I went to see Rebecca Ferguson today

As anyone who was my Facebook friend when Rebecca Ferguson was on X Factor will remember, this admission will seem a bit bizarre, as I didn’t exactly come across as her biggest fan at the time. Indeed, I once tweeted about the fact that I found her ever so slightly boring and was gently trolled within seconds. “You’re just jealous!” her fans fumed, halfheartedly. Oh, the lolz.

There are a couple of reasons why I ended up watching the lovely Becky today. Firstly, I reckon Mother Goose genuinely feared that her firstborn was going to be glued to Netflix for the rest of her days. Secondly, I wanted to see if the Liverpool International Music festival in Sefton Park was any good.

Inexplicably, as soon as we arrived, Mad Tam charged practically to the very front of the sizeable crowd. Mother Goose, our Paul and myself were flummoxed by this move, not least because not one of us had shown the slightest interest in watching her. Thus Mad Tam had outed himself as a closet Rebecca Ferguson fan.

The crowd was made up of middle-aged Smooth FM listeners in double denim, the type of women who would refer to themselves as yummy mummies along with their catalogue kids and fellas, and a smattering of absolutely brilliant Creamfields casualties, who were completely wired and completely confused by their surroundings.

Rebecca may have been the answer to finally sending the Creamfields crew off to sleep, though. She took to the stage with a “Youse having a good day?!” and then proceeded to bore me into a slight daze. Her on-stage banter centred around the fact that she was a bit warm, due to the weather. I am sure she is a very lovely person, and indeed she is very smiley, and inoffensive, and her dress was a nice colour. But her voice is weak – she sounds like she is running out of breath halfway through every line of a song – and I was way more impressed by her backing vocalists, who managed to hold my attention far more successfully than Rebecca did. My problem is that I am not interested in her, at all. I don’t love her or hate her. I am just not bothered. And this is not good. Pop stars should be exciting. They should not make music to be indifferent towards.

Still, the crowd seemed to love it, so what do I know?

SIGH.

With regards to the actual festival itself, it was around a thousand times classier than the Mathew Street festival ever was (which admittedly would not be hard.) I’m sure the good weather helped, but there was a pleasant atmosphere and far fewer complete messes on display. I’m a bit sad I missed the action on the previous three days. However, there’s always next year. Next year, I won’t have Breaking Bad taking over my life. Next year, I’ll attend every single day.

Next year, knowing my luck, it’ll probably rain.

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Abersoch, I love you

I got back from Abersoch on Friday, but am only finding a spare minute to blog about it now due to all my time since my return home being dedicated to watching Breaking Bad (blog on that to follow shortly.) As you may remember from my last post, I was just a tiny bit excited about our trip to Abersoch. It more than lived up to our expectations.

Our abode for the week was slightly more luxurious than the house we used to stay in…

State of us, eh?!

State of us, eh?!

Not bad at all. It featured beautiful grounds, a tennis court, and the following stunning view:

*sigh*

*sigh*

However, I refuse to let a bad word be said about my beloved Olgra (the house where we used to stay), and stated on many an occasion during the week that, when I win the lottery, I am going to buy Olgra, do it up so that it is ULTIMATE BLING, and then none of us will ever be stuck for a place to stay. What a plan!

The weather was, by and large, very kind to us – I even have a slight bronzy, complete with white tan-line across my back, and a white ridge on my nose, thanks to my sunglasses. On one of the drizzly days we made the classic trip of yesteryear to the rabbit farm. I don’t even know where the hell it is, I just know it is an absolute winner when the weather is crap.

This is probably my favourite photo of the entire trip.

Our new alpaca mates at the rabbit farm

Our new alpaca mates at the rabbit farm

We also re-enacted an infamous rabbit farm photo from back in the day…

Then...

Then…

...and now!

…and now!

I have to say, I think our excitement during the rabbit farm trip surpassed the levels displayed when we were actually children. We appear to be regressing.

