Thursday, 25 December 2008

Happy Birthday

Today is not just Jesus's birthday, it is also SuperCathyFragileMystic's birthday.
I've known her since I was very little and it was hard then to imagine only having one day a year of presents and not being able to have a party on your birthday because everyone was already busy.

Now however, I think it's quite cool because once you're a grown up, lots of people tend to forget your birthday and you stop getting so many presents... but if it's on a nice memorable day, you stand much more chance of people remembering.

I am sat writing this with a beautiful view of snowy mountains, sunshine streaming through the window and snowflakes gently floating through the air. It really is quite idylic. And, do you know something else? It's totally quiet.

I can't hear the tap tapping of the keyboard, but if I could I am sure that would be the only sound. It will be a shock to return to the bustle of London in January...

but at least that really is next year!!

Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Happy Christmas Eve

Well, there's much hustle and bustle in our flat this evening as we are going out for dinner as it's Christmas Eve. Make-up is being put on, hair is being done and my Pa is snoring in his chair finding the experience of being surrounded by four preening girls a bit overwhelming.

This dinner tonight is something of a family tradition. We used to come here when I was a kid and every Christmas Eve we'd go to the same pizzaria in the village and the grown ups would get sozzled and Big Bro and I would eat lots of pizza and laugh at them...

that is the job of London Cousin 1 and 2 this year as I am now old enough to get sozzled! hurrah!

So, I had a great lesson with Fabian again today. He is still in complete denial that I am deaf but that's ok as I am getting used to his accent and lip pattern... and permenant pout! He keeps telling me to keep my hupper body movement flu-eeed while moving on zee ard snow.

And that's really it... so I won't keep you any longer.

The Writer can get back to her eggnog, Shakira Shakira can get on with the busy business of flying to Istanbul, NikNak can snuggle up with Country Boy 1 and Fab Friend with Country Boy 2. Clever Katie is in Devon snuggled up with her family, Friend Who Knows Big Words is in a French farmhouse a few 100 miles away and Climbing Boy has gone northwards. And spare a thought for Gingerbread Man who's working... awwwwww.

Big Bro we miss you and your Clogs very much and the French crew - looking forward to seeing you this week.

And in the words of Tiny Tim:

God Bless You, God bless you everyone

Tuesday, 23 December 2008

sunshine and crashes

Phew, a man called Fabien has tired me out!

And no, not like that...

he's my instructor and I was his first English pupil of the season so he got very excited and made me ski down lots of things that were very hard. He taught me lots though and there as are more suprises in store tomorrow apparently.

When I first met Fabien I told him that I couldn't hear and he did what every foreign person does when I tell them that, he ignored me completely! On the lift up to the first run, I told him again and he smiled at me and said, Sure...

I said, in English, and dodgy French, that I needed to see his lips when he spoke and so he pouted at me. Great! And that's one of the reasons I am so worn out - in order to hear him, I had to ski as fast as him so that when he spoke I could whizz round and see his pouting lips... it was bonkers but it worked.

I sometimes wonder why so many of the foreign people I meet have so much trouble understanding my deafness... surely there are deaf people in France... although to be fair, I have never seen one in the flesh.

Anyway, the weather is still completely fabulous here so we've been making the most of it. This afternoon London Aunt and Cousins 1 & 2, Ma and I all went up to the top of the mountain overlooking Courchevel and skied about a bit.

Then we had a nice cup of tea and a sit down and I caught the bubble back down with Ma as Fabien had caused my leg muscles to die.

On arriving at the bottom we were greeted by London Cousin 2 and her very bloody nose. She'd done the most incredible wipe out that involved her nose making high-speed contact with the snow. It was very impressive, but London Cousin 2 was less impressed.

She's now chomping on jam tart and recovering and I am writing this.

Time for a beer I think...

Monday, 22 December 2008

cows and snow, cows and snow

Deafinitely Girly is in the snow this week and what a week it is turning out to be. I am having the most amazing time swishing down the mountainside, admiring the view that's complimented by the crystal clear blue sky...

But Deafinitely Girly has been yawning today, and here's the reason why...

The sleeping arrangment in our bijoux flat means that London Aunt and I share the living room. Perfect I thought when informed of this arrangment. We can have a nice glass of wine and a chat in the evening after everyone else has gone to bed.

And last night, that was what we did.

And then we bid each other goodnight and turned the light off...

and then

Moooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo-oooooooooooooooo

Eh?

