Tuesday, June 19, 2007

A (rather unusual) day in the life...

What a strange and surreal weekend! I have another reason to add to my list of how I could get on The Jerry Springer Show. It is true that I have at no time been a man, nor do I have any children that I require a DNA test for (oh, that's Jeremy Kyle isn't it?) and I have never been in love with a donkey, however family- and relationship-wise there are a good few leads.

On Saturday it was down to Huddersfield for a 'family' wedding reception. This is something of a long story, however I shall try to summarise as best I can. I am not really Divinyl. No, I am not an imposter who has been trying to pull the wool for all these years, and I have not taken the surname I have just because it is uber cool and trendy. You see, my dad was adopted as a baby. And this is where the story starts.

Pick said story up 60 years later and my dad decides to try to find his birth mother. Which he does. However, before he gets the chance to meet her she is taken into hospital, unfortunately never to leave there alive again. So, the only time my dad has actually seen his mother is once she, unfortunately, could not see him…I'm thinking this has probably all been a lot more surreal for him than it has for me!

Anyway, as his mother was dying in hospital, her children were opening any post she received. Which included a letter from my dad. These people had never known about him (and they are 52, 50 and 46...or something like that), but got in touch with him via e-mail, and they have since met up. Which is why we were invited to the wedding reception of the son of one of my dad's new brothers…all very convoluted eh?

I can only imagine the surprise these folk felt when they found out they had a (half) sibling they had never heard about. Well, I can imagine pretty well, because, at 26, I found out that my dad had a son before me, who was adopted at birth and will now be about 40 (is there a pattern developing here?). I found it very strange that he had never mentioned this to me, so it must be even more bizarre to find this out when you are double my age!

Hang on, just got to take a 'phone call…"No thank you, Mr Springer, I do not wish to appear on your show 'Lesbian Love Triangles Exposed'". Oh, sorry…that's a different story entirely!

Ok, back to the story in question…

So I travelled down to Huddersfield from Gateshead, whilst my family (my actual family of dad, step-mum and my two brothers) travelled up from Surrey. I arrived at the hotel where the wedding reception was taking place a few hours before my parents, and checked into my room…which was grimy and had the strangest bath I have ever seen…a pink circular number with a step to sit on in it…trying to shave my legs really got me in quite a tangle. When my parents and brothers arrived, their rooms were in a different, and refurbished, part of the hotel, and were actually quite nice. So I was Cinderella in my mucky hovel of a room!

Anyhoo, everything from there was without incident until, after I had finished my make-up and so on, I put on the dress that I had bought and one of the straps came away. Now this dress was the most expensive I have ever purchased…and I was also planning on wearing it to my pal's wedding this coming August (which is going to cost me a bomb…travelling down to Hampshire for the hen 'do' of horse riding and then back again two weeks later for the wedding itself…and I'll also have to sort out a B&B/hotel room for the night). It came from Monsoon, cost me £85.00 (ouch!) and fit beautifully. It was (for I have now taken it back in disgust) a lovely turquoise/teal colour, just past knee length, empire line, with a few large white and black poppy-ish flowers on it. It really was nice, honestly. My youngest brother was dispatched to the hotel reception to try to find a sewing kit, so we could botch it enough for me to wear (I can't sew, so that would have to have been in the hands of my step-mum I think). Alas, no such sewing kit was available…so I had to take all my make-up off (which I'd done to match the outfit) and start again (after, mid-crisis, walking past the bride in the hotel corridor, and feeling very embarrassed, because I was obviously dressed to go to her party yet had never even seen her before!). Fortunately I had also taken a pair of black trousers and a top with me…however I was the only woman there in trousers, when I had a beautiful dress sitting unworn in my room. Could've been worse…

So, crisis over, I headed down to meet the 'family'. There seemed to be hundreds of them! Names upon names of people I had never met, but who claimed to be related to me! One actually introduced herself as "Auntie Linda". I did a lot of polite smiling, nodding, hand-shaking, cheek-kissing, that kind of thing, but must admit I felt a little befuddled by the whole affair. And I now have 'family' in both Sydney and Calgary, which has got to be a good thing…Bondi Beach here I come (or maybe I should obtain a gym membership first? Nah, sod that!). Incidentally (here we go again), and almost completely irrelevantly, did you know that the Sydney Harbour Bridge was manufactured in Middlesbrough? Some great things have come out of that place…even if I do say so myself ;o)

