OK. Y’all know how mild-mannered and easygoing I am, yeah? Well, I’m about to declare summat that will REALLY make a lot of people think slightly differently of me. It’s a very controversial subject. Very incendiary. I’m going to be outcast from society after I say this. Like a pariah. With an extraordinary arse. But a pariah, nonetheless.
I don’t like pets.
Hate them, in fact.
They are stupid. Stupid pets. All they are are ANIMALS that live in your HOUSE. How lame is that? Animals live in fields, innit. Or, erm, underground. Or the sky. Or zoos. Not houses. Especially not my house. No way! My house is minging enough as it is, why would I want animal shizzle crapping up the place as well?
I feel very strongly about this, but only just feel brave enough to admit it cos, y’know, people get a bit precious about pets. Whatevs. You love your pets, fine. Love them. Just know that, essentially, having a pet means cleaning up after it all the time, and then they die. I like to admire animals from afar. Like, the lions in Africa are GREAT, just don’t be a lion in my kitchen. I would not appreciate that. That is why we have TVs, so that we can watch these great animals in their natural habitats without having to worry about them taking a dump behind the sofa or eating us.
Pets. What good pets are there? None. I once attempted to buy some fish. The idea of pink gravel in a goldfish bowl pleased me more than the notion of having a fish, I guess. I got as far as discovering you can’t just buy a fish and tip it into a bowl – they need to acclimatise and the water needs to be AERATED – FFS – and then I v rapidly lost interest. Cats? Nah, too spiky. Dogs are too needy. Gerbils and hamsters are too small and squeaky. Rabbits are evil. Guinea pigs look like they panic a lot. Reptiles are creepy. Birds in cages is just WRONG. The only pet I may consider ever getting is a tortoise and that’s only cos they sleep for most of the year and you can keep them in a box. What other pets are there?
I have a child who can’t clean up after herself. That is work enough. Why complicate matters by adding a WILD BEAST to the mix? Unfortunately Moo seems genuinely fascinated by animals – all animals, dammit – and I can see I’m going to have many battles on my hands when she gets old enough to demand we get a pet.
Oh and one last thing. People who call themselves ‘mummy’ and ‘daddy’ in reference to their pet? That is EEEEWWWW. Stop it. You did not conceive nor give birth to the animal. Please don’t act like you did. Eeeewwww.
So c’mon. How unpopular am I now? I don’t like pets. This makes me some kind of monster, yeah?
Got any good pet stories?
So I went to a wedding. It was great. Very lovely and wonderful. Am v pleased for my brother and his brand new wife. Moo behaved impeccably and I am proud of her. She looked very cute whenever the official photographer was hovering nearby – definitely out-cuted the other babies – and THAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING.
She also ate all her dinner and NOT MINE. Yes! I know! It’s as if she knows I blogged about her stealing my food and is just trying to show me up, the minx.
During the meal all the children were given little colouring books and some crayons to amuse themselves with. I didn’t pay much attention to the pictures that were available for colouring at first, cos Moo wanted me to draw a MILLION CATS like she usually does, but when I was unpacking today and went through the book to see if it was worth hanging on to for another time, I actually did a little wee in my pants.
Some of the pictures are HILARIOUS.
A dog. An astronaut dog. OK OK, not too weird, not too disturbing. A bit random. Laughable, yes.
Then there’s this:
What is going on here? What EXACTLY is going on?? It seems as if this young man has been BUGGERED just before making his escape on a skateboard, OR he’s just SHAT HIMSELF and only remembered that he neglected to wipe his arse when half way down the road on his skateboard. Innit.
WHY THE HALF MAST KECKS??
And then there’s this:
So here we have a PREGGO CROCODILE CLEANING ITS TEETH and, of course, naturally, a DISEMBODIED EYE IN A MAGNIFYING GLASS to follow.
Because when you’re picking pictures to go in a kid’s colouring book, those are the two things you absolutely HAVE TO INCLUDE. Don’t you agree? No? Well GOOD cos THAT’S NOT RIGHT!! *slightly hysterical*
Oh and it gets better. Best till last.
Have a look:
Yes. YES. Here you go, children, enjoy colouring in this picture of a MAN BEING EATEN BY A FARKING DINOSAUR, before attempting the final picture. Which looks to be THE DEVIL HIMSELF.
Muchos muchos hilarious.
Maybe not suitable for children? Or just plain daft? What other kid’s things should probably really not exist, ever?
This is what woke me up this morning.
In my dream, I was walking into the park. Like most subconscious locations, it was familiar, yet different. The trees bent upwards, fish-bowled round the grey grassy swathes, as their branches scratched each other and itched in the wind. Noise rushed past me: children shrieking, birds cracking and snapping, insects crawling. I was carrying Moo in my arms. We were headed towards the playground. We like it there. She twisted around me, giggled, her hair in my face.