Mooooooooooooooooooooooooo-ooooooooooooooooooooooooo

all of a sudden it really did sound like a mountain cow was in the flat.

Hmmmm not trusting my hearing very well, I lay still for a moment and tried to work out what on earth I could be hearing.

Moooooooooooooooooooooo-ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

there it went again...

And then I realised it was London Aunt, snoring!

And so it went on, MOO, and on, MOO, and on

and I started to wonder if I was ever going to get any flipping sleep..

So I did the decent thing and woke up Ma and Pa to ask them what I should do

They were not impressed.

And so we all tried to work out what to do about mooing London Aunt...

But concluded that we were all to afraid to wake the mooing one...

so I went to sleep listening to my MP3 player loudly. It was a song I know the opening line to, If I Were A Boy by Beyonce and it sounded like this:

If I were a Moooooo-ooooooooooooooooo

Wonder why Beyonce's original didn't sound like that?

Friday, 19 December 2008

Happy Birthday Shakira Shakira

Mon dieu!

It’s Thankful Friday again and I think if I listed all the things I was thankful for today, we’d be here for a very looooooooooo-oooooong time!

So are you sitting comfortably?

Let’s have a go…

Firstly, I am thankful for Shakira Shakira’s ma and pa falling in love as it means that today is her birthday – she’s 28 to be exact and to celebrate her fabulousness we are going a meal.

Happy Birthday Shakira Shakira!

Phew!

Next, I am thankful for holidays! I am soon to be going on one. It involves lots of swishing and hopefully no crashing and I can’t wait.

I am also thankful for London Aunt who organised the said Swishing Holiday!

However, it is in the middle of all this thankfulness that I must break some bad news… the swishing may well hamper Deafinitely Girly’s posting so you might not hear from her for a bit…

*Sniff

Moving on, I am very thankful for text messages. Shakira Shakira might not be thankful for these however, as in my excitement I texted her birthday wishes at 6am this morning!

It’s amazing how much you can fit into a text, and they make me smile. They also allow me access to a world of conversation where I hear everything – although that doesn’t mean to say there aren’t some misunderstandings sometimes. And do you know what I discovered…

…as well as being crap at lying in real life, I am crap at lying by text, too!

*Blush

Finally, I am thankful for the gym – it has enabled me to eat chocolate for breakfast every single day this week and still be able to do up my jeans. Today however, I broke the habit…

…and had a mince pie instead.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Rambling on

In today’s post, Deafinitely Girly would like to clarify to anyone who read her blog before noon yesterday that she really doesn’t agree with violence…

I really should know better than to leave vital words like ‘doesn’t’ out of my blog when I am a word person by trade. That said, while we’re on the subject of violence, I do think that wounding by wok is quite amusing. Apparently, Uni-Mate-Nik once had a go at a particularly menacing housemate with one and the results were very satisfactory.

Today, I am feeling strangely emotional – perhaps it’s because Christmas is nearing or because I get to see Big Bro and French Aunt and Cousin 1,2, and 3 in less than one week – at least I hope I do! French Cousin 2 is a regular reader so I guess I can ask her right here!

Big Bro is journeying over from Clogland to see us for a very brief pre-Christmas visit – it’s going to be hard for him to leave Maxi Clog and Mini Clog behind for a few days, particularly as a new Clog is on the way now, too.

Mini Clog was 2 on Saturday and celebrated with a Bob The Builder cake. I tried to be the trendy aunt and sent him a Quicksilver Hoody – now I just have to hope he doesn’t get banned from any shopping centres for wearing it.

He really is marvellous and The Rents were raving about the genius capabilities of him after their recent visit to Clogland. Apparently he knows his alphabet and colours in both English and Dutch. Very clever indeed. What’s even cleverer is that his speech is so clear that even his deaf aunt, Deafinitely Aunty Girly, can understand him.

Last time I saw him he showed me a tractor and pointed out the big wheel, little wheel and 'earing wheel.

Eh?

How clever is that? A tractor with an 'earing wheel…

Anyway, enough of the nostalgic ramblings…
It’s Thankful Friday tomorrow, so call back then

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

On the fence

Yesterday I read a sign on the front fence of someone’s house and this is what it said:

No trespassing.

Violators will be shot…

…survivors will be shot again.

It made me laugh out loud and then immediately feel guilty at finding the notion of violence amusing.

Don’t get me wrong I dont! think that violence is right. In fact, just the other weekend when I was in the Wild Um… West Country visiting Super-Cathy-Fragile-Mystic, another sign caught my eye and it said:

‘If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there’d be peace.’ And, apparently John Lennon said that.

