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…

Five Words To Ruin A Date

first date2I will let you into a little secret. First Dates on Channel 4 is my guilty pleasure.

As in, OBSESSED.

At first I thought I cleared my diary for it weekly because it was such good TV, with impeccable production standards and impressive editing. Then I realised it’s because I’m a bitch, and I’ve had so many bad first dates that I find comfort in the search for couples on TV that may have had worse ones.

To take you through all of my dating disasters would probably bring down WordPress. It may even crash the internet.

So, here is a taster of one of them.

I met a guy a few years ago at a fancy dress party. I was wearing head to toe neon, including a neon tutu and fishnet gloves. I looked hot…natttt. He rocked up in jeans and a t-shirt, clearly too cool to take part by wearing fancy dress like the rest of the party. Why I even bothered to strike up a conversation with him is beyond me, boredom I suppose.

Anyway, this, in hindsight, below average looking guy got talking to me and told me his life story without invitation. He had just been dumped by the love of his life, apparently completely out of the blue. I felt sorry for him because I’m an absolute sucker and agreed to a date, hoping it might cheer him up.

The date went ok. His sense of humour made up for his failures in the looks department, but his chat was a bit off. He revealed he got caught when he was younger setting fire to the local library by lighting fireworks through its letterbox. I had just sent off my application to join the police. Warning sign. Compatibility error…duly ignored.

We went back to his house after the date to watch a film. Just to stress here, I genuinely went back to watch a film. However, what he failed to mention was that he still lived with his mum and dad, and his front door opened in to the front room, where his mum and dad were sat watching TV. Meeting the parents on a first date – sure, why not? Oh, ummm, maybe because it’s FUCKING WEIRD?

Before I could digest the awkwardness, I had four dogs running towards me, one that looked positively rabid and one that looked like it might definitely kill me. I then spotted a dog that was most certainly a gigantic horse pretending it was a dog, barking and growling at me from behind a screen in the kitchen. Had he battered down that screen, as he was so desperately trying to, I have no doubt I’d have left that house in an ambulance. Should probably point out at this point, I’m terrified of dogs.

I’m not sure, from the haze of fear I was thrown into, if I actually kicked one of the dogs, or just screamed and kicked my date to try and force him to take action. I don’t know what action I wanted him to take, but at that point a shotgun would have been ideal.

Given my fear of canines, downstairs looking like Battersea Dogs Home, and the fact the sofas were occupied by his parents, we went up to his bedroom to watch our film. At least, that was the idea, until he opened the door and revealed his snake…s.

I’m talking a wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling snake collection. You think you’d mention something like that, right?! I’m not particularly scared of snakes (in the zoo, where they belong), but I draw the line at 60-plus in a bedroom, plus eggs, live crickets, frozen mice and dead snake skin hung in random places under the misguided belief it is an acceptable element of interior design. NO.

Overwhelmed, I sat down on the bed and asked a few snake questions, none of which I needed answers to because I. Did. Not. Give. Two. Shits. And then it happened. The worst part of the whole date. Yep, it gets worse.

Just to set this up, there was recently a hashtag trending on Twitter which reminded me of this moment. It was #FiveWordsToRuinADate. Aside from, “I am wanted for murder,” I think these may be them.

While I was flicking through Sky for something to watch, the guy randomly got up, opened his wardrobe and wheeled out a clear plastic trolley. He wheeled it over to where I was sat on the bed, and gestured for me to take a look inside the drawers. I obliged and took a peek inside, only to discover that EVERY drawer was filled to the brim with neatly stacked DVDs. Unfortunately, it wasn’t his film collection for our movie night. Oh no. It was his porn collection. Not just a porn collection, but an anal porn collection.

“Do you like anal porn?” were the actual words that came out of his mouth. Like, that was a real life question on a first date that he expected me to answer. Like it was an important factor in whether or not we progressed to a second date? Ummmm, are you mentally fucking ill?

First date over. Why did you say your ex dumped you again?!

Only fools rush in with their April 1 baby announcements

april-second-pregnant-cryingThis April Fool’s Day after another spectacular life fail, I was left in a hole so big I needed a JCB to dig myself out of it.
I present to you – fake pregnancy-gate.

Now, I know what you’re thinking – unoriginal, obvious, predictable, we’ve all done it. And you’re right. I have used the “I’m pregnant” prank every April 1 since my first sex education lesson.

Every year it has been dutifully met with instant disbelief from my family and friends, with not even a hint of excitement or belief in their voices. It had got to the point where it was almost insulting, as though I appeared impregnable to my nearest and dearest.

But then then came April 2015, the year I stepped up my game.
From my sofa planning HQ I thought to myself, “How can I make it more believable?” That’s when it came to me, I should accompany it with a scan. Cue a swift Google Image search, without a second’s consideration about the morality of it all.

Up the Google-sourced scan went on Facebook with my annual announcement, with an Instagram post thrown in for good measure and maximum coverage, and then I sat in wait for the moment I could gleefully reply, “April Fools!!”

I text my mother the same photo and in an instant, the phone rang. Of course, it was the mother. I assumed it would for her to abuse me, as immune to my pranks as she is. To say it didn’t go quite to plan is an understatement. Before I could even say hello, I was greeted with a hyperventilating and hysterical mum, crying down the phone, “Is that your baby?” The crying and wailing continued for an uncomfortable amount of time, punctuated with a few inaudible words.

Cue an incredibly awkward moment. A moment where I genuinely had to weigh up in my mind whether it was better to get pregnant immediately and make her dreams come true, or come clean and shatter her world.

Naturally, I chose to shatter her world. A string of expletives were fired my way, before the phone call was disconnected. It was abundantly obvious that she had not twigged what date it was when I sent the text at the crack of dawn.

Next, I decided to check my progress on Facebook. For the first time in my April Fools history, I had a bite and excitedly typed back, “April Fools!!” Slight problem was nobody read my response, and people kept posting their congratulations…and kept posting…and posting. Some people then decided to congratulate by husband. I’m talking his clients and colleagues running up to him in his place of work to congratulate him on his wonderful news.

Probably should have invited him to my April Fools HQ for a briefing before my prank of the year went ahead…

He did a good job of laughing it off, knowing me as well as he does. But, his laughter stopped when he received a text from his Great Aunt in Ireland stating how thrilled she was for us both. When the news has hit Ireland, you know you’re in trouble, because it spreads like wild fire.

The poor lady was not impressed when he explained it was a “joke”, and needless to say, I will be getting a frosty reception the next time I visit. It turns out that if you’re over 70, jokes bout pregnancy are definitely not socially acceptable. My bad.

After a day of responding to every congratulations message explaining to them that I actually I was just a full blown knob, and STILL not managing to put out the fire, I had to remove my Instagram post and make an anti-pregnancy announcement on Facebook, to make sure everybody knew there was no baby Miranda on its way. Hay bale…

I have learnt two valuable life lessons from this nightmare:

1) When you’re married, jokes about pregnancy are no longer funny because people are actually happy for you.

2) If you want to announce a genuine pregnancy on April Fool’s Day, you will probably be OK because people seem to believe anything you put on Facebook these days.

Now for my next trick…twins?

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!