Monday, 9 August 2010

Life Isn't Fair, Darling

I am struck by the TOTAL UNFAIRNESS OF LIFE as I sit here with a COLD, in SUMMER, gloomily stuffing my face with Day Nurse capsules and contemplating whether to go and buy more Kleenex or just use loo roll to blow my already-reddening nose. I can handle sunburn in summer (and in fact am often forced to, what with the gingerness and generally lax attitude to sunscreen) but to have a cold in August seems rankly mean of Fate or whoever. Apparently the loo roll option is unwise, as it's generally made from wood pulp (rougher on the face) rather than cotton pulp. Oh, who cares anyway. Whatever happens I'm going to look like a crimson Spacehopper for the next week. The summer cold is particularly vile because you can't even wrap yourself in a duvet and sweat it out in front of a nice warm fire - and since I'm on a stupid stupid Atkins-type diet I can't have honey in my hot lemon and honey. Or hot lemon, as it now would be if I could face anything hot.
ANYWAY.
Reading a lot of amazingly good stuff at the moment -
the new Kate Atkinson ("Started Early, Took My Dog", due out 18th August), always good to see Jackson Brodie again, I'll let you know how it goes;
a quite extraordinary book by Tim Powers called "Last Call" which manages to convince you that Bugsy Siegel was in fact the last but one Fisher King, that the Castle Perilous is a casino in Las Vegas, and that if you ever play poker with Tarot cards you risk losing your immortal soul;
Procopius's "Secret History" which is basically the Byzantine version of the National Enquirer (you'll never guess how the Empress Theodora used to supplement her income in those pre-imperial career days!! No, really!!) - scandalous, gossipy, unputdownable;
"Ottoline And The Yellow Cat" by Chris Riddell, a completely charming childrens' book with illustrations worthy of Edward Gorey (but more optimistic).
I will also report back on "Brooklyn" by Colm Toibin and "Bel Canto" by Ann Patchett (book group choices) when I've got them out of the way. Sadly the cold has turned my brain into porridge and all I secretly want to do is read comics.

22 comments:

Minnie said...

Life definitely unfair (am also accredited expert on subject). Poor Mrs Eff: summer colds are the worst kind. Get well soon.
In the meantime, I hope that lovely Jackson Brodie et al (Empress Theodora: what a devious trollop - and what fun, hooray!)cheer you up while you're recovering.
PS Love the new theme.

Lucy Fishwife said...

Thank you! I was hoping the new theme would galvanise me into updating more frequently. Blame delays on Day Nurse. Tchuh! That Empress Theodora! No better than she should be, I'm telling you.

Anonymous said...

Ooh ooh, I HATED Brooklyn. It started off so promisingly, but I really disliked it by the end. Just finished The Passage- another disappointment. Bought it because of all the hype, expecting The Stand- with vampires but found it really hard to get through. I know people said they couldn't put it down and it is good in parts but just way too long and I kept getting distracted. So basically, what I'm trying to say Luce, is that i have had a bad run of books recently. Boo.

Abs x

Lucy Fishwife said...

Hi Abs! Still awaiting my free copy of The Passage from the lovely Orion rep but he is a tad dizzy. At least if it's free the disappointment may be less? To curb your run of bad books I reccmmend "The Nobodies Album" by Carolyn Parkhurst, who wrote the one about the man trying to teach his dog to speak as it was the sole witness to his wife's death. This one also a bit odd but fab.

Blighty said...

Oh, so sorry to hear about the cold, summer colds are the worst, really! V excited that you are however back blogging, and pleased to hear there is a new Jackson Brodie book, like those a lot. I read Bel Canto for a book club, not really my cup of tea, like the sound of Empress Theodora though. Blightyxx

libby said...

Welcome back...forget the diet and drink hot toddies with or without honey....should make you feel a little better. Am amazed that you can have more than one book on the go - it has to be one at a time for me.....and am catching up on books other people read ages ago...currently plodding through the reluctant fundamentalist..

Lucy Fishwife said...

Blighty - Quite liking Bel Canto, although it's a bit more studiedly magic-realism than I normally like - I like magic OR realism. I may now start looking for a picture of Empress Theodora, the positive reaction to her is making me think she's going to join Sei Shonagon and Gertie Blood on my sidebar.

Libby - let me know if Reluctant Fundamentalist any good - quite fancy it. I think I may dispense with the toddy idea entirely and just have booze. As long as it's not sweet I'm allowed it (hollow sob).

Rol said...

Get well soon, LFW.

Lucy Fishwife said...

Thank you Rol! I wasn't going to mention the Night Nurse but am secretly delighted to have an excuse to take it again... x

Anonymous said...