We also managed to fit in a few visits to the beach, a pub lunch in the Glyn Y Weddw in Llanbedrog (best pub food in the world), an epic barbecue, a 60th birthday tea for Wendy and a football match contested by all males in the party which resulted in Dan being unable to walk properly for the rest of the week. Hashtag pray4Dan.

All in all, it was so good to go back to Abersoch. Such a beautiful place, it reminds me of great people and great times. This trip added to these happy memories – my favourites were the Saturday night in the pub and the slightly rowdy aftermath, and singing along to She’s Electric at the top of our voices another night – and my cousins, siblings and I all made a pact while we were there this time to keep the tradition going.

Long may it continue!

The majority of the gang.  We all look a bit special, but very happy.

The majority of the gang. We all look a bit special, but very happy.

Pair of legends.

Pair of legends.

We’re all going on a summer holiday…

…no more working for ELEVEN DAYS, to paraphrase ol’ Biff Richards. I’m off to Abersoch in North Wales tomorrow, with nearly thirty family members, just like old times. IT IS GOING TO BE AMAZING.

Been a bit quiet on the blog front recently, for a few reasons. Firstly, my life is currently DEVOID OF MEANING due to the fact that Made in Chelsea and The Apprentice have both ended. (This will change when X Factor starts up – apologies in advance. I will be blogging incessantly.) Also, I’ve become addicted to Breaking Bad, and every waking hour is dedicated to watching it. Finally, I’ve only seen about eleven flying ants all year, so as you can see, I really do have nothing to blog about.

Here’s a daft one to ensure that my blog doesn’t go cobwebby through neglect. It’s about some of my favourite holidays ever.

Abersoch

We used to go every single year and stayed in a mad old house called Olgra. It featured bedrooms with about six sets of bunk beds in each one, and baths that were full of sand, and an industrial-sized kitchen, and it was the best house ever in the history of all the land. An entire week with all my siblings and cousins, on the beach, whether it was freezing cold or blisteringly hot, was the highlight of my year, every year. And I cannot wait to make our long-awaited return tomorrow. Just thinking about turning the corner and catching that first glimpse of the harbour is making me want to do a happy dance!

Abersoch, the early years.  Best thing about this photo is the sign for the loos behind us.

Abersoch, the early years. Best thing about this photo is the sign for the loos behind us.

Llandudno

Another North Wales hotspot, we went with the school in Year 6 and I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so much in all my life. Our bunk beds collapsed, we all spent about a grand in coppers in the 2p machine in the arcade, one of the lads confessed his love for me and my “beautiful blue eyes” which would crack me up now, but nearly killed us off with mirth at the age of eleven, and we all looked a show in questionable sportswear.

Soundtrack – MmmBop by Hanson. WHAT. A. SONG.

Never fails to make me chortle.  WE.  ARE.  BAD.  SHOWS.

Never fails to make me chortle. WE. ARE. BAD. SHOWS.

Cyprus

The last bit of sun I think I got on my tragically pasty limbs, this was my very first proper sunshine break abroad (I know, bless me, right?) Our mate Helen got married in Protaras to Anthony and obviously we weren’t missing that for the world. We became obsessed with bingo and gin fizz cocktails, we met the completely gorgeous little Joe, ever-present in the pool, Katie had murder with someone in Ayia Napa – “SHE bumped into ME!” – and I fell into the sea halfway through the wedding reception. Oh, and one of our best mates got married. Not a bad couple of weeks.

All the girls on the Lackeys' wedding day.

All the girls on the Lackeys’ wedding day.

I just love this one!  Sob!

I just love this one! Sob!

Soundtrack – That shufflin’ song, because it was on about a thousand times a day.

Barcelona

We, for some reason, thought that because we were going to Spain, the temperatures would be balmy. We forgot that it was February and therefore froze for the entire time we were there. I got pooed on by a bird at the zoo, we went to Razzmatazz which was probably one of the best nights out in my whole life, and we got told off for being noisy drunkards by our fellow hostel-dwellers. Whoops.

Soundtrack – Torn by Natalie Imbruglia. It was playing when this photo of me was taken, and whenever I look at it I am reminded of how very, very happy I was at that precise moment.

