And The Winner Is…

So here’s something I haven’t been able to say for three months: I win. I fucking win. Mwahahahahaha.

I don’t win at breathing, that’s something I’m still not especially good at. But I do win at proving to the Department of Work and Pensions that they were totally wrong to take so much of my Personal Independence Payment away. I picked up the letter confirming it today and can now officially say that they’ve admitted they got it wrong and I’ve been reinstated at the previous amount.

Hoo fucking ray. I can afford to sort out my car now. I can keep my car, more importantly. I can continue to benefit from that internet when I need to order repeat prescriptions and I can keep the phone I have instead of having to downgrade to a wanky burner.

2018 may not hate my guts after all. Be ironic if I dropped dead moments after posting this, wouldn’t it?

Posted in DWP, Finance, health | 1 Comment

Careful Whisper

We must whisper. Speaking too loudly will spoil things. Softly, softly speakee hopefully. No comma before ‘hopefully’ thus it is an adjective. I am feeling hopeful.

I am not feeling hopeful about my sleep patterns returning to normal any time soon. Sleep final came after sunrise this morning and I dozed and woke and dozed and woke until around five in the afternoon. Nocturnal? Thanks but I’ve just put one out.

I am not feeling hopeful about my lungs being all better because that’s not how bronchiectasis works. It is true that the hospital treatment is now showing dividends, helped by physio I’m guessing.

I am not feeling hopeful that I will win a curling medal at the Olympics. I didn’t even make the team which would upset me if I’d tried out for the team but I didn’t. I wanted to be a lion tamer. They don’t have lion taming in the Olympics any more.

I am feeling hopeful that my 11 page letter of dispute to the Department of Work and Pensions concerning their drastic reduction to my Personal Independence Payment may have been successful. Checking my bank balance earlier, through the app that has transformed my ability to stay on top of my finances, I saw there was a substantial payment from the DWP today. Friday is my usual payment day and this month’s measly amount had already been deposited last week. Hmmm.

As I’ve slept and slept I haven’t checked my post at the front of the house today so I don’t know if there is a letter explaining what this extra payment is for. It’s possible there was an underpayment before the reduced rate kicked in, and this simply catches me up without signifying my dispute has succeeded. But it is also possible that they’ve read my letter and realised that I am a human being with specific needs that their cursory assessment process did not recognise. In which case I might not need to get rid of my car and disconnect from the internet after all.

Fingers crossed, eh?

Posted in DWP, exercise, Finance, health, Language, Life, mental health, PIP, Politics, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Banana Custard

Immobile car taunts my lack of engineering expertise with a metallic, blue stare. Sun pokes me in the eye while chumming up with chilly wind that steals my trousers. Road block makes me smile at least: enforced pedestrianism ensures my road isn’t blocked for my road is a sidewalk. Disembodied laughter floats across the sky, or rains down from second-storey student mouths between bites of cornflakes.

Such is Wednesday. An impertinent day. A middle of the week, not disastrous yet really quite annoying sort of day. A frustrations ahoy sort of day. A concerning news from several quarters sort of day. Stupid Wednesday.

I once knew a girl called Stupid Wednesday. She had long, black pigtails and ate nothing but banana custard. We held hands once at the local fair. She smelt of custard and bananas, which was quite exotic at the time. Her real name wasn’t Stupid Wednesday.

Immobile arse taunts my desire to walk further than I actually managed with a bum-shaped, immobile stare…

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Two Half Ps In A Pod

Here’s one we made earlier

A year ago I was in them United States at America. And then Canada for a night. The night of the 20th February. I was with my bestest friend of all the worlds, Scottley, for the 21st was his birthday and we were going to look at a bunch of noisy water together. Apparently Niagara Falls is famous. I really needed to wee a lot. Bloody noisy and watery there.

It was special because I’d not spent Scottley’s birthday with him for twenty years and then some more years on top on account of him maliciously moving to live in American a long time ago. Oh and on account of me being frighted of those bird metal sky things that whisk people into the air away from the land. Although they do return to land on land but usually a different land to the land you took off from.

So there we were watching the noisy water from our hotel room window (we had our own beds, we don’t fancy each other, you weirdo) and I was happy indeed to be sharing his 30th birthday with him. There may have been some other numbers to add in to the 30 but who wants to count them?

A year later I just wish I were able to be in them States and spend another of his birthday with him. Now my PIP has been downscaled from Personal Independence Payment to Pathetic Insult Payment the chances of me being able to afford another vacation in that America are almost nil. The chances of me being able to eat properly aren’t so hot either but there is currently cake in the apartment so I haven’t noticed if I’m hungry for anything else yet.