I'll give Parkhurst a go- just bought Jerry Della Femina's 'From those Wonderful Folks Who Gave You Pearl Harbour', which is what they based Mad Men on. Get well soon my pretty!

p.s. Have you hear, AMC are making 'The Walking Dead'- zombie drama based on a comic (you read it?) and it has Andrew Lincoln as the lead- FIT!

flittersniffer said...

Am impressed with your eclectic selection of reading matter for one so under the weather. Nasally speaking I am in rude health, but still find myself ineluctably drawn to those "Gift With Purchase" Lynda La Plantes flow packed to the front page of SHE magazine.

Steve said...

Abandon the diet. It has lowered your resistance to disease and viral illnesses. Honey and lemon are the least of it. You need chocolate. It is medicinal, you know. I guarantee you'll feel better by the fifth chunk. Who is this Atkins fella anyway? Oh yeah. He's the stickthin guy with the perma-cold and friends who all wear face masks. Not somebody to aspire to. ;-) Get well soon.

Lucy Fishwife said...

Abs - Yes, sadly must confess I have read many many volumes of "The Walking Dead" - cool casting choice! Is it a UK or US adaptation?

Flittersniffer - the "Gift With Purchase" that ALWAYS gets me is the free pair of flipflops. Like I haven't already got 15 pairs.

Steve - Eating my own bodyweight in tomatoes and chilli - I am vitamin C'd to the eyeballs. Ironically I think Dr Atkins had at least one heart attack. Rather like Jim Fixx the jogging guru, who died (also of a heart attack) while out jogging. Look, I just want to not have to tie a jumper round my waist in the tropics, OK??? IS THAT SO WRONG????? sob

Christina @ Fashion's Most Wanted said...

I hope your cold is better very soon. Do not blow your nose on loo roll it will be red for ages. Buy those Ultra Balm tissues with a bit of moisturiser in! I'd skip the diet while you have a cold and start again straight after.

I did that India Knight Idiot Proof Diet for two weeks. The roll of fat from my stomach disappeared instantly with zero carbs. I was so delighted I went on a bender and ate all the carbs I'd been missing...

Great reading list, I shall be looking into your recommendations xx

GoldenGirl said...

Please please do NOT blow your poor nose on toilet roll - ow! Get some of those lovely balsam tissues and get well soon

I am, er, was, reading Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, but I have resorted to the audio book. She has an off-putting habit of refering to the protagonist as "He" all the time which makes it hard going.....

katyboo1 said...

sorry to hear about the cold. We love Ottoline in this house. There is a sequel. It too is superb.x

The Poet Laura-eate said...

Sympathy and get well soon from an Oxfordly direction.

Glad you are putting the down time to good use - I generally feel too ill to do anything when ill and have even less concentration than usual when plaqued with an inability to breathe.

Aparatchick said...

Summer colds are so unpleasant. Have you tried cozying up to a glass of iced tea? Or lemonade with a little something to spike it?

Bel Canto is one of my favorite books; oddly enough I haven't really liked anything else she's written. Brooklyn? Eh. Just finished Helen Dunmore's latest - "The Betrayal." I don't know why she doesn't have a US publisher for this, but it was worth ordering it from your side of the ocean.

Lucy Fishwife said...

Christina - I did the India/Neris diet a couple of years ago and lost 2.5 stone. Hoping for similar this time! Also enjoying "Dead Hand" by Paul Theroux at the mo.

Golden Girl - Yes, I had the same problem with her French Revolution one - spent the whole time flicking back to check whether "he" was Danton or Robespierre.

katyboo - YES! Also "Ottoline Goes To Sea" will be out very soon! Pathetically excited. It will be blue!

Laura - thanks for the well-wishes. Must admit have spent an equivalent amount of time reading comics though...

Aparatchick - I haven't read the Helen Dunmore yet, it's supposed to be very good. Why DO publishers make you buy from abroad? Fools. As cold cures go I'm sticking with the Night Nurse (NyQuil I think over there)- ah the dreamless sleep.

pilgrimchick said...

So sorry about the cold! Sounds like you've had ample time for reading, though.

Christina @ Fashion's Most Wanted said...

Dear Lucy, I hope you're well and the diet's back on track.

There's a blog tag over at mine for you should you wish to take part. Have a fantastic weekend xx

http://fashionsmostwanted.blogspot.com/2010/08/getting-to-know-you-tag.html

Christina @ Fashion's Most Wanted said...

Dear Lucy, I hope you're well and the diet's back on track.

There's a blog tag over at mine for you should you wish to take part. Have a fantastic weekend xx

http://fashionsmostwanted.blogspot.com/2010/08/getting-to-know-you-tag.html