Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Act Like a Bitch, Think Like a Sleep Deprived Zombie...

So the big Oprah day is tomorrow and although I would like to kid myself I am not nervous I hardly slept a wink for the past 2 nights and kept thinking I was having some form of tachycardia attack, my heart was racing so fast.

And matters weren't helped last night when Johnny Drama decided to fall victim to a raging fever. He woke up at 2am and his torso was so hot I felt I was in danger of getting singed more than once. I felt for him. I really did. But as I mopped his fevered brow and stroked his back to help him sleep I thought, 'what are the chances? what are the bloody chances that one of the kids is sick now? I have no babysitting coverage on Thursday and if he is not well enough to go to school I won't be able to go'. And imagine how devastated Oprah would be if I couldn't be there?

I had spent the evening responding to an email from the Oprah Show asking me to submit questions for Steve Harvey - 'He would like your most hilarious, outrageous, unbelievable dating or marriage questions. Do you have some ridiculous stories from your dating days? Have you been completely unlucky in love and you are still looking for Mr. Right? Have you been married for years and you are STILL trying to figure out why your husband does a lot of the things he does? Are you new to dating and trying to figure out the rules of the game?'

I had speed read the book in a couple of days, which wasn't difficult because it was an entertaining read, but had no idea that I would have to submit my questions in advance. I had a couple outlined in my head but thought that I still had the luxury of another 48 hours to formulate something worthy of Oprah. Anyway, I guess the unexpected and tight deadline was a blessing in disguise. I could have ruminated on the questions for every waking minute of the next 48 hours and still not had anything more original and entertaining to say. Knowing me I would have been sitting looking at a blank piece of paper while sitting in the studio car park.

So here is, on reflection, the 'best of' said email. Which isn't really saying much. I am so screwed. Pass me the dark glasses and head scarf everyone. I am not sure I am going to be out in public from Thursday onwards without a disguise of sorts. (All donations welcome. Make sure you send them Express.)

1. I have been told by men that I am confident, smart, sexy, fun, outgoing - the sort of woman any man would thank his lucky stars for. Recently I have met men who have acted like they have been 'dazzled' by me. 'Oh my God, you're so beautiful. You're funny, You're incredibly smart. You are the sexiest woman I have ever met.' Hmmm. Really? Because despite all this attention, it hasn't led to a man being interested in dating me properly. Why would they say all that and not act on it? What is going on?

This was the original angle presented by my friend that the producer was keen to use...but my God, I hope they don't. I haven't slept for 48 hours and by the time of the show it is likely to be 72 roots are showing and I am looking like the most haggard version of myself possible. No-one - NO-ONE - is going to believe this of me and I am going to end up looking like a deluded has-been - living in a fantasy world with just her over-inflated ego for company.

2. I am in my early 40s, recently separated and a single mother to 2 young boys. There are so many incredible women out there. Is my competition young, gorgeous professional women in their 20s? No strings? No kids? No wrinkles to speak of? Oh - and bigger boobs?! If so, what am I meant to do? I can't reverse time. And I don't believe in plastic surgery!

3. Why do men just want to 'devour the cookie' a lot of the time - without nibbling around the edges and savouring the flavour before heading straight for the 'chocolate chips'?!

Steve Harvey is far too much of a gentleman to call sex 'sex'. It is 'cookie'. So you get the gist.

I also included a couple of more serious and long-winded questions but honestly, you don't deserve to be bored to death to that degree. (Degrees of death..? I told you I was tired.)

The next 3 questions were submitted from Kabbalah Rookie so I have blatantly stolen them.

4) Do men have an inbuilt sensor that detects the 'neediness transmission signals' from women, and if so, how can a woman disable it without causing actual bodily harm?

5) Why are men so hopeless at saying "I'm Just Not That In To You" - with a constructive list of reasons why not - given that it is common knowledge that us women turn blatantly neurotic when forced to guess?

6) If two people are destined to be together, what difference does it make to the man's way of thinking if the woman 'puts it all out there on a plate' right from the word go?

The next two questions were suggested by Home Office Mum (Thanks HOM - I will happily give you credit here but please do not expect any on National TV...cos I ain't gonna happen).

7) How is it that men are able to sleep through a baby crying?

8). Are men actually allergic to the magnetic force field surrounding dishwashers which prevents them from putting plates into it, instead of on top of it?

And here are the questions submitted on behalf of my 'guest', who I am guessing has spent most of the day pruning and preening and laying out half her wardrobe on her bed. Neither of us still has a bloody clue what we are going to wear. All options seem to scream either 'Matron', 'Sloven' or 'Slapper'. Decisions, decisions girlfriend...we can't turn up naked.

9) If a married man has not been interested in getting the cookie at home for a long time - but is adamant that he is not getting it elsewhere and it isn't that important to him - is he lying or is he the exception to the rule (ie. a freak??)

10) Why is it a man can sometimes see all the great things in a woman's friends - admire their looks, their intelligence, wit, etc - but he no longer sees these same qualities in his woman, even if she has them in spades?