I guess the owner of the first sign probably put it up to protect his television set as much as to make passers-by like me laugh so perhaps there’s some truth in the latter statement.

But, Wise Friend once noted how I often sit on the fence about things rather than forming a firm opinion on either side. And, I think this is one of those occasions. I think peace is a fabulous notion and would love to see an end to gun and knife crime.

But just sometimes I think that a trespasser should have been shot…

It would have made my world a better place.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Fire, fire!

Today Deafinitely Girly is feeling rotten! My face is full of mucus and my throat feels like I accidentally swallowed a block of knives.

How delightful!

Anyway, I don't know about you, but I always find I am much more accident prone and hear a lot less too, when I am poorly.

Take this morning when I awoke at 5.30am thinking about work – I was dreaming about something I had sorted last week and woke up panicking that I hadn’t done it.

I decided to break the cycle of panic and went to the bathroom. Then, CRASH! I fell down the stairs. To me it sounded like the du-du-dud of the drums after someone cracks a joke. To New Housemate and Very New Neighbours Below, it probably sounded like one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse had come a cropper!

But that's not what I am here to tell you about. Oh no…

The news today is that yesterday discovered I can hear the fire alarm in my flat... very well in fact. It's quite unlike anything I've ever heard before and when it went off, I nearly had a heart attack. There I was watching Star Wars…

*yawn – sorry Gingerbread Man, I am still not converted!

…and wrapping presents when I was suddenly aware of a din so loud that even the dead could have heard it. Heck, even the deaf dead could have heard it!

Having not heard any sort of fire alarm for a good long while, I did what you should do in these situations... I panicked.

I grabbed my handbag, favourite coat, and London Aunt's Christmas present, as I think she's going to love it and didn't want it to perish if there really were flames licking at my door, and then, I legged it and found Very New Neighbour 2 in the lobby frantically stabbing at the buttons of our fire alarm control panel, frilly apron around her waist, wooden spoon in hand, looking quite mortified.

But the main thing was the building wasn't burning, even if her dinner was!

But knowing that I can now rescue myself from my building in the event of a fire is not the best thing that happened yesterday. No, that would be that even though I was feeling really poorly and needed my bed and some tlc, the adrenalin from the fire alarm episode kept me going until 9pm, which was crucial as Top Gear was on late… and it was great.

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Back to deaf

There was no blog yesterday because Deafinitely Girly decided, unintentionally, to work undercover as a hearing person and, I was a bit rubbish to tell you the truth.

My day began with my alarm going off as a beeper instead of shaking me awake. It probably woke up New Housemate

*blush

But I continued to snooze on through it before waking in a panic and jumping out of bed with so much velocity that I stood on my hairbrush, knocked over a glass of water and went flying face down on to my carpet.

And I am normally such a morning person…

Then, the BBC saw to it that I watched breakfast news without decent subtitles, giving me a current affairs knowledge of zero, and the subtitles on my bus were wonky so I travelled blind... so to speak.

At work, I participated in office chit chat which probably came across as me shouting things randomly across the room that were of no relevance to the actual conversation, and at the gym after work, I laughed at things I hadn't heard instead of saying pardon!

Why?

I have absolutely no idea. But that's not the most shocking thing.

No, that was when I realised how much my day resembled how I used to live every day until about two years ago. And, do you know what? I can't believe I managed it. It was absolutely exhausting and downright embarrassing on several occasions. Doing it again yesterday made me appreciate how much better my life is when I allow my hearing, or rather lack of it, to be a part of me.

So today I'm going back to asking Lovely Freelancer for a translation on office gossip, reading the BBC news website and not laughing at anything unless I know what the joke is.

There is just one other thing I need a bit of help with. The auto speller on Pinkberry has gone a bit doolally. It won't recognise the word ‘to’ and keeps typing out ‘yo’ for me! This is very annoying as I like to text quickly and all the ‘yos’ are holding me back. But if I don't edit my texts, then I sound like I am talking in some sort of street language innit.

If anyone knows how to change this, please get in touch – it’s driving me CRAZY!

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

The kiss of deaf

I have some bad news – kissing makes you deaf!

Well, it does in the case of some woman from China whose boyfriend’s passionate kiss ruptured her eardrum!

Eh?

Yuppity yup, it must be true as I read it in a tabloid. You see apparently the kiss reduced pressure in her mouth and pulled the eardrum out,

Ouch!

