Thursday, 31 March 2011

The Hackney Scrawler

This morning I awoke to my son’s smiling face. He was caressing my cheek and saying gently “Mummy, wake up, I’m hungry”

As I opened my eyes I noticed he had three eighteenth century beauty spots on his face. My mind wandered as to how they could have got there and then suddenly

“Oh no! God no! Shit!” (it just slipped out I couldn’t help it….) I leapt out of bed, that feeling of child-dread and terror rising within me as I suddenly realised that the size and shape of those beauty spots corresponded exactly to the size and shape of the nib of my PERMANENT MARKER that I might just accidentally have left out last night.

I pictured my defaced passport (also on the table), my walls, my sofa (which I had just fucking finished paying for) the clean washing, the laminated floor - all covered in unintelligible scribbles.

I stood in the doorway, half-naked while my eyes scanned the living room and immediately I saw that the telephone had become a victim to the Hackney Scrawler. OK, I thought – I could live with that. I continued to search for more scribbles but no, nothing. I heaved a huge sigh of relief.

I went back into the bedroom and said to Bushman. “It’s OK, he just got the phone.”

Bushman’s eyes directed me to our crisp white bedsheets that I had just sprung from -  turns out they weren’t so lucky.

There’s a whole heap of things going on here right now. I don’t think I’ve even mentioned that my son has started Nursery two days a week and cries every time I leave, that I’m about to go back to jail*, or that I had a letter from my doctor telling me that I was a bad mother.

Apparently because I’ve been too busy blogging, striking, attending the ballet, doing ten tons of laundry a day and eating too much chocolate, it seems my daughter is 28 weeks old and has only had her six week injections. That makes me about 3 sets of injections behind. Ok, so the letter didn’t exactly call me a bad mother but it was certainly implied. What about parents who choose not to immunise their children?
I got Bushman to take her to the clinic and when he came back they had written “28 WEEKS” in bold writing over the bit that says “8 weeks” in my little red book just so everybody else at the surgery knows I am a mother with questionable standards too. Of course Bushman blamed it all on me when he got to the receptionist’s desk, although I clearly remember the conversation where I handed over all immunisation responsibility to him.

And while we’re on the subject of getting all judgy on parents I’m going to direct you to an article that a friend of a friend wrote recently. I often (as I’m sure you do – unless you are one!) fantasise about being a ‘real writer’, trying my hand at freelance writing, finishing one of the billion writing projects I once started etc. etc. but after reading this post I was struck by the fact that the internet has opened up a whole journalist-reader conversation. Gone are the days when you just wrote stuff and never knew what your readers were thinking.

So anyway, a woman called Pip Jones wrote a humorous article about how she doesn’t have any time to herself (and I hear you all concurring!) but some of the comments she got were so judgemental. Who the fuck are these people spending valuable minutes of their day electronically insulting others so that they can feel superior; saying stuff that they would never say so bluntly to your face if they met you in person? I suppose that by blogging I am essentially doing the same thing but I am always amazed at how nice other bloggers/readers seem to be. Take my last commenter for example. Just as I was feeling guilty about not blogging and lacking in inspiration I get this kind of comment.

“I always think there is no way you can top (ie make me laugh really hard) your last post, but you did it again. You are so funny. I wished you lived in my neighborhood because you would shake things up (in a good way).

I thought the drinking age in the UK is 16? At least it was when I lived there. Or maybe I never went to a pub/store that had someone who actually checked ID.

Keep writing because your posts put a smile on my face.

Oh, and you are right about the whole women vs. women thing. We are our own worst enemy against ourselves and other women. Until we realize and understand AND change that way of thinking, we will never be equal.”

I mean, how fucking lovely is that to say to someone? So, thanks Wendy. Except that I was only able to bask in my glory for a second before I started thinking. “Fucking hell – how am I going to make the next post even funnier? That bloody woman has put me under pressure now!”

Anyway, I have so much stuff so say and so little time to say it. I had planned to tell you about my Royal Wedding Plans and how to host your own ‘Porn and Prawn’ party (not I might add as a way of celebrating the Royal Wedding, but hey come to think of it, why not?!) but I guess that will just have to wait until next time mainly because the chocolate biscuits have just run out, the wine glass is empty and the sink is still full……Oh FUCK and I still haven't sent out the porn yet!!!! Self-flagellating as we speak..... BAD TROUTIE.

*Don't worry about the jail thing newcomers - it's just my workplace.


  1. I was hoping for a transcript of the conversation between Bushman and the doctor's receptionist pointing the finger of blame at you ...

  2. Just read your friend's post AND the first page of (mostly) poisonous comments. Good grief. Firstly, where the hell is their sense of humour? Secondly, where the hell is their sense of humour? Thirdly,(to those commenters, not you) Feck off, get a life and stop being so bloody sanctimonious! (And - breathe). Anyway, thank god you're out there with your hilarious posts. No pressure to deliver then, Troutie...

  3. Your posts are my favourites - keep it up ( no pressure! Ha ha) it always amazes me why anyone would write anything horrid, if you dont like it then don't read it. It's quite obvious.

    By the way Happy Mothers day for tomorrow. I hope the Hackney Scrawler strikes in a good way!

  4. Your blog is such a lovely indulgence- I have been neglectful in catching up with your adventures and have to say the Hackney Scrawler was a great start to a night of blooging and reading while the husband is at football- keep em coming!!!!

  5. You made my day with posting my comment. You really are a gifted writer. Don't feel pressure to write funny posts. I can tell, without even knowing you, that you don't have to try to be funny, you just are. The way you weave a story is really genius. I can visualize in my head what is going on through your words and I love that. I also like the fact that you don't post every day. I find that those bloggers that do post every day, lose some authenticity and realness.

    I read the article by Pip Jones and couldn't believe the number of negative comments (well, I could believe it, but it still shocks me every time I see people write such nasty things). It all goes back to what I said in my last comment, women are the hardest on other women. Women need to learn to be encouraging to other women and give helpful hints, instead of being jealous and having the attitude "your life can't possibly be as hard as mine".

    Keep up the writing whenever you feel inspired to do so. Remember, no pressure...we aren't judging what you write, just enjoying it!!