Saturday, June 14, 2008

Istanbul ate my shoes... but blogging ate my brain

If anyone can translate the Turkish part of this sign I'm agog to find out how this works...

Aplogies for the long delay here, but since getting back from Istanbul I've been playing catch-up... along with 'Don't Kick Mummy', 'Come Here', 'Go Away', 'Give Mummy the Keys' and 'Leave Sammy Alone'. They're from a book I found hidden under the Spud's mattress called 'Make Mummy Mental'.

I'd quite like to go back to Istanbul and see the city properly. It's bonkersly enormous, by which I mean that it must be bigger than Greater London and absolutely packed with endless, endless apartment buildings crushed cheek-by-jowl. It's modern and run down and quite fabulous. My big hint to the ladies however would be 'don't wear heels'. I walked a single block to and from lunch and when I got to the office my shoes were completely ruined - I swear they had teeth marks on them.

The main problem I had while I was there however was that the entire time I could hear a little voice running commentary inside my head and I realised that I was... writing my blog. Not this one, you understand, but an incisive, pithy, intelligent one about the comparitive differences between London and Istanbul peppered with economic references... because when faced with the array of 3-for-2 offers at airport bookshops I have a need to feel superior to the sweating hoards fingering Jackie Collins' back-catalogue and inevitably reach for something outside of my intellectual capacity. Which means I've been reading all sorts of popular economics books. Ask me anything. I am Clearly An Expert.

Anyway, the upshot of this is that whenever I am doing anything interesting such as visiting Istanbul or... or... er.... anyway, I can't enjoy anything first hand, as it were because I seem to have a corner of my grey matter (I have plenty to spare) which is constantly re-purposing events for blog material, or rather, cod travel pieces for the Sunday Times. This is hardly new for me, mind you.

I was in the park the other day watching the spud go up and down some steps a few hundred times and while I pasted an indulgent smile to my mug and tried to radiate 'Good Mother' vibes I naturally ear-wigged on the conversation of a nearby group of Mums with older children. "I'm obsessed with what to make for dinner every day" said one. "I know" said another "as soon as I wake up every day I'm worrying about what to cook for tea" and they all made sympathetic clucking noises. I turned and openly gaped at them as if a new species of cat, say, one with five legs, had just tottered by. 'Is this lurking in my future' I thought? Followed, inevitably by 'Am I A Bad Mother?' (one should never listen to other Mothers in the park). This did, however, raise a glimmer of recognition from my blogging brain, because in that over-heated little closet I Blog Every Day, which requires Things To Blog About.

Clearly, I don't post every day as luckily for everyone out in the real world, my blog brain is in direct competition for limited resource with my motherhood brain and so, while I would love to be a daily blogger, it's simply not to be. My motherhood brain, on the other hand, is clearly Taking Over. I found myself thinking, while passing a cafe in Istanbul and therefore many hundreds of miles from my son, thinking, mind you, in my head, to myself, 'Should Mummy go in and have a coffee?'.

Perhaps Mummy should have a lie down.

Later edit: so, the sign translates word by word to: "Please necessary water expenses resist in second time bacillus" I think in Turkish it's telling one NOT to flush twice but am a bit worried about the bacillus bit!!!


Helen said...

I don't read Turkish, but perhaps that part of the sign reads, "Beware of toddler-eating toilet." I only say this because I just got back from Disney World and I swear every single toilet there threatened to flush my youngest while she was still on it. It has made potty training much more difficult.

With regards to the bloggin brain, you have my sympathies. I can't turn mine off either, nor can I turn off my writer. I get the best ideas for horror stories at the playground. Now that I've started cartooning again, I see the whole word in four panel strips with word balloons and black and white line art. I've heard that photographers can only see the world through the camera lens. In other words, there is no cure.

Anonymous said...

I NEVER worry about what to make for dinner so early in the morning . . . why waste time and energy on that, when it is clearly needed at 5:30 when I am torn between which box of cereal to pour out for the kids? (5:31 is when I start worrying that I am a bad mother, and 5:32 is when I start wondering if any of the last two minutes worth of worrying are fodder for blog posting.)

(Thanks for stopping by . . . I am currently in a 'If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all' phase, though I hope to throw something up later today.)

