I guess its a natural tendency of the internet world, that we have friends, who we have never met, are never likely to meet, but at the same time, love dearly, and enjoy what they do. Tonight’s piece is about one of those people, someone named Betsy. Well, fine, I know her as Betsy, but whether that’s her real name, I have no idea. What I do know, is that she is a great writer, and I’m thrilled to be an online friend of hers, even if it never goes further than that.
Anyway, just over a week ago, she sent me a piece for approval. Not because it mentioned my name, let alone my full name, but fine, to anyone in the mind control story writing field, they’d know it was about me! I did object to the name she’d used for me. Fine, Seraphina might be a lovely name to some, but doesnt work for me. So I offered a few options to her as alternatives, and she decided on Maria. Yes, Metropolis robot connection, very apt for me. So last night, I found this on the archive update:
Yes, any resemblance to me would be entirely deliberate, I’m sure. In truth, Wakefield indoor market used to be one of my favorite places to shop, but I havent been over that way in over 2 years, and I know it was threatened with closure at one point, so I have no idea if its still there or not? In her defence, I have my doubts that Betsy has been there, but hey, I wrote a story about Hollywood before I went there, and another involving ECT, without having had the treatment lol!
No, for those that dont know already, I’m not telling you my author name there, though if you want to know, ask. Maybe that can get my ‘stalker’ in the US to write to me, if they’re curious lol!
No, I dont know how like Rhia that Betsy is. Nor I suspect will I ever know, for sure. But the little I know about her from our writings to each other, I think I would say, yes, there is plenty of Betsy in her! Though I should add, as far as I know, she doesnt control minds! But seriously, anyone who can use Letsby Avenue as an address in a story (think about it), is someone I love, in that non physical sense at least!
So yes, Betsy, I may, or may not ever meet you, but one thing is for sure, stories like this will always guarantee you a special place in my heart, all the same.
OK, the video. Big clue in the title, I guess? But no, its not the version you’d probably expect of an old wrinkly like me, its the Fugees version. I have no idea why I like this so much, but I do. Mind control, hmm?
So fine, lets at least start on a positive note, I could do with one at present. At least I think its positive, until the prize arrives at least!
A couple of weeks ago, I saw notice of a competition being run on Twitter, by a company called Fabulous Times. You had to select your favourite vintage pin up, and I tried a change of fortune, by selecting Jayne Mansfield. Yes, she’s blonde, and has a fine pair of, err, eyes. Well, something else really, but anyway…
Yesterday I had an email telling me that I’d won the competition, an absolute first. Given that the company that the voucher was for, is called Corset Story, it gives away their most popular sales item, I guess? And yes, even with a £50 voucher limit, there were some gorgeous ones there, that would restrict my waist quite tightly, if only I could lace them up behind my back! No, unlike Jean, I dont have a maid to tighten it up for me, I wish! And no, due to the limited flexibility in my wrist joints, there is no way (unlike the lady in the video tonight) that I could lace myself up.
So I resigned myself to buying a very nice dress instead, and leaving it at that. But…I asked if there were any that required very little, or no actual lacing while wearing it, and lo and behold…
Yes, I know, 1-2″ is not the same as pulling my waist in about 4″, but its better than nothing! And I should be able to put it on myself. 🙂 I do (somewhere, no idea where it is though) actually own a corset that would reduce me by about 4″ or so that is designed so I can lace it up from the front, but…as I say, its somewhere in my room, with the emphasis on the word somewhere, so this is more likely to get used.
Of course, if someone wants to act as my maid, and lace me up tightly, I could do a major search in my room to find it, but…No, thought not! If you need a clue how its done…
Right, fine, the less cheery news. Today, I can honestly say I did a phone interview, and it wasnt good. Alright, it was worse than that, as I had a total brain freeze when a question I hadnt planned for came up, and that was that! It was going OK until then, but that blew it, and I knew it. Yes, 5 minutes later, unsurprisingly I got the email telling me just that!
