Here Pussy, Pussy

By the time you have read this sentence containing the word ‘cats’, you’ll have reminded yourself how you feel about felines. Love them or hate them, felines have a way of provoking very interesting opinions. Oh, this isn’t a post about how great my cats are, it’s a post about being a cat owner and the reactions I get when this fact is revealed. And mainly how men react to this. Oh it can all kinds of useful to be a cat owner!

There’s this one guy, he’s a friend of a friend and so his unwanted advances are a little awkward. I don’t fancy him in the slightest but I know he’s always going to turn up in the pub when I’m meeting a certain crowd. He buys me drinks without asking, won’t let me buy him one back (the old ‘ownership’ thing which I hate) and it drives me berserk when people assume we’re together. A little time ago he very seriously sat me down, ran his fingers through my hair, looked me in the eyes and sighed, ‘Glitter, you know I really like you, really like you but there’s just one thing.. I just can’t be in a relationship with someone who owns cats. I’m sorry but I hate cats! If there was any other way.. but I just hate cats’. It took all my strength not to punch the air with delight! I paused, tilted my head, looked at him and kind of shrugged my shoulders.. ‘Well, I do own cats and I’ll always want to own cats. That’s just the way it’ll have to be then’ – RESULT!!! Mwahahaha…

I was seeing someone a while ago that lived way out of the city centre. I live in the city centre and while I’m prepared for someone else to pay a cab fare back to their place, I’m not prepared to do a walk of shame the next day that involves a bus journey. Public transport in this case, was easily avoided – ‘I know your place is great and it’s so much bigger than mine but I live just around the corner and I can’t leave the cats all night. They’ll need their supper!’ This was normally met with a ‘Bleeping cats’ muttered under his breath as I waltzed out of the pub. Another result! In fact, this is a line I’ve often used. Why risk going to a place owned by a single guy when you’ve no idea when a half empty tube of Athlete’s Foot cream will appear beside you or how many plates in the cupboard were licked clean and returned, how frightening it’d be to see a crusty nose hair trimmer propped up against the taps in the bathroom or a huge block of mouldy cheese in the fridge complete with teeth marks.

And then there’s the very handy, ‘Look! I have to go home and feed them, how would you like it if you simply had to go hungry?!’ This is often met with an ‘Ok, ok, s’pose..’ If at that point I don’t get a belini or a large bourbon for the road it’s easily prompted with the follow up, ‘They’re little rescue cats, you do remember that don’t you? They had a very hard start in life and probably wouldn’t be alive if someone hadn’t given them a home’ … and I’m back in the game!

Recently my newish boss was trying to suss me out. I simply answered the ‘kids’ question with a polite but firm ‘No’. I had previously mentioned I had cats and after asking their names this prompted the very typical male response of ‘Oh I prefer dogs. Dogs are way better. Cats are.. cats are well.. I don’t like cats’. I relayed to him that while I too very much like dogs, the automatic response from a lot of guys is that it’s great when a dog bounds up to you, all tail wagging and tongue lolling, would you really want something that throws itself at you at every opportunity? Is there not something interesting and clever about how cats will observe from a distance and then make a judgement. If a cat shows you any interest you’ll probably want to know what else is going on in that mind. You might even want to see the cat again just to see if it’ll react in the same way or if it’ll do something different, give away a little bit more. The only way you might see the cat again is if you make an effort to see the cat, if you try to impress the cat to gain some trust. You’ll go back to the cat because over time you learn that it’s worth taking some time to find out about this fantastic creature. My boss was laughing as he said ‘I don’t think you’re talking about cats and dogs anymore’ and he shook his head, sighed, asked if anyone wanted a cup of coffee and realised he’d learned a valuable lesson.

I’m also very aware of the ‘single female with cats’ tag 🙄 . Recently I was told, albeit with a few pauses ‘Not to become one of those, y’know, one of those women with cats’. A bit late I thought as I walked away and made a mental note that this guy probably wasn’t the most articulate and that I could probably practice my acerbic lines on him without too much come back.

So what it comes down to is that I’m a cat owner. It’s that simple. Accept it or don’t, it won’t change a thing. I’d rather be me, with my feline flatmates than the girl who’s cheating boyfriend treats her like a doormat or the bitch that everyone hates or the boring girl in the office whose life revolves around her husband and kids or the girl who will settle for anyone because she’s too scared to be on her own.

Don’t Linger by the Lingerie

The mere word makes me shudder – ‘Lllliinnggeerrrrie’, ugh. Any man that thinks it might be a good idea to buy me some in the future had better be prepared for a bit of disappointment. The hearts & flowers, oh so alluring picture painted by many a fashion designer, hotel, restaurant, chocolate maker and match maker is, a load of complete rubbish.

