Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Compulsory Annual Post

So it is Wimbledon again. It seems that something happens that makes me want to blog about it each year...so here we go.

Last night I stayed up (ok, for normal people it wasn't that late but I'd been planning an early night with my book as Husbink was on nights) to watch the Murray match. Having seen at least some of all of his matches so far, I found this one really intriguing - because it felt so much more familiar.

At last, the crowd knew what they were meant to be doing. At last, there were sections that I couldn't watch. At last, I had to walk away from the TV fairly frequently - because I really did have to get other things done and couldn't fritter away the entire evening on a game of tennis.

Watching last week, Husbink and I had both felt that the crowd - including us - didn't quite know what to do with straight sets. This isn't what we are used to from "our man". We are used to agony. When Murray was simply playing fantastic shots, there were cheers, there was applause but it was slightly lacklustre. Once things started to go a little pear-shaped, we were comfortable again. We can scream and shout and cheer. Hanging our heads one minute, pulling out our hair before leaping up in triumph, pumping the air the next.

I'm always a little amazed by the British desire to support the underdog. In some instances, as with tennis matches, this is partly due to the fact that you get a better game if the underdog puts up a fight, but I think there is more to it than that. We feel like the underdog so often (which is a whole other discussion) that we support them whoever they are. When one of ours starts to do well, yes we enjoy it but we don't quite know what to do with it. The Ashes will be at their best if England scrape through. A resounding victory in each Test and we wouldn't know where to look.

I don't want to go through the trauma of the end of the fourth set last night again. I would like Murray to win each match from here on comfortably but for us the spectators, the experience might be slightly dimmed.

PS we were on holiday last week and shortly (when I have done the picture sorting thing) there will be a couple of lengthy posts...including some propaganda)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

I have decided

So. The journalism course. That didn't go so well. :s
BUT. In a very helpful sort of way. I'd been pondering journalism (quite a bit at Husbink's encouragement) for quite a long time and, although some of my issues with the course are with the course, I have now established that it isn't something I want to do. I'm not, umm, hmm, thing enough. I'm really not quite sure what thing is. It's not that I'm not curious enough. It's not that I'm not disciplined enough.
If anything (and this is going to sound quite dumb and like I should have known beforehand), it's just that I don't like reading magazines all that much. Meh.
So, I've paid for it, I can't have a refund, I'll still receive all the tutorials. There have been some interesting nuggets in what I've read already so I'm sure I'll read through them all at some point and that what I pick up will be useful so I'm not beating myself up over this. What I am doing is being fairly sure what it is I want to do now. Which is quite a marvel for me!
1) I want to be a mum. Well, durrrr!
2) I want to be a tutor. As I finished with my GCSE students a few weeks ago I realised just how much I enjoy tutoring. I currently have a couple of younger students (who are very hard work) and I briefly had an adult student that I may pick up with again in September. These are both good but it is actually the year 9/10/11 stage that I really enjoy. It is fun maths, easy enough for me to teach and also the bit where many people suddenly realise a flare for some part of the subject. It's great! I know I won't have any new students for a year now (probably) but I know I'll want to go back to it as soon as I can.
3) I want to make a serious go of getting one of my novels published. I will finish editing. I will do my research. I will send it off to all the right people. It may not come to anything but it is certainly not going to come to anything wasting away on my laptop semi-finished. This was the main thing that became absolutely clear from the journalism course. I love to write and I love to write what I love to read - I love to read novels, I love to write novels. I don't love to read articles, I don't love to write articles. Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


So, lately Husbink and I have talked about names quite a lot. Obviously.
There is an abundance of names for girls that we like we we've stopped talking about them for now as it is just a case of picking one...but boys? Much harder we are finding. So hard that we've pretty much given up on sensible suggestions and are just enjoying being really, really silly.
The other morning I tried to raise the names question again, sensibly. It went ok for a while. We discussed various potential options but none that we were really taken with... Until Husbink suggested "Carl" I can't remember how it came up (oh yes, by this point we'd started listing characters from favourite TV series or films...so this was after Carl Sach in Boston Legal...having rejected Denny and Alan already). So yes. Carl. Which when you put it with our surname...(if you aren't getting it, say it a little faster ) (and apologies if you don't know our surname, this will make no sense. Hey ho.)
I was in a very silly mood by this point and it was all a bit too much. I didn't stop laughing/crying for a long, loooong time.
If it wasn't going to cause lasting psychological damage to our unborn child I would not be seriously tempted to call him Carl. If it is him.
We are not to be trusted with such serious things as naming babies!! We are also considering spelling things with their initials...oh dear...

Sunday, June 07, 2009

An Excitable Pregnancy Post

So I've been having lots of nerves this past week - is everything still ok after the scan? Is the baby growing ok? Heart still beating well? Etc...Etc...
So this morning I made Husbink listen to my tummy. He really, really didn't want to because he thought if he couldn't hear anything I'd just get more stressed. I assured him that wasn't possible but that maybe he could reassure me. So after some wheedling, he had a listen. Then pulled a face that really, really alarmed me before saying "do you know what? I think I can hear it!" so after a few moments of chattering, he said "can I listen again?" and this time was very confident that just by sticking his ear against my tummy, he can hear the heartbeat. Very exciting! When he gets home this evening he's going to try to get his stethoscope nicely positioned so I can hear too. :)
I do still have moments of complete confusion at the thought that there actually is a baby growing inside me. It isn't some abstract concept, there really is something in there. Crazy!

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

I do feel rather sorry for Mr Brown

I know it isn't fashionable and I suspect it isn't sensible but I do feel really rather sorry for Gordon Brown at the moment.
I've had a soft spot for him for years and years since his baby died. (My mum wrote to him as someone who had been through the death of a baby and at that point was working for FSID (Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths - you know why they prefer to use the initials!) to empathise and received a very kind letter back - not entirely personal but not entirely impersonal either. It was enough to impress me.)
So anyway, I suspect the poor chap should never have become PM under any circumstances but certainly not under the circumstances that he did. And now the world seems to be falling apart beneath him, poor poppet.
He's not an upfront leader type. He's not charismatic. He doesn't inspire people. He shouldn't be there. But now he is do we have to be so horrid all the time? Yes, he should resign and maintain just a little bit of dignity (actually, I think it is too late for that - his only shot at dignity now is for something AMAZING to happen that vindicates everything he's ever done...so holding on and hoping perhaps is *his* best option just now) but please, please, please can we/they/everyone just be a smidgy bit nicer to him while he goes?