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Mar 4


Posted on Friday, March 4, 2016 in Arty Farty, Family, memememememe, Strange and Unusual

This post is brought to you by a friend of mine who doesn’t write, but shares my love of new words. He challenged me and inspired me to learn 19 new words and use them ALL in one blog post.


Thus follows the story of K8’s February.

I am studying to be a teacher of all things medicine which is a huge thing to undertake and a marvellous privilege. I also have many children now at this stage, and am the keeper of wonderful things that come with this such as nappies that smell like popcorn, and pet rats that tend to escape.

To begin at the beginning…

There was the extraction. A lower molar, the sort that needs a lot of Novocaine and a monkey wrench to remove. It hurt, once my tongue was able to feel the gap. Even a nurdle* was too much to bear. They are good dentists, they did their best. They invited me back but I politely declined.

Two days later, I started a new course.

I forgot the octothorpe* after the numbers on the security system when I entered the building to let my students in on the first day… this sent the alarm off at the school where I was teaching. The alarm sounded like the vocable* of a really bad song, the sort of noise that sticks in your head, that sound that blackbirds love to mimic just to drive you crazy on a Sunday morning when you’re suffering from crapulence*.

The students arrived, and tea was sunk and class began, but due to the nature of the lesson I soon found that my keeper* was unreliable and several students commented on my builder’s arse. They were too demure to obviously point it out however and instead very kindly commented; ‘Hey K8, what’s the crack?!’ I was not in the mood for such interrobangs* so early in the morning so I avoided the collywobbles* by going outside to sniff the petrichor*, for it was indeed a grand soft day, and my desire path* told me that one cigarette wouldn’t hurt.

We had pizza for lunch. Or, at least the students did. By the time I had come back from collecting training equipment all that was left was the box tent* and a few lousy bits of cornicione*. I gave out to them for not eating their crusts, as every good mother does. What followed was a lemniscate* of argument which I could not win, and just ate into (as it were) a perfectly good lunch-time.

Later, at home I yearned for the punt* of a bottle of Chilean wine but found that Puppychild’s pet rat had escaped and was scratching around underneath my oven leading to immense curiosity of the dog and much perplexity of my daughter. Having spent most of the evening prone on the floor with a piece of ham trying to lure the fecker out while also explaining to Sir Fartsalot about magical letters in words where some are invisible.. knights, knees and knickers and other such examples of apthong* technology such as homework is at that age… I felt something nibble on my aglet*. When I turned and looked, it was gone, whatever it was was be found on the overmorrow*, leaving me fitful in my insomia and due dysania* with nightmares and fear that the dog would leave a bloody carcass where my neglect ran dry. I pictured Puppychild staring at the muntin* for weeks while the rain ran down the pane in despair of the horrible mother she had, she that had not the reflexes to catch the rat.

Catch it I did, however, last night. I heard it behind the piano while I was sniffing my barm* and I grabbed it tight and it squeaked and bit but the struggle was worth it, once it was reunited with its sister in the cage. And there it remains, barricaded in the frustration of its own existence. Just like me, just like the rest of us.

Sometimes freedom is more than what it seems to be I suppose.

This is a somewhat abridged version of my eventful recent past, there was also some tree-pruning, quite a lot of runny noses and nappies and also a flat tyre… but I have no more room for cromulent words at the moment, this will have to do for now…

…meanwhile I cannot use the oven, for the insulation is all chewed up. I’m not sure what to do about that.

apthongs aglet barm boxtent dysania desirepath crapulence cornicione collywobbles interrobang keeper lemniscate muntin nurdle vocable punt petrichor overmorrow octothorpe

Jun 7

Gotham Unhinged

Posted on Saturday, June 7, 2014 in Arty Farty, Jobs, Rantings, Strange and Unusual, Tattoos

Has it really been three months? I should really explain myself, but the explanation albeit potentially cathartic, would bore you to death which wouldn’t be good so close to the weekend.

So. I’ll launch straight in to a story. Or, maybe a snapshot… ten minutes out of my life which summarizes somehow how things should be, or the way things be since last we spoke. I wrote this in the First Aid post at Dublin Zoo, for I had had far too many coffees.

– – –

Among my various other dubious talents, did you know that I’m a face-painter? I’m not a very good face-painter but then again my services are free; so I suppose you get what you pay for.

The trick to face-painting is not in the art in itself as you might think, instead it’s about placating small children, tactfully stopping them from fidgeting, telling them not to breathe in a nice way, and withholding a gag reflex when you need to wipe sticky matter from around their mouths. It’s also very much about the parents. You need to perform rapidly, smile at all times, and ultimately provide them with a wonderful Kodak moment with their little darlings for their social networking sites.

Hey, I’m a parent, owner of snot-streaked ice-cream-caked nose-minors so I understand.