Surreal as it was, everyone did seem very nice and welcoming…I just drank lots to help cope with the stress of it all! This is possibly the first time my parents have seen me pissed…although I was still of good behaviour! I did a lot of bonding with my 13 year old brother, who was telling me how he likes to drink blue WKD and has been snogging girls…a different world entirely to my 16 year old brother, who still loves Warhammer and Dungeons and Dragons and doesn't want alcohol even when offered it!

All in all, a surprisingly pleasant evening and jolly nice people. My dad's fully hopped on board this 'whole new family' thing. I, myself, feel a little more reserved about the whole business…yes, these are nice people, but there's a but. Like I said, however, they couldn't have been more welcoming.

Dad and I are in agreement, on the other hand, with regards our own mini Patti Smith appreciation society. He had bought me her latest album 'Twelve' (as well as Joan As Police Woman's 'Real Life'…which will now replace my slightly less than legal downloads…and a cd by a woman called Keren Ann, who I've never even heard of…it's a little embarrassing when you're 60 year old dad's more 'down with the kids' than you are! He had also asked for me to burn my Gossip cds for him. Music has always been the common ground that it is easiest to talk about…but we are getting better when it comes to more serious stuff…like when he was up visiting, I said to him that I felt he should tell my younger brothers about the son he had that was adopted, as I didn't think it was fair that they didn't know or that I should have to keep it as a secret from them. I digress again…). This somewhat devalued the Fathers' Day gifts that I had got him, but it was all very much in keeping with the theme…Ms Smith's 'Easter' and a book of her poetry (my dad didn't realise that she had so many strings to her bow).

Whilst we're on a musical bent, I am currently rather addicted to Luscious Jackson's album 'Electric Honey' (I am also addicted to ice cream…of any flavour bar chocolate really…but that is beside the point)…an album I have had for what is probably more than a decade, but has much more recently found its way onto my 'essential listening' list. I have also decided that Carole King's 'Tapestry' is probably my favourite album…despite generally complaining when being asked to name just one. I love those songs…and I really love singing along to them in my car! :o) Music-ness-wise, the last thing I have to say for now is, in true Divinyl fashion, a result of reading The Observer yesterday (well, I've nearly finished Music Monthly...as usual, the rest of the paper remains to be read in stages over the coming week!). Sinead O'Connor, apparently, in 2005, converted to Rastafarianism. That woman is truly odd…she has been a kissogram, a priest, a lesbian…what other joys are yet to come??

On the subject of reading…I have just finished 'The Book of Lost Things' by John Connolly. Well, the story itself finished after 348 pages of a 502 page tome, so I'm not sure what's left to read. But I thoroughly enjoyed it. It is the story of David, a 12 year old boy in wartime England, whose mother dies. David than starts to go a little bit loopy, hearing books (which were always a jolly important part of he and his mother's life) whispering to him, and to each other. When an aeroplane crashes into his garden, David ends up in a fantasy/fairy tale world of wolves, beasts, dwarves, trolls and suchlike, where he must travel to reach the king in order to find his way back home. All the while being pursued by the Crooked Man. Twas a rollicking good yarn and I would thoroughly recommend it…particularly if you enjoyed such books as 'The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time' or 'The Boy in Striped Pyjamas' (pyjamas is such a great word!).

Heather would like it to be pointed out that, although pyjamas is indeed a good word, she personally doesn't believe it to be as good as 'cagoule'.

For today I shall leave you with a Big Brother classic…

Chanelle, the twins (still entirely indistinguishable in any way from each other) and one of the new housemates, Brian, were discussing long words…basically naming any words of more than one syllable that they had in their limited vocabularies:

Chanelle: What about juxtaposition?
Brian: Is that a sexual position?

Seriously, what woodwork do these people come out from when Big Brother comes around?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

What's white and giggles?

A tickled onion! Tee hee…totally the type of rubbish joke that I find very amusing…Peeg, you are a genius for telling me that one. I just don't understand why it's been received with groans from the people I've passed it on to. And there have been two separate people who have responded with the answer "You". Well, I suppose this is also valid.

