scribbles tagged ‘popular conversation topics’

perceptual plateau

Wednesday, January 19th, 2011 | tags: , ,  |

Popular conversational topics #6: hair changes

girlfriend: what have you done to your hair?

wendy: what looks different?

girlfriend: it looks longer

wendy: I’ve grown it?


my hair is beginning to look long ERI’ve had over 6 conversations of this ilk in the last 2 weeks

It’s as-if my hair length has recently passed some plateau that shifts peoples’ perception of it from not-long, to long

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the cooking conversation. again.

Friday, July 31st, 2009 | tags: , , ,  |

Popular conversational topics #5: cooking competencies

Tomatoeswhat do you cook? unless you include toast and porridge I dont really cook.   You don’t cook?   Do you eat out all the time? the question is asked with the intonation of shock,   disapproval or possibly repulsion.   I eat out once or twice a week,  having a quality meal produced for me is one of my  favourite luxuries.

If you don’t cook and you don’t eat out,   what do you eat, microwave meals? My questioner is still intoning in a disapproving manner.   For a few moments I wished that I had aspirations to conform to the social norm of interest or pride in the preparing and cooking of food.   Those moments pass quickly.    My lack of indugence in use of the  microwave,   only for porridge,   allows my  interregator to release a wrinkly or two from her brow.   I mostly eat cheese, tomatoes, cheese cucumber, cheese,  coleslaw,  cheese, necturines, cheese,  toast, cheese, marmite, cheese, twiglets, cheese, triffle,  cheesecake, peanut butter, date and walnut or battenburg cake.   All raw,   no cooking involved.     You like cheese then? My interregator appears to be reasonably satisfied with this reply.   But still their hangs a a niggling doubt over my ability to be a fully functioning member of society if I don’t cook.

can you cook? It had never occured to me that people don’t cook because they can’t.   At high school all girls were required to take cookery classes, under the title of ‘home economics’ classes.   They taught me to do things I’d been doing at home for years.   I used to cook, a lot.   As a student I rarely ate out and hand’t yet lost my verve for food preparation.    In my 30’s I used to host about one dinner party per month and the food seemed well appreciated,   in my 40’s I hosted fewer parties with more guests and they seemed well appreciated.   I can cook.   I only really enjoy it when I’m cooking for others and not doing it in a rush.   My interregator appears convinced that I can cook.

All my lasting lovers have been excellent cooks,   deriving pleasure from whipping up food to whet my palatte and I certainly enjoyed them doing so.

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Popular conversational topics #4: favourite roads

Saturday, June 20th, 2009 | tags: , , , , ,  |

person 1: what’s your favourite road?

Wendy: A68

person 2: yeah,   that’s got some nice (demonstrates bends and hillocks with his hands while making excellent sound effects)

person 3: what about the road that goes down to Cornwall?

person 4: Yeah,   the A30

The conversation continues in this vien.   I feel that I’ve found home.   Next time I may mention buses,   what do you think?

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Popular conversational topics #3: kitty settling

Monday, July 7th, 2008 | tags: , , , , , ,  |

“how are the cats settling in?”

Thankyou to everyone who  inquired after the wellbeing of my darling  fluffballs.   I am happy to confirm that they have quickly adapted to this Wendy House and are exhibiting a full range of healthy fluff-ball-ee activities,   most notable of which is the Monaco-ish,   formula-1-ish speed and agility,   dangerous-staircase dash.

Dangerous-staircase dash

Starts in the garden where Sampo cues-up Matrix by strutting backward and forward in front of her just out of paws reach.   Next,  Sampo runs for the front-door gathering sufficient speed to arrive before Matrix,    maintaining sufficient control to take the entrance-hall-front-room 90 degrees doorway-bend.   Occassionally Sampo misses the bend and ends up in the bathroom where she is cornered by Matrix and has clearly lost the chase.   After several months of practice she has the hall-front-room doorway-bend almost fully mastered.

The subtle curve on the approach to the foot of the stairs occassionally causes loss of footing on the bare floorboards and is invariably accompanied by liberal doses of meowing from both teams.   The main course-obstacle is the dangerous-staircase u-turn.   The dangerous-staircase u-turn either involves a headlong crash into the front-room wall for those missjudging their momentum,   or falling down the first couple of steps for those misjudging their paw-friction.   Sampo tends to crash into the wall due to belly-induced-momentum,   Matrix tends to slip on the steps.   Once past the first few steps,   if Sampo is still ahead of Matirx she’s pounces  safely to the finish line on the first-floor landing and is ready to start the next round.     Fresh water,   views of local trees and birds are provided on the landing at the end of the course for the competing kitties.

The cats are regularly able and willing to practice this tricky F1 course on a daily basis  often  changing  chaser-chasee roles and investigating route variations including the dinning room table top,   sofa-bends and comfy chair corner.

Ringside tickets are available.

Corporate bookings and sponsorship considered.

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Popular conversational topics #2: neighbours from hell

Tuesday, February 19th, 2008 | tags: , , , ,  |

This conversation topic sneaks out over lunches and in pubs.   At first I thought it was a reserved conversation amongst friends because while the stories have entertainment value they clearly point to a source of stress in the tellers life.   Then recently while  buying home and contents insurance from a clerk in my local Reading bank branch:

Bank Clerk (BC):   is it a nice home?

Wendy: it needs some work  but its detached,   no noisey neighbours to worry about

BC:   Oh tell me about it!   we’ve got the nieghbour from hell she deals crack cocaine and everyone knows about it,   last night at about 4am she through a concrete garden boulder at her friends car because they were having an argument,   I was lying there praying she didn’t miss and hit my car…   …we tried calling the police but they just don’t want to know,   there’s nothing you can do…   …we’ve asked the council to move us but they can’t…     …she leaves her 4 year old child alone in the house while she goes out partying…  (and more of the same ilk for approximately 15 mins)

My listening  performance was  worthy of  the type of fees traditionally paid to professional psychiatrists.       What friendly approachable, troubled,  staff they have at my local bank branch in Reading.  

I might just drop into the bank to check she’s ok next time I’m downtown.

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Popular conversational topics #1: commuting to work

Friday, February 15th, 2008 | tags: ,  |

Commuting is by far the most popular local conversational topic, everyone can weave a story about the time, the traffic, the mode of transport, and details of obstacles on the route. Bus numbers, train stations, connections, services. These conversations happen over lunch, during work breaks, on blogs, at bus-stops, train stations, in pubs, cafes and homes. The conversations are littered with amusing anecdotes and demonstrations of the commuters wyle and frustrations.

I will have to work on perfecting my currently short, colourful-engaging-anecdote-free, story of a 15 minute brisk walk to a Thames-Valley Park (TVP) free bus and notable-eventless ride. Short, easy commute stories just don’t cut the conversational-biscuit here.

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