Last weekend, I was volunteering at a ‘Family Fun Day’ (an oxymoron surely?) in aid of Cancer research. It was a beautiful day and the crowds were out in their masses. The queue for the face-painting stand was a half-hour deep. I had been smearing gunk on kid’s faces for two hours, and my back was beginning to hurt.

Next in line was a four-year-old boy. His mother was pushing him around in a buggy and reasonably (and judgmentally enough on my behalf) was quite chubby as a result. His hair was bright orange, and clashed weirdly with his skin tone which had turned an alarming shade of red upon being told that his hand-held console was to be momentarily pocketed.

“NOOOOO, MAAAAAAAA! NOOOOOOO!” he had the sort of voice that would remind you of a wooden chair being scraped across a carpet of birthing dolphins.

Then he noticed ME.

“He wants Batman” she said.

I regarded the kid dubiously. The kid regarded me with a look of pure horror. The brush I held in my hand might as well have been a large bore hypodermic needle. He screamed with pure unadulterated terror, snot and tears streaming down his face mixing unpleasantly with the undefined food stains on his chin.

“I’m not sure he does?” I offered tentatively.

“He does yeah, he’s been whining for face-painting for the whole day, we haven’t been queuing for this long for nothing! Just do it QUICK. BATMAN he wants.” she was becoming unhinged at this stage.

I smiled at the kid through gritted teeth, and told him what an amazing and brave Batman he would make, too. He continued to roar with a grimace nobody could possibly describe in the written word.


Armed with a face-wipe, I began to clear the slimy crud off his face and as I did, a vicious looking rash appeared from behind the mess. Impetigo/Coxsackie/Measles/Thrush… I thanked the patron saint of face-painting for the fact that Batman make-up is mainly north of the noseline and need not go anywhere near this mass of pimpled sores. The kid continued to squirm and scream as I prepared my yellow and black paint.

As the brush neared his forehead, the child’s screams increased with proximity. Time seemed to slow exponentially. A smear of paint finally made it to the spot right between his eyes, Batman’s right ear was an eventual success.

The pain, however, of having a soft-bristled brush applied to that beautiful spot, that point between your eyes, your third-eye if you will… was far too much for him. His eyes widened to the size of teacups and a fresh pint of drool erupted from his mouth as his terror escaped. I loved that kid right there and then, but I don’t know why. He leaped from his chair and tried to run away. His mother caught him firmly by the arm and dealt him two fierce smacks to his shoulder and back.

“SIT DOWN AND SHURRUP!” she yelled.



What a nice childhood memory.

“I’m sorry” I said. “I can’t do this, he doesn’t want his face painted by the looks of things.”


Other people in the queue shuffled, and glanced at each other knowingly.

She clamped the screaming head firmly between her hands and shouted: “DO IT!!” as though I was to pull a septic tooth, not decorate her darling’s face for the benefit of her Internet friends.

“no” I said meekly, and smiled. “Come back later maybe, when he’s more settled.”

“Tsk. Fafussakemuvafrkesferkenjustisfuk…” her cursed mumbles disappeared into the kid’s fiery hair as she turfed him back in the buggy and buggered off.

From that moment onwards, all money that went into the donations bucket beside me at the face-painting booth was made out of paper, not coin, so I’m pretty sure that cancer research benefited from at LEAST a hundred Euros as a result of this family’s dysfunction.

It’s funny how some things work out.

Mar 28

A rose by any other name

Posted on Friday, March 28, 2014 in Arty Farty, Family, Little known facts, Strange and Unusual

The following is a very long and spurious story. I would advise that you drop acid before reading it.

I’ve just returned from an effort to renew my driving license. I think I broke a member of their staff. I offered her acid of course, but she declined and declared that she had to have a lie-down instead.

See, it all began when Laughingboy was born. Because he was born out of wedlock, we decided to give him our future married name in order to avoid having to adopt him again at a later stage (stupid Irish laws etc.)

But, unlike normal people who would assign a married name as the husband’s, my own husband wasn’t really happy with his name as it seems to be jinxed: the majority of marriages on his side of the family wound up divorced. So! We adopted the IRISH version of his name when we eventually tied the knot.

But, we were very young at the time so of course we spelled it wrong and thus our family was given a brand new name, that which apparently doesn’t exist, or at least hasn’t existed in thousands of years. Still legit though, somewhat spuriously.

Trouble is, when you translate Irish surnames into Irish, there be politicks:

Master and Mr are easy… they’re both named Ó.

Females are somewhat more complicated though.

Unmarried ladies are known as ‘daughter of‘ which is ‘Ní’.

Married ladies are known as ‘wife of‘ which is ‘Beann Uí’.

