Friday, August 17, 2018



Over on the Chameleons' forum, one of our members, Steph, posted a happy incident in which she'd complimented a stranger and had a very positive reaction. I think paying someone a sincere compliment is both great and yet, sometimes tricky.

I think it's tricky because well, there's A) a chance that you'll get it wrong and offend, and/or B) that the person may not take the compliment. In terms of the latter, there's the whole gig around what are they after?, are they hitting on me?, to I'm not used to strangers saying this!

That last one - people saying nice things - is something I struggle with. With family, well, most of the time it's good-natured teasing, so compliments are rarely directed to dad. Not that I mind and I guess there's a blurred line between saying thank you and a compliment. Take Little Miss helping out, or Wee Man doing something kind for someone. In that situation, I'll say something like That was really kind of you do to that. Thank you! Equally, the Ever Lovely Mrs J gets nice things said because, well, she's ever lovely.

So when folk do say something nice about me - how they like my shirt - or someone at Chams, I try not to shrug it off and say thank you instead. The shrugging off isn't that I don't appreciate nice words, it's that I'm struggling to accept them. Me not them, so to speak... but I do try!

As to saying nice things to others, while I'm not sure if it's right, I usually say something like "may I say your blah looks great/fantastic/brilliant" where blah is makeup, outfit, nails, shirt, etc. It's fairly generic, but it's legitimate and doesn't have that personal touch - unlike what the kids get - where there's some feedback linked to it.

So, yeah, I might say "May I say your new dress looks great", but I won't say "Your new dress looks great and makes you look slim." I guess I'm worried that someone may read something too personal into the latter and I only say such things to people I really know.

Has it worked?

So in general just saying something nice has pretty much always gone well. A few years back I was out with my family shopping in Boots. The lady who served me had the most beautiful nails. Classy, well painted, with a length and shape that suited her. I said, "I hope you don't mind me saying, but your mails look amazing." She said thanks, I paid and took the goods, with nothing more of it.

Heading back to Mrs J, she asked: "What did you say to the assistant? She's grinning like she's just won a prize." I took a quick peek over my shoulder and indeed Mrs J was spot on: said assistant looked most chuffed. I hope she enjoyed those words all day.

Last week

Due to being away there was no time to post a snap from last week. Now we're back at home, there's a chance to show Val's photographic handiwork. Oh, to which I'm always grateful for, even if Muggins here isn't always the best subject :-D

In the spirit of trying something new, I'm giving my re-cut wig (thanks Steph!) another run. It does take me a while to get used to new things, but I think I'm getting there.

Take care,

Friday, August 10, 2018

Good things


I think that there are times when it's all about the simple things in life. Take today for example, the cooler weather meant I could ditch the baggy trousers and sandals, returning to my preferred jeans and Converse trainers look. Yes, I am a Dad of a certain age, but team the previous with a fancy shirt and I'm feeling more myself. Funny how the right clothes help you out huh?

With all the sun of late, it seems it's an early blackberry season too. Now, other than feeling okay with how I look, if there's one pleasure of the summer.... okay, other than a nap in the sun or ice cream on a hot day... for me, it's got to be picking blackberries. I think the concentration and simple movement from patch to patch very relaxing; almost mediative in a way. Like losing yourself in painting, baking, or doing your makeup.

Funny thing is, I'm not really a fan of blackberries on their own. But, maybe as jam or in an apple pie, and, wooo, now we're talking. With the any of those, they're a dish to be shared and for me, that adds to the happiness.... even if my daughter ate half the stash ;-)

Take care,