This is the blog which should really have preceded the Big Brother stuff…but I am laaaaaaaazzzzzzzzy! It's another one of my hotch-potch nothingness blogs me sweets.

A lot of this will be about (live) music…there seem to be so many great gigs on in Newcastle lately :o)

Ok, so onto gigs that I have attended (recently)…

The first of the batch was Patti Smith at the Sage. I went to it with me dad…how rockin' am I?! I was panicking about my dad coming up to stay…he has not seen the inside of my house since he helped me move in…and I am not exactly known for being tidy. In usual Divinyl fashion, like every essay or revision deadline I ever had as a student, I completely avoided the tidying thing until the very last minute…but, fortunately (and with lots of advance warnings that it was worse than it actually was) I managed to pull it off. And it was a rather nice 'weekend' actually ('weekend' with inverted commas either side of it because it actually occurred over a Wednesday and Thursday night…I took the Thursday off work as Annual Leave). My dad now knows I smoke!!! This is massive. And I am 27! He sussed me…I went for a cig in the pub we went to after the gig and he smelt it on me when I came back…oops! Anyway, it was a slightly under the influence (and much mellower since he has been off work sick long-term) dad who caught me out, so it all turned out ok. I still didn't smoke in front of him the whole time he was here though.

Anyhoo…Ms Smith. Was excellent. A real crowd-rouser. It was one of those gigs that, had it been the 60s and the audience collectively on mind-altering substances, would have been described as 'seminal' (in the 'massively influential and noteworthy' sense, as opposed to something to do with fluids...yuck!) in the annals of time. Even without said substances it was still jolly good. The cover of Neil Young's 'Helpless' that she closed with was particularly enjoyable. My dad, who (despite being very into all sorts of music) has never been into Patti Smith, came away a total fan, vowing to purchase the latest album, which he had said he's only seen rubbish reviews of, and saying that it was up there in the top three gigs he has ever seen (he is 60 and has been to rather a lot of gigs).

Two days later (after, on the intermediate evening, introducing papa to Revolution's take on the Bloody Mary and Tokyo's Chilli Mojitos…and the Bacchus to round it off with some Landlord…pure class us like!) it was back to the Sage to catch Bat For Lashes and Joan As Police Woman. I enjoyed both very much, although Joan had decided to perform with just her and a piano on stage and I think I would have enjoyed her with a band more. Seemed like a jolly nice woman though, and she had a very nice nose. Bat For Lashes were suitably crazy and off-the-wall, as expected. And, due to them, I now realise that I want to play the dulcimer...or at least that I think the dulcimer is cool (Anthony had to name what it was for me though).

The following day I was invited along to go and see Eliza Gilkyson at the Cluny. I haven't heard anything of hers beyond her name before. I think I would probably describe it as country-tinged folk. I enjoyed the gig, but don't think I need to be traipsing out to get hold of her entire back catalogue. I may be a philostine, but I have never heard of her father, Terry Gilkyson…apparently he wrote the song 'Bare Necessities'. This is a tune with which I am most familiar, having made up an 'alternative lyrics' version about a boy I knew when I was 15 (those lyrics weren't very complimentary, but not because I personally knew him 'in that sense'…it was mostly about the fact that lots of other girls did).

I missed the Freevolution festival at the Quayside on Bank Holiday Monday as my pal that I'd arranged to go with couldn't come along…twas a shame, but I wasn't too gutted, as there was only Datarock that I was really keen on checking out. And the weather was pretty rotten…whereas previous years I have managed to get some colour to my skin while I load myself with free cider (I don't even like cider but, hey, when it's free!). This global warming business is obviously not all it's cracked up to be ;o) I do hope it's nicer for the Americana wotsit in July…

…at which Holly Golightly will be playing…the second time I will have been able to catch her for free. And she was great last time…I even jiggled a little bit! As part of that I will also be seeing (although paying to go and see) Nanci Griffith and Laura Veirs (the latter being supported by people I know…how ace is that?!).