Not being a fan of politicks, I shopped and changed between all three over time between different entities until eventually everything became confused and now everyone in my family has a different name, indeed, I myself have at least four names. I also have my facebook alias name which has also creeped into real life on various occasions so that makes five names for me.

Bonus! This means I can get away with crimes left right and centre, but I choose not to. Does this not count for anything?!?

So, when I went to apply for my new drivers license today, I provided them with all the proper documentation and they got very confused because they didn’t understand Irish. I might point out here that shamefully, all staff were as Irish as a packet of Tayto but their heads still exploded.

“Jaysus but this is all very Irish” yer man behind the counter ironically exclaimed… this statement has various meanings in this country.

So, I reverted to my maiden name and distracted them with magic tricks.

I’m expecting a very strongly worded letter from somebody in the future. I wonder what name they will use.

In the meantime, there is this:


Jan 18


Posted on Saturday, January 18, 2014 in Arty Farty, Jobs


So I’ve made up about 50 or so wedding invitations for friends of ours… it took me about five hours, including printing, writing of invitations and addressing of envelopes. I reckon supplies cost about €30. I’d charge maybe a tenner per hour.

So, if someone had 100 invites to send, it would cost them on average €120 and four days by my production ability. Is that competitive?

I’m wondering if I shouldn’t offer this service up somehow? I need money, I have a calligraphy skill, I’m willing to give it up for cheap.

How would one market something like this?

Feb 1

The Loser

Posted on Friday, February 1, 2013 in Arty Farty, Philosophy, Rantings, Something to think about

Well sure, now and isn’t it a while since we played a game?

– I don’t like your games, I always end up being laughed at.

Well isn’t that the point, to have a laugh?

– Not if I feel bad about it, no.

But if there isn’t a loser, there can’t be a winner, can there?

– I agree, but what does losing mean if it’s all the time?

It means you haven’t found the game you’re good at yet.

– Find me a game that I’m good at and I’ll play with you so.

Sure I don’t know what you’re good at, will we just play cards?

– I don’t know how.

I’ll teach you! You’ve a face like a tomato, you need something fun.

– I don’t want to be taught, I just want an easy life.

Sure if you can’t be taught then how will you learn?

– Eventually.

How’s about we get a grip?

– That’s easy for you to say. You’re not me!

Yes I am.

– Fair point.

So what will we play?

– I don’t want to play anything, I just want to watch TV.

Let’s play ‘what happens if you only have a week left to live!’ What would you do?

– Sleep.

That isn’t true. I bet you’d get a degree in Metaphysics or something.

– You have a lot of faith in me!

That’s because I am you.

– Is that what you’d like to do?

Not really. I’d go out and go crazy.

– That’s kind of pointless though.

So is sleeping.


So what will we do?

– Write a blog post?

What about?

– nothing.

What’s the point in that?

– I dunno.

So let’s play a game!

– Let’s play ‘leave me alone’? I have things to tidy.

You’ll go crazy if you don’t play.

– I think it’s too late for that.

So you think you’re already crazy?

– Maybe.

But if you were crazy then you wouldn’t realise it so therefore you’re not crazy.

– Shut up and leave me alone.


– I hate you.

I’m your inner child, you have to listen to me or I’ll broken your face.

– Fair point. What are we playing?

Let’s play ‘Hide and Seek’. I’ll go hide and you have to find me.

– That might take a while.

I have all the time in the world. You love me though, I know you’ll find me.

– Eventually.

I hope so.

– Me too.

Nov 17


Posted on Saturday, November 17, 2012 in Arty Farty, Rantings, Strange and Unusual

Not a fear of sneezing, apparently.

Nope, it’s the feeling I get when I sit down at a computer. Whether it’s reading emails or writing on blogs or reading others, or just mucking about on Facebook… it’s the nervous feeling that I’ll say something stupid. It’s best to stay away, maybe.

So I do.

And then a charity thing  or a training day comes along, or yoga practice, or a dentist appointment…

(no, scrap the dentist appointment, there’s not much fear of failing there, just a fear of sharp shiny things)

…and I find that as nervous as I am about confronting these appointments, the positive benefits afterwards always outweigh the nerves. It’s a proportional thing, I’m almost sure there’s a scientific equation out there somewhere to describe it.

Sarolta Bán

(image by Sarolta Bán)

Except that that doesn’t really apply to this blog. Whenever I write something here I always feel cringy the next day. And yet I can’t let it go.

Which brings me to my new fear of Call of Duty II. It has infected our household and if I don’t gain appreciation for it FAST, there shall be complications. This is my evening of Getting Things Done. So there shall be blood spilled, and several young Americans shall be tea-bagged by this solemn Irish Housewife, it won’t be pretty but it has to be done.

Cheers to facing fears!

