It’s Valentines Day! Hurrah! In honour of the Day of Love, I started out writing a list of people I want to punch in the face (people who won’t move down the tube carriage, people who actively refuse to understand what feminism actually is, the pervy waiter in the restaurant last week, people who bang on incessantly about their partner) but then the whole thing just sounded too miserable, so here instead is a list of people and things I currently love.
Sharon is 16, she walks with a limp (and a clicky hip), she has a constantly infected eye so is always winking, and she could not give less of a shit about me or anyone else as long as she is fed and has access to her fleece bed. She’s BRILLIANT.
It’s basically all I eat at the moment. Go and make yourself shakshuka. You will not regret it.
3. Floor Six
I’ve managed to get just disgustingly lucky with my neighbours. Last week, a big group of us from three different flats on our floor were all in the pub just hanging out, and I swear that hardly ever happens anywhere, let alone in London. It isn’t going to last much longer because people are moving on, but for now, I’m totally making the most of having loads of awesome people within shouting distance. Also it’s very handy not having to put on shoes to go and see people.
4. Popcorn old fashioneds
I’ve been trying to get into whiskey because I think it will make me look suave, but it’s taking ages. Even the stuff that basically fell straight out of Ben Nevis didn’t go down as nicely as I’d have hoped. HOWEVER the other week I had a popcorn old fashioned and it was the most delicious thing I’ve ever tried, so I’m trying to perfect them at home. I haven’t worked it out yet but the practice ones are quite strong so I’m having a nice time experimenting.
5. Running to songs from musicals
I go through a phase of actually liking running about once every three years, and I’ve fallen into one of those phases again recently. Seriously, it makes me feel like a champion, even though I’m quite slow and wheeze like a broken dog toy. At the weekend I found a new route round the canals by my house which is beautiful, so I’m excited for more running as spring arrives, plus I’ve made a playlist that veers between pop punk and musicals and it makes my heart happy.
Towards the end of last year, I did a creative writing course and have continued to meet up with some of the amazing women to talk and to write. Sitting with people in cafes or the Southbank Centre, writing and sharing what we’re doing, somehow speaks to my soul.
7. Being an aunty
I now have two nieces and a nephew and my god if they aren’t the most brilliant people to have ever graced the earth. My oldest niece is now texting me and there is nothing more likely to bring you down to earth, in the best possible way, than the unedited, un-self-aware cutting bluntness of a 6-year-old who has no time for your pointless chit chat.
(This is Joey, who is the cutest baby in the world. Especially the mohican.)
8. Tiny tiny gigs
When I moved to London two years ago, one of the things I was most excited about was the chance to go to loads of gigs, and then I didn’t go to loads of gigs. Mostly because I couldn’t often find people to go with, so this year I have decided to care less and just go on my own, because when you’re listening to live music, who cares anyway. And I’m having such a good time, and finding so many awesome new bands that I’d have never heard of otherwise. I’m still on the hunt for gig partners but for now, I feel like I’m 16 again, when I used to go and see local bands every weekend. I missed it more than I knew.
9. The Good Place
The Good Place is the best TV programme I’ve watched in bloody ages. It’s so uplifting, and so funny, and I am in love with Kristen Bell. I am also in love with William Jackson Harper. And D’Arcy Carden. Basically I want to be in some kind of polygamous platonic marriage with the entire cast of The Good Place. Although it infuriates me that I can’t rename my Amazon Echo to Janet instead of Alexa, which if you’ve watched it, makes total sense and will now infuriate you too.
If you haven’t seen it, go. Hip hop musicals are the way forward.
Positivity done. Happy Valentine’s Day!