14 headlines you’ll never see at Cosmo

Get Crafty! Teach Yourself Eugenics

Ten Easy Tips To Recreate Hillary Clinton’s Look! (You Don’t Have To Break Glass Ceilings to Break Out The Pants Suits!)


Men Spill: What They’re REALLY Thinking When They’re Following You Down A Dark Alley, Carrying A Knife

It’s Winter, It’s Time for Smoky Eyes (Like You Needed Any Fucking Encouragement From Us)

Continue reading


My top 5 nightmares, ranked in order of how much of a dick my brain is for creating them

Recently, I awoke my partner in the dead of night by making a high-pitched noise, over and over directly into his ear. I was woken myself by his startled voice. “What’s wrong?! Stop it!”

What I was doing, was trying to scream, in my dream. It turns out that when you’re asleep, and in your dream you’re trying hard to scream but not making any noise except a weird high yowling noise and you can’t seem to form words- try as you might- for your information, what’s happening in real life is you are weebly-warbling like an insane baby owl.

In my defense, I was having a nightmare and was just screaming myself awake, in an attempt to get out of a trap constructed by my own brain. Nightmares, one of the drawbacks of being a sentient human.

Figure 1 shows the classic ‘screaming yourself awake’ tactic of escaping nightmares.

Here are my top 5 nightmares in order, where 1 is “unnecessarily awful” and 5  is “yeeeeeeep why the hell was that necessary brain why why why are you such a bellend now I have to put my light on and read a chapter of Winnie the Pooh”. Continue reading

Thanks for the creme egg, Red Sandy: sex clubs, reviewed

Note: NSFW, or people who are bothered by discussion of kinky sex practices. (Other people’s,  not mine!)


Those of you who read my blog will know that I occasionally enjoy browsing through online reviews for supermarkets left by Bristolians with not a lot better to do (see here and here).

I’ve recently taken a slightly new direction in time-wasting. It started when I realised that one of Bristol’s notorious local sex clubs, The Office, has plenty of reviews left for it on dedicated swingers’ message boards. This then led me down an internet rabbit hole.

Since, as I discovered, sex clubs are expensive, people don’t want to pay to get into a dud one. (A dud sex club is apparently one where loads of old fat guys stand around, drinking Stella and crowding round a plastic-sheeted bed watching one presumably discombobulated-but-enthusiastic couple politely ignore them from the missionary position). So online reviews of sex clubs are both comprehensive and detailed across the country, as people try and work out what they should do with their weekends.


The Office sex club, Bristol. Turns out not to be well reviewed, despite the ambitiously in-your-face decor

This all makes me very happy. It turns out that with a bottle of red wine on hand, I can get lost in reading sex club reviews for, well, a bit too long. There’s just something about the banal precision of the way people describe all the facilities, coupled with the arresting details of people’s presumably hot and sticky nights of glitter-covered group sex on revolving beds, that I find both diverting and inspirational. To think that I spend my evenings out drinking G&Ts and talking about whether George Ferguson screwed up by introducing resident’s parking zones.

So, welcome to the world of online sex club reviews. I’ll give you a tour.

Continue reading

A Jonathan Franzen novel, stage by stage

Characters are being described in detail over the course of several pages. You can’t quite picture their faces, but you feel as if you definitely empathise with the overwhelming emotions they are experiencing as they perform small and mundane household tasks. As they watch a kettle come to the boil (800 words) you feel your face settle into an expression of restrained despair.

A character in the book feels very uncomfortable with their expensive, liberal arts college education. They take a horrible job to feel better about it.

You quite enjoy a scene tinged with humour, centring around two old people performing a mundane household task (something like cleaning a bath or replacing a tyre on a car). The scene is witnessed blankly and unemotionally by the younger person with the expensive liberal arts college education, who is picturing having sex with someone inappropriate. By the end of the scene, at least one character will have privately and violently pictured causing serious physical harm to one of the other characters. You check your emotions and find that you don’t really care.

There is an excellent, soul-wrenching passage examining some emotions experienced by a character having a solitary bowel movement. Continue reading

Life changing advice (and DCI Barnaby)

*spoiler alert: formatting is f**ked up in this post, but you don’t care, and neither do I.


I loved this post at Knowable which gathered up 21 Reddit users’ contributions on the theme ‘things people said to me that changed your way of thinking’.

My favourites from the list include:

“Next year, you’ll wish you had started today.” – so true! And in five years time, you’ll wish you started ten years ago.

“You are not required to set yourself on fire to keep other people warm”. – yes, especially when those people probably need more fire than you can ever provide and you’ll just end up burning out. I think this one applies equally well in toxic workplaces AND relationships.

Continue reading

4 ways to use birds to convey your sexual potency on Tinder

You would not believe the number of men who photograph themselves with large birds (usually birds of prey) on Tinder.

I haven’t kept all of them, because they’re not actually funny; and I am considerate of your feelings.

But after seeing it a million times, I’ve started to wonder what is going through these guys’ heads when they consciously select the ‘large bird’ picture for their Tinder profiles.

So, just to get it out the way so that we can get back to Tinder Top Trumps: here is a selection of the common ‘large birds’ shots, with some best guesses of the subtext.

1. The Standard: I’m a Nice Guy with AN EDGE

The tried and tested falconry shot. Continue reading

5 steps for saying no to ‘life-suck’ invitations

I belong to a group of women that regularly get together to discuss our life goals and share personal achievements, drink wine, and give each other advice on stuff we’re struggling with. (I know, that’s quite the opener, right? Try to remember that at least I don’t belong to a local branch of an anarchist network, or regularly knock on doors to ask people if they’ve found Jesus yet, and you might hate me a little less. I promise I’m only telling you because it’s relevant.)

Since it’s January, we spent our last evening together reflecting on 2015 and trying to devise our 2016 goals by working out what  uses of our time we’d got the most and least out of last year.

As we went around the room, I noticed a pattern in what was being said. Essentially, all of us wanted more time to do the stuff that mattered, like spending time with children or significant other, learning something,  growing our own businesses, fixing up our houses, getting better at our favorite sport or hobby, discovering new music, walking in the country, or hosting dinner parties for close friends.

What was getting in the way of a lot of this? Well, quite often, stuff we were doing we didn’t really want to be doing. I’ve started asking around about this, and it seems to be a common theme in our lives, particularly with women.

Examples of the stuff the women I spoke to collectively didn’t want to be doing but were nonetheless spending precious time on include:

Continue reading