Tuesday, January 06, 2009

What's Occuring?

I have no idea where I am going with this. It is likely to be in the favourite expression of my kids and their mates 'Random'. I always say to myself re blogging that if one has nothing to say one should say nothing at all. But it's my rule and rules are there to be broken (except grammatical rules obviously).

My friend Anne was recently 50 and we had a great night celebrating the occasion. She sent an e-mail to all of us who attended in which she particularly thanked the Thomas's who had travelled a significant distance to attend. Thomas senior replied thus "You have unwittingly stumbled into a small local dispute about how to spell the plural of Thomas. And I’m afraid, Anne, that your spelling is not helpful to my position on the matter. I shall have to alter your email before showing it to the children; doh!"

Anne's response was:
"OMG we're starting the new year with a Lynne Truss moment - now I know I am f**king 50................ "

Well there you go - I certainly didn't know I was going to mention that when I started this post.

Moving on:

This past few weeks I have been mainly ...watching Gavin and Stacey. Both series 1 and 2 plus the Christmas special. I have seen each episode so many times now that I know them verbatim and have inadvertently developed a Welsh accent alongside a recently acquired tendency to describe matters as 'Tidy' I also look at our toilet brush in an entirely different light - but enough about that particularly sordid hotel bathroom episode.

I have also in the past few weeks been mainly ...coughing. This is in fact how come I am sitting here now at home blogging, rather than earning my crust dealing with the whole range of the human condition. I try not to talk about my job here but if I just tell you that in the weeks leading up to Christmas I had to cope with amongst other things: the aftermath of a suicide; someone who was falling in love with his sister; a childhood story that was unremittingly awful from the day of his birth (born in a ditch- literally) to the moment he left the care system as a profoundly damaged young man; and I had to tell someone he was born as a result of his mother being raped by her father. It was all a right laugh as you may imagine. Actually, thinking back it is no wonder I have been ill. I fairly successfully ignored the fact that I was coughing my guts up all over the holiday, but at the weekend it got ridiculous and I saw the doctor yesterday. Diagnosis: chest infection as well as possible asthma. Instruction: take medication, use inhaler, come back and see me in a few days and stay at home. The silly thing is that I can't say I feel really ill. I had pleurisy 17 years ago and thought I was dying. Ever since then I have probably judged being ill as feeling like I did then. I never ever want to feel like THAT again.

The other thing I have been mainly doing is continuing with the on going struggle to get through 'War and Peace'. I am on page 545. Oh good - only another 813 to go. (The print is very small by the way.) I do like it...in fact it is positively 'lush'. I love the way Tolstoy paints portraits of the characters - he is often very funny. My main problem with it though, at the risk of sounding very thick, is that because the book is so huge, and because the names are (surprise, surprise) Russian - plus they often seem to be known by more than one name (not helpful Leo my old mucka) - that when they come back into the narrative, I can't remember who the hell they are and have to go back and find their previous appearance to refresh my memory.

Yesterday having been instructed by the doctor to stay at home I thought I would be able to have the day in peace and quiet reading W&P. In fact I had not been in five minutes before my two youngest returned home from school together with a gang of mates. The school's heating had failed and they had been sent home. You may imagine how devastated they were. Anyway - guess what they came in to watch? Would you believe series 1 and 2 of Gavin and Stacey plus the Christmas special. So I ended up watching them yet again. Oh well - fair play.


Fire Byrd said...

Getting to be 50 meant a present of liver salts and KYjelly, from a close mate..... The Lynn Truss moment doesn't sound so threatening!!!
Get better soon.

Reidski said...

There is no debate - it would be "Thomass". However,that looks horrid, so I'd always try to structure the sentence in such a way that I would refer to the "Thomas family" or sumfink like that! At a very strong push, "Thomases" may be allowed - but I wouldn't venture an attempt at that one. The one thing it should not have in the way you have written it is an apostrophe!

Who the fuck is Lynn Truss btw?

Yorkshire Pudding said...

The plural of Thomas is most assuredly Thomases.

Hope you are feeling better soon Griselda and ready to discover yet more weird and disturbing aspects of human society.

Martin said...

Sorry but I don't get Gavin & Stacey.I watched the first episode and it didn't raise even the merest hint of smile.

So, are Lynn's family known as The Trusses then?

Happy New Year & Get Well Soon

Gill said...

Get well soon JJ. Being ill is a time for reading epic novels so enjoy the time you have, but given the Tolstoyian happenings in your job maybe you should write one instead?

J.J said...

Pixie - is that person STILL a mate may I enquire???

Reidski - thanks for your valuable imput! (Once a sub editor....) xxxx

YP - also good to hear from an English teacher upon this matter. and thank you - feeling much, much better.

Martin - I may well have been brain washed by having to see it so many times - but I must say that the writing is very clever. Happy New Year to you too - and come on you Alty!

Thanks Gill. If I did try and write about my work I'm not sure that anyone would believe a word of what I had to say. Nowt so queer as folk of course.

Andy said...

Gavin and Stacey is excellent. I really must get round to buying the DVD.

And I've never read War and Peace, but finished Crime and Punishment a few months ago. I thought it was very good and generally didn't require cpnstant rechecking of who characters were. Although the ending (which may or may not be an epilogue - cannot remember)is a little out of place in my view.

Finally, the debate on Thomas is so intriguing it may well send me to an early grave. Please find out the answer and report back to prevent this.

J.J said...

Hi Andy and thanks for popping by. I will of course keep you updated on the Great Plural of Thomas Debate.

G&S DVD's well tidy.

On page 832 now by the way - although it was a bit of a shock turning over from page 778 to see the words 'Part 2'.