The Reluctant Housewife or Dorothy Parker Ate My Puppy

"When I got married, I said to my therapist, 'I want to do something creative.' He said, 'Why don't you have a baby?' I hope he's dead now." Joy Behar

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Happiness is the new despair

An unreasonable sense of wellbeing has come over me. Thank God the drugs work. I'm no longer trying to live through a miasma of pain and depression. I've discovered motivation. For most of my life I've been a vortex of inactivity (oxymoron?) but now I'm almost normal. Imagine me doing a little happy dance.

I'd forgotten how exhausting working can be. Do you remember when you were small and being peevish? And your parents explained that you were 'overtired'? I stumbled in from work and became a monster or whining. The German's used to it.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Having Joined the Working Masses....

I'm in shock.

I have a job.

I'm used to long lie ins, leisurely lunches, mornings wrestling with Su Doku and days passing without speaking to a soul, my system is reeling.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Gark. Have turned into Bridget Jones.

Cigarettes: 11

Blisters from kitten heels: 4

Headaches: 1

Unsuccessful job interviews for crap jobs: 3 this week

Level of disgust at hovel-like flat: 9/10

Need for a glass of wine: extreme

Fear that am an alcoholic: marginal

Friends who want to run off with me: 1

Kind, gentle unexciting husbands: 1

Level of frustration at life: 9.5/10

Dust on furniture: 1mm

Spiders inhabiting hovel-like flat: millions

Mice inhabiting hovel-like flat: unknown, but squeaks suggest many

Monday, September 19, 2005

Youth is a Marvell

Have been hearing a strange rumbling noise all week. At first, I though it was my stomach. Then the tube line under the house. But after much deliberation I've identified the cause. It's Time's Winged Chariot hot on my heels. It's a week until my 29th birthday and I'm terrified. Crow's feet, lines around the lips, saggy bottom, grey skin - it's all begun. Have been compusively chain smoking & moisturising, hoping they cancel each other out.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Am I cursed, or paranoid? Or Both?

This has been a week of minor disasters & emotional confusion.

First, there was the Flood which ruined the carpets, left a damp smell & brought the mice out of hiding.

Second came the Plague of Maggots. A bin bag split outside and hosts of white wiggly creatures came squirming toward the light under the kitchen door. It was a relentless army of bug babies. I don't mind them if they're on the end of a hook, or being bred in sterile circumstances to eat rotten flesh. I do, however, object to them seeking sanctuary in my room where I prepare food.

The third straw across this self-pitying camel's back was the disintegration of the cold water tap in the bathroom. Now I have to brush my teeth with the hot tap. It's disconcerting, as though my mouth becomes a minty washing machine.

Then, the bedroom curtains split as a result of sun damage. Almost took a pair of scissors to them in a fit of homicial/curtaincidal rage, but was stopped by the fact that my scissors can't cut butter. Found a replacement pair of curtains in Homebase (although replacament scissors would have been more satisfying) in a ecclesiastical shade of purple. Vile, but serviceable.

My name is Edith & I live in a hovel.

Lastly, and most upsettingly, Old Friend has decided that if I do not choose between him & husband he will never see me again. How can I do this? Things might not be great between Husband & I but I can't run into the unknown just because things are rocky, I don't have a job, I live in a pit & need some excitement, can I?

At least I'm not Toby the bunny on Death Row. "Toby is the cutest little bunny on the planet. Unfortunately, he will DIE on November 6th, 2006 if you don.t help (sic.)...Unfortunately, on November 6th, 2006, Toby will die. I am going to eat him. I am going to take Toby to a butcher to have him slaughter this cute bunny. I will then prepare Toby for a midsummer feast. I have several recipes under consideration, which can be seen, with some pretty graphic images, under the recipe section. I don’t want to eat Toby, he is my friend, and he has always been the most loving, adorable pet. However, God as my witness, I will devour this little guy unless I sell 100,00 copies of my book."


