother kicks me

In fact, it was so perfect that when I grew up and got married, I determined I’d give my family the same kind of upbringing. I use the term ‘grew up’ loosely because I actually, stupidly, got married at 18 – not pregnant and no one tried to stop me! I had three kids and sadly divorced. I say sadly because although I am happily remarried now I feel that if I had understood life more I may have made more effort to make things work. I was not properly tooled up for the task at hand. Fortunately, neither myself nor my exhusband are total arses and we continue to have a pretty great relationship (this means I don’t call him a dick and he doesn’t call me a bitch – to our faces) and he’s a wonderful father to our three kids.  I stayed where I was, giving the kids the best I could afford, which wasn’t much but it was my best and eventually bumped into Beardieboy on the Internet one night, talking about music. It turned out we’d both performed on virtually the same circuit. We got on like a house on fire. This means we were happy chatting without the need to jump each others bones. It was all good. We started talking on the phone and eventually arranged to meet…

I’m going to skip the bit where we jumped each others bones, got sprogged up, got a business and then decided to get married. Maybe that’s for another day. Suffice it to say we did do that and then tried to sell the house in wales to move here. This is the house that I lived in for 20 years and raised 4 children in. By the time we’d sold it I was a heap of nerves, I was moving to a polluted pit of overpopulated, underfunded greyness and I was leaving my friends, family and fresh air behind. I was horrified, I questioned what kind of fruit-loop I must be. I photographed every inch of my house as if I’d never taken any photographs within the walls before. They basically led me weeping from my empty home and I cried the entire way to Birmingham.

A close up would show teardrops on the carpet.

A close up would show teardrops on the carpet.

I arrived, I moved in, unpacked and hated it. I hated you lot. You were all rude, all pushing and shoving, all in a  hurry, all didn’t care. I couldn’t believe how hung up on colour and culture you all were. I couldn’t get over how you all defined yourselves by these things and not by your individual nature. I was confused. I was Welsh yes, but mainly I was me, a creative being, frustrated by daft barriers of my own making, a mother and a musician and someone who was never happier than when feeding and comforting others. That’s it. I arrived here to find complex characterisations of people, by themselves and each other. People who defined their person by the fact that they were white Muslim, Pakistani Muslim, Irish catholic, black, Somalian black/Muslim, Sikh, white, Chinese, etc, etc. I was no longer surrounded by Johnny Saw (carpenter), Maggie who makes pots, Pete the Milk, Joanie Bigmouth (yes it’s true, she was the local fishwife, god love her). Suddenly I was surrounded by people who defined themselves by their religion or colour and I was confused. I didn’t know where I fit in, I didn’t know any welsh people,  I didn’t know anybody that wasn’t introduced to my by Beardieboy. I did know some musicians by this means, but it’s hard to find common ground with people who are as close to Napalm Death as you are to Alanis Morissette.

I remember the first time I took a stroll down City Road. I had my toddler in a buggy and I realised I couldn’t breathe such was the air pollution. I wept imagining what it was doing to my child’s lungs, came back and rummaged for an inhaler and never walked down that road with her again. The same happened when I went up Bearwood Road at home time. I couldn’t get over how dirty I was after a day shopping. The city is a dirty place. And the litter…don’t get me started on the litter. Cripes people, pick up some rubbish will you.

Our business ground to a halt overnight. I am not joking either. One day we were happily moving rich people from one big house to another, smiling and wrapping up their bone china, and the next day recession hit, and along with 10 other removals companies a week, we simply stopped working.  Fortunately we’re hardy buggers and Beardieboy immediately started driving HGV for the only growth business in the recession – Poundland. He’s never been out of work since, thankfully and I immediately got my job and was only out of work for the time it took to check I wasn’t a secret cat burglar.