I've also been rounding a crowd up to go and see Ruthie Foster at the Cluny. She's not someone I know a great deal about, but the stuff on her MySpace page sounds good…kind of bluesy-soulish. I do like to give new things a whirl!

But the gig that I am MOST excited about (and have to wait until July for!) is Sunny Sweeney. She is a great country singer…and I mean C-O-U-N-T-R-Y! I bought her album on the 'net' from America before it was available in the UK, so have been listening to her for some time now, and I'm stoked that she's coming to Newcastle. This is a woman who, only one album in, has already played the Opry! She has also turned me into a petty criminal; I half-inched a poster, which was advertising her upcoming show, from The Cluny. Don't worry Sunny, there was more than one, I'm not going to be denting your ticket sales. As well as having made a cracking album, she also seems like a jolly nice and down-to-earth person…the kind that actually takes the time to get around to responding to any messages you leave her on MySpace and who keeps a canny blog to boot. It still doesn't change the fact that I don't own a Hag t-shirt though (she has a thing for collecting Merle Haggard t-shirts)…I wonder if turning up in a Dolly one will do?

Polly Paulusma is on at the Academy (for the princely sum of a fiver!) this Thursday if anyone fancies it? I missed her at the Cluny recently...I've also now missed seeing Josh Pyke twice, just because no-one was able to / wanted to go with me...and I'm generally a bit too scaredy to brave gigs on my own!

Blimey...I'm just checking out what I had already written of this blog and it was truly yonks ago that I started it! I was, I think, about to write about a programme that was on "last night" as I was going to sleep...that was actually several weeks ago now! The world seems to be whizzing past me at the moment...mostly as I sleep! This whole being back at work thing has kind of knocked me for six and it doesn't really seem to be leaving the space or time for anything else. I have weeks and weeks worth of Facebook messages I haven't yet replied to, just because I don't have the energy. People must think that I am so rude!

Anyway, the programme that I was going to talk about was that music show on Channel 4 that's hosted by Lauren Laverne and that Welsh boy off T4. And I was busying myself trying to get to sleep (which really hasn't been a problem more recently...busying myself trying not to fall asleep has been far more taxing), but then 'came round' to see Yoko Ono, Beth Ditto (she has such a darling accent when she speaks) and Ana Matronic (grrr!) all sitting on a sofa together...it all felt very surreal. Oh and Bat For Lashes were playing on the same show. I was getting slightly worried about the rate at which Ditto seems to be putting on weight (hoping that it wasn't just to make a point to the media...and rapid weight loss is also something I would comment on if there was someone worth commenting on...Paris Hilton (throw away the key next time!)/ Lindsay Lohan / Nicole Ritchie I couldn't care less...really, what do they add to society? Particularly those 'Simple Life' girls...simple indeedy!) until I saw her naked cover photo for the NME (the first time I have bought it in...I dunno, 13 / 14 years). She looks fab! Bring it on chick.

I always go to sleep with the telly on...I'm really not so good with the whole silence schtick (you don't say?). Either the old brain starts working overtime, or I get scared because I start thinking I can hear noises like my house is being broken into or something (if only those burgling scum realised...or gave a shit...the impact they have on people's lives). So, that particular night, after said Ditto programme, I next stirred to find, there on my screen, a talking panda. Now I really wasn't sure if I was just dreaming or not, or even hallucinating from lack of sleep! But that was nothing compared to the next time I opened my eyes. By that point, said talking panda was being, erm...let's say manually pleasured, by some zookeeper man. WTF?

At this stage, having disclosed the above, I feel I need some nice cosy sanctuary...so let's have a bit of a chat about Neighbours eh? It's totally crazy lately...on the occasions I have caught it, Karl and Susan have been holidaying (is that how you spell it?) in London, where they have bumped into Emma Bunton and Parky, and been re-married by Neil Morrissey, with Sinitta present as a witness! Way to boost a flagging career...bit-part in Neighbours! Ahem.

But, alas, the little cosy retreat of tea time BBC1 has also been threatened recently. Nope, I'm not talking about the fact that the Beeb have decided not to bother re-purchasing it...I am talking about the fact that they have killed off the Stinger!! That's spiggin' dreadful that is...Scotty, I will mourn you forever :o(

And I think, for now, we should leave this here...in loving memory of Stingray (de de ler de der de).

