An introduction to my Mirandaisms

I am Miranda (not the sexy Kerr kind). Not by name, but definitely by nature. For those that have never watched the comedy show, I’m an embarrassing, overly excited disaster area to all those that know me.

I cannot even begin to recall the number of times I’ve been stuck in situations so cringeworthy that sudden death has seemed like the most painless and sensible solution.

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This blog is designed to help me pour my heart out, as a form of counselling I suppose. I’m hoping that an embarrassment shared is an embarrassment halved, but then I’ve always been a wishful thinker. So here goes…

Dating was never a breeze, but it was pretty windy

Once upon a time I went on dates.

I’ve always struggled with word date. It sounds so formal, and formality and I don’t mix. Let’s just go with once upon a time I went for dinner with men who made me laugh, were vaguely attractive, and were willing to pick up the bill.

One of these vaguely attractive men was a work colleague and despite all the warnings not to mix business with pleasure, I agreed to go to dinner with him.

It was a great dinner, nothing stiff (if you pardon the pun) or formal and snoozy. He had arranged for us to go to a Jamie Oliver joint in Clapham where you cook your own dinner under instruction from an infinitely more skilled than you chef, then sit down in a group to eat it together, and coo over your creations.

Up on the menu that night was veggie risotto, nothing too strenuous.

By some miracle, all went smoothly in the kitchen. In went the onions, the stock, mountains of Parmesan bla bla bla. It tasted pretty good and I felt proud that I had proved myself as a domestic goddess. Wife material? Yeah, pretty much.

We ate, we laughed, we ate some more, and then we left to walk to a nearby pub. Back then I bothered to wear heels out, so off I sashayed, feeling like superwoman.

All was going so well, until I was suddenly doubled over in pain, clinging to a bus stop sign, feeling as though a crossbow had been fired through my stomach.

I’m gonna put it out there, I have IBS. I use the abbreviated version rather than the full title, because it avoids me having to say bowel. Well, there you go, I said it. Everybody, worldwide web, I have irritable bowel syndrome.

Now, on a date, that’s not something you want to be talking about. But, the pain was so unbearable that I couldn’t even stand straight to walk. There was no hiding something was very wrong.

In those moments, the only thing to do is let out a fart….like a HUGE fart. Don’t worry, I didn’t, at that moment anyway.

My date, as caring as he was, didn’t really help the situation, when he turned around ON OUR FIRST DATE and asked, “Do you need a poo? Is it trapped wind?”

“Trapped wind?!” I replied, absolutely horrified. “Of course not!”

What on earth was he suggesting? That this woman who had slipped on red stilettos to cook dinner was a woman who (whispered voice)…farts?

Instead I told him I had been bitten and needed to go and check it out, in the pub loo. It was the middle of winter and the most plausible thing I could come up with was an insect bite. Way to go, you twat.

I wouldn’t say I sprinted to the pub toilet exactly, but it was definitely running-for-the-bus-and-don’t-want-people-to-think-you’re-running speed.

I don’t need to go into detail about what happened in that toilet, but I can tell you I was fine by the time I came out. The top button of my impossibly skinny jeans did however remain firmly undone for the rest of the night.

As for risotto, I now know the only safe place to eat it is on the toilet.

Cannot bring myself to give this a title

imageAs you’ve now discovered, frightful inappropriateness is my bag. Nobody is safe and NOTHING is too awkward to be a reality.

I take you back to Channel 4 programme, Seven Dwarves. Typically Channel 4 in its level of shite factor, the series followed the cast of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs as they prepared for panto season. Awful programme, never watched it.

However, that didn’t stop me getting vaguely excited when somebody told me one of the seven dwarves featured on the programme was a guy who had gone to my college. As a local journalist at the time, that meant only one thing to me – news story.

Without a second thought, I’d opened up a private facebook message and was typing away. “Hey, long time no see! Somebody mentioned you’re on Seven Dwarves at the moment,” I began. “I haven’t seen it but I’ve heard it’s really good. Fancy doing a little story with me about it? Which one do you play? I’m going with Happy lol.”

Easy page filler I thought, with some nice pics. Then, ping. I had a reply.

“Hi Louise,” a promising start. “No I’m not in it, I don’t know who told you that. I find the whole thing humiliating and degrading. That’s just my opinion, but I wouldn’t even watch it to be honest.”

Oh holy fuck. I could feel my cheeks burning. I felt sick. The word mortified probably doesn’t do it justice. A more accurate insight to my thoughts would be – hide me in a cupboard for eternity and feed me through the gaps with a straw so I NEVER attempt to communicate with humans ever again for the rest of my life…ever.

