5 things that I’ve been doing…

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I’ve been catagorically rubbish at updating my blog at late, and as I’m stealing a bit of time from my working day, I’ll keep this succinct and to the point.

5 things that I’ve been doing of late…

1.  Not going to the Doctors
Following my blood test at the Dr’s a couple of weeks ago, I’ve continually forgotten to make another appointment to get the results.  However, as the Dr’s surgery haven’t contacted me I’m assuming that I’m not dying of anything – and I’m feeling a million times better, so I think it might have just been a funny weather related turn

2.  Going to the Sonisphere Festival
A couple of weekends ago I went to the totally tropical Knebworth for the Sonisphere festival.

High Points:

  • Rammstein, Alice in Chains, Placebo
  • Meeting up with old friends
  • Tea in a mug – an amazing tent that did proper tea in a mug with optional biscuits.

Low Points:

  • Festival food related stomach upset on the Friday night (thank the Festival Gods for the invention of the ‘Comfy Crappers’!)
  • The sight of a man walking around in speedos with one bollock hanging out for most of the festival
  • The loud posh kids in the tent next door.  A right bunch of Nathans who decided that we all wanted to hear them shout profound things at 4am.  Twats.

3.  Car Hunting
After the pain of lugging tent and belongings on public transport to the last festival, I have decided to bite the bullet and get mobile again.   Other drivers in the UK:  you have been warned.

4.  Getting my stuff together for the Beautiful Days Festival…
…which is next weekend.  A festival organised by The Levellers.  In Devon.   In a field.  What’s not to like?   I am expecting rain, real ale and dogs on bits of string.

5.  Getting my Art On
…I may well update this blog with some of the outcomes.  If I remember.


Written by Lores

August 10, 2010 at 12:00 pm

Favourite Website of the Week: Awkward Family Photos

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This site is simply genius – and does what it says on the tin…by sharing and celebrating all of those Awkward Family Photos that people have been forced to pose for.

Take a look at the prime example below, and check out more at

Written by Lores

August 4, 2010 at 10:42 pm

Doctors. Bleurgh.

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Urgh.  Doctors.

After my tres bleak blog post of last week I visited the doctor who suggested that I swap contraceptive pill immediately, and go for a blood test to check out the low blood sugar symptoms.

Although getting him to send me for a blood test was a bit like getting blood from a stone.  So to speak.  After I described my symptoms (dizziness, tiredness, excessive thirst, poor concentration), he told me that (and I quote) ‘…you are probably not eating enough…’ This was after he had just told me that ‘…your weight is ok for now, but if you put on any weight you will be in the ‘overweight’ catagory…’

Well that piece of advice was about as useful as an aspirin lifeboat.

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m not someone to skip a meal, so I put my food down and was granted the right to be stuck with a needle by the helpful nurse at the local PCT.  Unfortunately, they couldn’t find a vein straight away, so had to poke about for a bit – and because I bruise like a peach, I now look like a skag addict.

Ho hum.

On the plus side I’m feeling a lot less moody and depressed – so I do believe that these feelings were a result of the pill that I was on.  Now I just need to be told that my dizziness is a result of the weather / dehydration (which quite a few people have advised could be the case), and then I’ll have to find something else to complain about.

After all, hypochondria is the only illness I don’t have…

Written by Lores

July 22, 2010 at 10:01 am

Posted in On Health...

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Bleurgh-ness & Broken Minds…

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I’ve been a bad and lazy blogger of late.  Not that I was ever a good blogger of course, but you know what I mean.  I haven’t been updating very much, but in my defense I haven’t been feeling great.

I seem to have been caught in the grip of a weird lethargic, debilitating depressive state recently..which is very unlike me.  Of course, I’m prone to the odd miserable mood swing just like everybody else, but I’ve never been someone that could actually be described as a ‘depressive’ or who has had any notable mental health problems before.  However, over the past few weeks I’ve been feeling progressively miserable, weird and…well…bleurgh.

It’s a weird and slightly frightening feeling.  I’ve been feeling continually spaced out – in a sort of dream like state, where my concentration levels are low, and I’m lethargic and tired all the time.  I feel very down, in a kind of ‘everything is futile way’, and have been tearful and antisocial (not wanting to see friends / family).  Alongside this, I can’t seem to get up the enthusiasm for anything, and I’ve had mood swings.  Bad moods swings, that swing (like meat cleaver being wielded by a psychopath) between irritation / anger with other people to intense feelings of self loathing.  I also feel like I have constant low blood sugar, and have been self medicating often (too often) with chocolate.    There are several things that I think could be a cause of these feelings…

  • Giving up smoking (again) – Since I quit last year, in the last 6 months I managed to get myself back into the habit of not smoking from Monday to Friday, and only smoking when I was out for a drink (i.e a Friday or Saturday night).  Eleven days ago – along with a friend of mine who also wanted to quit smoking – I decided to pack even this in for good…so perhaps nicotine withdrawal is a contributing factor to the way I’m feeling?
  • PCOS – a few years ago I was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome, a hormonal imbalance / pre-diabetic condition.  I’m wondering if the mood swings / low blood sugar / tiredness is related?
  • Going back on the pill – a couple of weeks ago I decided to go back onto the Cilest pill (this can mask some of the symptoms of PCOS).  However, thanks to the medium of Google I’ve been reading several forums where people have been complaining of incidents where taking Cilest has caused feelings of anxiety and depression.  So perhaps it’s this?
  • I’ve actually gone mad. This is also a plausible explanation.

