Category Archives: Birthday

2018, a bit of a drag?

So, as promised, the review of the year starts here. It will finish tomorrow, and then at the start of the new year, I’ll take a look at what 2019 might hold, some of it very likely, some of it unlikely, but might be fun if it does.

2018 actually saw something happen, that I’d never done in my 44 years of working life, I was told not to go to work! Yes, a combination of the fragility of my back, and some very cold, and icy weather saw me put on ‘winter weather leave’ for a few days. It made sense in so many ways in truth, but was still a bit of a novelty to me. But agreed, if I’d slipped over, landed on my back, and especially my spine, well you wouldnt want to think about the potential outcome, lets face it. Pretty sure its likely to happen early in 2019 too, especially given the deterioration in my wrist too, but we will have to wait and see on that. In truth, after about a week of that, I was getting a bit of ‘jail fever’ but it was a very wise move, so kudos to my employers for letting me do it.

While on about work, I started working on an LGBT committee at work, which was definitely a fun thing to do. Yes, was, more on that over next couple of posts.

Something else that happened early in the year was also work related. One of my colleagues got notice of volunteers needed for the Blackpool Film Festival in March, and the rest, as they say, is history! I wont claim it as strictly the revival of my acting career (its more a natural performance thing, no scripts), but it was a moment that led to the return of my time performing in public.

This year, it was a flying visit, arrived in Blackpool on the Friday afternoon, left again on the Saturday morning, due to fate, and a memorable date. Yes, the night of my flapper revival was my 60th Birthday! The works celebration was done a week earlier (would have been anyway), but the ‘house’ version was delayed until the Saturday night, which was why we needed to get back as we did.

Yes, a decade or so ago, that would have been it, retirement, which in truth, the body probably needs already. Now, officially it will be March 2024, though I have my doubts my body will hold out that long, but we will see? If it does, I might plan to retire (or take holiday) from work a couple of weeks early, because as things stand, the Iditarod race will start from Anchorage on 2nd March (restart at Willow on 3rd), and that would be an amazing thing to do, and a sort of dream come true. Nome as well? Well, maybe, but all that is a long way off. More on my preferred retirement option in part 2 tomorrow night.

May saw my return to Seattle for the first time in a few years. A few firsts there. Another state bagged, as I flew in via Las Vegas, so getting Nevada as my 24th state. Hopefully get 25 ‘somewhere’ next September, maybe? Ask Kate on that one, lol. She knows the one I’d love it to be, but its not renowned as the most friendly LGBT state in the US, so maybe not? There are a couple of New England options for that title too, so we will see.

The other big first on that trip, was my first Mariners game. It was memorable for more reasons than one, good, and bad. Good, they won. Bad, disability related issues. To be fair to the club, I complained, got a free ticket in the disabled area later in the week, and a few souvenirs as well, they handled it all very well.

Lastly, in the first half of the year, was a return to Blackpool, for World Pier Day. Again I have to thank a colleague for covering my Saturday shift to enable me to do this. Went back even further in time, as an Edwardian Lady, though I never got tightly corseted, cant have everything, lol. Amusingly, it was also Blackpool Pride day, and though I heard a lot of that, didnt get to see it at all. 2 trips already planned for Blackpool in New Year, but more on that on Tuesday, one of which you may not want to miss!

Well, the year certainly hasnt been a drag, but when this came up in my You Tube suggestions tonight, I couldnt resist this 1930 offering. And yes, a certain ‘fluffy haired’ blonde definitely looks like it could be Clara Johnson!

Advertisements

The lady danced?

The next few days might be a let down for readers, but a bonus for me. Why, you ask? Because apart from Sunday, if you’re lucky, one blog will cover both versions! Tonight, because of the event, and next week, because of the holiday. But for now…

113 years ago today, in a small part of Pottawatomie county, Oklahoma Territory (as it was then, only became a state in 1907), a baby girl was born, to, I assume, a Mr and Mrs Johnson. They seemingly named her Clara Elaine, and the rest, in terms of Hollywood Chorus girl duties, and the like, are history.

Maybe one day, I’ll do more of a dig on Ancestry.com, and discover what her parents names were, and if there were any more brothers and sisters, as well as her. The only tentative suggestion (apart from the lack of birth control back then) that there was more than 1 child, was one of her actual film credits, when there was also a Peter Johnson listed in the cast. Of course, that might simply be a name coincidence, though her 1930 Los Angeles census record did mention 1 brother, so I am inclined to suspect it was probably him.

