Did you know that product reviews are a thing?
Apparently they are. If you’re a blogger you can get free stuff from organisations who want their products reviewed.
Everybody likes free stuff, and I like free stuff too, so today I’m going to do a product review in the hope that I will be offered some of that free stuff. In particular I would like my very own satellite. Not a crappy artificial satellite that relays telecommunications signals, spies on foreign military sites, or pisses off Sandra Bullock by turning into an exciting cloud of orbital debris, but a natural satellite made of rock and other space stuff.
So to increase my chances of being offered one, I will review a similar product: the moon.
I noticed something odd when I looked in my bathroom mirror this morning. Somewhat disturbingly, the odd thing seemed to be part of my face. But it did provide the answer to a mystery that has bothered me all week.
It began a few days ago. I thought I was alone in my flat one morning, but then I heard a noise in the bedroom. I went to investigate, fully prepared to tackle a mouse, a cat, or a burglar – or shriek and flee if it proved to be a particularly noisy spider – but what I wasn’t prepared for was a very small giant.
Yep. There was a giant in my flat. A very small one.
After a moment of bewilderment I did what anybody would in such a situation – chased it out with a broom – but it’s presence did concern me a little, especially when, later that night, I encountered a second giant.
This one was even bigger than the first giant (but still very small), and was carrying a sheep under its arm. Again I got my broom and chased it out, but I started to worry.
I don’t always eat vegetables, but when I do I eat vegetables that I don’t particularly like.
The other day I made pea and mint soup. This involves lots of heavy cans of peas which have to be carried an inordinately long distance to my kitchen, twigs from a mint tree or bush or whatever, an onion, and a bunch of other stuff I found in my cupboards – stock cubes, herbs, spices, dust, lint and so on.
Making soup is one of the more boring things one can do with the above ingredients, so I put on some hard-rockin’ tunes to entertain me while I cooked – which, in hindsight, was an error.
My last story was in September?! Eek. Sorry. I haven’t abandoned this blog, I promise. In fact, quite the opposite – I check it every day to see if I have made a new post. But mostly I haven’t.
At the moment I have no internet access in my flat, which is one excuse I might give if I weren’t about to tell you in this sentence that the real reasons are mostly because I am lazy and/or doing other things. So at this moment I am sitting with a coffee in the café in which I work, plainly not doing café -related work, consuming the wi-fi bandwidth almost as greedily as I am consuming my coffee – which is to say that I hadn’t thought this metaphor through before I started it.
*Warning. This post may include death.*
*May. I said may.*
The other day I was behind the counter in the cafe where I work, doing important things involving spoons. I find that most things that involve spoons are important, but I was being paid to do these particular things, which made them more important than usual.
It was a slow morning, after the morning coffee rush and before the first customers would come in for lunch. In fact there was only one customer, a regular, ensconced at a small table by the wall, reading a paper, drinking his americano and eating a piece of cake.
I had my back to this gentleman, because of my aforementioned engagement with the spoons. Soft cafe-type music tinkled out of the speakers overhead – but neither that, nor the clinky song of the spoons was enough to hide the noise.
Yesterday I got stuck on the toilet.
As entertaining as bodily functions are, I’m the kind of guy who needs a little extra entertainment in the bathroom. Sometimes I like to read a chapter or two of whatever I’m currently reading, but on this occasion, and somewhat predictably, I forgot my book.
If I have my phone to hand, I fiddle around with it. Sometimes I change the settings to annoy or suprise future-me. Sometimes I use the screen as a teeny mirror to check there aren’t spiders on the wall behind me, or pretend I’m a secret agent making sure I’m not being tailed. Recently, since I decided I should get a Twitter account to help promote my novel, I go on Twitter and forget to promote my novel. Instead, I give myself repetitive strain injury scrolling through bite-sized bits of whatever, wondering why the hell I have a Twitter account and what it’s for and what it’s all about, and if I should just delete the fucking thing, or learn how to use it, or something.
But on this particular occasion, I did none of those things. I played Brick Breaker instead.
I’ve just returned from a lovely week in the lovely France, where the lovely Miss-Matic and I attended the lovely wedding of a lovely French couple, who were, quite frankly, lovely.
While we were there we did a number of touristy things, ate at number of cafes and restaurants, and stayed at a number of hotels, like tourists tend to do. But this particular tale begins with our arrival in a small village somewhere south of Lyon.
Miss-Matic and I disembarked the train and walked the mile or so to our hotel. It turned out to be a cross between a low-budget located-on-a-roundabout-near-an-industrial-estate type chain hotel, of the kind you might see in a British film, or a British TV show – or in Britain – and a cheap motel such as you might see in an American movie, or an American TV show. Or, indeed, in America. The result was the type of accomodation you might expect to find in a joint British-American film production, or TV show, or in whatever province might have resulted if the colony hadn’t gone off in a huff, demanding independence like a stroppy teenager with bad hair and an obsession with ‘freedom’.
Except it was in France.
Picture this, if you think it wise:
After a long day – or even a short day – of being a person who gets stuff done, I like to get myself a beverage, take off my trousers, and sit around in my underwear for a while.
The other day I was sitting on the sofa, elegantly sprawled and scratching bits that needed to be scratched, when I noticed a big bruise on my thigh. It was the kind of bruise that says ‘Hey!‘
So I looked at the bruise, said ‘Hey,’ back, and wondered where it had come from. My curiosity didn’t last long – I got distracted by my beverage, which on this particular occasion was hot, and had a half-biscuit floating in it.
A couple of doors down from me lives a pizza beast.
The pizza beast lives exactly where you might expect a pizza beast to live – in a pizza shop.
The pizza beast and I have a wary kind of relationship. We’re like the daddy lions of neighbouring prides; rival wizards whose sorcerous towers overlook the same enchanted forest, or the last two bruised apples in the supermarket, desperately not wanting to be the last bruised apple in the supermarket.
Yep. We keep a wary eye on each other.
Right now, as I type this, a creepy toad ornament is looking at me.
This particular ornament is a little smaller than the size of a fist, made of dark wood. The upper jaw/head/back section is actually a lid, which conceals a small cavity for storing half-digested flies, lily pad crumbs, long-lost surgical forceps, or whatever else might be found inside a toad.
The creepy toad ornament came from somewhere in Sheffield. Miss-Matic saw it, and decided her life really wasn’t complete without a creepy toad ornament, and so it came home with us.
Although the creepy toad ornament is ugly, it isn’t inherently creepy. It’s creepiness comes from the fact that it watches me.