From nowhere, there came teeth, and sticky fur, and a livid eyeball. This is what I recall: not a whole animal, just a whirling impression of one, though in hindsight, I think it was a dog. It was on me. It was trying to bite through me, to get to Moo. The teeth were in my arm, my shoulder. They sank into my back. No pain. Just a sensation of sliding, and gripping, within my flesh. A hopeless stinging, maybe.
But the worse thing was my baby’s fear. This is what nauseated me. In my dream, I had fallen to the ground, curled around my daughter, using my own bones as a cage for her protection. She was screaming into my eyes. Above it all, the teeth were rending my flesh apart, but it was my baby girl’s terrified wails that made me wake, sweating, heart pounding.
So I didn’t get back to sleep, though it was still early. I couldn’t manage to relax again. I’ve never heard anything like that before – the sound of sheer terror – and I farking hope I never have to. Especially not from Moo. Never, ever, from Moo.
Maybe this is why I am so low today. Nightmares suck the joy from waking hours, sometimes.
Man, smoking cigarette: Yeah well I don’t agree with zoos in principle.
Other man, holding dog on a string: No?
Cigarette man: It’s cruel, innit. Well, I mean, in the wild is cruel too. Nature is fucking nasty.
Dog man: Yeah. Yeah I know. [dog barks] Shut the fuck up!
Cigarette man: Shut that fucking dog up.
Dog man, to dog: SHUT THE FUCK UP.
Cigarette man: Yeah. And I’ll tell you what else. It stinks of gipping weasels here.
Dear Auntie Venting
Something terrible has happened, yah? I have totally kept my other middle name a secret for years and years, yah, and now some pesky phone hacking inquiry has meant I had to, like, totally reveal it to everyone, yah, and now they’re all laughing at me. I mean, Mungo is a totally solid name. It’s been in my family for generations. I totally respect its history and its connection with all things traditional and aristocratic, yah? My other middle name – John – is so common. Like, sooooooo common. I need the Mungo to totally posh me up a bit.
But now my worry is that since people are laughing at me, I totally don’t know what to call my baby, who was, like, born recently and everything. Can I call her Mungo? Is it totally a boy’s name, or can I be all groovy and, like, totally modern and, like, break down the barriers between gender and renounce stereotyping and all that, yah? What other amazing names are there? Surely none are as amazing as Mungo? My god, Auntie Venting, you must help me. This is, like, totally doing my head in.
The totally honourable and not-at-all sleazy
Auntie Venting says…
Calm down, Mungo. Choosing a baby name is fraught with danger and one needs a SOUND MIND and a COLLECTED DEMEANOUR to be able to achieve the Holy Grail of parenting – i.e. the Ultimate Baby Name That No One Will Laugh At. It can be done. Do not quail in the face of danger! Keep your head and take some deep breaths. I will help you through this calamitous time.
Although, from what you say, you are heading in the wrong direction entirely. I don’t have much hope.
You see, Mungo is not a cool name. It is a ridiculous name. It sounds too much like Um-Bongo, the mega-fruity juice drink beloved of anyone fortunate enough to be a child during the 1980s. And nobody wants to have a name that sounds like a juice drink. Please DO NOT call your daughter Mungo. Not even the middle name. No.
As for first names, this can be a veritable minefield of lifelong mockery and heartache. Do not choose anything that rhymes with a rude word. Your child would suffer intolerably in the playground. And beware: kids can be horribly imaginative, as my friends Ruby ‘Pubey’ Townsend and the late Felicity ‘Fecal Matter’ Jones (god rest her soul) knew all too well.
Do not choose a name that could easily be misconstrued as a pet’s name. Standing in the park and calling for your daughter to come to you could result in a cavalcade of dogs launching themselves at your nethers instead, which is never handy for anyone. Therefore avoid Chi Chi, Bam Bam, Snowy, Toto and Sugar Cube. Which reminds me, do not pick a name that can also be slightly whorish.
Try to choose a name which is feminine, to avoid confusion in later life, especially if your daughter happens to inherit your hairy-arse gene.
And lastly, bear in mind that inspiration can be found in the most obvious places. The other day I was gazing out of my window and musing on the wonders of nature and managed to spy several suitable baby names within no time at all. Unfortunately, my husband did not want children called Spruce, Pylon or Massive Grain Silo. The spoilsport.
I hope this helps you, Mungo. And good luck with the whole parenting thing. You’re going to need it.
[No actors were harmed during the making of this blog post]
I got told a true story about a friend of a friend of a friend who slipped on some ice and squashed her dog. A very large lady, a very small dog. She squashed it. It died. I was told this story and I laughed. It’s AWFUL but I laughed! I think I’m becoming more mercenary in my old age…