Oh, except for one final ponderance...

Is it just me, or do some of those "Dulux - We know the colours that go" colours really not go?

Friday, June 1, 2007

Where are all the men?!!

This is not something I am normally wont to ask. I am, of course, referring to Big Brother. It is a house full of women!

There is also something else amiss with this series…has anyone else noticed it? Davina is not pregnant. Is this some new kind of plot twist?

Now, I would love to be 'cool' enough to not care and not bother watching to see who everyone is. I am not even going to pretend. Don't get me wrong, I'm not someone who feels the need to sit in and watch every show, or ring the helpline when it is all over, but I do like to watch that first episode so that I know who all the contestants are when everyone is talking about them in the office!

I, like the true dweeb I am, made notes as I watched them all entering the house. My intention was to write a blog that night, so that I could be one of the first BB blogs. Saying that, my general verbosity would have probably killed that idea anyway. And then my need to sleep before work the next day also superseded it all. So, here I am, 2 days later, when everybody already knows what's going on, finally getting around to it (and this blog, in turn, has superseded the next general rantiness blog I had planned).

My plan was to offer a 'quick guide' style pr├ęcis of each of the contestants, giving my first impressions etc. These will all likely be disproved anyway, as you can never tell how it will all play out.

At this early stage I am loving Laura and Carole; I am undecided on Nicky, Tracey (she is either going to be totally brill or incredibly annoying) and Lesley; and I am fairly sure I am going to hate Charley, Shabnam and those god awful twins. Hating people is a good thing, in my opinion, Big Brother-wise. The British public always make the mistake of voting out the annoying ones when, actually, those are the people that make it worth watching. There are two further contestants – Posh-alike and Geldof (Peaches)-alike (or so she says…why on earth would anyone want to emulate either of these people?! Is this what role models for young women have come to?), but they don't really seem to be very noteworthy.

So, without further ado:

The Big Brother house

(You will all, of course, know most of this by now, so I shall keep this bit brief)

It looks small! Smaller = more confined = more conflict? There is also a general ridiculousness going on whereby the kitchen appliances are scattered around the place. The cooker is in the bedroom, the fridge-freezer is in the garden, the kitchen sink is by the bath (which is in the living room) etc. etc. Yes, this will be annoying, but just seems rather silly…is this the best they could come up with? I suppose the other notable thing is the sleeping arrangements; there is one single bed (cleverly bagged by Lesley, saying that she had been promised it by Big Brother…no-one thought to question this), but otherwise everyone is going to have to share. One of the beds is big enough to sleep about six people, with one long pillow that everyone is going to have to share (that would annoy me so much…I like to scrunch my pillows up to funny angles, flip them over to get to the cold side etc.!). My only other comment on the house, for now, is sadly a rather grown up one :o( I really like the green tiles in the shower; I wonder where they got them from? That, of course, is by the by. Ok, so onto the contestants (in the order they entered the house):

1 and 2 – Sam and Amanda

Giggling, blonde, identikit 18 year old twins…wearing matching outfits and speaking in unison. Key quotes from them on launch night include:

"If there's only one fit boy in the house, we'll share him."

Oh dear, just what the pervy old men want to see and be thinking about. They, despite their seeming lack of any depth whatsoever, were obviously very aware of this as they bounced into the house in very short skirts each licking a lollipop. And I'm sure there will be antics aplenty in terms of pretending one is the other etc. They are indistinguishable as they behave as if they are one person, never mind looking alike. It was all arm waving, screeching "It's pink!" and so on. And jumping on items of furniture like they are small children…18 year olds just don't behave like that. They rate themselves "Ten out of ten for attractiveness" also apparently.

3 – Lesley

The next person to enter seemingly couldn't provide more of a contrast. Lesley, aged 60, looks like (and appears as restrained as) a headmistress or a female MP. According to Davina she is also 'mates' with Charles and Camilla. She said some semi-witty things, but these were simply on a different plane to most of the other housemates. She claims not to like music…full stop. Does this woman have a soul? I thought she was a likely lezzie Lesley, however the papers say she is married and has several adult children (not as in that fetish where grown men wear nappies and such, just that she has offspring that are themselves now above legal voting age)…but then I don't suppose that precludes anything and it's just me making assumptions about peoples roles etc. etc. Yawn. The key quote from her 'VT' was:

"I think there's a very strong possibility that I will win."