The first time a man bought me lingerie I was 17, he was 18, mature for his age and a guy with expensive tastes. And clearly someone who was prepared to betray his studenty, goth, beer swilling roots. I arrived home from University for Christmas, the unopened present tucked under my arm as I was met at the train station by my parents and sister. After much berating I had no choice but to open the carefully wrapped, bow on top elephant in the room, well large box taking up half of the back seat of the car, truth be told.

I slid the lid off the box and was mesmerised when all I could see inside was cream silk and there wasn’t much of it. As I took the Camisole top out of the box by its two tiny, delicate straps my sister bellowed to ‘Look, oh my God! There’s knickers as well!’, my mother’s face was one of pure horror and when my father turned to see what was going on he nearly crashed the car. My mother took me aside later on to that while the present was very beautiful, she wondered how my boyfriend knew where to buy such eh, items. She also said that my father had never bought her ‘anything like that’ and he wouldn’t have a clue how to go about it. You read that I was 17, right? Absolute mortification.

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Konj Wha?

Konjac. Konjac sponge. No silly, not as in Victoria or Cream, as in to sponge to clean your skin with! I will admit that this was a new one on me but readers, I’m loving my Konjac Sponge! I was surprised with this as a present recently and immediately the beauty buff [geddit?] in me wanted to know what it was, what it did, how did it do it and why didn’t I know about this little piece of fabulousness before!

This sponge is made from vegetable root and is an entirely natural product, mine has the added benefit of French red clay – which is particularly good for tired or dehydrated skin. So what does it do? It’s slightly alkaline so it counters any acid on your skin [such as general grime or oil], removing it and restoring a neutral pH which can be very soothing on sensitive or skin prone to breakouts. It also works to exfoliate the skin and this is always good – getting rid of old, dead cells leaving a fresh feel and encouraging skin renewal. Once you run the sponge under warm water to rehydrate it, all you do is use a gentle circular motion to lightly massage your face, when finished just set it down, mine is hanging from the shower head via the very handy string attached.

It’s hard to describe how the sponge feels, but it’s so soft on damp skin it’s almost as though you can just feel all the yucky stuff been swept clean away! It’s definately hydrating and in an instant skin will feel ‘zingy’ as a lovely protective film is laid down. You can use the sponge simply with water or an additional cleanser [but you’ll need far less cleaner than you’d normally use] and non foaming cleansers are recommended. I for one am delighted with my little piece of Japan that won’t even cost you a tenner, me likey a lot!

Get your Konjac sponge here from the fantastic IRISH beauty store,

That’s My Own Business

So Scarlett Johanssen doesn’t like the fact that naked pictures of her have been leaked onto the internet. She’s even done an American TV interview to say so. She feels that everyone is entitled to their privacy and that includes her. As an A List actress and face [& body?] of many an advertising campaign, you could argue that she is where she is today because of her acting ability to a certain extent but just how many of her millions are down to how she looks?

It’s the classic ‘Look at me, look at me! Don’t look at me, don’t even think about it, where’s my lawyer?’ type of behaviour we’re bombarded with from many a person whose front of camera role is a blurred line between the glitter of an Oscar nominated professional part and a sneaky fag or stolen kiss while on a trip to the supermarket. As an actor, TV presenter, musician etc how do you go about the business of show while maximising your likeability i.e. continuing your popularity and not showing yourself up in embarrassing situations such as puking in the street after a big session or getting caught in a menage a trois with strangers? I think I’d start off by not having naked pictures of myself on my iphone.

There are plenty of celebrities that have never been caught up in  sex scandal, a tale of theft or a misplaced misdemeanor because they play the game correctly and understand the rules. They get the fact that the more exposure you have in your professional life, the more you have to be careful of your private life. This isn’t is any way to say that they don’t have a life, it’s just that they don’t accidentally star in a grainy home made bit of porn or go to the club de jour and drunkenly grab a microphone and a bit of boob. A beach exposure for such celebs is a paddle through the edge of the tide with their kids or date night at their favourite Italian is done with their partner beside them. I have no sympathy for ScarJo, none! If she wants a naked pic of herself to present to a lover she has Mario Testino on speed dial to set it up. If she wants to spice up a long distance relationship, hello Skype! If she wants to get up to all sorts, she has several houses to entertain in and surely she’s learnt by now that a ride in a hotel lift doesn’t have to include Benicio del Toro.

There will always be the ‘Gee, I just didn’t know there was a camera’ type people such as Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian who profit hugely from the fact that little more is expected from them and I abhor such females for letting the side down but when you’re caught out, just call a spade a spade or wait and let the fuss die down, as it will very, very quickly. Getting your PR to arrange a TV interview, shedding a few crocodile tears and banging your expensively manicured hand on a table in defiance at an abominable intrusion when you should’ve known better is not the way to gain more fans.

