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Sep 10

It’s been a while…

Posted on Saturday, September 10, 2016 in Family, Quickie

…since my last confession.

I worked at a boxing match this evening and should probably be flaking on the couch watching television but it suddenly struck me that I should be talking to you instead.

I have thoughts about motherhood, the competitive nature that lies within. The jogging pants, the networking updates declaring achievements of marathon runs, of mummy college graduations and I must admit to feeling a bit inadequate, but that’s my problem, not theirs.

The school car park is where all of this happens. I used to stand amongst the other mummies waiting for our little snot-nosed characters to be released from the guard of their relentless underpaid teachers and we used to make small talk in the meantime. It was nice small talk, but it was superficial which was nice then, but now it’s more cackle than I can handle in my already overcrowded mind and besides, mummy groups are the straightest route into getting roped into things.

Now I sit in my car and pretend to listen to voice mails on my phone while doodling on the back of old diesel receipts, pretending to look busy. I play Candy Crush sometimes while trying very hard to maintain a serious expression. It’s quite sad, but it’s understandable.

Sometimes I do venture out, and hover outside the mummy groups. I laugh awkwardly and venture into their various circles but I don’t belong. I resort to retorts about the weather, I compliment their babes in arms, they compliment mine. Then we all go home.

I wonder sometimes if other mothers feel like me, if they have a boundary, if they’re lonely in spite of loud obvious laughter, in spite of the jogging clothes. Maybe we’re all the same, underneath.


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

Feb 24

I hate to interrupt you but…

Posted on Monday, February 24, 2014 in Jobs, Philosophy, Something to think about, Strange and Unusual

… there has been an accident outside.

Imagine you are at a volunteer first aid meeting (if you’re into that sort of thing) where you are expected to sit and be relatively comfortable in your mindset, you are wearing your best jumper and jeans or maybe your pretty heels because you never know who may be looking at you and judging you. You might even be wearing a suit. You are expecting education on a formal basis.

It is a commonplace meeting and you may well want to be somewhere else but you are there because you are there, you are bored or needing an outlet, but you are a volunteer nonetheless.


a person known to you, a contemporary if you will: runs in and announces that a horrible car crash has happened outside. You are dubious but somewhat alarmed.

I’d like that. I’d like to disturb people out of their zone of security and lead them out into a mayhem of contrived chaos. I’d like fake blood and ripped up pieces of paper to represent broken glass. I’d like to spill water on dry ground and let people wonder what this fluid is, and then flick a cigarette butt into it and cause an imagined explosion. I’d have a driver with a pretend brain haemorrhage who is the father of a child who has suffered minor injuries in the back of a crashed car (because he was wearing his seatbelt) who could give a full history of not just his father’s medical background, but that of his friend’s who is in the passenger seat and suffering an asthma attack brought on by stress.

Interesting, maybidge?

I and a fellow meeting volunteer have contrived sick plans in our sick minds because we want our stagnant meetings to have a bit of flavour, and to introduce an opportunity for otherwise bored people to go out and heal sick people on a whim. I and he would rather this be kept a secret, to which you are privy.

What say you? What sick and accidental contrived situation would you imagine if you could? Nobody is watching. Everyone that reads this blog is unjudgemental so please unleash your best! But shhhhhhhh. Don’t tell anyone.

Think your worst. Think reality. Give us a scenario to practice our healing because we NEED it. We need to practice, they need to get their suits and high heels dirty. I would like to orchestrate the play from Hell, because that is life, that is what should be expected from us.

REALITY. Choking babies. Exploding supermarkets. Your favourite neighbour’s heart attack.

Reality is harsh, but plays are fun, and practice makes perfect.

No musicals though. Lyrics shall not be accepted.


Is it cruel that I make light of such a thing if we’re to be rescuers? Should a love of horror be disturbing?

I fear for the day I find a teddybear at the scene of a car crash where a child has been decapitated.

Help us to prepare. Life is cruel.

Curtain opens…

Feb 1

Riot Police

Posted on Saturday, February 1, 2014 in Family, Jobs

Movie nights at the school. I’d bowed out of this lark at the beginning of the year but something drew me back in.

I’m not a huge fan of crowds, I hate shopping. Crowds of children are more manageable though, at least when I bare my teeth and threaten to punch them, they get that I’m joking whereas most adults don’t.

One child ran into a heating vent and inflicted a pinpoint wound in his scalp which he boasted with no pain at all but still made sure everybody knew how major the lump was.