The lucky lady has been reassured her hearing will return to normal in about two months. However, it has left me pondering on exactly how they were kissing. I mean to reduce air pressure in the mouth to the extent of rupturing an eardrum, they really must have been taking the expression ‘sucking face’ literally.

Yuck!

And on that note, I think I will save my lunch for later and perhaps pack my mistletoe away this year.

Monday, 8 December 2008

Monday Moan-day

It's Monday, it's sunny and Deafinitely Girly is ready for the almost deafinitely tumultuous week ahead.

But that’s OK – in the run up to Christmas it’s always a bit like this. People coming and going, moving to Sweden, falling in love, falling out of love, falling over…

The list is endless.

But what of Deafinitely Girly?

Well, I am doing none of the above – not even the falling over as I have run out of gin – but I have been baking.

YUM!

You see, in November, I am making NikNak’s wedding cake, so need all the practice I can get. So yesterday, I made peanut butter cookies and fairy cakes and both – my colleagues tell me – are delicious.

The fairy cakes are the most important thing, as this is what NikNak envisages as munching on during her big day and seeing as my oven has the baking capabilities of a Barbie Dreamhouse one, they can be somewhat hit and miss.

But yesterday’s batch turned out perfectly. Not too brown, not too pale, not too risen, not too flat, not too sweet and deafinitely not too salty…

Good grief, I know I sound like Goldilocks at the moment, but they really were just right.

If only everything else was…

Friday, 5 December 2008

Phew! It's Friday

Well, today is Thankful Friday and, well I guess I am thankful that I made it through the week, because what a week it’s been.

However, this weekend should be fun – London Cousin 1 is celebrating her 9th birthday and having a party, which I am helping out at. Apart from climbing at a climbing wall, there will be a birthday tea and games.

Last night, London Cousin 2 practised her one-legged musical statues, which looks set to be the most competitive, heated game of the whole party. I was in charge of the music during this practice session – it was David Gray, which was hard to dance to, so I did his nodding dog impression, which London Cousin 2 – being only 7 – didn’t get.

I can hardly believe that London Cousin 1 is now 9. It seems like only yesterday that I was looking after her when she was just a few weeks old. I went to help London Aunt and Uncle, and it was great fun – I would hold London Cousin 1 while she did cute things like sleep, and then London Aunt would take over for the less pleasant duties like waking up and feeding and nappies. It was quite a privilege to play a part in such an early bit of London Cousin 1’s life – and, it was through her that I learnt I can’t hear babies cry!

HURRAH!

Sometimes, now I am nearly a grown-up, I wonder about what will happen if and when I ever have one of my own. Will I hear it crying? I know there are fancy monitors that vibrate when your baby is crying so I will probably get one of those. Then I will be able to say to people, ‘Ooohh hang on, my baby is vibrating, back in a tic.’ and then they will have me sectioned.

Crap

Thursday, 4 December 2008

ARRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH

Certain people – Climbing Boy – will be aware of just the kind of day that Deafinitely Girly is having today.

In short, it’s the kind of day that makes you want to run to the edge of a cliff…

And no, not jump off – but let out a massive bellow!

Work computer has had a meltdown and is in emergency surgery, which is making my job very difficult and every time I try and do some work, I am reminded of this. It’s frustrating to say the least. I am currently working “remotely”, which isn’t remotely fun!

But it’s reminded me of a society that I formed at school when I was about 13 – did I mention that I was an uber-geek? It was called the Silent Screaming Society and whenever things got tough, we used to scream, silently. And, even hearing people can lipread a scream so we’d be sat there in double maths (2 hours – ARGH) silently screaming at each other, and the maths teacher probably thought we were just exercising our jaws or something.

Anyway, it was kind of nice to be reminded of this – not just because it has given me something to think about while my computer is being resuscitated – but because I have taken it up again… and it’s very therapeutic.

So instead of getting frustrated and breaking something, I am silently screaming – it really is the most fantastic way to release tension.

So next time the world all just gets a bit too much, give silent screaming a go – ignore the weird stares from people if you are in public and just let rip.

Oh, and be careful not to open your jaw too wide, in case it doesn’t close again – according to Google, this actually does happen – OUCH!

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

I am not deaf enough

And this is why…

Mariah Carey keeps coming on the radio screeching something about wanting me for Christmas and I can hear her!

ARGH!

It’s not Christmas yet – I haven’t finished my shopping or had a mince pie and the only evidence of me accepting its imminent arrival is my wonderful advent calendar from Ma, which has a surprise in a box every day.

