Friday, 9 January 2015

Is there an Over-Packers Anonymous?

 I am the world's worst packer. I'm a whiz at folding and a genius at stuffing undies in shoes, I'm even slightly more than handy at rolling things so they don't get crumpled. What I'm truly crap at is actually deciding what to take. Girl child and I have come to town for two nights... We're here for a total of 46 hours and I swear on my favourite patent pumps  that I have just released no fewer than nine outer garments from my bag. And four pairs of shoes. 

In a pathetic attempt at some kind of defence, this IS Melbourne. Yesterday it was 30 degrees Celcius and today is heading for a top of just 17... with rain. And we ARE here to attend a couple of very different functions. 

Nope... Not even convincing myself here, am I ?  The truth is, I'm a chronic over-packer. 

Actually making the decision about what to include in the final cut for any overnight bag/ backpack/ suitcase/ carry-on... to be totally honest, even a goddamn picnic basket ... brings out the hyperventilating banshee in me. It was especially dangerous to be nearby when the kids were little and there were about fifty zillion extra what-ifs to be advance-planned and catered for. Stand too close to me and you could get totally sucked into a veritable vortex of wringing hands and mind-changing. 

I love those packing cell thingies. They allow me to neatly locate and organise all the extraneous in-case stuff I bring along. And they make it easier to cram more into a smaller space. Genius. 

Every time we go away, I go through the motions of the put-everything-out-and-then-take-away-half routine. Right before I start sneaking it all back in. 

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

What about 2015?

I don’t really need an excuse to sit in front of an old movie — or a new one for that matter. By simultaneously indulging in a little arts and craft of some kind, I dupe myself into believing I’m actually doing something productive while I while away a few hours of any day—I can be so gullible when it comes to enjoying sedentary pursuits. One of my genie wishes would surely be that multitasking in front of the TV was number one on the list of 10 Ways for to Burn Calories without Even Trying. 

On especially hideously hot scorchers, and 2015 began with a couple of days like that, movie-watching becomes a given. Naturally enough, knitting is off the accompanying activity list, so too is ironing. Blissfully and utterly off the list. And guilt-free too —which is a total bonus because even the most miserably lame of excuses is a good reason for me not ironing… even on a cold day.  But when it’s stinking hot outside, sometimes I don’t feel the need to even pretend to be productive. Just breathing is enough heat-generating activity. 

So as an integral part of Day 1 of 2015, I plonked myself down with an icy Coke–Zero  …Yes, I know, it has absolutely no nutritional value but it has no calories either, and I reckon it tastes better than water. And hey, it wasn’t a glass of wine so cut me some slack already. And yes, I know “they say” that the artificial bumph in diet drinks can hasten the onset of dementia, but I already have a post-menopausal-black-hole where my memory used to be so I wish “they” would all just shut-up and let me enjoy my chemical cola drink. 

Plonked beside me and my memory-sucking calorie-free beverage was Miss 14. Educating my children in the classics is something I have always taken very seriously. I’m immensely proud to say that last year when we visited Madame Tussaud’s in London, it wasn’t Angelina that Girlchild wanted to be photographed with, it was Audrey. 

We’d already recently re-watched many of the greats that our movie channels were offering: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, School of Rock, Pretty in Pink, An Officer and a Gentleman, Roman Holiday… so I opted for the timeless joy that is the Frank Oz masterpiece What about Bob?  
 Absolutely perfect New Year’s Day fodder. In fact, SO perfect that as of 1 January 2015 I have declared that What about Bob? is to New Year's Day what Love Actually is to Christmas. And here's why.

1: When it comes to making New Year Resolutions, Bob Wiley and his new bestie  Dr Leo Marvin have the very best of advice to offer: Bob begins with his regular mantra, "I feel good, I feel great, I feel wonderful...".
Then, with help, learns that almost anything is achievable if you break it down into Baby Steps. 

No nebulous namby-pamby goals or fantastic wannabe wishes are going to come to fruition. Huge resolutions lead to mega-fails. There are too many other uncontrollable factors and loonies out there. So as far as New Year Resolutions go, for me it's baby steps all the way. 


2: Bob and Siggy remind me to have the courage to try new things and take some calculated risks...



Especially with the support of friends.

3: In 2015 and every year hereafter, I'm going to employ Bob's approach to social anxiety:  “You know, I treat people, as if they were telephones. If I meet somebody I think doesn't like me, I say to myself, I say; 'Bob, this one is temporarily out of order.' You know, don't break the connection, just hang up and try again!”

4: I don't care what day it is, this scene always makes me laugh and to my absolute delight, it was Miss 14's favourite too and thus will henceforth remain a part of our 
stock repartee:

5: Anyone and everyone who lives in a holiday town over the summer season can totally relate to Bob's t-shirt. 

(Note to self: have a few thousand printed to sell during November.)

So from Bob and me, here's to a hassle free 2015...