What I do know is that my friendship with Scott has endured distance and difficulties across the many, many years we’ve known one another and that our connection has simply grown deeper and stronger. So if I can’t go and visit him for a while we won’t lose our friendship, it will simply have to be conducted via internet nonsense and Skype-o-yammering. And telegrams if they still have them. Or even if they don’t. I’m sure I can buy a couple of telegram tapper thingies on ye olde internet and then lay thousands of miles of cable so we can write to each other in morse code.

Yes, I’m also sure we could both learn morse code if we really wanted to. Oh and happy tomorrow, Scottley.

Posted in Family, friendship, internet, Life, Transport, travel | Leave a comment


Remember when Labour came to power in the late nineties after almost two decades of Tory rule? Remember how the anti-Labour papers jumped on the role of Alistair Campbell, non-member of Parliament, no portfolio as such but hugely influential when it came to dealing with the media in general? Spin doctor, that’s the buzz word: Campbell was a spin doctor, spinning facts so that they reflected what Blair and co wanted them to signify. How deceitful, cried the right-wing press, ignoring the fact that every ideology spins.

The knock-on effect of all the focus on spin was that the electorate of Great Britain began to feel increasingly sophisticated when it came to recognising specific political bias within the media, within the rhetoric of members of Parliament and their advisers. How smart we now were.

How, then, have we ended up eighteen years in to the twenty-first century not less likely to fall for spin but way more susceptible to it all? How and why did we not throw out David Cameron’s bullshit austerity politics when they were first put forward in 2010? How come we still appear to believe that any issues with Britain’s economy are caused by dole scroungers and immigrants rather than by tax-avoiders and hateful business practices such as gender pay disparity, zero-hours contracts and the rise and rise of unpaid internships?

We still assume we’re sophisticated, that we recognise fake news when we see it (we never talk about the grey-area, half-truths of spin these days, news is either real or fake, there is no ground in between) and yet we allow our political leaders to drag us further and further down intolerant, uncaring paths which ensure the rich get richer, the poor have to put up with a bread and circuses attitude from their overlords and the country becomes disturbingly dystopian for any who are not fortunate enough to be born into money and/or privilege.

Revolution. Strange that the word shares some aspects of meaning with the word spin. In previous centuries, in other cultures, the poorest would be more likely to seek revolutionary means to change the cruel realities of their existence. What the hell happened to the British? We are convinced it is revolutionary to replace Mel and Sue with Sandi and Noel on Bake-Off but will seemingly never contemplate demonstrating to our leaders that enough truly is enough, that it is time they acted on behalf of the most vulnerable instead of increasing the influence and comfort of the wealthiest.

We are the opposite of the yarn of Rumplestiltskin: we are golden beings spun into straw. Which really doesn’t work as a political analogy but I didn’t know how to conclude without repeating the word cunts when referencing the current government and adding the word stupid in front of the word cunts to define us as an electorate.

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Night And Day

There is an opposite to awake. Theoretically this awake-o-opposite occurs during darkness when the planet has done so much spinning that the sun won’t look at it for a few hours in protest. Theoretically.

In my world the opposite to awake happens somewhere between the thunder of delivery trucks bringing fresh, overpriced goods to the local store and the call to arms and up-ness that is desperately needing to urinate. In other words, I sleep for about four or five hours after sevenish in the morning and before middayish in the middle of the day. Ish.

Normal people stop doing awake when it has been dark long enough for them to be bored by the lack of light. And they do awake again when the god of light returns to bless the sacred skies above the ambrosia fields of their dreams. Because they need to piss. Or go to work. Or both.

I don’t work. I do piss. Therefore all the rules are gone and I don’t even know which way is uppity.

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Induction Then Destruction

Weekends. Huh! Good gawd. What are they good for? Absolutely nothing. Woah, woah, woah.

No, I won’t say it again because an accurate depiction of my weekend would prove weekends are good for some things. Crying. Feeling like a complete and utter piece of shit. Saying ouch whenever movement is necessary. Watching some women slide down a bobsleigh run on a tea tray (it was on the television, I didn’t go to a bobsleigh course, you numpty). Crying.

Did I mention crying? It’s good for the skin. Or the shoes. Or nothing. I don’t even know why it’s happening. Beyond eternal angst and rage against the limitations created by health stuff. And it may also be because movement makes me go ouch a lot – Friday’s physio is still totally making me its bitch.

I did achieve food yesterday but I didn’t quite get my usual cavalier approach to adding herbs and spices correct and it tasted sort of dark. Like my soul. Like an endless night engulfing all hope and joy. The spaghetti was fine, though.

Posted in food, health, Life, mental health, Music, War | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments