April 18, 2012 § 105 Comments

I am so sorry I have been so silent, and then the Times column didn’t come out on Monday when I had promised it would because they had to make way for a big book extract about the death of Philip Gould.  Anyway, it promises to go in next Monday and I jolly well will publish it here on Tuesday.  It will of course be rather out of date, to say the least, for which I am sorry.

I am also sorry that I have not been posting.  Everything went wrong and I was just too fucking depressed and am still feeling a bit knocked for six.  In the process now of – yet again – trying to pick myself up, dust myself down, smile and wave and push on.  Not quite back on track.  But getting there.  I guess.

I am lucky enough to have the children back and to have had the opportunity to read some excellent novels, including John Lanchester’s Capital (I am a BIG fan of John Lanchester, the writer and the man; he’s wonderful) which really took me out of myself; and another one which was high-brow enough (about the decline of the Austro-Hungarian Empire) to require a little more concentration than usual to distract me a little from my self-imposed misery.  I loved it too, and especially so when a friend of mine who is the sub-warden of an Oxbridge college and a distinguished historian told me that she had always been told how brilliant this particular novel was but had never got to grips with it and how clever of me not only to have got through it but also to have loved it!  (Nothing better than kind, supportive friends, eh?)

You have every reason to tell me I am sounding like the worst kind of boastful arsehole and I can fuck right off and you’d be right, but I mention it purely because the boast is all I have right now: the book and her compliment constituted the only little pulse of pleasure in a period otherwise entirely devoid of the stuff.  Worst Easter ever.  Thank fuck it’s over.


§ 105 Responses to Silence

  • Aggie says:

    Have been wondering how you are. LOVELY to have you back…am so very sorry you have had a shit time. It is just NOT fair.

  • Lydia says:

    Ah, well adopt my virtually 365 days a year working and then you don’t have the issues of problems over holidays. Win win all round… laughing as I type…

    Anyway things always get better. It will be fine. The things that matter are our physical and mental health and that of our children first always. Everything else can be dealt with particularly as we’re lucky enough to live in a country with a welfare state for when money problems get to rock bottom.

    Well I met the man with whom I’d had a good phone conversation (childfree man). I think he wants to meet again and I didn’t respond to that. We aren’t compatible in a major way which matters to me but we’ll see. He was a nice change from the widower who progresses but isn’t right either who I’m seeing tomorrow. It’s rare I see two but I|’m not committed to either and I’m seeing the wheelchair one who is not as quick and has the wrong accent (and of course no working legs) soon too – he fixed it last night. He is suitable in another way. Pity you cannot meld them all into one. I can’t say I had that great an Easter either as I was dreading a foreign business trip last week but that’s all over now so that’s fine.

    I don’t really want to give the widower lessons on how to make me want him so I cannot see how it could work as he isn’t doing what he needs to do although he’s very keen. I must say that just going out with two people who seem to think you look okay etc and they usually go on about the voice/brain too is quite flattering although perhaps not good for the soul.

    I have often sung the various settings from the Book of Common Prayer including these lines of which the Plankton post put me in mind if people want to wallow in a bit of sorry:

    “In the midst of life we are in death: of whom may we seek for succour, but of thee, O Lord, who for our sins art justly displeased? Yet, O Lord God most holy, O Lord most mighty, O holy and most merciful Saviour, deliver us not into the bitter pains of eternal death.”

    However I am sure all will be well.

    • Redbookish says:

      Lydia, I’m fascinated by your little descriptive comments “isn’t right” etc. I admire the way you are so clear and pragmatic. Can you say a little about your criteria, or is it more an individual sense of “fit” when you meet each person?

  • J says:

    There’s no need to apologise for the gap in your posts, P. It was understood a few weeks ago that you would probably be posting less frequently in the near future and everyone seemed content with that. Personally, I’m happy with the gaps; that way, when one of your posts pops up in my Inbox, it’s a nice surprise.

    It’s not a nice surprise to read that things have been so grim for you of late and I trust that you will feel better soon. This sounds a bit Pollyanna-ish, but it’s always a good idea to nourish yourself at times like this. A bath full of bubbles, a slick of lipstick and your favourite comfort food (tomato soup, cheese on toast works …) – just examples – these things don’t impact on the serious things which derail all of us during our lives, but my experience is that they allow you a few minutes respite from the distress and that is how longer term recovery begins.

    I’m not sure what has happened to have upset you so much but appreciate that it might be private and that you might not want to write about it.

    Whatever the situation, take good care of yourself. Readers will still be here next week.

  • Margaux says:

    Welcome back P.

    With ref to Lydia – we are all allowed a bit of a wallow. The trick is in how we bounce back.
    Nothing ever stays the same you know, – today’s misery inducing scenario is tomorrow’s lucky escape,thank God that’s over, I’m not putting up with this crap,how am I going to sort this out mood change.

    If the object of your romantic interest isn’t playing ball – that will change too – time is not of the essence unless he is about to emigrate or walk up the aisle -…

    Meanwhile, losing oneself in books is a comfort and a joy. I can never understand people who don’t read…

    M – ( currently reading Lionel Shriver’s ‘So much for that’)

  • AnonW says:

    I’ve been finding adding to my blog difficult over the last week or so. I guess it’s partly Easter, which if you live alone is always bad and also the weather, which just seems to get worse.

    I’m sure they send the rain to wash widows, both female and male, out of this world.

  • june says:

    Lovely to hear from you again P and sorry you have been feeling down, like the others, ive been thinking and wondering how things going for you and all your regular contributors as well.You have been missed.

    i had a bit of a down time myself, no “twinkles” and a bit of fall out with good friend, connected a bit with my plankton status, we are ok again now, and as she pointed out to me, being coupled up has problems too, youngest stepdaughter been giving her grief. Still we are off to westfield at stratford on friday, her, another friend and i for bit retail therapy, so will look forward to that. i am not a sports fan but will be interesting to see the olympic village.

    It wasnt a book that helped me although i do read a lot, but going to the opera, went to see Barber of Seville last week, very uplifting and very funny, the two friends i went with enjoyed it to. Also saw a Titian exhibition at local gallery, very enjoyable.

    Think weather so depressingly unseasonable doesent help anyone,let alone us planktons,that i am on my own feeling seems to creep up doesent it. But we must not lose hope, other day i ran into someone i know, well in her 70s, she doesent look it , been a widow for years,flashed an engagement ring at me, so there is hope for us all, although i am first to admit i dont always feel that way,.

    All the best to you hope you feel better soon, look forward to next post..

  • Aidan says:

    We are just pleased to have you back P. To be frank some of us were a little worried that you may have met up with a hunky dreamboat and dumped us, obviosly we would have been happy for you but would miss you badly.

    John Lanchester is a brilliant writer, I have loved all his books including Capital. What was the name of the novel set in the Austro-Hungarian empire it sounds intriguing?

    Hope you are felling better soon, this rotten weather doesn’t help.


    • The Plankton says:

      Oh, that I had had an excuse to dump you! No, I didn’t mean that! I did meet a hunky dreamboat but, well, I met him…and that about covers it. You are right about this rotten weather. I only hope it is cheering up the drought, if not us! Pxx

  • joseyjo says:

    Poor P, we have all missed you, and I hope that soon you begin to pick up and feel better. Lots of love xx

  • rosie says:

    Great to have you back, P, and so sorry things didn’t go to plan but good on you for getting through not one, but TWO, books in such stressful circumstances. I know I couldn’t. It would be a duvet (or three) day chez moi.

    I Get Knocked Down But I Get Up Again: the plankton mantra, eh? x

  • aj says:

    I’ve got a good idea how you feel and just wanted to add my voice to those whom are letting you know that you not alone. 🙂

  • Erin says:

    Oh Dear P, I’m so sorry : ( Please try to think of this as just a bump in the road to meeting Mr. Right. Remember when you were feeling low about LS and suddenly this surprise twinkle appeared? It will happen again. Please, please, please reconsider internet dating. If you had several twinkles going at once, it would perhaps keep you off the emotional rollercoaster of devastation when one doesn’t work out. You have to do the work though. You can do it. There is nothing to lose. (((Big hugs to you today, P)))

  • Alison says:

    Lovely to see you pop up in my mailbox again, as has been said, we have missed you but all were rooting for you too and will continue to do so regardless of outcome. It doesn’t matter matter if you are plankton, evolving plankton to a higher form or fully fledged out of the sea, your missives are well written and you are an interesting person.

    Look forward to reading whenever you can make a post, and hoping you feel better soon

    Best wishes

  • Lizzie says:

    Oh f-ck. Not good news Plankton. If only these situations could be in OUR control, not anyone elses.

  • SteveH says:

    Hi P

    Been away for a while( not inside;) ) but have just seen your post.

    Sorry to hear you’ve had such a tough time of it recently but look forward to reading some of your thought provoking musings in the comeing weeks.

  • Fabbss says:

    Was it Musil you were reading?

  • EmGee says:

    You, a “boastful arsehole”? Hardly. Nothing like a little boost , a accomplishment, an unexpected pat on the back to remind that we’re worth more than the skin we’re in.

    What a nice surprise to find a new entry in my emailbox this morning. Also nice that a few people have kept the dialogue going in some older posts as well.

    I would like a bit of your ‘rotten weather’ please. I live in arid country, where when it does rain, it simply pours for a few minutes, or a day at best, then nothing for weeks, even months. Although much like a sunny day to most of you, the fresh smell of rain after a dry spell is refreshing and delightful. An analogy very similar to those twinkles; there will be many more dry days than genuinely twinkly ones, that is simply the way it is, more space than stars…

  • leftatforty says:

    I missed you. Thank fuck you are posting again.

  • Caz says:

    Hi Plankton

    sorry to hear you haven’t had a very good time recently. I’ve been away on a bit of an adventure – I did a house swap to a distant island and spent 3 weeks without TV, computers, just thoughts – sea – paints – good food and occasional company.
    I really love your blog and avidly followed it every day. However – having had a break I think you are doing absolutely the right thing by having a break from it.
    The trouble with blogging is that encourages one to be very introspective – you pour so much time and energy into it – and for what? to attract comments form your loyal followers whom you will never,ever meet. If you suddenly stopped blogging we would all disappear in a puff of smoke.
    Writing and answering a blog is a sort of addiction…your blog is excellent but one dwells so much on every nuance and thought.
    I hope you write that book….you are so intelligent and have a fantastic way with words. I re-read Notes on a scandal last week by Zoe Heller…surely with all your material you are well equipped to write a best seller?
    I wish you all the best in your quest for love – but I only think it will happen when you are busy getting on with your life.
    All the best xxx

    • The Plankton says:

      Dear Caz, this is a very thoughtful and helpful comment and I agree with it all (except maybe the bit about writing a bestseller: in my dreams!). I am so glad you’ve enjoyed the blog, but i am going to have to slow it down a bit, for my own mental health. I will tell the story of Surprise Twinkle in time, I guess, but it is all still rather raw. Onwards with starting the book, that’s the thing, I think. Thank you for your compliments and encouragement. So many of my friends have told me what you have said about stopping the blog and getting on with my life and only then might someone appear… Well, I probably won’t stop it completely, but I do need to get on with my life and perhaps not lay out every tiny nuance of the disasterous side of it for all and sundry! (Not that my lovely readers and commentators are really all and sundry, but you get my drift). Thanks again. Pxx

      • Sorry the Twinkle fizzled. Back to “Least Expecting It” and “Counting Your Blessings.” Sigh.

      • Redbookish says:

        “I will tell the story of Surprise Twinkle in time, I guess, but it is all still rather raw.”

        I had a Surprise Twinkle 2 summers ago — well, a little more than a “twinkle” rather less than even “going out” with someone, let alone getting to “staying in” with them.

        It took me a good year or so to get over it. It wasn’t just him, and he did nothing — except that he did nothing. But one gets over-tender. It’s natural, and I’m not going to beat myself up over it (too much), although I recognised that my response was — in the scheme of things — a bit of an overreaction. But I think this was due to my general situation. One goes without affection or regard or being the focus of someone else’s attention for long enough, and it only takes a small incident of feeling that regard and attention to make one yearn. Its as much about the situation, as the person.

        You just have to get through it, day by day. But sometimes, one is justified in briefly and privately shouting to the universe “What IS the point?”

        Best wishes, as ever, Ms P.

      • MissM says:

        Nicely said Redbookish. So true that when a need is so lacking for so long the smallest scraps can take on the greatest importance, in the same way that a crust of stale bread would be yearned for by a starving man. I know full well what it is like to ask that very same question of the universe also, but I am convinced the universe does not care.

      • EmGee says:

        @ Rebookish:

        I know exactly how you feel. I had been emotionally neglected for so long in my marriage, that I had begun to believe attentiveness and affection didn’t even exist in the real world, just couples were just pretending to be nice to each other when the rest of the world was watching.

        When my bf appeared in my life and started paying attention to me, I was in heaven! Then he suddenly broke it off in the spring and I was devastated. Turns out it was nothing to do with me, but he was going through some other emotional issues, and pretending they weren’t as taxing as they were.

        So, he worked through them and we got back together, after a fashion, late last year, but it isn’t the same. I am a bit leery of another melt down because he still may not be honest about his feelings, and he’s not physically affectionate, apart from when he first sees me and when he leaves. At the same time, he called and left a message the other day, which I didn’t respond to immediately and he called again, and just said he wanted to hear my voice. And, he loves to have a ‘honey-do’ list when he’s here, and brings me things from the city which I cannot get locally, particularly indulgences from the cuban bakery.

        Maybe I am ‘settling’ for a less than perfect relationship, or just accepting that the good parts of the relationship outweigh what is missing, and not dwelling on what may or may not come to pass. All I know is that I (not smugly) happy in the companion department right now.

      • MissM says:

        You sound very sensible and realistic EmGee, I don’t see it as settling when it sounds more like you are just aware that perfection does not exist. I actually find it quite interesting that quite a few men I have met seem to hold a fairy tale view of the ‘perfect woman’ being out there somewhere, especially since it is mostly women that are criticised for having a Disney-style view of relationships.

        I understand how you can be a bit leery given the previous meltdown, once burned twice shy and all that, but of course not every man is necessarily very physically affectionate. He sounds like he has in fact lots got of feeling for you and shows you in the ways that he is comfortable with. I suspect time is the only thing that will build trust and confidence in the relationship for both of you. As always I wish you both the best, you deserve it.

      • EmGee says:

        Thank you MissM, your thoughts mean a lot coming from a ‘regular’ here.

  • MissM says:

    So very glad to see a new posting from you dear P. I have so enjoyed reading your blog including every tiny nuance of the disastrous side of it, as you put it, since that is what makes it so real and touching. Sorry to hear that circumstances have left you have feeling rather depressed, for some reason bad things always do seem to happen to people who don’t deserve it. I admire your strength in getting up and dusting yourself off yet again to face the world with a smile. Best wishes and big hugs from me too.

  • Redbookish says:

    And generally, good to hear from you, Ms P. I’m sorry Easter has been a bastard for you, and I sense I could empathise with your disappointment. I think a number of us *do* understand the tendency to wallow, and the self-reproach that goes with it. I know I do! Although anyone meeting me in person at times when I have felt very low would not see it.

    Ah, the copers of this world! We cope, and if we don’t others around us get upset. Sometimes we need to let down the aura of cheerful efficiency, if only in the privacy of a diatry, or its modern Web 2.) ewquivalent: the anonymous blog.

    I have a SinL who is “not a coper” as a sibling put it. And she’s high maintenance– not her appearance, but her emotional and time and control demands. What must it be like to be high maintenance — I know that if I became so, no-one would talk to me.

    All the very best to you and other commenters on this blog!

    • The Plankton says:

      Thank you, Redbookish. Pxx

    • Jill says:

      So much good sense and many thoughtful observations which resonate with me on this site, which I have only just discovered. I so agree with what you have said above, Redbookish, both about your Surprise Twinkle of 2 years ago, and the need for others to perceive that one is “coping”. You have put both those scenarios so well, that I find myself immensely cheered by an awareness of shared experience .

      I too have missed your insightful articles, Ms P, and send you my very best wishes, as I can empathise only too well with your situation. I hope that you can take huge pride in the fact that you have gathered “about you” a vocal and very supportive group of new friends. No mean achievement – and please keep going, even if intermittently. I/We would miss you.

      Jill x

  • AMJ says:

    Oh, have you read Noelle Oxenhandler’s “The Wishing Year”? I’m reading it at the moment, it’s beautifully written and from time to time her predicament reminds me of your predicament. I think you’d love it.

  • rhubarb0 says:

    Hey there, just wanted to relate to the crappy Easter bit. I always find Easter a bit of a let down. I think it’s because it’s just not as big a celebration as Christmas, there’s no ‘spirit of goodwill’ hanging around, just copious amounts of sickly chocolate that have the effect of making you feel guilty and depressed that you’ve stuffed your face with the kids eggs, again.

    Anyway, you are right, getting stuck into a good book is the best way to drag yourself out of a dark place. I find myself totally consumed by a good book and it can really affect my mood one way or the other. At the moment I’m re-reading the Dirk Gently books as the TV series got me ever so slightly annoyed that he hadn’t been portrayed at all accurately. I’ve allowed myself a self-indulgent giggle at Douglas Adams’ wonderfully surreal sense of humour and it has certainly helped to lift my mood on those days when you just feel like snapping at everyone and anyone.

    I’ve been recommended to read Crime and Punishment next, but the sheer size of the book puts me off. However never let it be said that I don’t take recommendations on board. It’s on my bookshelf right now, waiting expectantly. I might just re-familiarise myself with the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy first though. Just for a bit of light reading you understand!

  • Becca says:

    I am sorry too, but glad you are back writing. I check your blog every day and am so disappointed when you’re not ‘there’, but I appreciate that you don’t owe us anything!

  • Brigitte says:

    P., I’m sorry that things are not going well. I hate to bring up internet dating, but the men on senior dating sites seem to not mind middle-aged women. There are many men that will not please you, but there are usually a few that are decent looking. My senior dating site is for men and women 45 and older. So some men are still in their forties. A few even look younger than their age. My new guy, Steve (below), is fifty but looks forty. He looks younger than me, damn it!

    Not to be smug, but I will take this opportunity to say that my last internet dating pal, Steve, is rather wonderful. It’s early days (four weeks), but he is a dream. He’s an artsy type (musician, graphics artist) and wears his emotions on his sleeve. He’s as thrilled with me as I am with him. He’s not at all like any of the men I have dated (he communicates!). He’s attractive without being overly good looking. He calls and emails regularly and is visibly pleased to see me. He truly appreciates my lack of baggage (no kids or ex-husband). He has never married and has a 28 year-old daughter. We are very suited. If any of you want to check us out, see us on facebook under Brigitte Lord, Ottawa. There are better pics of him on his facebook page. He’s listed as one of my friends.

    And no, I am not smug. Just happy.

  • T Lover says:

    Can I join the book club? I ardently recommend “Scrope”, “Days and Nights of Fishing in the Tweed” or Fred Buller, “the Domesday Book of Giant Salmon” volumes I and II. Just the sort of thing a bloke in harness needs to distract him if ever permitted a quiet moment.