Sparx said...

Helen - oh goodness... autoflush loos... your poor kids. I am beginning to see that perhaps there is no cure except to write the damn stuff down...

Driving - great to see you - and... 5:31? If you are up with your kids at 5:31 you are DEFINITELY a Good Mother!!!!!

DJ Kirkby said...

Lol! As usual...LOL!!!! 'Make Mummy Mental', N3S has clearly read the same book and if I ever find the store that sold it to him I'll...
Seriously though, what a great book title, hint, HINT! xo
p.s. Happy Father's Day to Frog.

Jen said...

The day I wake up and the first thing I am thinking about is what to make for dinner is the day I want someone to shoot me.

jenny said...

Oh no, not me! I'm a fly by the seat of my pants kind of mother when it comes to dinner. My mother in law made weekly menus for her meals when my husband was a kid!!

Want to know what we had for dinner last night? Eggs and toast! It was the quickest and most filling thing I could think of, so I could hurry up and work my mulberries.

Nevermind those auto flush toilets, I wish they'd ban the hand dryers! Every bathroom that has one, my girls want to stand and squeal and fluff their hair and pull down their shirts to see them poof with air and.... I'm forever standing there saying "c'mon girls, time to go. Let's go, girls. Now!" Then I have to forcibly grab them and drag them out of the bathrooms with other women looking at me.

Rob Clack said...

I'm sure you're way ahead of me here, but next time you're sent somewhere exotic on business, go a day early or stay a day late just so you can have that little bit of time there getting some of the flavour of the place.

Anonymous said...

Oh, no . . . that's 5:31 in the evening - and me feeding the kids cereal for dinner. Though I am often up at 5:31 in the morning as well - seems toddlers think that sleep is VERY overrated.

Sparx said...

DJ - never mind book title, it's the story title of my life these days!! Thanks!

Jen - I know, me too!

Jenny - that made me laugh, the thought of you waiting for your girls to stop primping themselves under the hand dryers! Very funny! ...and, eggs on toast for dinner - been there!

Rob - Not a bad idea... will have to run it past the frog next time!

Driving - AhA! That's great, I love that you think about feeding them cereal for dinner. Sometimes the spud gets porridge for dessert...

Anonymous said...

Hmm, I do have days where I plan ahead for meals, but that's the exception to the rule. Just the other day, I was at a loss, so we had strawberries for dinner. On top of a sponge cake. With whipped cream. Yes, alright, call it strawberry cake if you like. Did the trick anyway.

I would also love to visit Istanbul again, but I think we should be glad to have seen it when we did. They're waiting for the Big One, you know. One of the friends we were visiting had done all his earthquake homework, just in case.

LOVE Freakonomics. The best bit is laying bare the misconception that moving to the suburbs is the best thing to do when you have kids. Never thought a book about statistics could be that much fun...

Jonny's Mommy said...

I couldn't blog every day if I didn't have access to a computer at work and could quickly blurt things out. Otherwise I would be consumed with mommy brain too and do find that quite often worrying about if I'm a crappy mom or not occupies all of my brain.

Blogging helps to quiet some of that and give me other things to think about, though, so at times blogging is a bit of therapy for me.
We enjoy your posts whenever you can blog.

I hope you did get that lie down

Blogget Jones said...

That sign is absolutely hilarious! As is the book Spud had....must be something that circulates among kids!

My writer/editor brain never gives me a break. The editor part is the worst. Bad grammar on TV and signs drives me to distraction. I about had a seizure over a sign the other day that said "41th Annual Pancake Day!" oh good golly.

:o) BJ

Hoto said...

If you updated your blog from your phone, you could send snippets from wherever you are.

Sparx said...

Jennie - glad I'm not alone on the Freakonomics front! Have you read the Economic Naturalist yet?

Jonny's Mommy - I have daily computer access too, I just don't have daily inspiration!

Blogget Jones - really? 41th? Is that fortyfirth? or fortyonth? That would be driving me nuts for years. How many copies of 'Eats, Shoots and Leaves' did you get for Xmas when it came out?!

Hoto - I know, I know I should do... but then I'd have no excuse for not posting... and I had my laptop with me at the time I was just... lazy... tired... busy... (rifles through book of excuses...)

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