a yellow antidote to the grey
Well it’s been bleak of late hasn’t it? As I stand shivering every morning in positively BALTIC conditions at Harringay station, ready to press myself onto the 8.04 to Moorgate, folding my limbs beneath a stranger’s armpit like a disgruntled contortionist, it’s difficult to feel full of the joys of Spring. Rather than the beautiful yellow of bobbing daffodils, the colour of this particular Spring seems to be grey. And white, when that pissing snow keeps falling. Who can blame the weather though really? It seems to be reflecting what’s going on generally- teetering on the cusp of triple dip recession, budget cuts, deaths of controversial past political leaders, HECK even in Cyprus, a country famed for sunshine and delicious houmous-based snacks they’re all feeling jolly sad and stressed.
This is bad.
At times like this, when Life and Weather are ganging up, generally sniggering at you behind your back and being a right couple of pricks, I think it’s important to make a concerted effort to feel positive, to find the sunshine in the mundanity. So here’s my guide to some nice things.
- Take pictures of funny street names. I got a thrill recently and chuckled heartily upon spotting ‘Mincing Alley’ and ‘Great Bell Street’. (haha BELL. AS IN BELLEND. HA!)
- Look up. Buildings are beautiful in London. Breathe in the domes and spires.
- Salute a couple of chirpy magpies. Can’t hurt, two are for joy.
- Listen to songs that feature more than one key change. It’s impossible not to smile when you hear Eternal and Bebe Winans scream their way through five key changes of gospel goodness in ‘I Wanna Be The Only One’.
- Orange skittles and Orange Starburst. They are like pellets of mouth sunshine.
- Drink pints of real ale and cider in old pubs. At every opportunity. The stronger the pint and the more weird stuff they have on the walls the better.
- Find one of your old friends within the pages of a book. I recently paid a visit to William as he said ‘Goodnight Mister Tom’ and it felt like being given a great big literary hug.
- Wrestle/cuddle someone immediately. Maybe not your colleague or the man making your morning latte though. Housemate/friend/lover all acceptable candidates.
- Look at pictures of nice men with beards. I can really recommend this site for it. You’re really really welcome guys: http://vikingposts.tumblr.com/
- Watch old British sitcoms back to back. BALLS TO YA BOX SETS HBO, YA NEVER MADE THEM LIKE BLACKADDER.
- Read interviews in magazines and pretend you’re famous and ask yourself the questions. God I feel important and successful when I do that. And a bit like that bloke in ‘The Commitments’ who gets interviewed by Terry Wogan in the bath.
- Go to the pub quiz and feel well smug when you know the answer to a question.
- Freeze grapes and eat them. Seriously. They are like little balls of healthy ice lolly.
- Don’t stretch until you have time and space to actually have a really good stretch where you can go for it and make this sound whilst you ‘re doing it : ‘YYAARUUUUAAAAHHHHHHH’
- Enjoy nice words. Three of my best ones are ‘soft’, ‘chugging’, and ‘replete’.
- Play the ‘bring me a present’ game. When someone says they’re popping somewhere (the shop/out/the loo) shout ‘BRING ME A PRESENT’. The idea is for them to come back with the most random/inventive thing they can find. Excellent booty so far includes: a dummy, a doorwedge (sorry Birmingham University Library) and a floppy disk (anyone under the age of 21 is going, ‘what’s that?’)
- Stroke a cat. They purr so loud and it makes you feel like a DON. If you don’t have one, come round mine and you can give Toby a little rub on the head. You’ll probably have to give him a piece of ham or something though in return because he’s a lad and his Dad was a panther.
- Read poetry. Honestly, it’s good I promise.
- Change your bedding. Take all the drugs you want, indulge in casual sex, eat a vat of chocolate- I guarantee nothing feels as good as CLEAN SHEET NIGHT.
- Wear your best frock and a fake moustache to tidy up your house. I’m not just saying it to be lol, I did it once and I felt so free.
- Spin around on your chair then try and walk, suck some helium then try and talk- sometimes the old ones are the best.
- Start a whatsapp chat with as many of your friends as possible. Mine keep me laughing and informed on a daily basis. And anyway, pictures of your mates pulling their ugliest faces in public are always funny.
- Remember how good these things are: chandeliers, kilts, wellies, raising one eyebrow, the blue whale at the Natural History Museum, frogspawn, rubber ducks, fairy lights, the sound of a lovely accent, cups and saucers and Trebor extra strong mints.
- Wish on eyelashes, stars and wells. Why not, it can’t hurt to keep shoving your dreams out into the ether right?
And if all else fails, invest in a big bottle of Hendricks and sit tight until Sunday- apparently it’ll be 20 degrees. Dust off your flipflops and shake off your smiles folks, looks like Spring might, finally, be on it’s way.