    Apropos today’s torrent of sympathetic comments, that’s life.

    And what about the bad language, “ladies”?

    • Lizzie says:

      I think the bad language is occasionally forthcoming only as tongue-in-cheek, comedic, and just a way of expressing “this is the shit of life as I see it at the moment”.

      Not to be taken seriously, and I really don’t think you will find any racous cacophonic cussing plebeians here.

      • Lizzie says:

        raucous, that was meant to say

      • T Lover says:

        Some women would only be happy if they had three balls.

      • T Lover says:

        Testicles, that is what I meant to say.

      • EmGee says:

        Ah I couldn’t figure out why you thought we all wanted pawn shops. ❓

        Sure, I want a pair -as log as they are attached to someone else, not me.

      • T Lover says:

        Dr T Lover writes:

        Delusions about polyorchidism are common amongst certain female types. Females falling into this sub group are becoming increasingly common.

        Behavioural traits include swearing for effect, reading the Grauniad and an inability to cook a boiled egg.

        Psychological consequences include problems forming and keeping a relationship with a male. Emasculated males are therefore in great demand amongst members of this female sub group.

  • fiftynotout says:

    Fab news Bridge! another internet success story- see P they do exist.
    I had a look at your F/B Brigitte and he looks lovely(as do you) weird isn’t it? why are we all saying that? what were we expecting? that one, or both of you may have 2 heads or look a ‘bit odd’ Guess we all want reassurance that we are just normal people and there other normal people (men) out there and on the internet, to be had.

    • Brigitte says:

      fiftynotout, I think perhaps the ‘looking lovely’ is partly due to the peace and happiness Steve and I feel right now (hope it lasts). We both are so relieved to have found each other after so many internet false starts (his experience) and no starts (mine).

      Thanks to everyone who commented. I just wanted to share a bit of good news that all is not lost even when we think it is. I will keep you informed from time to time, but promise not to gloat. I’m a little scared of being so attached. I’m used to being single, even if the last year has been lonely. At least we agree that we probably are too set in our ways to live together (neither one of us has been married).

      • fiftynotout says:

        Just jump right in with both feet and enjoy! you’ve waited a while, so now relish every second. x

      • june says:


        So pleased for you, see you are not in uk, which doesent surprise me, still think very hard for mature women here to meet men on websites. Steve sounds sensible with his same idea as you re not living together, Something i dont think i could do either,too set in my ways.

        I went on a shopping trip yesterday with two very good female friends, both coupled up,one in a long term,easy going relationship,with child of own, another with a not so easy going one, with stepkids. We discussed relationships etc, and i thought then i couldn t live with a man all time,it just wouldnt work for me, ive been on my own too long, but they were saying hope house is as i left it etc,but will probably be a tip, and i came back to my small apartment just as i left it, but quiet and empty and i wondered, will it always be like this, but i am so used to my own space. ,My friend was saying about problems having with one of stepdaughters and her partner just gives in to her, and i thought on reflection no i really couldnt hack full time living with someone and what that would involve, but thats a bit different to never having anyone in any way in your life isnt it, i think, as P and many more on here will probably agree with.

  • Geoffrey says:

    P – if the reason for your reverse is that you fell for someone and he turned out to be very different than your expectations – don’t beat yourself up about it. All that means is that he was not The One, not that The One is not out there somewhere. And at least you have not wasted too much time on him. So keep your spirits up – there are plenty of intuitive and empathetic men commenting on this blog and I am convinved you will find someone like that who really deserves all you have to offer. Which, judging by your writing, is a great deal indeed.

  • Jill says:

    Three cheers for you, Geoffrey; how splendid that an intuitive and empathetic man like you is reading and commenting on this blog. That was a very wise and insightful comment and I hope that P takes great heart from what you have said.

  • Aidan says:

    Jill, what you may not know is that P screens all the men who want to join the blog so that only the very most intelligent, intiutive, empathtic erudite ones are allowed on. Added to that we have to submit a photo and P will only let men on here if they are very handsome, she has the highest standards there respect too.