11). So if a married man is no longer showing any indication that he wants to profess, provide, protect then does this mean the marriage is over?

After wracking my brains, I also unearthed my only disastrous dating story (you should know that I am afflicted with selective memory syndrome combined with the early stages of Alzheimer's, so 'only' is probably a lie but one that I am sticking to). I have embellished the telling of the story a little - I thought it wise to omit a few (ie many) incriminating details in the version submitted to Oprah, given that it is intended as a family show and is being co-hosted by a man who is a fervent Christian, teetotal and refers to sex as 'cookie'.

Disastrous dating story:

Many years ago I was out in a bar with a girlfriend, getting totally wasted on pitchers of Long Island Iced Tea (they seemed to be all the rage 15 years ago, when this story took place. You could always tell the quality of LIIT by just how diluted the coke was - and these pitchers were virtually transparent.) By the second pitcher we were legless and shameless, but under the impression we had morphed into the wittiest, most gorgeous version of ourselves and were flirting outrageously. Just as we were leaving, I attracted the attention of a really good looking guy. When we left the bar and went to eat at a restaurant nearby he followed us, joined us for a drink and then paid for our dinner and drinks before getting my number.

Truth be told this guy was a bit of a Lothario and I knew it. He was a set designer for Pinewood studios, which I thought was incredibly glamorous (but on reflection he was probably standing around waving a paint brush over various shapes of MDF all day). We went out on a couple of dates and he seemed incredibly smitten. Lots of chemistry. Lots of gaze-holding. This was July and the guy started talking about how he would love me to come and spend Christmas with his family for heaven's sake. He got me hook, line and sinker.

One Saturday we planned to meet in the afternoon after he finished work. He arrived at my flat 2 hours late, said he was exhausted and could he please use my shower to freshen up because it would take him too long to go home and then return. I was a little taken aback and agreed. (Just incase it isn't obvious - we hadn't had sex at this point, unless you consider frantic dry-humping sex, of which there had been plenty). After some time I went to check on what was going on because he hadn't returned to the living room. I found him fast asleep on my bed, dressed only in a towel. I was stunned. I went back to the living room, fixed myself a stiff drink and started watching television. After another hour or so I began to get seriously annoyed and went to wake him up to find out if we were still going out. At this point 'one thing led to another' and he got the 'cookie' (see question 3.)

He ended up staying the night and left for work the next morning, promising to pick me up in the afternoon to go to a family barbecue. 'I can't wait for you to meet my sister - I think you're going to get on like a house on fire' were his parting words. I was all 'aglow'. I took my time getting ready and, of course, he doesn't show up. Not only does he not show up but I never hear from him again.

This could be the end of the story but I was really angry to the point of wanting to castrate someone. I had never had Fatal Attraction bunny-boiler tendencies before but I really wanted to find some way to exact my revenge. So I hatched a plan. A few weeks later the friend I was originally out with called this guy, pretending to be a nurse from the local STD clinic. She asked if this was a good time to talk and whether or not he could speak for a few minutes in private. She then went on to say that they were treating a young lady and were in the process of contacting her recent sexual partners. She would highly recommend that he come in for some tests and possible procedures - just as a precautionary measure. (This was in the height of AIDS media attention, where we were being led to believe it had the contagious properties of the bubonic plague.) Of course, she couldn't reveal the young lady's identity, due to patient/doctor confidentiality, but there was a high chance he had been exposed and needed to come in to be cleared as soon as possible. The guy was speechless. He asked some stammering questions 'how serious is this exactly? how soon can I come in?' He made an appointment to attend the clinic there and then (we had researched the opening times and were able to give him directions) and sounded absolutely terrified.

Who knows whether or not he actually attended the clinic. I couldn't care less either way. It was a far more satisfactory ending to our dating experience than the one he originally left me with.

So there we have it. Still have no idea if Johnny Drama is going to be well enough to go to school tomorrow. He has been dosed up on the US version of Calpol all day and leaping around in his usual ant-in-the-pants way. I can only keep my fingers crossed that I still get to go. Although given that you have now seen the majority of my 'contribution' (ha!), his illness and my subsequent non-attendance could be a blessing in disguise.


  1. I can't believe you submitted my questions. Mad woman. But best of luck. Hopefully Johnny Drama will be well, you'll look glamorous and your phone will ring incessantly after your nationwide appearance, with gorgeous millionaires wanting to whisk you away to tropical islands.

  2. OMG, that is hilarious, all of it! Love the questions especially the one about the dishwasher!

    Also loved your dating story - these sort of things are why I don't bother dating anymore - I can't be doing with all the mixed messages.

  3. Forgot to say, good luck on Oprah!

  4. I hope you get to go - and get to tell the dating story! Excellent stuff MH

  5. Can't wait to see you on National and International TV!!!!
    Remember to just breath, smile that lovely smile and bat your lashes over your beautiful big blue eyes.
    And HOM is right, you'll be beating them off with a stick! If there are any spare, please throw them my way.

  6. That is a BRILLIANT revenge story. I love it. Loads of luck for the show. Hope you're going to let us see it on your blog afterwards. Lx