Invitation Only

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CC Image courtesy of barockschloss on FlickrSeveral months back, I decided I would celebrate my birthday on a scale which meant I could justify inviting Matthew.  Then, around the time that FFS first appeared on the scene, I realised this was a silly idea.  So it’s kind of fitting that FFS going MIA should be in part responsible for what happens next.

‘Hello Matthew,’ I begin, as if it were the most natural thing in the world to drop him a line after not having seen him for, what, four months?  ‘How are you?’

I go on to issue the invitation.  It will seem random, that’s for sure, but I’m past caring.  FFS has brought me to a real low point, and what I need now is a hit of happiness.  A self-help book would probably advise me to go out dancing with my girlfriends (does anyone actually have girlfriends who ‘go out dancing’?), or take up a new hobby (note to self: start running again).  What it probably wouldn’t advise is contacting a long-standing crush, who has a girlfriend, and inviting him to your birthday dinner, to which the guy you are/were/might-be-but-who-the-fuck-knows? seeing, is also invited.  But it’s fine.  I’m not looking to be seduced, only distracted.  I hit send on my message and dash off to tango (I’m doing the hobby thing too, so it’s even more fine).


Holding my towel in place with one hand, I straighten the duvet with the other.  That’s when I see it, flashing white, my phone, just visible between the folds of fabric.  I swipe the screen.

‘Hello Anna…’

I feel a jolt in the pit of my stomach.


CC Image courtesy of Simon Greig Photo on Flickr

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No Man’s Land

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CC Image courtesy of rafa59(II) on Flickr

Rachel takes my arm.  ‘Soooo what’s new?  Tell me about the love life!’

I spread my hands.  ‘There’s nothing.’

And for the first time in a long time a) I mean it, and b) I don’t mind.  Really.  It’s bliss: no frantic checking of the phone, no sleepless nights, no frittering away hours on Facebook.  I spend my evenings seeing friends, running, dancing, and writing.  Life is good.

I say nothing.  What I mean is that I’m enjoying what can only be described as a low-level crush.  It barely impacts on my day-to-day life; it is merely a pleasant thought which drifts in and out of my mind.  Admittedly, it helps that Crush isn’t on Facebook (what IS it with these guys?!), so I can’t stalk him. I have his number but don’t feel tempted to use it, ever, perhaps because I know I might see him soon; or perhaps because I’ve learnt something in the course of the past year, namely that if a guy is interested he will make it happen. So I don’t think about it..  I have his number but don’t feel tempted to use it, ever, perhaps because I know I might see him soon; or perhaps because I’ve learnt something in the course of the past year, namely that if a guy is interested he will make it happen.  So I don’t think about it.

‘It’s so liberating,’ I say, ‘not being hung up on someone!’

Rachel smiles.  ‘Mmm.’

We walk on in silence down The Mall, heading for Victoria.   It’s a beautiful, balmy September evening.

As we pass the palace I wonder idly if Harry is home.  I keep this thought to myself, for Rachel is currently of the opinion that I am grounded and sensible – she hasn’t seen the blog – and, for one night only, so am I.

CC Image courtesy of Niquinho on Flickr

A Wee Chat

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‘Fennel tea?’CC Image courtesy of Daniel Panev on Flickr


‘Yes please.’

He makes the tea.  A man hasn’t made me tea since, like…


He hands me a cup of piss.


We sit down at the table.

We sit down… oh for crying out loud.

‘You were saying?’ I ask.

‘Oh – yuh – I really like Chekhov.’

God yeah…

‘Me too.  I’ve only read his short stories – they were amazing – but I’d love to see one of his plays…’

He looks surprised.

‘Really?  You mean it?’


I do.  I… do…

‘Then I’ll let you know when there’s one on and we can go.’

We.  Weeee.

I take a sip; it tastes even worse than it looks.

‘Y’know,’ he says, ‘most people run a mile at the prospect of Chekhov?’

Takes more than that, luv.

CC Image courtesy of AGrinberg on Flickr

A New Leaf

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CC Image courtesy of freefotouk on Flickr1. I will not do a repeat of Joe or Toby (though hopefully will do other men in the course of the year, one at least).

2. I will find a fulfilling, real job which leaves me with enough time to write, and then…

3. I will get published!  Yay!

Back in the real world…

4. I will resume going for 45-minute runs at least 3 times a week, if only because I can’t a) afford the commute, or b) figure out how to cycle without getting damp patches on my bottom.

(Bored of real world.)

5. I will eat 50g chocolate MAX (I won’t do a repeat of Max either) on a daily basis.

6. I will not pursue men, esp. at speed (cf. running resolution) on Valentine’s Day.  Don’t ask.

7. I will learn to complete tasks, such as the above.

Come fly with MBE in 2013!

And remember, it’s not about the journey, it’s about the packed lunch (not a euphemism).

CC Image courtesy of cursedthing on Flickr


Leave Me Breathless

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‘We should go running together sometime!’

The excitement I initially feel at being asked quickly gives way to panic.  Flirting whilst running at my usual pace would be a challenge; any faster, and I would have to make breathing a priority.

Then there’s the question of what to wear.  It occurs to me that nothing could detract from the rivers of sweat and bright red face; except, perhaps, nothing…

I’m starting to think this isn’t such a good idea after all.