Saturday, 11 March 2006

I've been tagged...

... by CJB of Crazy Jay Blue. She’s asked me not to slap her for it, so I won’t because she’s a very nice woman, but my little fingers are itching…

I’m supposed to list five weird habits or peculiarities. My first reaction was, “I don’t have any”, but I’ve been disabused by my partner. Apparently, I do. Hmm… (Oh, by the way, like CJB, I am always right so thinking that I am is not a peculiarity at all – I do get berated for it a lot, though; in fact, just yesterday someone… nah, it’s too boring…)

1. Starting with the least weird (lots of people, CJB among them, are like me): as it says on my profile, I don’t do mornings. I am the ‘night owlest’ night owl I know. I go to bed when my upstairs neighbour leaves for work. I was rather dismayed the other morning when I realized that it was already dawn and I was still up and about (well, not exactly, more like glued to the PC, reading blogs). My ‘nice’ next door neighbours are aware I go to bed late (ah, the understatement!) and usually try not to do too much noise too early, but the other day they were having their carpet replaced and the man turned up earlier than expected (actually, whatever time he’d been expected would have been too early for me, but, you know, there’s early and there's early: it was 7.50am). I nearly jumped out of my skin when he started scraping around to remove the old carpet. By then I’d only had two and a half hours of sleep and I was going to the theatre in the evening. A nightmare! I tried to go to bed a little earlier a while ago, but failed miserably. It doesn’t make my life easier, I can tell you.

2. I write funny things on the bathroom tiles in eye pencil. I listen to the radio all the time (Radio 4 – the blah blah radio) and I keep hearing these jokes and quips and clever phrases and you don’t have pen and paper in the bathroom, do you? So what else should I do? I only have to write ‘funny’ things because, although my memory is pretty good for my advanced age, I can never remember jokes or anything remotely funny (Freud explains why somewhere, but it must be a funny explanation because I can’t for the life of me remember it).

3. I don’t eat and drink at the same time. That’s not really a quirk: I suffer from IBS (not Isaac Bashevis Singer, but Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and I’ve been trying to control it for nearly twelve years. I noticed some years ago that I felt unwell at breakfast, when I had tea with toast. I would have a kind of turn; I would go grey and feel faint. So I started having a cup of tea then waiting half an hour then having a piece of toast and, lo and behold!, the malaises stopped. I applied the same rule to the other meals during the day and I like to think that it’s made a lot of difference to my well-being. Like going to bed at dawn, it doesn’t make life easier, and it creates havoc with one’s social life – going to a restaurant is hell, but, then, eating out is difficult anyway with IBS – but being alive and not in pain makes it worth it.

4. I don’t say anything good about any forthcoming event in case I jinx it. Things have happened in the past that have convinced me that I am a witch (yes, some people knew that all along, didn’t they?). I make bad things come true. I’m ashamed to say I am superstitious in that way. I try not to talk about anything in advance. I let it happen first, then I discuss it. It’s not a new thing, actually: when I was young I always refused to say whether I thought I’d done well in an exam, in case it would change the results. I also believe that the content of an unopened letter gets worse as time goes on. Well, ok, I don’t really believe it, but it’s a funny idea, isn’t it? They read a wonderful short story about it years ago on Radio 4 (and, yes, I had to make a note of it on the wall of my bathroom).

5. I go to the loo twice before a theatre performance: the first time about fifteen minutes before the show and the second time as they announce, “Tonight’s performance of X will commence in three minutes.” (Yeah, right, when was the last time, a show started on time?) I know it’s crazy, and it’s annoying for anyone who’s there with me, but I can’t help it. I used to go only once, right at the last minute, but one night someone suggested we go at a time that was too early for me so I had to go again and that was it! A new weird habit!

Nothing to write home about, is it? I don’t think it’s worth calling the men in white coats yet, do you?

The rules of the game dictate that I have to tag five other bloggers, so here are my 'victims':

Jonna of Hrmph
Laura of Laurelines (she might draw her quirks - that would be nice, wouldn't it?)
Mireille of C'est Chic
Red-Queen of She'll be feverish after so much thinking
and Surly Girl of D-Flat Chime Bar

Ooooh, I can't wait to see how weird they are.


  1. i would definitely do the scribbling on the bathroom walls with eyeliner if only i had paler tiles


    we have a radio in every room, although i will confess (shhhhh) that the one in the kitchen is tuned to radio 2 (for jeremy vine - thassit, honest!)

  2. Bela, you are SO weird! But the not drinking and eating kind of makes sense...not diluting the gastric acids or something. I suffer from the opposite problem - too much acid. Not good either. And just as likely as IBS to be stress-related.

  3. weird, huh? Ok. I can do weird. *mwah!* xoxo

  4. I do that toilet thing too. I'm even worse before exams.

    And yes, my friends hate it. A lot.