Also, someone rang here re an interview yesterday, while I was at the agency in Leeds, and hasnt rang back yet. Plus, I had an email last night from another agency, asking me to ring them re another job I’d made the short list for. I rang this morning, she was busy, no call back. Rang again this afternoon, yes, she had the message that I rang, but she still hasnt called back, aargh! If they try tomorrow, well…
Oh, and the hypnotherapy course that I thought I did so well at, at the weekend, been told they dont want me to continue. Alright, I do wonder if there is an element of ‘politics’ in this decision, given a friend of mine, and her relations with the guy behind the course, but anyway…Yes, very annoyed, though I do have another option if I decide to go forward with it anyway, so…
Tomorrow, I get to actually go to an interview in Wakefield. Yes, there will be competency questions (I know, but at least I have in theory been fed what they will ask), but there will also be a brief display to do, should be fun! After that, to the Job Centre, and sign on, a bit late, but they know I will be, so all fine.
Yes, its getting to me, I need that lucky break. No, I’m not yet planning on standing on the street corner, in a short skirt, but…rolls eyes!
Wish me luck, I need it. Well, other than for winning competitions to give me an hourglass look, at least!
OK, fine, I know, a bit of catching up to do, thats what life, and a pile of various interviews will do for you! So lets get started
Maybe I’m old fashioned, but I was always told that you ‘dress to impress’ when you go for a job interview. Be it just with a job agency, or a potential employer, you look smart, and well dressed, to make them think you’re the right person for the job, yes? OK, clown in the circus might be different, but otherwise…
So you can imagine my amusement earlier this week when I went for a receptionist role, in a ‘posh’ vintage tea room company, and saw the 2 young ladies being interviewed in front of me. To the credit of one, at least she wore a top, and trousers, but they certainly werent what I would call of the ‘quality’ type. The other, oh please, leggings, and boots!
The lady being interviewed with me was in a dress at least, which made me feel better, but even so…The irony is, the 2 younger, prettier, but under dressed girls will have more chance of getting the job than me, because he was also after a PA, and they would look better as eye candy than me! But we will see…
Yes, I’ve never been sure whether you need to dress up for an appointment at an employment agency, but I tend to do so. Maybe its just an older lady thing, maybe its just that I enjoy wearing a dress, but anyway…I do! Well, fine, the second one was a follow on visit from a job interview, so I needed to be dressed up, but I would have done anyway.
The other job interview this week was yesterday morning, in Batley. In fact, thats why I had to register at an agency on Thursday! So yes, amusing moment, a job, working close to the Hollywood sign, what more could I ask for? Alright, its not THE Hollywood sign, just one belonging to a local club, named Hollywood Legends, but even so…
Given my recent record with competency questions, I decided it was time to try something different, so I did. For those who have been reading a while, you know this, but for the newer folk…last November, I was hypnotised (not for the first time), and Jean-Bot was created in my sub concious. Yes, Jean Harlow, though strictly she was created as a bot, so she could cope with modern life situations. But bubbly, confident, and everything else Harlow was, absolutely. So basically, I let her loose in my mind for about 5 minutes before I went in for the interview, and told her to see what she could do. The only reason I couldnt let her do the interview is because she talks with Jean’s Kansas accent!
Anyway, end result, the best interview I’ve had this time around, by far. As long as ‘she’ doesnt think that she’s got the job, all will be fine! Mind, if I have, she probably got it for me, so…The other amusing thing, and the first time I’ve seen this was some sort of Personality Profiling test. Most of it was fairly standard stuff, but the 3 questions where the options included, obedient, controlled, and submissive amused me no end! I will have to be careful with the training methods used, clearly lol! Kidding, I think?
After that, another agency yesterday afternoon, something different job wise. I did do some call checking at Hills, and this job would be doing more of that, for an insurance company in Wakefield. Well, I wanted to do something new, so…
Oh, I’d better mention the General Election, I guess? Well, I sort of expected the Conservatives might have been the largest party, but getting an overall majority, yes, you got me there! I’m not surprised the Lib Dems almost got wiped out, seat wise, though I would have preferred less votes for UKIP, but anyway…though ironically I ended up feeling rather sorry for Farage in the end, with his vote on Friday.
Tomorrow, I’m torn whether to head into Leeds, or not. There is a vintage fair there, at the Town Hall, but its also the Leeds Half Marathon in town, so how easy it will be to get to, no idea. Also, should I be spending money on luxuries, when I havent yet got a job? I will see how I feel in the morning, but I’m tempted.
Right, lastly, the video. Relates to the General Election. One of my favourite Madonna songs, and the video has such an old fashioned feel to it too.