Hmmm…doubtful methinks. She seemed to be in such shock from the whole experience to date that she was super keen to get into the champers that had been provided…looked like she was necking the stuff! Even on the first night it already looked like she was getting a bit side-lined by all the giggling young girls…however she also seemed to be making a point of hanging back and appraising. I am bemused about why someone like Lesley would want to go into the Big Brother house and, in fairness, it would seem she is too! Very much an anomaly in this house.

4 – Charley

Charley, 24 (and played by Neneh Cherry), was booed as she entered the house…never a good sign, but it might mean she becomes a classic Big Brother 'love to hate' character. It certainly looks like she will slip into the role (or one of them, given it is a house full of women) of 'house bitch' without too much of a problem. She describes herself as a "South-East London 'it' girl" (or was that Davina describing her as that…I forget) and says such fan-winning things as "I love money". She is clearly a wannabe 'WAG', as she was mentioning going out with footballers and her cousin (Kieran someone? Football really means nothing to me) playing for Man U. The only positive I have to comment upon for Charley is that she says she has a phobia of "skinny people". Saying this, it wasn't long before she was commenting on how she is a size zero (my arse!) and hates it…yawn! She was already telling housemate number six she loved her as she stepped over the threshold…yeah, that's genuine and sincere! Basically she is an unemployed blagger living the high life whilst contributing nothing…and she used to work as a lap-dancer.

(Phew! Cash-in ad break long enough for me to get a tarb smerked.)

5 – Tracey

A 36 year old cleaner ("Cleaning – I'm good at it"), with pink hair, who has collected carrier bags since she was six and also does a good line in blown light bulbs. We present to you a true British eccentric…or simply a drug-fucked nutter! In true BB spirit…"You decide"! My first impression of Tracey was that at some point in the past she must have been a man. Watching her further I am not sure…she claims not to wear any make-up (again this is me stereotyping, but surely a MTF would do this in an effort to appear feminine?)…she is definitely rather masculine either way. Her catchphrase, and indeed her first words as she stepped through that door, seems to be "Have it!" (with a notable pronunciation of the aitch – not haitch all you people out there who annoy me by pronouncing it wrong. And on a similar note, it's nuclear...if it was pronounced 'nucular' surely it would be spelt like that?). She also overuses variations on the word 'buzzing', example, "I'm a buzzing person". What does that even mean, really? It's all about 'buzzing her tits off in a field' and threatening to leave naked when (not if!) she gets evicted. Saying this, she may turn out to be alright…I'm undecided on this one so far. But, for now, for a final strike against her, we also have the fact that she describes herself as "In your face"…oh dear! The celebrity she thinks she is most like is Julie Walters…I need this one explaining to me!

6 – Chanelle

Chanelle, 19, wants to be famous and rich (nothing new there then)…or a speech therapist in Spain. Interesting…well, not really, when you look at the rest of the evidence. To her credit she has a Yorkshire accent and grade seven violin. This is all I have found so far…she is something of a nonentity. She models herself on Victoria Beckham (and even admits that she is doing this on purpose!)…even down to the pouts for the cameras. Chanelle has met VB once, who apparently told her she was beautiful…nowt like a bit of narcissism. This really is all I have to say about her…she wasn't even memorable enough to note down a 'key quote'.

7 – Shabnam (or Shabs, as she gets called)

Now, Shabs seemed alright from the video of her talking etc. before she entered the house. She spoke about things such as her love of reading on the toilet and the fact that she is "passionate about eating". She tells us that people who like to eat are her friends…and she has beautiful eyes. All good. It all starts to slip when she reveals that one of her nicknames is 'Shabalicious' and, shortly after this, is the most screamiest screamer since the twins. She has also already said things like "I'm just checking out how sexy I look" (I am paraphrasing this one perhaps, as I didn't write it down…might not be exactly word for word…or it may well be!). Likely to be a backbone of the Big Brother screaming, bitching girly posse.

