Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Nooks and corners

I think it's about time I dredged up a few more random facts about myself. All those fascinating little quirks you're dying to hear about. All the obscure nooks and corners of my tangled personality.

1) I hate tomato ketchup, HP Sauce, mayonnaise and chutney. And most concocted sauces and condiments except for pesto, soy sauce and marmite.
2) Dogs are usually all over me, while cats tend to look wary and run away. But I like cats more than dogs.
3) I loathe boxer shorts, beards, comb-overs, hairy chests and crotch-hugging male cycle pants.
4) I never wear pyjamas - they're uncomfortable if I'm tossing and turning. I prefer nightshirts or sleeping naked.
5) I have virtually every birthday card Jenny has given me.
6) I never get jet lag, only tiredness after long journeys. I adjust very quickly to different time zones.
7) I can't sit for long on a stool, it gives me severe back ache.
8) I've worn glasses since I was 17, but I've never been called Four Eyes.
9) I've never had a nickname.
10) I've never heckled anyone.
11) My shoulder bag contains a filofax, a purse, a notebook, a Belfast streetfinder, an umbrella, some biros, door keys, car keys, an office key and some plastic bags.
12) I have some crooked teeth but I've never worn a brace.
13) I have a very poor sense of smell.
14) I love thunderstorms.
15) I'd absolutely hate to be bald.
16) I find shoelaces fiddly and annoying. Why not velcro?
17) I've never lost my voice.
18) I was once so drunk an entire evening was wiped from my memory. But I've only had four hangovers in my whole life.
19) I like watching gymnasts, but ballet leaves me cold.
20) I think kissing is way more fun than sex.

Pic: Melissa Ibbitson, from Lincoln, who is so addicted to tomato ketchup she gets through nearly 70 kilos a year.


  1. How do you feel about BBQ sauce? Some of the things you mentioned, I've never heard of, like marmite and biros.

    We always use the plural 'braces' when referring to teeth. A singular brace would be for an injured arm or leg.

    I've never counted my hangovers. Fun to read, Nick!

  2. @Bijoux, a biro is just a brand name for a ballpoint pen thats used generically.

    I don't know how anyone eats marmite without gagging.

    I"m a naked sleeper myself - I don't like that twisty feeling of Pj's or nightgowns. Comb-overs are silly, I prefer no beards, but I love chest hair on men.

    I've never had braces either, but my teeth are reasonably straight.

  3. Bijoux: I don't think I've ever tasted BBQ Sauce. It's not a big thing in the UK. Marmite is a type of yeast extract, similar to the Aussie favourite, Vegemite. Very salty and very much a love-it or hate-it food. Thanks for the clarification re brace/braces!

    Most people seem to be quite resilient to hangovers, however severe, but I find them totally unbearable and absolutely to be avoided.

  4. Agent: As I said, Marmite is very much a love-it or hate-it item!

    It's the pyjama bottoms that are the nuisance. A nightgown is fine because it's looser and more flexible.

    When I was at school, I had an almost fetishistic fascination with the boys who wore braces. I would watch them all the time.

  5. An interesting list, Nick. I have a friend who had crooked prominent front teeth, In his fifties he decided to have them straightened and went through a very long stage of wearing braces. He is now very happy with the new shape, but to me after knowing him for thirty years, the change is too drastic and totally changes the character of his face.

  6. Grannymar: Yes, it must be hard to adjust to his changed teeth when you're so used to how they were before. And don't worry, I have no intention of altering my own teeth!

  7. John: So you didn't agree with Boy George when he said he preferred a nice cup of tea (which was probably a big fib)?

  8. I'm with you on 20, the journey being much more interesting than the destination.

    As for nightwear, I've always been partial to men's PJ bottoms and a baggy T-shirt. Though sleeping nekkid was also part of my repertoire. Depending.


  9. Brother in law brought us Marmite from Australia....it tasted much more salty than U.K.Marmite; and apparently there is - or used to be - a New Zealand Marmite too, which had a different taste.

    What a world when you can't rely on Marmite....

  10. www: I think a T shirt and shorts are pretty common nightwear. I've never tried shorts but I suspect I would find them a nuisance as well.

    Helen: There is indeed a New Zealand version, Sanitarium Marmite. There was a drastic shortage after the sole production line had to be shut down after the Christchurch earthquake, but supplies are now plentiful again.

  11. Funny how people home in on one particular thing in a blog post! Who'd have thought it would be Marmite?

  12. Love Marmite - a light scraping transforms beans on toast into a culinary delight, and if you have it on Ryvita it's like eating giant Twiglets.

    Kissing may be better than bad sex, but great sex with a similarly enthusiastic partner blows everything else into the weeds.

    I'm virtually bald by choice - can't stand messing around with hair.

    You have a shoulder bag?!?
    Thought it was one of the golden rules of masculinity to carry your entire life in a small piece of folded leather that fits in your pocket.

  13. Dave: It goes very well with beans on toast!

    I couldn't survive without a shoulder bag - it contains so many essential items. And a whole lot more when I'm going on holiday. I've had one for about 40 years.

  14. Interesting list. I find it fascinating that you carry a bag.

  15. Ramana: And why might that be? Is that so unusual in your part of the world?

  16. It's unusual to see men over the age of 30 with any sort of carry bag, unless traveling through an airport. College students do carry book bags or the more hipster flap bag (I don't know the real word for it). I'm wondering if men will start to use shoulder bags more with how big smartphones have gotten. I don't know how they stand trying to shove the damn things in their pockets!

  17. Bijoux: I see quite a lot of men with carry/shoulder bags. Usually business types who presumably have work stuff in their bags. I honestly don't know how I would carry all the bits and bobs I mentioned without a shoulder bag to put them all in.

  18. I haven't used a purse/shoulder bag in over 25 years. I use a small backpack.

  19. Jean: yes, I forgot about backpacks - which are often used instead of a shoulder bag. I tried a backpack once but found it very uncomfortable.

  20. What is it with cyclists? Normal respectable men suddenly think it's fine to display their anatomy. Shudder.

    Husband has a poor sense of smell too while mine is good. Makes up for my less than perfect hearing!

  21. Liz: I wouldn't mind the anatomical display if it were attractive, but it isn't. It's just weird.

    Re my poor sense of smell, I rely on Jenny to notice that whatever's in the oven is on the point of burning. If it were left to me, the house could easily go up in flames.

  22. The lack of smell is most annoying when we're out and I'll say, 'Oh what's that lovely smell?' and start sniffing the air to locate its source, and Husband says, 'What smell?'

  23. Liz: Exactly what happens to us!

  24. Yes, unless one goes shopping for vegetables and groceries. Men normally walk about without any encumbrances, though, some like me need to carry a cane.

  25. Ramana: Ah, different customs in different countries. I don't know how they manage without one!