  5. Grumpy, eh? Slap, eh? I'll give you grumpy, you naughty monster ;D. Hey, my blog is an art blog, not a confession booth. Maybe someday I'll answer. Maybe not ;D. Love you still, J, though god knows why.

  6. UC, I could lend you a white pencil I've kept from the '60s. :-D

    I don’t even know who Jeremy Vine is. LOL!

    Indeed, L. What I do is perfectly logical; not weird at all.

    Thanks for playing, M! Mwah back!

    JvS, before exams I used to be stuck to the loo. This is different: the theatre doesn’t make me anxious. I just can’t bear the thought of having to disturb everyone if I need a pee.

    Friends don’t understand it, do they? They always want to carry on chatting and drinking their wine and wanting to take said wine in to the auditorium (that reminds me: must slap theatre managements for ever allowing people to take in drinks of any kind).

    Boo, Laura, I thought you might sketch yourself doing funny things. Oh well, never mind, I’ll carry on admiring the beautiful things you draw instead. Love you too. :-)

  7. My friend once bought me a coffee right before we went in to see a play. A coffee! What was she thinking? Of all the bladder irritants in all the world...

    It's not nerves so much as a sense of forbidden activity. I can't miss a second of a play or an exam, therefore I'll spend the whole time thinking about my bladder. Which can be counter productive.

  8. Yay! Thanks for playing. I love your weird habits.Yes, the downside of being a night owl is that the rest of the world doesn't work on our schedule. Getting up at 5, 6, 7 - heck, ANYthing that says AM is just unnatural. In my next life I'll probably be something nocturnal that loves daylight.

    Writing on the bathroom tile with eye pencil - brilliant! What I need to know though, is: do you later transfer your scribblings and remove them from the tile? Or do you have funny stuff from years and years written on your bathroom tiles? Guests must have fun using your bathroom. No need for magazines in there!

    Do you touch up your lipstick on both trips to the loo, or just one? That's where I'd get into trouble, I think. Sat through Verdi's Requiem this weekend - 80 minutes, no intermission. Thankfully, it was a riveting performance. My pregnant sister though, skipped the standing O and kicked her husband in the face to get to the toilet before the line.

    Thanks for playing - you're a great sport! Back to the slapping.

  9. If your toiletting habit is peculiar, at least you're not alone. This is why I think there should be at least two ladies' rooms for every men's room. Few things strike fear into my heart like the thought of having to sit through - whatever - and have to *go*!

  10. If you do have to disturb a row of seated people to go to the loo, the best things is to mutter 'Sorry, feeling sick' as you go past. No one wants you to be sick in an auditorium so they are only too happy to let you past, and they feel sorry for you rather than annoyed. I used this on an aeroplane too - they were circling the airport for ever and the seatbelt lights were on and you weren't supposed to get up but I told the stewardess I was going to be sick and she let me into the toilet.

  11. Dear Bela ... in Lebanon nobody drinks with their meals either, it is considered unhealthy. You drink water before or after, and tea and/or coffee is a separate event.

    I love the eye pencil in the loo, I would do that myself except I am sure the twins would pick up the habit as well.

  12. I share your 1, 3, and 4. When I was growing up, it was considered unhealthy to drink with the meal. I have still retained that habit.

  13. Yes, I know it's like several weeks later, but I've been preoccupied. Sorry.

    JvS, you can't still be friends with that person, can you? What a dreadful thing to do!

    The going to the loo because of nerves is something else - wow, much worse - the theatre thing is just being afraid of disturbing other members of the audience and the actors. It's terribly embarrassing.

    CJB, in my next life I want to be an adorable slow loris (the cutest of all the little sloths).

    I tell my partner all the funny lines and jokes that I write on my tiles and then I erase them, never to remember them again. Guests? What are they? Flat is too tiny for guests.

    I touch up my lipstick just before curtain up. Weird or what. I fancy the actors can see me and I want to look nice for them. That stems from years of sitting in the front row of tiny studio theatres with masses of friends in the casts. LOL!

    It's horrible, isn't it, D? It's only happened to me once: back in 1969, in Stratford: I was watching Pericles with Ian Richardson. I'd been dreaming of seeing that play for months and I was in agony within minutes of its starting. The first half was hours long... Awful. I go to the gents when the queues are preposterous and time is short. Germaine Greer goes to the disabled loo. We saw her once, at the National. It was deftly done and hilarious.

    L, I will keep your advice in mind the next time someone manages to drag me on board of an aeroplane.

    I'm so glad to know that I'm not weird after all, F. At least where eating and drinking, or rather not drinking, is concerned. :-)

    There are much worse habits that the little birdies could pick up, aren't there? LOL!

    V, I knew we must have something in common. :-)


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