All I know of the early history is that she moved to LA from Texas in 1925, but when the move there, from Oklahoma, no idea. I need a long enough period of time to really work on Ancestry.com to dig into that sort of matter, and also I need the funds to buy a subscription for a few months at least, that I can get to really use to dig for info. So probably wont happen until I’ve finished working, whenever that is, but then… Even then, I suspect I’m only going to have the 1910, and 1920 census details, so unlikely to find exactly when the Texas moved happened is still going to be vague.

The other thing that needs a major digging through, is a list of marriages in the LA area in the late 30’s (most likely, as her work career seems to stop around 37/38), or perhaps the beginning of the 40’s, because for now, thats where my trail goes cold, with the lack of her married name. Given that her daughter she mentioned would now be in her 70’s, if still alive, it might be fascinating to follow the family tree from there. Probably grand children, and great grand children by now! I wonder if any know, or wonder what Grandma/Great Grandma did?

As I say, if I survive to retirement, and I’m mobile enough to still do it, I suspect it might be my post retirement challenge to try and find out more. I guess that nowadays, I could do a lot from the comfort of a computer at home, anyway?

I must admit, one thing I’d love to do, just once, especially at my age, is do the whole chorus girl thing. My dancing wouldnt be great, I’d probably look less than graceful in one of those flimsy outfits, but my attitude is, just once, I dont care, I want to do the whole Clara Johnson thing! I have 2 lovely friends who are trying to work on making that happen, so who knows, but I hope so?

Anyway, given this was the first year I actually have known her birthday, before the big day, I wasnt going to miss this chance. Its funny to think though, she had all the glamour of working in Hollywood, without any of the fame!

So, happy heavenly birthday, Clara Elaine Johnson, and hopefully, maybe one day, we can get to actually meet, though not in this world.

OK, video time. I have seen her dancing in numerous musicals of the late 20’s, and through the 30’s, including many of the famous ones. For all that, back then, unless they went on to make it, chorus dancers didnt normally get credits. One that Clara did, was a film named Strike Me Pink, though seemingly she was working under her middle name at the time, probably because Clara was a little ‘old fashioned’ name by 1936? Its also the best sighting of her, because she fills the screen between 4:13, and 4:17 in this clip

Two in a row

And yes, though strictly you do have 2 versions of the same song in a row, that isnt what I mean! But before we get started… May I just wish a blessed Eid to all my readers who will be celebrating it. Yes, tomorrow at work is going to be tough, to put it mildly, but hopefully my back will survive the day. And Saturday, and…

I didnt actually realize this was going to happen until today, when Facebook kindly told me about a birthday today. The one tomorrow I knew about in advance, slightly more warning, but…

Back in September, in the US, I met, and holidayed with, 2 women in a row! Yes, firstly, my long term friend, Kate, whose birthday it is tomorrow. Then I went off to go to a wedding, though not to be married, and teamed up with Stacie for a few days. And yes, its her birthday today! Hopefully  next year, though not near their birthdays, I will see at least one, maybe both, yet again. If not next year for Stacie, will be the year after. Kate and I are considering Oklahoma, but given it would be a ‘one trick pony’ to see the county that Clara was born in (Kate is originally from that state), and there might not be much else to do, so we will have to wait and see.

But yes, its fun to have 2 special friends, with their birthdays quite literally next to each other, I must admit. So, I offer a birthday toast to both of you tonight, as I will be otherwise engaged tomorrow.

Given that Stacie keeps sending me pics of alien spacecraft that I’d love to have a flight in, and alien suits that I’d love to wear, I thought this song was apt in that sense. No, so far, she hasnt sent me either lol! As for Kate, well, she has seen some of the weird space set sci-fi I’ve written, so why not? As I say, 2 versions, firstly, the original video from the time of release

Secondly, given the original line up have just got back together after many years, and plan to record a new album, and hopefully a new tour, the latest recording of same song. Slightly less hair now, lol!

That was the day, my friends

Well, hopefully a few of you at least have been eagerly waiting for the report from Friday night. If you werent, you’re getting it anyway! 😛

Beyond a few moments of, err, entertainment on the last section of the journey, from Preston, to Blackpool, in truth the journey was relatively unexciting. The ‘entertainment’, some very loud children, and the fact that we had 2 wheelchair passengers, as opposed to the train designed 1, caused some fun. But in truth, we arrived pretty much on time.