I got my job working in the heart of public service, in the heart of the biggest court in Europe, in the heart of the second city and I loved it. I don’t talk about it, it’s my job. I do, however care about it. Through my job I’ve got to know the best and the worst or Birmingham, literally. I have learned about the driving forces behind city crime, community division, the risk of falling into the educational abyss, cigarettes, whisky and wild wild women. I’ve learned how cultural identities help people create communities in what would otherwise be a heaving pit of humanity lacking any cohesion. I’ve come to see how it can be positive for some people to identify themselves in this way in the absence of ‘the village’ and how it can cause strife. I love the diversity in this city, in my office, amongst my friends. I always have enjoyed diversity on the level of personalities but now there’s an extra dimension within culture/religion/ethnicity.

I find the city’s architecture fascinating. It’s such a challenging city. So chopped up by trends and ages but somehow it works. It’s exciting and forward thinking. Brummies are not afraid of a challenge. Not just in building but in so many ways. If you don’t believe me take a look at http://www.justdoit.org to see how many different organisations need you to make a better Birmingham.

I saw all this and set about making a life for myself here. I set about finding people who valued their own individuality and other peoples’. I’ve used social media for its most perfect purpose. I’ve found people I have got to know, and people I am getting to know and have noticed people I’d like to get to know and you are probably one of them if you’re reading this (especially if you’ve read this far).

I’m back writing and singing and am at the point of ‘putting myself about’ along with Beardieboy with our ‘Less for Murder’ project. It’s a strong project. We like it and so do others. I’m hopeful.  I’m even more hopeful for my eldest daughter who is displaying the result of being brought up surrounded by musicians and has a fearsome untapped talent that is jumping up and down to be heard. I’m just as excited for my son who is about to begin reading for his degree at Birmingham City University and for my youngest, who will grow up  remembering nothing of her birthplace, other than as a location we visit to see friends and family. Only my eldest has shown no interest in the city, but that’s ok. I remember hating it when I arrived. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea.

I am still welsh in my heart, the valley will always be mine. I still gasp for fresh air and feel my skin is suffocated by the pollution but I am hopeful and excited by this city and I feel I have a place in it, not just a nameless, faceless body in an unremarkable home but I have a place being me, being constructive and creative and contributing. After two years I’m ready to start taking part.

A Little Bit of This and That

Sunday, May 23rd, 2010

Oh there you are. I must have had my map upside down, I was heading in the opposite direction. Soz.

I’m not sure I’ve got anything interesting to write about. Work is interesting but I can’t talk about that and stay working so we’ll leave it there. You’ll have to take my word for it.

Family? Well, let’s just say, everyone has been ill so far, and the least ill but the most grumpy is obviously Beardieboy.  I sent him a text tonight, after venting my spleen earlier (I still haven’t found my wedding ring from my outburst two days ago so I really should get some anger management). The text said ‘Sorry I got angry. Please get well soon.’ This means ‘Sorry I got angry (, you wound me up with your whiney shit and outrageously grumpy, pestering behaviour and if you don’t get well soon I might have to kill you, so) please get well soon.’  He came scampering down the stairs like an excited puppy to accept the apology in person. grr

A typical victim of 'man flu' - just add a beard and ignore.

 I’ve been so ill all week that I’m finally on antibiotics and recovering. It’s a good thing. We’re short staffed next week and well, you can’t have too many people to push bits of paper around can you?

Friends? My welsh friends will always be my friends but not being able to get home more than once every four or five months is proving a bit of a barrier on the close friendship front. Never mind, we’ve been friends since we were five I’m sure we’ll survive. Then there’s the friends I’ve met through Beardieboy. I have to say they are pretty much as lovely as you’d like. Kind hearted, good fun, always come to our parties and never borrow the lawn mower. However, it’s important to find friends for yourself as well, so I decided recently that I should start working on new friendships, new acquaintances and becoming part of my new community. Twitter’s been amazing.