Just to clarify, I asked a dwarf if he was one of the seven dwarves, purely because he was a dwarf. The ultimate insult? Yeah, pretty close I’d say. He definitely wasn’t Happy, that’s for sure!

I quickly called my friend who had informed me of his starring role, desperate to make sense of the misunderstanding. My panic was met with howling laughter. Once she had gathered herself, she said, “I was only joking. Oh my god, you’re a fucking embarrassment.”

Yep, couldn’t have put it better myself.

Don’t corner me without a fire extinguisher

Years ago, while training to be a journalist, I secretly fell in love with my tutor.

I say secretly, but the entire class knew and would watch with pity as I salivated every time he turned around to write on the board.

I would deliberately not get changed after a day of work at the newspaper, even though I had plenty of time to do so before my evening journo lesson, because:

A) I thought I looked better in sexy work clothes and hoped he would too. Who doesn’t love an offensively tight pencil skirt?

B) I was only the student who had already been offered a job in journalism while still studying and thought it would earn me brownie points. If he didn’t love my pencil skirts, he could love me for my brain.

C) It meant I could legitimately wear heels to class. He was about 6ft 5in and I (not at all rationally) thought it would help him recognise our potential as a couple of we were mutually tall.

If you haven’t already worked this out, I was mental. I had all the qualities of a stalker, minus the Oyster card I needed to fully commit to following him around London.

One Saturday at college, after arriving the full hour early that I always did in the hope of some precious one-on-one time, I jumped on the computer after him to “check my emails.” Internet history was immediately checked, and my heart sunk when I saw he had been looking at flats….two bedroom ones. OBVIOUSLY this meant he had a girlfriend, obviously.

My heart was broken as I realised I would never complete my challenge of bagging my tutor.

Now, you probably assume this was a man who was gifted in the looks department. Why else would I be so willing to make a twat of myself? You would be wrong.

He was very tall, but awkwardly so. He would often hunch his back as though apologising for his freakish height. His hair was permanently greasy, and he always smelt hungover. His skin was shockingly bad, and clearly needed a good wash, and I’m ashamed to admit it, but he wore flared jeans…in 2008.

His favourite words were mug, and fuck. He possibly thought he was Danny Dyer.

My brutally honest course buddy broke it to me one day over coffee by saying, “You do realise he looks like he hasn’t eaten a vegetable in 10 years and injects crack through his toes?” She was right, but despite that and finding out about his girlfriend, I still obsessively “loved” him, just from an unarrestable distance.

After my course finished, I was resigned to the fact nothing would ever happen and realised I had gone through a period of mental illness and delusion.

And then he called.

He wanted me to speak to the latest batch of students about making it in journalism and bla bla bla. He offered to pay me, but I insisted I would do it for free.

Instead, we went to the pub afterwards with some of the students, and I watched him get more and more drunk. The female students were clearly enamoured with him, just as I had been, and I realised what a loser I must have seemed. He then suggested a few hours later that we return to college to pick up my portfolio, which they had been using as an example for students. Just me and him.

I once again obliged, only realising when we got entered the closed building that it was really inappropriate. It was like being at primary school, and seeing your teacher in Sainsburys in normal clothes with their husband. Horrific, and wrong.

Then I realised he hadn’t turned the lights on in the classroom. And then, and only then, did I panic as it twigged in my mind hat I had fallen into some sick trap. The moment I spent hours dreaming of had come, and I wanted to die. He probably knew about my crush, and thought he was doing me a favour and making my day. No mate!

Desperate to kill any romantic intentions, I clumsily thumbed the portfolio, chatting absolute shit about anything I could think of. Unperturbed, he got up, moved across the room, and locked the door.

I think I may have at that point produced actual vomit, and held it nervously in my mouth in case I needed to use it as a weapon. As he moved towards me with that look in his eyes, I felt cornered. Rather than reject his advances in a mature, adult-like manner, I jumped up off the table and said, “You shouldn’t lock doors inside. What would we do if there was a fire? It’s really dangerous. Are there even fire extinguishers in here?” I turned the lights on to look for fire extinguishers.

Successful passion killer. Needless to say I quickly saw myself out and sunk deeper and deeper into my seat on the train home as I relived the awkwardness in my mind.

Possibly kissed him a few years later though. Well, nobody is perfect!

Families and weddings. Who’d have them??

Every woman dreams of getting married and somehow, through all of my faults and disasters, I got married last month to a man mad enough to want to spend the rest of his life with me.