I did chuckle recently when I read that Hugh ‘Dr House’ Laurie said that most of his underpants are probably stolen from friends bedrooms as no one wants to see him buying  smalls in his local M&S. And he’s right. As one of the best paid actors on TV, I certainly don’t want the image of him holding up a pair of tighty whiteys and comparing them to stripey boxers when all I’m doing is trying to get to the wine section. It brings a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘drop your trousers and bend over’!

So ScarJo, get over yourself, love. You’ve done partial nudity for millions of dollars and are happy for the film to be seen by everyone. You took two pictures of yourself in bed and in your bathroom which are again, partial nudes and you didn’t like that they were leaked. Is it because it’s obvious in both that you took the photos yourself, meaning that you’re now a narcissistic, dirty little girl as opposed to just a sexed up actress? Either way, crying wolf is never the answer.

See the portraits for yourself here

Casting the First Stone

The first time I heard her speak she shouted in my direction and much to my disgust, at me. She was gone in a second and I’d barely blinked. The second time I heard her speak she was blatently trying to chat up a guy I’d my eye on, I got my shoulder bumped as she whirled past. I’d observed her a few times, flirting with any guy in sight and she wasn’t taking any prisoners. Then there was the time when a group of us were parting at the end of the night and she shouted at one of the guys asking if was he ‘going to ride the blonde wan’, pointing at me. My clenched teeth and fists and sense of decorum stopped me from reacting.

She popped up at parties, she walked into pubs with people I knew. I’d heard her routine on numerous occasions by now. Always the same, loud, brash, tottering on her heels as she fell into another guy. I couldn’t work out if this was the real her or just the one she wants people to see, there had to be something else to her. Then there was a cliched conversation in the Ladies – she confessed that some guy was ‘freaking her out’ and wouldn’t leave her alone, admired my eyeshadow and asked me if I’d spotted ‘anyone nice’ in the pub. We bonded over Duran Duran on the dancefloor and she became more intriguing but my guard was still very much up.

Then came the night that it was literally me, her, a guy that left early and her friend who was being chatted up.. so that left eh, only me and her really.

‘Did he just take your number? OMG, he’s very cute! I was only gone a minute! That was the second guy tonight!’ I was trying to work out what she was getting at because popular as I was, she had been chatting to what seemed like every guy  in the room at some point. Then she stopped and said she wished she could just calm down in front of guys, not scare them by literally exploding into the conversation, taking it over and leaving them in no doubt whom she wanted to be the star attraction, give them a chance to speak. She just stopped, stared at me and said how she’d love to be like me, the way I can ‘just stand in a pub and guys come over to me’,  that I seemed perfectly happy to just be me, that she knew she made a tit of herself but was just a bit all over the place.

Now, this got me thinking. Was she really that clever that it was all a game? Was she lulling me into a sense of false security, hoping as she’d done to others, that it wouldn’t be long before she nailed the last stiletto into the coffin of my confidence, so to speak. Is this how she was with any new person, that she went into full defence mode, made a show of them and wanted them to slink away in a cloud of self doubt? Or was there a hint, just a hint that she might be a real person with real feelings and just needed to take a bit of a look at herself, admit that being the all singing, all dancing life and soul of the party was keeping everyone at her preferred distance in case they got too close. Everyone has barriers after all.

I did wonder if there had been a breakthrough, between me and her I mean. Did she now feel less threatened by me and realise that perhaps we could have a bit of a laugh? I wasn’t fully convinced on this one but, in my quest to give everyone a chance, I put it on the back burner for definite consideration. A few weeks later we both laughed as we recalled a previous night out, she in no uncertain terms told me what she’d like to do to an unsuspecting guy within sight and she pushed a guy off the couch so I could sit down. Cue more laughter and another drink. And cue a definite thaw. The fact that we both needed to buy our own bodyweight in crisps for the taxi journey home made me realise we might have even more in common.

A Game of Rules

There are rules and regulations everywhere but personally, I’m not one to abide by them. In the world of dating, there are Rules Girls and guys who play The Game. Charlotte Yorke of ‘Sex and the City’ and Kate Middleton are classic Rules Girls – they played the boys at their own game, persistently stood their ground and trampled over any other pretender to the crown in order to get their man.

Among ‘The Rules’, which should never, ever be broken are mantras such as; not calling the guy, ever, let him call you and always ending the date or phone call to leave him wanting more. You shouldn’t offer to go dutch on a date, allowing the man treat you as a non money carrying princess nor should you ever see him more than twice in one week. A classic is not accepting a date for Saturday night after Wednesday because your weekend is always full, Dahling. The probably most quoted rule is not to sleep with the guy before you’ve had three dates because by then you’ll have charmed your way into more than his bed, presumably and led him to think that you’re worth it. A Rules Girl shouldn’t live with a man either as, the number one rule is to ‘be a creature, unlike any other’ – at this point I’m guessing that guys know girls shave their legs, occasionally lick the lids of ice cream tubs and sometimes leave knickers on the bedroom floor for a day or two but some people will insist on a facade.