8 – Emily

Emily is 19, blonde and posh. She has teeth that cost £4000. She likens herself to Peaches Geldof (why would you do that…why?), but says that she is "not a rich bitch"…I think that might be a point that is up for debate. She is into a "new music that's taking over our country and it's called indie" (her words, not mine…dimwit!). She hopes to meet Pete Doherty-type boys in the house (again, what the fuck? And furthermore, unlikely…I hear smack is scarce within tham thar walls). She has clearly been practicing her pose for the paps before entering the house…it was the full-on bag-to-the-floor sideways pout shebang. She gives herself ten out of ten for intelligence…but will be voting Conservative in the next election.

(There have been false hugs and squealing galore by this point).

9 – Laura (are we nearly there yet?)

Laura is a fat girl, who is 23 and very Welsh. She seems great (hey, I never said that this was going to be an objective critique). Now, I don't mean 'fat girl' in a derogatory way…it is refreshing in the world of BB! I wondered whether she was trying to be a bit of a Beth Ditto-alike, but she proudly announced that she'd been told she looks like Peter Kay. Tee hee. Key quote in this case was something about how we'd probably perceive her as a fat bitch, but she was going to say anyway that "food makes me happy". Game on to you petal. Her ideal job would be as an embalmer and she sweeps leaves for free in her local graveyard. Laura, I think, is going to be a bit of a 'floater'. Sorry to refer to you as that, Laura! What I mean is one of those Big Brother 'inmates' that will not show allegiances with only one group within the house, but who will merrily try to chat to, and get on with, everyone. So far, she seems to have been the only one of the younger housemates to have paid any regard to trying to get to know the older members of the household. She got a great big cheer from the crowd as she went in.


10 – Nicky

Aged 27, born in Bombay and adopted by a Catholic family in the UK, Nicky says "I really love cigarettes and electro music" and "men…yeurch, gross!". She expands upon this by telling us that she would choose vodka over men and that love is for losers. Then, entirely contradicting all of this, she states that if she could sleep with any celebrity it would be Callum Best (one of the worst man-slags going!). Her party trick is doing a rendition of the Cheeky Girls (I do hope this is as a piss-take and that she hasn't spent too long practicing it) and her half brother appeared in the tv programme Skins. I am undecided so far as to whether Nicky seems ok, or whether she will just merge into the group of aforementioned screaming, bitching girlies.

(By this point the people in the house seem to be getting progressively less excited as they welcome each new arrival…too wrapped up are most of them, it would seem, in talk of make-up and how simply wonderful they are).

And finally (for now)…

11 – Carole

Carole, a 53 year old divorced bisexual, is a slightly bearded woman with a head of iron wool scraped into a top knot. I am already thinking that this is a good sign and that she should be decent to watch! She is another big lass who seems like a good sport and who garnered a massive cheer from the crowd outside the house. She regularly attends demonstrations and once dressed as a mobile 'phone when she went to see the Scissor Sisters. Apparently she also has a 'giant African land snail' as a pet. Possible the best quote of all, delivered in a strong London accent (and let's not forget by a 53 year old woman):
"I am gonna shake it summink rotten, and they will be shaken shitless".
Totally one to watch I reckon…Lesley certainly seems to think so…I wasn't sure from her reaction to Carole entering the house whether she was shocked because another older woman (who seems more fun than she is) was there, or whether it was because it was an ex-shag she never thought she'd see again…it was literally hand over mouth from her.

And that's our lot…still no men. Although apparently they will be throwing a man into the pit for them all tonight.

It's early days, but so far I'm gunning for Laura and Carole. Shabs and Charley already look like they've decided to be the best of friends…and I don't think that that is going to be a good thing. Lesley and Tracey have already been excluded/excluded themselves from the first (very loud) visit to the diary room (by all the other housemates all at once). Laura has already been subjected to people feeling it's ok to touch her breasts just because they are large…seriously, this is not ok people. And that's my lot for now.

I wonder what I'll be thinking of each of these people in even a week's time?

Oh, just one last thing…

I was over the moon with the fact that we'll no longer have to put up with Russell Brand (presenting Big Brother's Big Mouth)…but then I found out he has been replaced by Chris Moyles…guh! Clearly no improvement whatsoever :o(