Given my track record, I was very worried about embarrassing myself. In the weeks building up to the big day, I envisioned the gasps as I fell over down the aisle, got his name wrong, or ripped my dress to expose my knickers to all the guests.

As it happened, I forgot my own name during my vows and popped my dress during the speeches, but it was a fairly well run event. I reigned in my inner Miranda and behaved, for the most part, like a normal human being.

When I woke up the following morning I was fairly pleased with myself….until my brother called me.

His day had ended quite differently, and our wedding photos from the latter part of the evening consist of my dad checking my brother’s pulse as he lay sprawled on his front over a table, lights off, in a part of the venue that was sectioned off to guests….with an inflatable banana stuck up his bum.

Proud

Proud

Couldn’t get much worse, right?

Wrong. Because as I answer the phone and listen to his apologies, the phone call takes a turn where I suddenly realise he is apologising for something else entirely.

It turns out our videographer had taken people aside throughout the evening to record surprise snippets for our wedding video. Their favourite memories, how we met etc. All very lovely.

Except, as my brother kindly informed me once he had sobered up, he decided to announce on camera that his favourite memory was of him weeing in my mouth.

Yep, that he had urinated INSIDE my mouth in my actual lifetime.

Now, let me clarify? We were children, very young children. We were sharing a bath and it was traumatic. Still is. Unfortunately, through his drunken haze, he was unable to tell me if he specified this was a childhood incident on camera. I of course am too mortified to ask the videographer, so can only wait in anticipation until we receive the DVD – our lasting memory of the day.

Thanks bro, the male version of Miranda, your sorry phone call totally makes it ok….NAAAATTTTTTT!!!!

Miranda trashes love

Miranda goes to a wedding.

It’s a lovely affair. She wears a beautiful lace dress that she rips down one side throwing herself round a guest’s waist as she parties to a Whitney Houston classic.

She spends half the night on the dance floor, bare foot, continually grabbing the bride roughly by her elegant wedding dress as she battles crippling bouts of toe cramp. She is ordered to go and sit down, but she refuses because Dolly Parton has just come on and she knows every single word and move to 9 to 5.

She then gets out her camera to make herself useful and films the bride’s throwing of her bouquet.

It is caught, much to everyone’s delight, by the biggest romantic in the room. A girl who can quote every line from The Notebook and vows to press her favourite rose from said bouquet as a beautiful memory of the day. She really does love love.

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Miranda simply must go and congratulate her. Off she limps, disabled by toe cramp, phone in one hand, and the other holding together her dress.

The music is still quite loud, still playing Beyonce’s Single Ladies.

“Congratulations,” wails Miranda in her high-pitched, over-excited tone that thankfully only surfaces at weddings and roller discos.

The girl, beaming at this point, shows Miranda the bouquet and shouts over the music, “It’s fake!”

Miranda is shocked. The bouquet, made up of beautifully plump ivory roses had looked so real.

So she grabs a rose, and starts tearing it up over the edge of the dance floor. She is now very confused because it feels very real as well. She smells the shredded rose, and it smells real.

She looks up confused at the girl she has accosted who, looking equally perplexed, shouts, “I said it’s fate, not fake!!!”

Ahhhhh. Well that’s awkward. Has she now altered fate by tearing it up and throwing it on the floor? Should she glue it together? Go home? Avoid human contact for the rest of the night?

Miranda gets married herself in three weeks. I sense there being enough material to write a book. Bad times!

Warning to fellow pale-skinned twats reaching for the oil in the sun

“Isn’t the weather amazing? So nice to see the sun out,” is the starting point for conversations all over England right now.

Well, yes it does beat rain, but I would like to point out that the sun also presents a range of problems for people like me who have inherited the pale-skinned Irish gene.

My biggest problem isn’t my milky white skin, it’s my inability to accept the fact that I’m a pale person. After two weeks in the sun, I do manage to pick up a nice colour, so I cling on to that and refuse to accept I’m as deathly white as my reflection portrays for the other 50 weeks of the year.

But the sun is a little bastard and likes to punish me for my ignorance, hence my lack of enthusiasm when it rears its cocky little head.

Last bank holiday I took a little road trip to Durdle Door, an amazingly stunning beach on the Dorset coast.

It was to become the hottest day of the year, but when I left the house at 7am I found that hard to believe. Impossible, I thought, so I poo pooed the idea of bringing sun cream.

“I never catch the sun in England,” were my exact words as we left the house for the long drive down.

What I did pack however was a bottle of Garnier Ultimate Beauty Oil, for moisturising purposes. I’m sure you can see where this is going.