The Game that guys ‘should’ play – insert name of practically any strong male lead in any movie – essentially revolves around, well, them. It’s all about the swagger, the nonchalance and a total air of ‘look at me’ – are you surprised? Guys should only play the game with women they are prepared to fail with, so that it’s no biggie if she doesn’t fall into your arms. Extreme confidence at all times is the watchword and if the girl in question seems interested, that’s the exact time to ignore her – but there should still be a bit of showing off near her, just so she can see what she’s missing, like. Ultimately if a guy is interested he should alternate this with complete disinterest, just to keep her on her toes.

Oh, I’m exhausted reading through that! What an effort, what a palava! Surely 99% of that goes out the window when you’ve had a few drinks and lets not even get into the destructive power of the drunken text late at night! I don’t want someone who refers to a book when they want to ask me out. I don’t want someone to stop in the middle of a funny story, get up and walk across the room to say hello to someone else and then ignore me for the rest of the night. I want someone who’ll want to make me laugh, someone who can see that sometimes I want to watch a movie that I love for the fifth time, someone who’ll be prepared to dance with me to my favourite song even if it’s 5am and I want someone who’ll simply ask ‘how was your day?’

I’m not prepared to become someone else so why would I want someone who can’t be true to themselves? And believe me, your average girl can smell the bullshit a mile away, you’ll instantly become ‘one of those guys’ and spend eternity in the asshole category. I’m not someone who tolerates fools and really, you’re a fool to play by these rules. Full stop. Do your own thing and have a ball doing it!

Angry Little Man

This is a tale reminding everyone that just because you want it, that doesn’t meant you should have it. The angry little man in question is someone I liked, note the past tense. Oh not in that way, silly. I liked him because he’s very funny, laugh out loud funny and is the type of person that can catapault a conversation from dull to dramatic in one foul swoop.

I spoke to him loads of times and we very much got on but in no way did I fancy him, not my type at all! And then there were one or two occasions whereby he said something with a bit of a cock of his head, a pause and definite raising of his eyebrows. Then there was the flattery, from him, not me. I took the compliments with a wry smile to aleviate a potentially awkward situation. I didn’t return them, I didn’t like him in that way. Not at all. Then the compliments weren’t just in passing, they were kind of embarrassing, to be honest.

Then one night a few of us ended up in his house. We’d all had a few drinks but we just put on music and were chatting, no one was drunk. I decided to rest my eyelids while on the couch, drifting in and out of the conversation. At stupid o’clock it was suggested that I just lie down on the bed and I did just that, I was wrecked and in no mood to move. When the last person left this guy decided that he’d get into bed beside me and I was having none of it! I was lying fully clothed w half a duvet over me and there he was, just in his jocks, hands all over the place! I was fully awake by now and instead of causing a scene I just politely declined his advances. I knew I was going to see this guy again so I really didn’t want any awkwardness. We chatted for a few minutes as I put on my shoes. Then he lashed out at me when he realised I really was leaving, ‘Well! I thought the least I’d get was a ride after waiting this long!’

Yes, he did say that. I was disgusted and his face got uglier and uglier as he snarled at me to ‘leave so’. He practically pushed me out the door, as though I’d done something wrong. I walked home and I was just flabbergasted at his arrogance! I couldn’t get it out of my head!  The next time I saw him, I said hello as I had been chatting to friends of his when he arrived in the pub. I was polite, no one would’ve thought anything of it, I certainly wasn’t give him the satisfaction of thinking that I couldn’t rise above his testosterone filled anger. I think he was surprised and I didn’t wait for a reply and left him open mouthed as I continued my conversation and I left a few minutes later to talk to someone else. The next time I saw him was similar, I was polite but non commital about a conversation. Then when I moved to another pub with friends, he walked in a while later. He knew all of the others and he sat down but we didn’t talk. Then, I don’t know what he had been talking about but from across the table there was a raised voice. He turned to me and then back to the group before venonomously glaring in my direction again shouting ‘.. well we SLEPT TOGETHER so I don’t know if you’re allowed comment right now! Well, you TALKED THROUGH IT, typical… !

I was so disgusted by now I merely raised my glass to my mouth and there was a bitter taste in my own mouth as I sat, motionless. I took a deep breath and looked into the distance. I wasn’t going to bring even more attention to this outburst by reacting or acknowledging what had just been said. I have no idea what the others in the group thought or if they actually believed what they’d just heard. Conversation started up again, I finished my drink, quickly, and left. The angry little man has no idea who he’s dealing with. But he should know not to cross me.