    That is the reason why although there are not many men on here they are all top notch in every respect.

    • Mrs T Lover says:


      So how come my old man is allowed on?

    • The Plankton says:

      Not true, Jill! I don’t screen any of them, I promise! pxx

      • Jill says:

        Well, I have no doubt, Aidan, that you are indeed “top notch” – that’s almost as good an epithet as “nifty”! – but I wholeheartedly accept P’s assurance that she does not screen any of you intelligent, intuitive, empathetic, and erudite chaps before allowing you your say. However, I think a trick is being missed here, in that a picture gallery of such of you gentlemen who are endowed with all these excellent and desirable qualities should immediately become an integral part of this site……I can see the potential for Ms P’s Matchmaking Emporium……does anyone else think this idea has “legs”?!

      • T Lover says:


        Have you thought of a career on the stage?

        It’s bad enough having to read what this lot have to say without throwing in – you think as a bonus – what they look like.

        In my, extensive I might say, experience a woman who doesn’t put up a picture taken whilst she was at school is a rarity, a true gem.

      • Jill says:

        Strictly speaking, T Lover, it was not I who suggested putting photographs of”this lot” on display; I was keen to examine the credentials of the exceptionally handsome male correspondents, among whose number Aidan included himself. BTW, may I express my condolences to you for the suffering you are experiencing in apparently “having” to read what is said on here; I can only imagine that you must be well in thrall to Mrs. T Lover. But seriously, I am sure that she is a gem – just like me!

  • Chris says:

    Blimey planky, you do seem a bit down, not like yer old feisty self at all. Hope things get better for you. Hope you feel happier soon, haven’t been aroubd as I thought you’d wrapped all this up. Cheers !!!

  • rosie says:

    Just to say that I have had two of my very own Twinkles in the past couple of weeks, both of whom have turned out to be Non Twinkles before they even got off the starting block.

    Twinkle One I was told about through a work acquaintance in her early 30s, happily coupled up and either doesn’t know or doesn’t care that she has stirred up the long dormant hopes of this perennial plankton only to grind them back into the dust by disappearing into it herself.

    Twinkle Two came, to my eternal surprise, via my sister, someone she works with who she thinks I will ‘hit it off with’. He even gave her his number to pass on, despite being aware of my advanced geriatric (he’s *only* 40) status. So, after waiting a few days, the seemly thing to do, I thought, even plankton have their pride, I texted him. And guess what? Nothing. Nada. Zilch. Sweet effing FA!

    Now how fucking rude is THAT?

    • EmGee says:

      I find your comment about the 2nd twinkle confusing. If I give someone I’d like to meet my phone number, I expect them to call me.

      Bearing in mind that I personally detest texting (although I will eventually have to succumb; my excuse, which is true, is that I can only afford the cheapest phone and plan), perhaps he felt that a text was rude coming from someone he’s not even met yet.

      Maybe he doesn’t even have text/data on his plan. I’ve had that feature blocked on my phone. (the problem, is that unlike a blocked call for instance, the texter isn’t told the textee doesn’t receive texts). I have voicemail, leave a message if I don’t answer, otherwise I get the impression that you can’t be arsed to take 5 minutes (if that) out of your day to speak with me.

      PS: I said ‘arsed’ for effect. 😎

    • The Plankton says:

      BLEARGH! So sorry to her this, Rosie, but so effing typical. Pxx

  • fiftynotout says:

    @ Jill, I have thought for a long time that people should post with a pic (women as well as men- let’s not turn it some womens cattle market) who knows, if people caught each others eye, what may transpire.

    • AnonW says:

      I would have no objection to this. You can actually change your WordPress identity to a picture if you want. In fact, I put a picture on my e-mails and my blog contains the odd picture of myself, but only when someone else takes a photo. No lady I could fancy, has ever commented. Perhaps, they’ve not visited.