The hotel was pretty much standard budget hotel, with thin walls which we noticed overnight (people talking outside the room), and though in theory we had a second bed, it was so designed that neither of us, in perfect health conditions would have been able to get out, and besides, we had no bedding for it anyway! Survey comments done, lol! But fine, thats not what you want to hear about, is it? So after a meal together, Eric went back to the Trams, I went off to the Winter Garden, and through the time travel portal. Fine, not literally, but you get the drift? After an early false start, the staff worked out where we needed to go, and lo and behold, I was soon in a lovely, and short pink flapper dress. Fine, I wasnt going to care about length for one night, but more on that shortly. Thing is, flappers werent designed to have boobs, or big shoulders, and the zip wouldnt do up properly at the back. Anyway, as you will see shortly, I was quickly changed into another dress which was longer, with no zip issues, perfection! Well, I was flashing someleg, but…

Oh fine, like this!

Me in Blackpool

There is a better one of me, but it has someone else in the picture, and I’m loathe to use that without her permission. I suspect she wouldnt care, but to be on the safe side… If she grants it in hindsight, I will add it to the posting. So if you come here in 6 months time, see 2 photos, and are confused, you know why!

The evening was great fun, lots of lovely people that I was working with, equally a lot of nice people in the audience, including 1 wonderful gentleman I talked to for a while, who had originally come from Bradford! However, having flirted as an Usher prior to performance, stood on the stairs, we eventually got told that part of our work was done. I decided to give the film, Some Like It Hot a chance, but it didnt grab me much, so after an hour or so, I headed back to the refreshment area, got myself a coffee, and started chatting with a few others, until it was time for part 2, getting those who had paid for it, to the party upstairs.

All went smoothly, then a few of us went up to the Balcony, put on a bit of a show (very tame dancing, by Flapper standards, I suspect) for the guests for a while, then I, and a few others went back and changed into modern life again. One treat I had for a while, was to do something I’d never done before (and no, it wasnt to dance the Charleston), which was to wear a pair of those long gloves that go up to your elbow, and maybe beyond. I’d seen pictures of them, always wanted to wear them, and now I have!

End result, everything, and everyone was so lovely, I’m already planning on going back next year, however crazy, and unpractical that is. Might be a different era, but as long as it doesnt mean wearing something as revealing as what my past life self, the chorus line dancing, Clara Johnson had to wear, all should be fine. But no, I’m not going to suggest 42nd Street, or the like, just in case, lol! But beyond that, I’ll definitely be back. Fine, if it is that, I will probably still go back!

The journey home by ‘modern trains’ was a bit more entertaining. The train from Preston, back to Manchester was very crowded, but ‘Queen Bitch’ soon pushed a way through for me, and Eric, to our reserved seats, and someone was already sat in them! Yes, they got moved, probably not my most diplomatic moment of my life, but hey, its principle, and neither of us could have stood, anyway!

Then we get back to Manchester, running late, so going to be a tight push, or no go for our booked train back to Huddersfield. Only…I looked at the departure board, it had been cancelled! So anyway, the next train was going to be very crowded, (2 sets of passengers, plus loads of football fans), but I lined Eric up roughly where I thought the doors would be, and we grabbed 2 seats very quickly!

After that, out last night, with Ella as well, for the birthday meal. I wore the same dress as last week again, so I stayed in Flapper mode for the weekend. Oh, should I mention, this was all done in lots of snow!

In theory I’m back to work tomorrow, but if it had been today, I’m certain it would have been a ‘snow day’ off, with my physical issues. Tomorrow, who knows? Hopefully its better in the morning, I must say. Not just because I’m due back, but because I need to learn something for the following week, which I will probably relate later in the week, but until then…?

Yes, I hurt, partly because of Friday, partly because of the current weather. When (or strictly at this point, I guess, if) I do this next year, I’ll pace it better, all that travel, on top of everything else, in 1 day, was just too much now. Go down the day before, build to it, and have a day off afterwards to recover, before coming back, far wiser! But hindsight is a wonderful thing!

Video, big clue in title. The frightening thing for me, this song is 50 years old, and I remember it being released!

Life begins at 60?

Well I’ve heard that 60 is the new 50, which might just about be believable, given that the average life span is more than when I was young, but I pass at the optimist who said that 60 is the new 40! The way my back is now, its more like 60 is the new 70 lol! 😛 Either way, I’ll find out tomorrow, I guess?