I know, so much for the every couple of days thing, but…
Tomorrow marks the day that I get back to business, trying to get a new job! Actually got 2 proper interviews tomorrow, of the face to face kind, quite a delight nowadays! The snag is, one is in Leeds tomorrow morning, the other one just outside Wakefield tomorrow afternoon, so an interesting logistic exercise. Oh, and the getting up before 6.00 tomorrow morning is going to be a bit of a shock too!
Both are for call centre work, both would be different for me, as they will be outbound calling jobs, albeit neither of them would be cold calling people, so fine by me. The one in Leeds appeals to me more, I must say, sounds quite interesting work, and an interesting place to work.
A company doing medical trials, basically you contact the people who have applied to take part in trials, to see if they are suitable, and if so, to check their details, and if all is fine, sign them up for the course. Only going to get fun if there is a trial for female hormones, lets face it! Of course, the sci-fi writer in me comes up with other ideas about medical trials, but lets not go down that road! OK, fine, those I might be interested in taking part in, but anyway…
The other is for an insurance company, dealing with union members, who get a certain level of free insurance, to see if they want to take up any more. I have the distinct feeling this might involve more of a hard sell attitude, which really isnt my thing, but we will see…Also, with it not being in central Wakefield (a fact I only discovered after going for this), it might be more, err, fun, getting to and from work, as a non driver in all honesty. But I can get an idea on that tomorrow, might be a no go before I even get started!
Then on Friday, that time has come when the notice period payment is up, and I have to report to the Job Centre, and sign on, to get my Job Seekers allowance. Not a fortune, but better than nothing! Ironically, they wanted to have the interview tomorrow, but were quite happy to delay it, given I had 2 job interviews lined up!
There is one other thing I’m tempted to do Friday, but its that question of how long the Job Centre thing is going to take, as to how practical it is. A salon type place over Bradford wants to have an afternoon of fun, basically a before, and after session of photos, and possibly some modelling, starting about 12.00. Now, it would be fun, but I have no idea how long I’ll be at the job centre (last signed on in 2002, different name, different gender!) or anything, so its tricky to commit to. So under the circumstances, I’ll probably pass on it, and regret the fact afterwards!
Oh right, a tongue in cheek video. Given its a medical research place, and its a 2 hour interview, I’m wondering just what will be involved. I’m just assuming that their method of finding the perfect candidate for the role doesnt involve research of the human mind? But…
Well, I assume most of my followers are as big football fans as me, because the last blog barely got looked at lol! So hopefully a Trans girl, going shopping in the sun might prove more popular.
To be honest, beyond a few vintage style purchases in Jersey charity shops, I havent had an afternoon shopping scavenge in a while, what with work, and everything else thats been taking up my time. Anyway, with 3 days off in a row, and gorgeous weather outside, I decided today would make a fine day to visit Wakefield, and see what I could find.
So what’s new about that, you might be asking yourself? Simple, no trousers, I went in a skirt! And to be honest, it caused as little reaction as I probably would have got wearing trousers, so…I’ll be doing it more often, I’m sure, given that my knees seem to react favourably to the lack of restrictive pressure that trousers cause. Which I sort of had guessed already, but got confirmation of the fact today, and seemingly the world isnt going to end at the sight of me out in a skirt.
So fine, I bought a few, and may well be wearing one of them to work on Wednesday in all honesty. I have got some more, but the 2 ‘nice’ ones are both lined, and might just be a bit warm in this current heatwave, so…Well, I hadnt bought anything in ages…A few tops too, a satin one, a gorgeous 30’s style glittery one (definitely only style, got it on a market stall) and a few more vintage looking ones too. Combined with a vintage style dress, and some new, needed bras (3 for £7)…I spent more than planned. Seriously, Primark seem to have stopped doing 38B, the smallest I can find there now are 38C, so finding some 38B’s reduced, I couldnt miss out. Will give me the chance to throw away a few of my ‘more tired’ ones, shall we say?
The one highlight for me, of this spending spree, was the return of an old friend, the Wakefield Hospice charity shop, home to so many lovely vintage, and vintage look items. Yes, they are back, in the Ridings shopping centre, I nearly squealed with joy when I saw it. And yes, I bought a top (very 30’s look), and a skirt (plain, modern) in there, just to say thank you.