Now, rabbit tastes good. No, it tastes great. I say save the world from another mediocre book and put Toby in a roasting pan with some shallots.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Numb Stomach & a plaster the size of a handkerchief


Just back from the hospital, where they put oestrogen & testosterone implants & zoladex under the skin of my abdomen. Despite the lidocaine, it hurt like hell. But, am feel gaunty & young & feeling shiny so it doesn't matter. There are three plasters over the wound, a little pyramid of gauze.

Marriage Problems

How do you know when a marriage is over? Is it when you stop sleeping with each other, or when you can't be bothered to talk?

We live a life of curious, dull domesticity & I don't feel noticed any more. Had an argument last night which centred around the fact that we are more flatmates than husband & wife. I don't know how to fix it, and I'm not sure that I want to. I've begun the 'what's wrong' conversation maybe six times this year. There's only so times I can say it.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Barbie's Dead

I found Fucked Up Barbie outside my front door this morning, slightly mauled, very dirty, utterly naked. What's happened to you Barbie? Did Ken have his wicked way then throw you out of a moving car? Did you lose your clothes in a game of poker and collapse in a drunken heap? Is your head turned in shame? Sigh.

Look at that hopeful, jaunty ponytail... Sorry you're in the gutter babs, but at least you're got good hair.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Why are my ankles wet?

I was washing up, watching the scouring pad chip my newly painted red nails, when I noticed that my bare feet were cold. There's nothing unusual in that - I have the circulation of an eighty year old. Then turned to get another plate from the never-ending stack of dirty dishes and realized that water was pouring in under the kitchen door. Not trickling, pouring: gushing even. Like a fuckwit, I opened the door. Cue very soggy housewife. With an awful sense of premonition I ran to the front door. There was water everywhere. It crept up over the doorstep and through into the hallway.

I thrust my hand into the drain, which involved almost putting my head underwater but couldn't find a block. I did the same at the back of the house and no joy. So, I turned off the mains electricity, heaped the Persian rugs on the sofa & sat on the kitchen worksurface with a cigarette in my hand. All I could do was watch as the water rose about my ankles.

Eventually, of course, I did the only thing I'm good at and used my mobile to call every man I knnow for advice, in various tones of hysteria. The most calming person was my brother but then he's army barmy and used to people gibbering with fear & despair.

Of course, the thunderstorm ended, the drains began to flow again and I mopped up the two inches of water that was left with every towel, bedspread, mop, cushion and tablecloth I own. The carpets still sound a little squishy when you tread on them.

Told husband that Old Friend tried to kiss me the other night. When will I learn? Honesty is an overrated virtue. Of course, he went nuts in a restrained, Germanic way, but I don't see the problem. He asked me never to see old friend again, but I can't do that - I could never do that. He's a thread that runs through my life and who I hope will do so until it ends. He understands me in ways that husband never will, and I can't give that up.

Lastly, read this and try not to get angry. Actually, get angry. The only other reaction is despair.

Later: there's a seam of disquiet running through me today - I cannot identify the cause. Listlessness, boredom, a surfeit of emotions, panic, confusion, it could be any one of these or all of them.

Inevitably, I have come out of my hormonal madness and explore the world again like a five year old. Then, there is the inevitable realization of the time I have wasted being depressed and crazy. This in turn makes me depressed & crazy but in a frustrated, 'how the fuck did it all go wrong?' sort of way. I look at the wreckage of the last few years and wonder if it's possible to salvage an independent life from it. And I hate myself for my self-conscious posturing. 'Get a life' I say to myself, but the second question is always 'how?'.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Danced the night away...

Had my night of dancing last night, in a cheap & cheesy salsa club. It was fabulous, until Old Friend told me he loved me. It was awkward & drunken & romantic & pointless & made me want to cry. There are too many &s in that sentence. I ran away like a coward. The reluctant housewife became a reluctant conversationalist, & a reluctant friend. I hardly slept - too many martinis I think. Sat awake most of the night eating toast, cursing men.

The London light is yellow: a thunderstorm is underway and there's rain pouring down the steps toward my front door. It feels like a Sunday afternoon - drowsy & aimless.