Yes, I’m getting started early, on the first day I can use one, I’m using my senior railcard, to get me to, and from Blackpool, over the next 2 days. This is the last time I will be publicizing the show at the Winter Gardens tomorrow night, the film weekend, with Some Like It Hot being shown, with me as one of the 20’s flappers hostesses! Yes, I know, flappers were young women, but unless I can find a friendly ‘mad scientist’ to make me young again, they will have to settle for me being a little bit more elderly lol! Mind, if I can, darlings, just watch me go!

Funnily enough, its not the first time I will have used senior privileges for something. The recent, and relevant one was an amusing happening back in November, when 3 of us from work went to the Amateur Dramatics at Cookridge. Somewhere up near Rawdon, the 3 of us met up, and went for a meal at a very nice fish and chip restaurant. Now, the menu was fine for me, but there was a Seniors offer, for people aged 60 or over, and I was only 4 months short of that landmark, so I went for it! That strictly was my first time as a true Senior, though I’ve had senior meals before (about a decade ago, in fact) at some US restaurants, where the portions are huge, the senior portions less so, so I’ve asked nicely, and they let me have senior meals. (Definitely Dennys, I think IHOP too?) Now, this year, I’ll be able to do it legitimately, assuming they havent raised the age to 65?

At completely the other end of the scale, when I was in my late 30’s, and paying a visit to my mother, we went out for the day to a shopping center across the Medway Towns from us. Anyway, she had a senior pass, got on for free. Me, I got ready to pay the full fare for the trip, but the driver insisted I was still a half fare, in other words, under 19! Now, I might look reasonably young for my age, but that was crazy.

Given that I had no idea what the fare was, I just paid him what I was told, and yes, he’d issued me a half fare return! No, I didnt have any issues going back, but I dont think that driver checked my ticket that closely!

Sadly, nowadays, my cut off for the free off peak travel on buses is the same as the pension age, so I wont get that for another 6 years, assuming I last that long of course. I’m sure I will, but…? Who knows? No, I have no plans, even if it is 60 to get anything in the US to prove my age, as I rarely visit the same state again very quickly. I suspect you’d have to prove your address, so that would mess me up anyway!

Equally, tomorrow, I might find an obliging mad scientist, who turns me back into a twenty something flapper, with all of Clara Johnson’s dancing skills, and then, especially if I can find that time travel portal, well this might be the last blog from the 21st Century, darlings! No, not going to happen, but I can dream for a few hours at least! Wouldnt that be fun though?

Right, video time. Lets just say I wanted to find something filmed in Blackpool, ideally at the Opera House, or Winter Gardens, and lo and behold… Title fits aptly for my wish for the flapper girl makeover lol!

 

 

In the working years

Its funny to think, in the week when I reach 60, that as little as 8 years ago, if I’d been off this week (and fine, I probably wouldnt have been, in that case), I’d be retiring from work this week, and drawing my state pension. Yes, up to April 2010, women retired at 60, wow! Since then, much to the annoyance of those affected by it, the pension age for women has risen to 65, to match men, and in the next couple of years, will actually go up to 66, the age I will get to retire at. Dont get me wrong, something had to be done, as everyone (well, most people) seem to live longer now, so this was sort of inevitable.

One of the amusing challenges I have to look forward to, or think about in that case, is one of my occupational pensions! Yes, William Hill, round 2 (there have been 3 rounds in all), between 1985 (2 years after starting there) until I left in 1999, I was paying into an occupational pension scheme with them. And actually, that was drawable, even for a man back then, at the age of 63! And I guess if I’d worked there now, for 33 years, with 3 to go, it would be quite a decent sum! But no, it was about 14 years, so not a fortune (I’m guessing about £3000 – 4000 pa, from what I can remember of last salary), but better than nothing.

The thing is, since then, I’ve changed gender, I’ve changed name twice, and though ‘theoretically’ I’ve got the deed polls to cover that, I’m not sure how easy they would be to find? National Insurance number hasnt changed though, and at least one of those names was used on William Hill, round 3, so who knows how complex that would be? Still, something to think about in the next 3 years or so, for sure. Not a fortune, but given the state of my body, a top up to wages like that might be handy? And where I’d start, 22 years after leaving, no idea? Anyway, something to consider, I guess?