However, not having any medical or psychological knowledge (apparently the Brownies First Aid badge I achieved at 8 years of age doesn’t count as a medical qualification), I can’t say for certain what is causing me to feel like this.  But at nearly 3 weeks of steadily increasingly, worsening symptoms it’s time for me to seek professional help in the form of a Dr’s appointment tomorrow morning.

I know it’s bad when I’m actually at the Drs, as usually I leave a visit to a doctor until the last minute – when I’ve actually got something hanging off or something is definitely broken.

But when it’s my mind that appears to be broken, I can’t put it off any longer…

I’ll update with diagnosis shortly.  Unless of course I’m carted off to a lunatic asylum in the meantime.

Little Boxes…

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I have been recently introduced to this song, and I am going to share it here for the following two reasons;

  1. Despite the fact that is was written decades ago, it is very astute social commentary.
  2. That it has been in my head since I was introduced to it, and I believe in sharing the earworm…

So here we are – Pete Seeger singing ‘Little Boxes’ (lyrics below – originally written by Malvina Reynolds)

1. Little boxes on the hillside,
Little boxes made of ticky-tacky,
Little boxes, little boxes,
Little boxes, all the same.
There’s a green one and a pink one
And a blue one and a yellow one
And they’re all made out of ticky-tacky
And they all look just the same.

2. And the people in the houses
All go to the university,
And they all get put in boxes,
Little boxes, all the same.
And there’s doctors and there’s lawyers
And business executives,
And they’re all made out of ticky-tacky
And they all look just the same.

3. And they all play on the golf-course,
And drink their Martini dry,
And they all have pretty children,
And the children go to school.
And the children go to summer camp
And then to the university,
And they all get put in boxes
And they all come out the same.

4. And the boys go into business,
And marry, and raise a family,
And they all get put in boxes,
Little boxes, all the same.
There’s a green one and a pink one
And a blue one and a yellow one
And they’re all made out of ticky-tacky
And they all look just the same.

Written by Lores

July 5, 2010 at 10:10 pm

On Volunteering…

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Yesterday I had a conversation with a friend of mine about why we both spend quite a lot of our time volunteering in our local community.  We came to the conclusion that it is human nature to want to help others – and not for recognition, just simply because we ‘can’.

I was put in mind of this passage by George Gilbert Aimé Murray on ‘Man as a Social Animal’, which I thought I would reproduce here as I think it explains my thoughts perfectly;

The whole supposition that a system of violent and intense rewards and punishments is necessary to induce human beings to perform acts for the good of others is based on a false psychology which starts from the individual isolated man instead of man the social animal.  Man is an integral member of his group.  Among his natural instincts there are those which aim at group-preservation as well as self-preservation; at the good of aurui as well as of moi.  Even among animals, a cow, a tigress, a hen pheasant, does not need a promise of future rewards to induce her to risk her life to save her young from harm.  The male bison or gorilla needs no reward before fighting devotedly for his females and children.  They all instinctively care for autrui.  And it would be a mistake to imagine that this devotion only shows itself in the form of fighting, or in dangerous crises.  It is part of the daily life of any natural group or herd; the strong members help the weak, the weak run for protection to the strong.  In man even in his primitive state these instincts are much more highly developed that in the gregarious animals; with the process of civilisation they increase in range, in reasonablenes, in sublimity.  In the late war, how many thousands of men – not particularly selected or highminded men – risked their lives eagerly to save a companion wounded in No Man’s Land?  The did not ask or know why they did it.  Some may have alleged motives of religion, or motives of ambition in the form of medals or promotions.  But the basic motive was probably more or less the same all through; that instinctively they could not see a mate lying there wounded and not try and help him.

A fair and progressive budget?

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I was saddened, but not surprised to read yesterday’s Observer article; ‘George Osborne’s budget cuts will hit Britain’s poorest families six times harder than the richest’ which states that

The impact of George Osborne‘s emergency budget on the poor has been revealed in a study that finds the country’s least well-off families face cuts equivalent to 21.7% of their household income. That means they will be hit six times harder than the very richest by the coalition’s deficit-cutting measures.

I understand that this country is heavily in debt, and that the government needs to make cuts in order to repay the deficit, however, I fail to see the so called ‘fairness’ of this austerity budget.  After all, wasn’t the recession itself exacerbated by the wealthy banks?

The poorest in our communities struggle as it is.  The announced cuts to benefits (yes, a three year ‘freeze’ in Child Benefit does count as a ‘cut’ in real terms), cuts to public services (on which those poorest in the community rely on heavily), rising joblessness and VAT rises will only serve to increase the rich / poor divide.  And while the rise in income tax allowance is a welcome, I can’t help but feel this is a very small carrot compared to a very big and brutal stick.

Meanwhile 23 of the 29 new cabinet members are millionaires

Fair and progressive?  I fail to see this myself.

As someone says in the comments section of the above Guardian article “This budget will cause misery for many least able to bear the burden”.

Written by Lores

June 29, 2010 at 2:55 pm