Best night ever.

Best night ever.

So, good times aplenty. Here’s to many more, starting from tomorrow.

P.S I really need to try and travel further afield than the E.U.

Skins is over, and I am sad

So that’s two of my favourite series that have been axed in a matter of months. Shameless was the first to go (read my over-emotional blog about its demise here ) and now Skins has followed suit.

Unlike Shameless, which I lost track of a few series in, I have never missed an episode of Skins (I know, I know, give me a medal, right?) Therefore I am utterly devastated to see it go.

The final series consisted of three two-parters which revisited Effy, Cassie and Cook. Cassie’s were rubbish – the rather daft storyline coupled with the realisation that, far from being fragile and enigmatic, Cassie was in fact just really irritating, wound me right up – but Effy’s and Cook’s displayed what fine actors Kaya Scodelario and Jack O’Connell have become.

I’ve read mixed reviews, of this series, and the programme as a whole. Some have hailed it as groundbreaking, others have dismissed it as unrealistic and over-the-top, and that it lost its way after series four. I’m firmly in the former camp. Granted, there were times when it was a bit heavy on the slightly preposterous neon-spattered raves – I can never remember attending anything like that when I was 16 or 17 – plus there were some absolutely shocking characters introduced in series five and six – Franky anyone? However, I can forgive them for the sometimes unrealistic portrayal of teenagers’ social lives. God knows if there were a series based on my social life at that age, it would be very dull indeed, and the clothes would be terrible and the hair even worse and the most hard-hitting thing featured would be the traumatic days following my brace being tightened. Also, it dealt with issues like mental health problems, eating disorders, bereavement, drugs and teenage pregnancy sensitively, and played host to some truly great characters – Chris, Effy, Cook, Naomi and JJ all spring to mind. Finally, it introduced me to the wondrous being that is Jack O’Connell, and for that I am ever thankful. I’m sad to see it go.

Why I dislike Katie Hopkins

Because hate is a strong word…

 

So, Katie Hopkins is at it again.  Fresh from her appearance on This Morning which hit the headlines as she snootily declared that she would not allow her precious cherubs to associate with children with “common” names like Tyler and Charmaine (The Willoughbooby was NOT impressed), and not long after stating that ginger children were “harder to love”, she’s now written an article listing the ten reasons why women hate other women.

 

Here’s a link:

 

http://www.bestdaily.co.uk/your-life/news/a503520/katie-hopkins-the-10-reasons-women-hate-other-women.html

 

What a load of poisonous nonsense.  I only dislike people – women OR men – if they are, to give a few examples, dishonest, or bigoted, or if they hurt my family and friends.  To use ol’ Katie as a case in point, I do not dislike her because she is happy with her lot, or because she’s “got what she wants.”  I dislike her because she is a snob, and because if I had children, she would probably dismiss them as unworthy for her kids to play out with.  I dislike her because I feel that her opinions are damaging and that they are encouraging women to turn against each other.

 

To prove the latter point, I am saddened to see that her Twitter timeline is awash with women agreeing with her views.  Is that what she wants?  Women admitting that they are jealous of each other, and are bitter about the fact that they are not slim, or successful, or haven’t got a nanny?  Whatever happened to Girl Power?  These people would never have made it as Spice Girls, I tells ye.

 

Like Liz Jones (frankly terrifying) and Samantha Brick (frankly deluded) before her, she is just another spiteful hack who thinks she’s telling it like it is.  In reality I strongly believe that all of three of these women don’t believe the majority of the bile they pen – they are solely doing it for attention. 

 

So for that reason, I will speak about her no more.  She craves the attention.  Hopefully, if we all ignore her from now on, she will realise that no-one is listening anymore and will fade away from the spotlight.

                                                                                                 

Side-note – my favourite quote in the article is the following:  “Men are capable of looking one another in the eye and telling it straight.”  Really?!  The majority of men I know are frankly useless at communicating.  Lovely men nonetheless, but rubbish at “telling it straight.”  So to give Katie her due, that at least raised a wry grin.