Its funny to think what I’ve packed into my first 60 years, though yes, the transition stands out as my proudest moment by far. Maybe one day, I’ll even brave the surgery, and get everything done, though as I’m not one for surgery now, for the sake of it, I cant see it, unless the need really arises to get ‘my bits bobbed’ as such.

Its funny though. I’ve written, I’ve acted, but in neither case, anything I’m likely to be remembered for. Well, up to now at least, anyway! Still a few years to go, hopefully, though how much more acting I will get to do, no idea? I know, given that I will definitely play the role on Friday, you could say I’ve got one more part, but I suspect I might be the only one looking at it like that! I suspect most, if not all of the others just see it as helping out, and being dressed in an old fashioned way, but we will see?

Writing, well I keep saying I might do more when I ease off work, but doesnt seem to be happening just yet. I only wish I could gather enough information to do a biography of a certain chorus line dancer, and bit part actress, but given she died in the 50’s, and any children (she mentioned one, a daughter, seemingly) would be in her late 70’s by now, if still alive, if I could hope to trace her!

Oh, other point of amusement for you. Not surprisingly, for someone who has spent so much of her life working in the betting industry, the Cheltenham Festival has always been a bit of a special event for me. When I’ve been able to, I’ve tended to take some time off that week, ostensibly because of my birthday, but hey, its good racing, so… Well this week, I missed a couple of races today (only able to watch 5 on ITV), because of the need to go to the doctors, I’ll miss all of tomorrow, due to getting things done to me for Friday, and then I’ll miss all of Friday, because of the Blackpool thing! Funny thing is though, I didnt really mind. Is it because I’m now a woman that I worry less about it? Who knows? I’ll let you know next year lol!

Right, thats enough, dont want to keep you here forever with my waffle. So, video time. In my humble opinion, one of the greatest singers of my lifetime. Yes, I used one of his songs recently, and here’s another!

The Roaring Teenies

Well, fine, a couple of years younger and I really could have posted this as the roaring twenties lol, albeit one hundred years on from the original, but anyway…

So, last night, for the first time (but not the last) in a week, I got into flapper girl mode last night. Oh fine, pushing 60, girl might be being a bit optimistic, but hey, all I need is a good rejuvenation machine, and a dancing skills neural download, then watch me go! Open to all mad scientist offers to arrange that, by the way! 😉 Oh please, dream birthday present, and all that! Then I could show Clara Johnson how to dance! Well, probably not, but…

So yesterday, after the working day, I, and several work colleagues (8 in the end) showed up for a lovely meal, at a lovely restaurant in Bradford. 3 of us at least probably had the staff wondering which decade they’d opened the doors into! No, to be fair to the others, notice was limited, and it is a cost, so… still kudos to Madi, and Rebecca for putting on a show too. What, you want proof, of me at least? Oh fine!

 

 

Now where did that time travel portal disappear to? As you cant see from these shots, my dress wasnt quite as short as the ones being worn by the young ladies in the video, but hey, I’m very nearly 60, so… Not sure the dress on Friday will be as long lol! But yes, if I get pictures, and my legs arent too shocking a sight…? 😉

In truth, my dress was very maxi in length, and even after Ella took it up (thanks given) a few inches for me, it was still touching the ground! Taking it up again, and then I might even flash a little ankle, ooh! If done, I might take it to Blackpool on Friday as a back up, as I know it fits, and then I might wear it again next Saturday, for the birthday meal for the home group. If not, it will get worn again, I’m sure, just not quite sure when!

Still, until next Friday at least, I will have to live in this strange thing called the modern world! Unless I can find that portal, and then wouldnt I be the cat’s whiskers, darling!

Video time. No, I didnt do any dancing last night, nor will I be planning to dance on Friday without a lot of assistance mentioned above. My dress last night wasnt this short, but next Friday, who knows?

 

Dont dream the snow is over

Oh fine, I’ll admit it, I’ve definitely started to get a case of ‘cell fever’ having been stuck indoors since last Tuesday morning, because of all the snow, ice, and stuff like that. I have to admit though, that its been nice being able to take ‘snow days’ from work since then (total of 3 work days), and not have to risk slipping over outside, and damaging knees, back, or both! Especially the latter, as I dread to think what further damage I could have done by going out, slipping over, and landing on my back, but anyway… It is still white out in the garden at present, but most of the snow is gone, the temperature is above freezing, so unless something dramatic happens overnight, I should get ‘release’ tomorrow to go back to work. Thankfully, if I believe the Weather Channel website forecast for next 10 days or so, I should be fine now, through to after my birthday. I know temperatures in the 40’s are hardly amazing, but a lot better than low 20’s!