(if anyone even THINKS about robbing that for a cheesy car-bumper sticker I’ll be on you like an RCXD for royalties, ok?)


Oct 28

Weird rituals

The handy thing about being the overlord of the school library is the ability to make it my hovel. If there was a zombie apocalypse I think it’s the first place I’d go to hide out. I have a Lord of the Rings poster in there, not the new release one, but a graphic that was done for the book series a while back. I like to scatter odd poetry books and fact books about whales and motorbikes about the place. And cushions. Lots of cushions.

There’s a blackboard at the rear of the little library room, this year I’ve decided to chalk up an aul’ Word of the Week for the laugh. It’s difficult to decide what the week’s word should be though, it can’t be too long or too short, and must be relatively comprehensible to your average nine-year-old.

This week’s word is:



Meaning: Things to be deleted or destroyed.

To use the word in a sentence, ‘The spam comments on this blog are among my delenda today.’ It would make a lovely name for a cat, if you’re a fan of irony.

So far the past words of the week have been ‘Jagged’ and ‘Laconic’. Have you any ideas for good words? I run frequent blanks.

I leave you with a creation of Puppychild’s;


I made the skull out of scrunched-up newspaper sticky taped together, which Puppychild wallpapered over with kitchen paper and a PVA dilute mixture. When it was dry she painted it and skewered its brains with a coat-hanger and hung ripped-up plastic aprons onto it before performing her weird ritual which of course I asked nothing about.

Happy Halloween, pagans!!

Apr 12

Life continuum

Posted on Thursday, April 12, 2012 in Arty Farty, Family, Jobs, Little known facts, Music

Yet more apologies for being so anti-social. I don’t mean to neglect this writing lark, it’s just that two months goes by awful fast. As do six months, and twelve. I wouldn’t know where to start in my descripshuns to you of the minutiae of it all, so I have just brief highlights for you.

I organized a table quiz! We made about twelve hundred quid which brought us nicely up to the halfway mark of the final €10,000 we need to raise for the school. Sweet. It was an excellent night, a spurious friend of The Accidental Terrorist saved the day by acting as compere when the usual dude chucked a sickie at the last minute, so I’m hoping this redeems me from random committee scattyness to come.

Some of my questions were;

Olympus Mons is the largest volcano known to man. Where is it?

Which country has a birth rate of zero?

Who was the first Bond Girl?

How many Oscars has Alfred Hitchcock won?

What is the only Olympic sport that has a finish line that no competitor will ever cross?

How many grooves are on one side of an LP record?

Which Irish Saint is said to have discovered America a thousand years before Columbus?

Which is the non-contagious disease that is most common in the world?

What is Borborygmus?

What does the circle in the centre of the Celtic cross represent?

I made a dingbats round, a caricatures round and a lyrics round. The latter backfired on me totally.

Someone on the committee (a pox on her!) decided it would be good craic if I sang the lyrics, so sing them I did. As embarrassing as it was, it was amazing how easy it is to spark a song in collective people. There was Whiskey in the Jar, Frank Sinatra, and Parklife (John’s got brewer’s droop, he gets intimidated by the dirty pigeons) and this one bloke even lept into the air when I sang  ‘Her name was Magil and she called herself Lil… But everyone knew her as Nancy‘ and carried on with ‘Daniel was hot, he drew the first shot, and Rocky collapsed in the corner-errrrrr!‘ ‘Twas awful funny. I should have given him the mike in hindsight, dammit. His name was Dan. Figures!

Apart from that, there are Nazi Zombies (as usual), various knitting projects, yoga(!), disciplinarianism with terrible two year old, cupcake practice for communionisms, and many many sleepless nights.

There have been the throwing away of old things:

Cons, Painted kid's runners

And restoration of old things.



I wonder is there money to be made in photo restoration? I need a job. Still. Ugh.

I hope you’re all suckin’ diesel out there?



PS.  Here are the answers (not necessarily in order, heheh): Mars, Vatican City, Ursula Andress, None, Swimming, 1, Saint Brendan, Tooth Decay, The sound of a rumbling stomach, The Sun.

Jul 22

Why you need to sleep with a teddybear

Posted on Friday, July 22, 2011 in Arty Farty, Quickie, Strange and Unusual


Created by deviant artist Begemott.

Jun 25

Dub Boy Angst

Posted on Saturday, June 25, 2011 in Arty Farty, Family, Music, Quickie

Laughingboy invented a new music genre today, I call it Dub Angst:


Isn’t it lovely? If I play it back to him during a shouting spell he calms right down instantly, but only for the duration of the track. I may have to record an album and turn him into a gazillionnaire.

I created the file using the ‘LaDiDa’ app(lication) for the iPhone. Sorry. I’m aware that last sentence made me sound like a tosser, but technology does have its perks.


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