 I’ve chatted with some hilarious and lovely people. Take @nudieprincess for instance. She’s gorgeous even in the nude .  Obsessed with (my) weird sex (fetishes) too.   Then there’s the beautiful and talented @cosmicgirlie. I don’t chat to her much but I do watch her growing confidence in photography and her refinding of her love for cello with admiration. Her honesty is very endearing. Her kids are cute too. There’s @brumcast who is passionate about birmingham and passionate about music his Rhubarb Radio show is great and he’s very excited about his impending parenthood (and so he should be, it’s a bloody trip). We met up with him at a rhubarb radio mash up and he’s a lovely bloke. There are more and I’m sure I’ll mention them again but I don’t want to do a roll call. You/they are all great and make my long evenings tolerable.

Deserving of a paragraph all of her own is @mrs_eddieizzard What can I say about this woman? She’s funny, passionate about her family, human rights, society, and crocheting.  She’s also an absolute mare who nearly made me piss my pants by texting the word ‘Boo!’ to me when I was watching Paranormal Activity the other night. This was closely followed by ‘Look outside, I’m behind the bush’ Not fucking likely spank you very much! I’m the woman who watched Salem’s Lot in my first home with no curtains up. So there I was, sitting in the living room, when there was a tappety tap tap on the window. Fearing that my life was about to drained from me by terrible vampires I picked up two pokers and fashioned a cross before turning around to discover they were effing moths trying to get to the light. Bastards.

 

However, back to mrs izzard, she is propery funny and has great taste in clothes and cars. I know we’re going to have fun, even if she is younger than me, with bags of energy and enthusiasm. Calm down dear.

Music? Well that’s taking on a life of its own. Still nothing recorded as Less for Murder yet but we did go down to Katie Fitzgerald’s in Stourbridge on Monday, where they have an open mic night. Someone called us experimental; someone was clearly heard saying ‘well that was shit’ after the first song, but overall we had some very positive feedback, including being compared to the Pixies. We were encouraged to return. That’s the ticket! We’re going to be spinning our little yarns of fucked up relationships and the life choices of weirdos at the Adam and Eve in Digbeth on 31st May for our first offical outing as Less for Murder, that’s if I don’t decide before hand that I could actually get less for murder and dispatch him with a rolling pin first.

So that’s it, in a nutshell. Been sick, have new friends, driven insane by the evil one, making music, will be heard. Night all!

Beardieboy

Sunday, March 7th, 2010

Beardieboy, quite remarkably, has given me my second posting topic, the first being utterly pointless (the second may well follow suit).

I’ve been feeling crap today, which is obvious really, after all I’ve been perfectly well all week in my tedious job so why on earth would I be given the pleasure of enjoying the weekend that I’d looked forward to. Our friend has organised a memorial gig for her late boyfriend, our mate Neil, who was a remarkable but troubled musician. We’ve looked forward to the gig for a number of weeks so it’s only right that I should be ill and miss it, after all, that is the way of the world.

Beardieboy took off looking like he was going to a gig and happily he managed to suppress his excitement tourettes.  This tourettes involves saying and doing things best left in his head, out loud, at the most inappropriate times. When I first met him, he lifted my top up in front of his dad. You get the drift…anyway, he managed to say nothing inappropriate like, ‘I hope you have a good evening’, or ‘Have you finished that job application yet?’  Before he went he did say the obligatory, ‘I won’t be back late…’

Well, it’s gone midnight and I’ve just had THAT phonecall. The one where he pretends he’s sober and the more he tries not to,  the more inapproriate he becomes.

Beardieboy: How are you?

Me: I’m ok, I’ve still got a headache

Beardieboy: I’ll come home soon and get you drinks and junk food

Me: Is that what I am? A lazy junk food eater? (look, I am ok! But that’s not the point)

Beardieboy: Noooo, don’t say that, ooh I knew I’d say the wrong thing, does this mean my treats will be floppy now?

Me: Floppy? Pardon? Floppy?

Beardieboy: Sex, you know? Floppy!

Me: Is your brother standing next to you?

Beardieboy: You’re not going to write this on Twitter are you?

Me: Nooooo, of course not….