Within a few hours I was lying on the beach sweating it out, not an inch of shade in sight, liberally spraying myself with oil to stop my skin drying out.

All good. No feeling of burning, still so white that my skin was reflecting the sun like a snowy piste.

After 5, maybe 6, hours we decided to head home. As we pulled up after the 2 hour drive back, I realised something wasn’t right as I peeled myself off of the leather car seat. My skin felt radioactive, like a vat of acid had been poured over me.

Every movement hurt and as I got I undressed I winced with the pain. Don’t even get me started on the ordeal I went through getting into the shower.

Yep, like the twat I am I had overdone it and returned home looking like a human prawn.

Naturally the bright red sunburn wasn’t even, and the solid pink and white stripe down my arm resembled a drumstick lollipop. This got worse and worse over the course of the night as my skin continued to fry itself.

Twat

Twat

4 days. 4 days I suffered with the pain, unable to have even a duvet over me. The fridge became a storage cupboard for after sun and soothing potions.

After that I was left with limbs that looked like a snake had shed its skin on to me. Sexy I was not, flaking all over the house, leaving a trail of skin and destruction. I think I must have peeled about 50 layers of skin every 24 hours.

Turns out the beauty oil worked in the same way cooking oil would work on a little baby chicken before you stuffed it inside a roasting hot oven. I had effectively cooked myself.

So yeah, the sun is nice I suppose, but you won’t see me in it, or at least you won’t recognise me under my wallpaper paste-like, thick, factor 70 sun block.

Although I fly to Marbella at the weekend, and it would be rude not to bring a little bit of dry body oil for round the pool…..wouldn’t it?

How not to deal with wetting yourself

Looking back, I can see that my Miranda side developed a long time ago.

In fact, looking back, it is probably fair to say my childhood was one perpetual embarrassment.

Sure, everyone had a few awkward moments as a child…my mate fancies you etc etc.

But, not everybody suffered as regularly as I did. Here is just one of those moments, straight out of a Carry On sketch.

Growing up, my best friend’s parents owned an amazing apartment in Brighton. They were much richer than my parents, who at that point had already divorced, and I think they felt sorry for me. Needless to say, I played on their pity and as a result was treated to endless weekends in their apartment by the sea.

On one of these weekends, I was sporting my then favourite jacket – a sexy black bomber jacket with bright orange lining, sold exclusively by Kempton Market and made out of gloriously shiny, and probably highly flammable, material.

I loved that jacket.

Up until the point I got caught short in it.

My best friend and I had been playing in the huge communal gardens which were overlooked by her parents’ apartment. We had been annoying them as usual and so had been banished outside to wait for them, before we all left together to grab fish and chips.

Obviously I decided I desperately needed a wee and, lacking all rationality, decided I couldn’t possibly risk annoying them further by returning to the apartment and should instead pee outside.

Problem is, I did then, as I do now, have a fear of nakedness so at the age of 10 went to great lengths to prevent myself flashing my bum. Instead I crawled into a bushy area and decided to remove my bomber jacket, and wrap it around me to shield my arse from god knows what – the birds? The brambles?

My aim clearly wasn’t what it should have been, and coupled with my desperate effort to keep my bum hidden as my bomber jacket slid down, I managed to piss all over my beloved bomber jacket.

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Cue panic and more irrational thinking.

I decided there was absolutely no way I could go back to the apartment and fess up to her rents that I had peed on myself, and besides that I couldn’t face having to go out without my ridiculously cool bomber on. Plus it’s breezy by the sea, you need a coat.

So I rubbed it against a tree.

Of course. Because that would work, right?

I was hoping it would dry it off somehow, but what actually happened was the moss from the tree transferred on to the jacket. All over the jacket.

So I now had a urine soaked, moss covered jacket. But did I give up? No.

I confided in my friend and insisted we run down to the seafront to wash off the moss with a bit of sea water so I could wear it to dinner. Dutifully, my best friend complied and off we went, racing to get back before her parents left the apartment to collect us.

It probably goes without saying that I dangled the jacket just as a wave came crashing in, and soaked my jacket.

But did I give up on that jacket? You bet I didn’t! I still rocked it to dinner.

That dinner was an interesting one, particularly when my friend’s mum insisted on continually sniffing and asking what the strange smell was.

Yes, I smelt like a mixture of urine, fishy sea water, and moss, but I like to think that was all beside the point.

The point was, I may have smelt like a pile of shit, but I looked bloody awesome.

Vive la bomber jacket!