Another was hit at point-blank range with a soccer ball and accepted the purist sorrow from a complete stranger. I did not kiss it better, but my 3 year old son passed my sentiments along.

I got to watch ‘The Croods’ for free, and I will admit to stealing a bag of sweets and a teabag from the staff room, but the biggest theft was that which could have had my family home earlier,  maybe to let go of responsibilities and relinquish them to others might make them stronger but it was nice picking up popcorn with them and re-arranging desks and hearing how things could have been done better, or worse.

I got home to my fire, and my wine, and my Criminal Minds. Study tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that, then exams.

Then hopefully I will be an EMT.

Oct 5

Dead men don't pay rent

Posted on Friday, October 5, 2007 in Family, Strange and Unusual

One of the best parts of having a head cold is that constant stoned feeling, I find.  Every now and then I find myself displaced, like I’m frozen in a weird reality where the atmosphere is denser and objects don’t make sense, like the world has been superimposed on itself.  This is when the strange stuff happens, stuff that you write off as temporary insanity.  Like last night, for instance.  The following is nothing but the truth.

It was dark.  I had a clingy child who needed distraction.  I carried her downstairs through the unlit sittingroom, and into the unlit kitchen.  There’s a very large wendy-house in my kitchen which takes up most of the floor space, it’s there because our garden is a mudbath and a pretty unsanitary place for a child to play in, unless you’ve done the rounds with a pooper-scooper. 

I bent down, puppychild in arms to the door of this wendy house and opened it.

“What’s in there?” I whispered excitedly to her.

“A man” She said.  She stared at the far corner of the miniature house.  My blood suddenly changed it’s direction of flow.

“What man?  Who’s there?”  I asked.  Puppychild began to babble non-sensically, then suddenly clung to me for dear life and shouted ‘Mummy no!‘ repeatedly until I stood up. 

Somewhat bewildered, I flooded the kitchen with light, and put puppychild down.  She ran out of the kitchen immediately.


This mildly creepy event would ordinarily have been written off in my mind, if it wasn’t for my friend once telling me that my house stood on an exhumed burial ground.  She told me I could look it up in the Wicklow Courthouse if I didn’t believe her. 

I would love to see a ghost.  I’m convinced I would be able to stand tall and look it in it’s misty eyes and talk to it quite sensibly.  At least I was convinced.  When you get spooked suddenly like this though, it’s quite easy to slip into mild panic.  I kept glancing at the reflective window expecting to see a horrible disfigured head behind me.  I kept glancing at the wendy house, looking for shifts in reality or cloudy apparitions.  Of course I saw nothing.

It doesn’t end there, my pretties, oh no.

Laughing boy’s room is a makeshift adaptation… we divided the kitchen in half with a partition, and made the extra space into his bedroom.  There is a small window cut into the partition that looks into the kitchen, and a small shelf which I use to make up kiddo’s meds.  I was standing here at this shelf, with puppychild to my left, playing on the floor.  Laughing boy was giggling in his bed behind me.  This was only a few moments after my wendy-house shock, so I was nervously humming ‘La Bamba’ to regain focus.

I turned to my right to fetch a syringe, and I saw this:

Thank God I don’t have kitchen chairs

I want to stress that this room is increadibly small.  If puppychild had done this, she would have to have done it extremely quickly, and would have to have pushed past me to do so.  The thing was that she was still playing on the floor on the other side of the room.

I got a dose of the shakes that Shane McGowan would’ve been proud of, let me tell you.  I left the bottles as they were for a moment, putting logical explanations together like a jigsaw.  When nothing fitted, I decided to ignore the whole issue, and went to put the bottles away.

NOOO  mammy!” Puppychild yelled – “Um man diddit.  He’s help!”  I looked at laughing boy for support, but he was gazing at a spot over my shoulder with a blank face.

I’m a pretty sanguine girl you see.  I didn’t run away.  One word ran through my brain like an unstoppable train: Logic.

There are certain times in life when logic can’t be found, and you just have to accept the fact that there may be other forces at work,  which leads me to the acceptance that there may be a freeloading dead man sharing my house, and apparently he has something to say.

I suppose now it’s my job to investigate this.  I will start taking pictures of my empty kitchen.  I will place a full alphabet of magnetic letters on my fridge, and blank paper on the countertops, assuming this dude is literate enough to write something for me.  I will employ my dog to guard me, and note unusual behaviour. 

And, last of all, when I’m tucking my child into bed at night and if she whispers ‘I see dead people!’, I won’t doubt her for a second.

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