January 21st, 2005



I've been trying to get more sleep lately, but I'm glad I got to bed so late last night; if I hadn't done, I might have already been asleep when the giant over-door storage thingummy on the back of my bathroom door decided to descend in an ear-wrenching, metal-twisting, stuff-clattering heap, spewing medicines and toiletries all over the room. The bathroom, for those of you not acquainted with our house, is just about big enough for a toilet, sink and bath; so the hanging drawers (oo-er) on the back of the door are the only thing that fits.

The whole assemblage is currently leaning up against the not-airing cupboard (where the hot water tank used to be when the house was still a house of two halves, with a split-focus central heating system, and ... am I boring you?) opposite the toilet, because there's nowhere else for it to go until I can hoist it back onto the door (having twisted the metal hanging thing back into shape and screwed it on to the door this time) or just given up and bought a new one, which means that in order to use the facilities I have to sit at a peculiar angle. It doesn't make any practical difference, really, but it feels awfully precarious.

The interesting side-effect, though, is that the twisted wreck of the metal drawers is blocking the toilet-roll holder, so the roll is currently sitting on top of the radiator. It's winter. The heating is on. This means that, for the time being, I have heated toilet paper. It's surprisingly pleasant. Perhaps I've finally found my get-rich-quick niche: toilet roll holders with built-in heating mechanism.

The other positive result was that Candia McWilliam's A Case of Knives, which is frankly unmitigated toss and about as much 'the natural successor to Iris Murdoch' (or whatever inflated claim is made by the blurb) as I am the natural successor to Einstein, fell into the bath and is now sufficiently water-crinkled that I will feel justified in throwing it away. Okay, so it's not very water-crinkled really, but we take what excuses we can get. I'd kept it in the bathroom for years on the offchance that I might actually, during a protracted poo, be bored enough to finish reading it; but having waded through half of it I think I'd rather read the ingredients on the indigestion tablets.

Hopefully, too, the process of putting the bathroom back together will force me to get rid of some of the outdated medicines and superfluous toiletries. In case anybody is reading this who might be tempted to buy me a present any time in the next 20 years: I don't need any more soap. I know I'm a slob; I know sometimes I smell. (Terrible.) Besides, fancy soap is nice; Lush soap is, well, lush; and I'll forgive my sister for buying me the coffee-scented soap called "Flick the Bean" because it made me laugh. But honestly, I could wash three times a day for the next decade and still not make a dent in the soap mountain. Likewise, disposable razors may make it on to our anti-shopping-list, the list of things we absolutely don't need to buy even if they are on the Speciallest Multibuy Reward-Point Extravaganza Ever ("No tuna. No gin. ABSOLUTELY NO MILK."), unless I am faced with the imminent prospect of being responsible for the personal hygiene of a yeti.


But why am I still awake? Have I, overnight, been conditioned to eternal vigilance against falling furniture?


Perhaps sleep will come soon.