So yes, Wednesday morning, wearing a nice black business skirt to work, instead of trousers, highly likely! Business killer heels, not quite so likely lol, I might have to run for a bus coming home!
Fine, I spent too much, but I had a wonderful afternoon shopping, but discovered the world doesnt end if I go out on my own in a skirt. 🙂
So to the video, its an oldie, a live performance, and the first word in the blog title, is also in the song title.
When I was young, and yes, that is a long time ago, town centres were anything but uniform. In fact the main high streets through the 3 parts of the Medway Towns that I knew well, were full of delightful independent stores, only occasionally interspersed by the odd national name, like Boots, and Woolworths. Indeed, as a record buying teenager, the real delights were the independent record shops in Strood, and Chatham, where it was always possible to get records outside of the top 30, and would also carry a good back catalogue of both albums, and more importantly singles, still available to buy.
You also had butchers, greengrocers, hairdressers and the like, which were not national chains, mainly no more than 2 or 3 shops maximum. It was fun shopping, because no 2 towns, or cities weren’t identical shopping centres. Therefore a visit to a new town, would introduce you to new delights, but…
I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but it did. National brands jumped into towns, firstly through supermarkets, and gradually most of the small food stores got pushed out, because these mass buyers could get discounts that smaller shops couldnt dream about. Music megastores opened, and pushed out the people who really cared about music, not just the profits they could make. As for clothing…! Slowly but surely, town centres became more and more alike, until, well, you cant really tell them apart!
Nowadays, it seems that completely controlling the high streets is not enough for many brands, they have to have ‘shopping centres’ everywhere in town too. In many cases, major names will have a branch in town, and in the shopping centre in the larger cities, just in case one person might pass them by! In smaller towns, its why so many high streets are filled with betting offices, charity shops, pound shops, and pawnbroker/cash loan places, everything else is in the shopping centre!
Thankfully, some smaller towns and cities have tried to resist this event, though in the end, they all seem to be got, to some degree or other. But in the end…the great serpent of ‘shopping heaven’ seems to win through.
Lets take Wakefield as an example, where I went this afternoon. The heart of the town isnt entirely gone, though a big gash through the heart seems to be on its way. A few years ago, a little shopping centre, called ‘The Ridings’ opened up in town. Its a mix of national names (Primark, WH Smith, and the like), and little local shops, so fits in quite well.
Unfortunately, the big developers saw this, and started to build ‘Trinity Walk’. To say its soulless, and full of national brands would be putting it mildly! Fine, its avoidable, and on the whole, I did, and focussed on the little shops, the charity shops, and the wonderful market for my purchases.
The thing is, Trinity Walk decided in its wisdom that it needed to expand more, and put a cinema complex where the market currently is. So that will be gone within months, and no alternative site offered, its more opposition out of the way. Today, as I was heading on the home stretch to the bus station, I noticed one thing, a whole stretch of shops, just around the back from Trinity Walk had suddenly all emptied. Including unfortunately, my favourite charity shop for vintage stuff in town. A lot of these shops had signs up, with one message in common, the lease has ended, and they’ve had to move out, no offer of the chance of staying on. It doesnt really take a genius to work out who’s to blame, does it, seeing they own all the land leading up to that area, Trinity Walk!
Maybe they dont realise, if they shut down all the popular little shops, they may kill off the opposition to them, but, far less people will come to town, if their favourite stores are no longer there! I know, as an option, Wakefield drops down the list for me after today, and I suspect I wont be the only one.
I know, I know, US cities are even worse, on the whole! Not only do they not have downtown shops, they are all parked out in ‘Malls’ miles from town, many of which are hard to reach, if like me, you dont drive! So, I’m not saying they’re any better, just…
And then you hear news reports that retailers are ‘concerned’ because people arent going on to ‘High Street’s’ buying things! Its such a soulless experience, its hardly surprising!
