Monday, 27 February 2017

Operation 'Turn That Frown Upside Down'

The good thing about articles that start, ‘In the midst of all this terrible news, here are some things to be cheerful about’ is that the list is always changing and never ending. Last time I felt the urge to buoy up myself, and the world because of current events, I started with the pleasure of watching Netflix’s The Crown. (You can remind yourself here if you feel the need.) That was ages ago. Now? Who knows what it would be? Who knows what cheerful distractions I would put on a list to gee us all up in these dark, dangerous times. Well the answer is simple. You. You know, or at least you will if you keep reading, because I am about to tell you.

So without further preamble, and like so many before me, in the midst of all this terrible news, here are some things to be cheerful about.

Click on this link now. Right now. I promise it’s not a scam. Do it. ISN’T IT BEAUTIFUL? 
Now this is what I am talking about. This is my kind of porn. LOOK AT THE OOZING CHEESE!! I’m not London-based, but if I lived anywhere near Leather Lane, I’d struggle not to shovel one of these in my gob every time I walked past. Hello Grill My Cheese, you marvellous beast. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

I call this 'Laughing Cow and Vegemite 
on Milk Roll'. Nigella must be bricking it.  

I recently lost my slippers. Actually, not true. I recently lost my favourite slippers and didn’t want to have to resort to any of the other five pairs I have on the go. (They just aren’t as comfy). Rather than looking for the lovely lost ones, I ended up buying these bad boys. Even though it was a waste of money (although Tesco isn’t exactly Harrods) I feel all cheery and uplifted for them being in my life. It’s the small things. 

They have ears.
What more do you need?

The world has gone mad. People are being attacked and discriminated against left, right, and centre, and the minute Brexit comes up in a convo, a deathly hush descends as people try to work out which side of the cavernous divide everyone falls on. Yet in the midst of all this, here is something marvellous to do. Buy some sanitary towels for refugees! Aunt Flo turns up on a monthly basis, regardless of having to leave your home and flee for your life. (Aunt Flo is a frickin' biyatch, btw.)  Bloody Good Period have made this simple.  They’ve set up a link to Amazon so all you need to do is decide how much you want to spend and send it to the address they have added. It is ridiculously easy, as cheap as you want to make it, and genuinely useful. 

Why I have a fishmonger's storage box in my
downstairs loo is anyone's guess.  

Following on from charitable donations, a bit of armchair activism can help dissuade the frustrated feeling to take root. Online petitions can make a difference, even it only means you’ve had your say on something you feel strongly about. Boycotting businesses that don’t support your beliefs won’t necessarily bring them to bankruptcy but will aid a good night’s sleep. Then there’s the odd gentle march here and there. As slated as the Twitter echo chamber is, seeing like-minded people share views similar to your own, can remind you you’re not alone.  Get involved!  Get involved in anything – whatever rocks your boat.

Liverpool's protest against
Trump's Muslin ban - 30.1.17

   Let’s move on to some escapism. Netflix currently have two series of Tina Fey and Robert Carlin’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and it is joyous. Funny, disarmingly clever when you don’t realise, and an obvious baby sister to the razor-sharp 30 Rock. Moving on, Netflix have just added The People v OJ Simpson which, when it aired on BBC2 last year, blew my mind. It felt like a soap opera until it became clear everything depicted happened for real. And in other news, I just bought all three series (and additional Xmas special) of Last Tango in Halifax. Every episode is a master class in writing and acting perfection. 

Sally Wainwright's writing makes
everything feel all right.

I love Marian Keyes. I love her books, I love her tweets and I love her vlog. There is nothing cheerier - literally nothing - than clicking play and hearing about her week. Whether it’s a new jumper, what she’s watching on TV at the moment, or the escapades of her nieces and nephews, she makes the most mundane of details utterly hilarious. She is defo on my list of ‘Women I Need to Befriend.’

A selection of Marian's books. I call her
Marian because in my head we are bezzies.

There are two reasons to use a calendar. One is to keep track of where you need to be and when. The other is to make exciting plans that you can look forward to. Whether it is a holiday, a family do, or a planned lazy day, the delayed gratification can be as sweet as the event itself. As I type, I have an evening out with friends tomorrow. It's been in the diary since Christmas and I CANNOT WAIT. I’d have missed out on all this anticipation if we'd sorted it a couple of days ago. So make a plan. Arrange a date. Get excited.  

October needs to be filled.
I shall make plans forthwith.

Right, mission accomplished. I’ve now raised everyone’s spirits. Feeling uplifted? Of course you are. Top stuff. And on that note, I need to make a cheese toastie and finish Last Tango.  

Enjoy the week, folks.

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