Yesterday is was a green glitter glue pen! I love my Ma.

Anyway, back to my point, which is – I don’t want to be hearing no Christmas songs on the radio until Christmas Eve – and even then only carols are acceptable.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas – but I like Christmas on the 24th and 25th of December – and perhaps the week before. When did it become acceptable to start advertising Christmas in September when the shops should be full of back-to-school paraphernalia?

The whole world’s gone mad!

Now, you’re told to buy school things in June before the summer term has ended, Halloween stuff in August while enjoying BBQs and sunshine, and Christmas cards in September – heck why don’t we just change the calendar and be done with it? School will then begin in June, my birthday (Halloween) will be in the summer so I can finally have an outdoor party that doesn’t involve umbrellas and Christmas will occur when the evenings are still light.

When I am Queen/Prime Minister or just generally in charge, expect things to change…

Now, just imagine that – me in charge…

What would I do first, I wonder.

Well, for a start I would make it compulsory to have one screen in every cinema in the land showing a subtitled movie every hour that it was open.

I would sort out the iPlayer at the BBC and I would make techy people invent telephones with ultra low rings, ensure that every deaf person in the land got a free fire alert system installed in their house, and find a way to speed up subtitled radio.

I would also create a subtitled announcement system on planes so the captain announcing the altitude and speed didn’t induce a ‘We’re going to crash’ hysteria within me – although perhaps a strong gin and tonic would do that, too.

And, after all that, I would go back to my palace and declare a permanent 3-day weekend.

Let me know if you’d vote for me!

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Everybody say aaaaaah

Well, a quick scan of today’s deaf news threw up the cutest story about a deaf dalmatian called Zoe, who, thanks to some sign language classes, has been given a new lease of life.

After her previous owner was forced to give her up because of her behaviour, she has now been taught the signs for sit, lie down, stay, dance, paw, kiss and 'good girl' and she’s ready for a new home…

Hmmmm is my flat big enough?

The answer is an outright no, but if I did have a country pad and the time to walk her, I would home her in an instant and we could be deaf together.

However, on second thoughts, a deaf dog and owner could be quite a catastrophic combination. Let’s think…

Big red fire engine, Deafinitely Girly and Dalmatian walking along the road oblivious to the screeching siren.

CRASH

Dog and DG gone…

On a more positive note, do you know that when I was younger I used to raise money for a charity called Hearing Dogs for the Deaf? Ma used to call it Deaf Dogs for the Blind – logical huh?

It’s a great charity and from the case studies on the website, a hearing dog really can change the life of a deaf person. And, as I get deafer, I often wonder about whether I too, could get a hearing dog one day.

If I did, I would be able to answer the door when the buzzer went, leave a burning building when the fire alarm was ringing and always know when a fire engine/police car/ambulance was coming my way. How cool would that be?

But just to be difficult, I think I’d rather have Zoe, the deaf dalmatian.

Monday, 1 December 2008

Just another manic monday

*Harumph

Well, if Friday was Thankful Friday, then today is deafinitely Manic Monday! What a morning I have had. My computer has crashed no less than four times for absolutely no reason and Word is playing silly buggers with me to the extent that I am beginning to wonder if it has a personal vendetta against me.

*sniff

The weekend, which incidentally was brilliant, seems a long time ago now. I don’t know if I mentioned it or not but I saw Friend-From-Penthouse-Flat, who is now a very yummy mummy of two, and First-Uni-Housemate – who is in the throes of organising her wedding, which I am invited to! Hurrah!

We ate and drank far too much and had a very merry and somewhat early Christmas, which saw me winning Yahtzee – and perhaps drunkenly accusing Penthouse Husband of cheating! It would seem that my competitive side emerges when it comes to Yahtzee…

…oops

But anyway, something has happened that’s made my Manic Monday much easier! Work got instant messenger – for the whole company! It's like MSN only better, and it now means I can contact people with the same speed and efficiency as my colleagues without having to pick up the phone!

It's kind of hard to quantify how this is going to change things for me at work – but I know it will. Most Hearing Peeps love MSN Messenger so I reckon they will be happy to use the work version. And, because it pops up on the screen, it’s not as easy to ignore as an email so I should get instant replies.

Just sometimes, it really is the little things that put the biggest smile on my face.

Deaf Girly and subitled Mamma Mia: Here we go again

Regular readers and my followers on Twitter will know that recently I've been talking a lot about the lack of subtitled showings availab...