Right, rant over. The video, the song sums up for me the attitude of the big shopping centres, to the rest of the town shopping. Please, special plea, wherever possible, support the smaller shops, and avoid the greedy cartels, thanks
No, seriously, that title is very tongue in cheek, unless my tipping skills take a turn for the miraculous over the next few days at least. Yes, that time of year has crept around again, the Cheltenham festival starts tomorrow. And at work, there is a meeting long tipping contest, for all the shrewdies, and the one or two like me, with little clue, to take our chance on winning a few pounds. Or most likely in my case, lose ten pounds! But given its the only gambling I will do all week…
But it helps to break up the insanity of the week, checking your selections in the vain hope that they might be running well, only to find they’re still running 15 minutes later, or fell at the first fence! Well, for what its worth, I’ve already done tomorrows picks, so I will apologise to those trainers in advance for ruining their chances! As long as no one expects me to show as much interest when the World Cup football starts, all will be fine!
The only advantage for me this year, with Cheltenham, is that the overtime this week will get paid at the end of April, just in time for my holiday in May! Even more so, as I did a little bit last week, and have some more in 2 weeks time, which will help pay some of the expenses at least! Might have some prize winnings too, though the term ‘pigs might fly’ comes to mind on that!
My favourite race, the cross country race, but I always was a strange soul, in more senses than one!
The video, well, its definitely in the title tonight!
In other news, which may amuse some, I’ve decided to accept my very nice fate, and accept I’m a Jean Harlow lookalike. Hey, I could do an awful lot worse in life, lets face it. So I’ve decided (for now at least) to stay blonde, and go for a 30’s style look with my hair, which given my fringe (or lack of it) might not be a bad thing. I will still (probably) wear a flapper style dress to my birthday dinner on Sunday, but given my hair, and my eyebrows arent being ‘rearranged’ until Tuesday, that should be fine. Well, I’ll wear it if the weather stays like this at least, they are both too short if it turns cold again! In which case, given my finger nails are now gun metal in colour, I might wear the grey dress, seen at Christmas, or I might wear a nice black one, from, err, a Wakefield charity shop!
So, I’ll let you decide, is this me, or is this Miss Harlow, hmm?
Mind, I’m led to believe that we are so similar (or will be when my hair is restyled) that telling the difference is tricky. Ah well, I can dream…
Well, yes, it sounds crazy, but in fact, it already happens, for a few years now, in Wakefield, the town I visited today. In fact, the famous rhubarb festival was only last weekend, but, like Trans Pennine Express trains tend to do, I was running a bit late for that!
Rhubarb is actually more interesting than you think, and before you ask is it fruit, or is it vegetable, I’ll tell you the answer, its both! Over here, for some reason, its a vegetable, but in the US, its a fruit! Personally, I see it more as the latter, but anyway…
Its so famous over here, that Yorkshire forced rhubarb is one of those foods that has a protected designation from the EU! Even more so, if it comes from the famous Yorkshire triangle, I kid you not!
Forcing apparently keeps it sweeter (grown in heated dark sheds during the winter) which is pretty helpful, because on its own, its a pretty sharp taste! I only really know it cooked in pies, and crumbles, but as the video shows, it is useful in other ways too.
Oh, and one other fun connection, for me at least. Kansas State is probably the college I most root for in the US, and their sport teams are the Wildcats. Wakefield’s rugby team, yes, you’ve guessed it, are also the Wildcats!
For me though, my favourite thing about Wakefield, the wonderful charity shops there! For some reason, vintage, and vintage look clothing (more the latter, I suspect) seems to be plentiful over there, I have no idea why, but I am very grateful. To support my home town of Huddersfield, we too have some good charity shops, but beyond one, finding anything less than modern looking, is nigh impossible. So not hard to see why my shopping expeditions take me to Wakefield!;)
So, the next time you have rhubarb pie, just think, it might have been grown in a shed near me! Hope that thought doesnt put you off it!
Just before Christmas, the 23rd December to be exact, the station building I had known for years at Wakefield Westgate closed. Something about modernisation, and all that, so they say. I have to say it looked fine to me, but such is the desire for upgrading things (and not just the Cybermen, apparently) that it had to go.
So today, when I went over to Wakefield shopping, I had my first look at the new station building. Absolutely soulless, I’ve seen airport terminals with more atmosphere than that place. So fine, maybe Friday, early afternoon isnt the best of time for these places, but it was dead, apart from one woman handing out vouchers, something about a free coffee, if you bought an expensive sandwich or something, but anyway, I didnt, just moved on.
Dont get me wrong, I’m not saying the previous building was a vision of beauty, but compared to this, loved it! Maybe it will grow on me, maybe it wont? Ironically, the other station in Wakefield, Kirkgate, was a dump, but is currently clad in scaffolding and things, finally being done up after so many years of neglect. Given that its an unmanned station, I doubt it will become an ‘airport terminal’, at least I hope thats not the case.