The silly thing is, normally I can get by on less painkillers when not working, but yes, fine, that doesnt work so well in freezing conditions! Actually, I’ve only got 4 more working days as a 50 something now, as I’m off the week of my birthday. Mainly because of that, but yes, there is a little racing event called the Cheltenham Festival too, to enjoy as well. Irony, unless I remember to switch it on at the hotel in Blackpool, I’ll end up missing the biggest race of the week, the Gold Cup, despite that.

Oh, and another moment that shows I’m getting old, the rail trip will be made on a Senior Railcard, my first time. Yes, that hasnt changed from being available at 60! In fact, its available at that age for men too! The card might be £30, but by the time you add this trip in, the one to Scotland in September, a possible one from Manchester Airport in May, before anything else, I’ll easily cover the cost.

One other trip I need to book too, the one to Newcastle for work, which should be fine, seeing they’ve now had a week to register my account, and it should take 2 working days! Yes, had planned to do it Wednesday, but then the snow happened, so… And yes, tax payers, I will be using my Senior Railcard to save your money!…angel… Cheapest centrally based hotel available, with internet for me, I’m positive.

But yes, it will be nice tomorrow to actually be able to go out the front door, and ‘escape’ for a few hours, even if it will be at work. I like it here, a lot, but after nearly a week indoors…

An amusing moment before I go. You might remember I ordered a maxi length flapper dress for my work birthday dinner next Saturday? Well, comments on Amazon said it was too long, but I thought that just meant for women of short, to medium height, not to women of my height, at 5′ 9″ tall! Wrong, it actually needs taking up so I can walk in it, and as a good flapper girl should, show a bit of ankle! No, you dont want me showing knees lol, which is why I got a maxi one! Still, matter of getting it taken up is in hand, so… In truth, I’ll probably take it to Blackpool with me, just in case, as a back up.

Right, video time. You might have worked out the song, or maybe not, but you wont have guessed the singer, because its not Crowded House. One of the great ‘lesser known’ British voices of so many tears now!

 

Snowy Days and Thursdays

Well, maybe I have been talking to myself, and feeling old? Fine, if that, and the blog title dont give you a clue to the video tonight, you’re way too young! Unlike me, but anyway…

I dont ever remember school closing for bad weather, but then again, that was about 50 years ago, so I’ve either forgotten, or it never happened? And given my first year at school included the brutal winter of 1962/63, I might be wrong, but hey, I was only 4, or 5 at the time, so something like that would easily pass me by, I guess? Nowadays, it seems to happen in a lot of winters. Is it just health and safety, is it just people getting softer, or is it quite possibly, the thought that if someone has an accident in said weather, that accident compensation claims will fly like confetti?

Up until yesterday, I’d had one day off work since moving up to Yorkshire, due to the weather, and even then, I walked into Huddersfield through the snow (about 2 miles), and it was only when I got to the railway station, to find that no trains were running, that I gave up on the prospect of getting to work that day. Yes, I then walked back home, there was no public transport whatsoever. But then again, I was healthy back then, so…

As those in the UK know, and maybe others too (at least 1 US friend commented on our winter weather overnight), we’ve had a ‘bit’ of snow this week. And yes, fine, at the time I was due to leave for work, the buses were running, just. Let me add, that about 35 minutes after that scheduled time, both the buses from the estate, and the buses to Bradford got suspended for a while. So whether I would have got to work, who knows?

As you might have gathered already, I have no idea on that, I never left home. Nowadays, there is an allowance called ‘snow days’ for when travel to work, especially for as distant as I am, is tricky, or impossible, you dont go. Normally you’d go to your nearest office (I could have gone to Job Center in town, I’m sure), but it was quickly agreed that I would be going no further than the front door. Lets face it, the last thing you’d want is me trying to get into town, having an incident, and being out of action for months, due to my back, or my knee issues. Not that I’m one of those ‘sue at all cost’ types, but still, if I damaged my back really badly…?

In truth, its no better today, and I doubt it will be much better in the morning, but I will see what its like before making a decision on that. I have this old fashioned feeling called guilt over such matters, even if it is the sensible thing to do. But fine, if its really crazy to try to get to work? I know, if it wasnt for my back, I would probably have tried it yesterday, but age, wisdom, and pain have made me more cautious, I guess? Ah well…?

Oh, and second piece of amusement, I’ve decided to give into modernity, and get a mobile phone. A very basic one, as a birthday present, but in truth, probably a wise call. I’m sure it will only get used in emergencies, or as on my birthday, as a means to call for a taxi (at Blackpool, to get from station to hotel, would be one of those), maybe? But fine, I’m getting old, I’m getting fragile (fine in both cases, should be got, not getting, probably), so having something like that to hand, not a daft idea. But yes, nice and simple, it will make and receive calls, it will be able to send and receive text messages (dont wait for me to do so), but that will be it! Oh fine, if you believe rumors, lots of 20’s and 30’s movie stars had one, care of time travel lol. I mean, there are pictures, there is film on You Tube, and…I’ll stop laughing now! But I wont be advertising the number, for sure!

Oh, and one last thing to show I’m old. This weekend (tomorrow, if I need another snow day), I’ll be ordering a Senior Railcard for myself. Yes, you can still get those at 60 (regardless of gender), and you can place the order online 14 days before your birthday. So… Will definitely get used this month, thats for sure. Blackpool (for myself), and Newcastle (for work) will both be a third cheaper thanks to it. Fine, it costs £30, but when you add in Scotland, in September… way in front!

OK, video time. Big clues at the start. Sadly, one lady who has never had to concern herself with the issue of getting old, she died far too young!

Crazy sizing!

Oh fine, lets have an amusing rant tonight. And oh, just to confuse my US readers even more, all sizes quoted are in UK figures, which are different to yours. I think you take 2 off those numbers for US sizing, but dont quote me on that?

Well, 4 weeks from now, I will, in my eyes at least, be officially ancient, as I will have had my 60th Birthday, 2 days before. Given that I will be in Blackpool on my Birthday working (though in 1928 mode, its fair to say), I’ve worked the Birthday meal here to one day later, on the 17th. Yes, I know what date it is, but the only thing green I might drink that day would be a fizzy lime drink!

Given that its one of those rare landmarks, and the fact that I’ve pretty much ignored all of them up to now, I thought I’d go wild, and celebrate with workmates as well. Given events of my birthday weekend, the plan is that will be the previous Saturday, after work, in Bradford. Well, I got asked, do I want a theme to things? And I thought, as long as its not compulsory, why not?

Lets be fair, the robot look isnt going to work in a public restaurant, so the obvious answer was 1920’s, or 30’s style. And yes, 20’s is such a fun era (ignoring Crash at the end) that it works perfectly for a party. No, for some at least, it wont be a prohibition era  scenario, lets face it. In truth, I do have a couple of flapper style dresses, but as was the want back then, both are above the knee, which has numerous issues in Yorkshire, in March, mainly the weather! Fine, my knees arent a pretty sight, but…

So  anyway, today, I thought I’d take a look for longer length flapper style dresses. I found some really nice ones on Ebay, but they’re dispatched from China, so no guarantee of delivery in 3 weeks! In fact some, they definitely wouldnt! So over to Amazon I go, and unsurprisingly, most flapper dresses are above the knee. Then, lo and behold, some maxi length ones! Yes, even in an XL size! But…some of those advertised as XL equate to a UK Size 12! Thats right, a UK size 10 (US size 8) is regarded as large! Seriously?

Who, me? Well, because I’m Trans, and therefore my waist isnt as tapered as a ‘natural’ woman, I tend to swing between size 14, and 16. But yes, seriously, my issue is some people who see a size 10 as a large! I suspect its because many of these dresses originate out of Asia nowadays, and those women can be tiny, but…?

Anyway, if I can convince myself to buy a dress that I probably wont wear often (a 60 year old flapper, seriously?), this is the one that at least ticks all boxes.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01M70L8Q4/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=AHNM721RF1ZD1&psc=1

I know, its not expensive, but when you’re only able to work 4 days a week, due to your health, money is tight! I’ll probably do it (will probably get killed if I dont now, lol), but if anyone wants to help…? https://ko-fi.com/merrybrooks I suggest you make a comment that its for the dress, not the meds, if donating! No, wont hold my breath!

Right, video time. What would a large dress do, that was a size 10, if I tried to put it on?