My home town station, Huddersfield, still has its beautiful old station building, so as long as you dont enter it, its a glorious sight. In fact, internally, its pretty nice too, especially compared to Westgate, but thats not hard. The main amusement about Huddersfield Station is the platform numbers. We have a 1,2,4,5,6 and 8, but no 3 or 7! I assume they were branch terminal platforms somewhere, for lines that no longer exist, but dont quote me on that! As to where they were located, not a clue!
Oh, and to keep up with the theme, the reason I went to Wakefield today, was the need to buy new for old on a few things. Boots and slippers needed replacing (both from before Christmas in all honesty, but today was the first chance), but managed to get both today. I would also have needed a new handbag, as the strap was virtually gone on the old one, but for the fact that, err, I had at least 2 suitable replacements already lol!
The last piece of New Year modernisation, my annual Metro card! Up until now, for as long as I can remember, they were always paper (board type, railway ticket), but now we get a smart card to use! Its great, as the magnetic strip on the back of the old one wore out after a few months, so using the ticket barriers becomes a pain. With this (famous last words) that shouldnt happen! So fine, the current barriers at Huddersfield arent calibrated for it at the moment, but soon will be, and getting through Leeds is now far easier.
Now all I’m waiting for is the new version of me! 😛
The video, well, its in the title, but given this is over 40 years old, I dont expect any to know it. As is the case with these songs, finding an actual video, is nigh impossible. This is the best I can do, its the group, but clearly not this song
Why, because today almost certainly marked my last venture out shopping for things this year. And yes, unsurprisingly, it was to Wakefield, rapidly becoming my favourite shopping spot. Well fine, it already is, but…
No, I cant guarantee it will be my last, but it looks a safe bet, and given where I work, I should know these things. My days off for the rest of the year are Tuesday and Sunday next week (former is beauty treatment day, latter is last Sunday before Christmas), then Christmas Eve (no way am I going shopping anywhere then!), Christmas Day (pretty obvious), and the Sunday after, when I will be on my own (and public transport is awful anyway). After that, well the next day off is New Years Day, and there are no buses then, and besides which it will be 2014 by then! So, as I say, good bet that today was it.
Surprisingly, 2 weeks before the big day, Wakefield wasnt overly crowded. I know, its midweek, but…To be honest, given all my purchases today (apart from my coffee and cake) were from charity shops, I havent helped the retailers much myself!
Most of it was practical stuff, 4 tops, and 1 skirt, which will all get used for work, and things. Well fine, the skirt to work is only a maybe bet, but…I should do really, they seem to be better for the circulation in my legs than trousers, but its just…I know, I know! Err, one of those tops, no, fails the work test. But…let me explain,
At work, we have a rule that all tops should cover the shoulders completely. Fine, understandable, though some choose to ignore it, and get away with it, but anyway…I try to be a good girl lol! One of the things I love about Wakefield is the quality of clothing options in the charity shops there, some really nice stuff, at very good prices. One especially, the Wakefield Hospice shop, is the creme de la creme. Seriously, I saw a gorgeous silver dress there today, must have cost a fortune new, for £15. Thankfully it was a size 12, with a zip at the back, so no way would I have got into it, because otherwise…drool…
But sneakily, they also, in a size 14, had a top that looked quite literally as if it had arrived direct from the 1920’s. It hadnt, its good a ‘made in Asia, somewhere’ tag in it, so clearly it hadnt, but…Snag, its got nothing more than 2 thin(ish) straps over the shoulders, so I cannot wear it to work. And to be honest, in that sense, whats the point in buying it, even at £4.50? Even though its perfect for a Flapper…? So I talked myself out of it, left it in the shop, even though I regretted doing so.
Fine, I walked round the corner, and after about 5 minutes, changed my mind, and went back and bought it! No idea when, or where I wear it, but, its mine! I know, I know, silly thing to do, but I would have regretted it for ever more if I hadnt.
But anyway, famous last words and all that, it should be the last silly buy of 2013! Stop laughing now!
The video, not the last Christmas one of the year, of that I’m sure. I’d forgotten about this little gem until You Tube reminded me!