    • Jill says:

      Well, fiftynotout – great nom de plume, btw – I think it would be a starter for ten, and would be happy to participate, but I feel that the initiative should come from the inceptor (is that a word?) of this blog. It’s her thunder after all, and I wouldn’t even contemplate stealing it. (I was actually just trying to be jokey about the potential for Mrs.P’s M-ME, in response to Aidan’s very fulsome promotion of himself and the other male correspondents “allowed” on here, but who knows, indeed?!)

  • rosie says:

    EmGee, he gave his number to my sister, so he was expecting me to contact him.

    I don’t know how it works in the US but no one in the UK would actually CALL (omg!) a potential blind date. Well some people might but they’re in such a minority as to be an endangered species.

    I pay a measly £15 a month for my phone plan and I can text so I’m sure he can. And if he really is in a sulk because I’ve texted and not called then he can take a hike anyway.

    • EmGee says:

      “…no one in the UK would actually CALL (omg!) a potential blind date.”

      That is an interesting cultural difference.
      I see what you are saying about calling up a blind date, since it is usually set up by someone else, but still, I don’t get the difference between calling and texting.
      Maybe it is just me, feeling that texting is an impersonal way to make an introduction.

      I pay $65 US (after taxes and fees <-aka 'taxes by another name) for a basic plan, about twice what you pay, even after currency conversion. AT&T has the only signal where I live, so I can't get a cheaper plan from another carrier.

      Still it sucks that he never contacted you back, maybe he's another Long Shot and you'll hear from him in another 6 weeks. 🙄

    • fiftynotout says:

      Rosie – phone him! has it occured that the text never got there? I say that because I have experience of that very recently. Someone sent me a text yesterday afternoon at 16.17 and I know he did because I have seen his phone with the text in the sent box. I still haven’t recieved it today and it’s now 10.45.
      Also, you may be asking if you really want to be hooked up with someone who needs to be chased, fair enough. Not calling someone because no-one in England would ever do that? Perleeeeze! this is your life not anyone elses, it’s you that sits at home on your own, not them. Dismiss the guy ..sure! but think about why you’re doing

  • Joules says:

    Dear P and everyone else who had a bad Easter

    So sorry that Easter was not that great. I have been away with my family – (sister, her husband and two children and I went to Vienna) it was great – at times I really do regret not having had children. Those of you who did have them are incredibly lucky. However I do realise – before Lydia tells us to adopt etc. – that I do not have the resources to do that. I can have a great time as an auntie.

    I really think a book is a good idea – does not have to be about plankton life only, perhaps life in general as planktons are just one example of life ending up not exactly where you thought you were going to be when you were young.

    Today is my 50th birthday. I don’t know what I am doing tonight – already had a lovely dinner out with the ladies from work on Thursday. My team from work are up to something. I have been receiving text messages on about a 30 minute interval. I am being picked up at 7 tonight – told to wear comfy but smart clothes and bring a tooth brush – not sure what that is going to be for but going along with it. Have to trust them. The best thing has been being able to sleep in without having to get up early and sort lunch or dinner for everyone at my house. Which is the usual thing for a birthday — you know what I mean. Making something happen, extremly nice to just trust someone else to organise something.

    My birthday is also my nephew’s – I always say he has been my best present ever. I am hoping to be able to talk to him at his party before I go to what ever they have planned.

    I hope that things get better for you as the weather will inevitably get better over the next month. I am off again for work next week – Sweden which I have never been too. Hoping that May is quieter than April has been.

    Big hugs from me to feel better.

    • The Plankton says:

      Have a very Happy Birthday! pxx

      • EmGee says:

        Happy birthday Joules, please tell us what the surprise was.

        Sweden sounds super right now, it’s 95ºF (33.9ºC) here today. Always looking on the bright side, when this little heat wave is over, it will seem even cooler when temps get back to normal in a day or 2.

  • fiftynotout says:

    Happy Birthday Joules! enjoy your treat.Enjoy Sweden too, it’s lovely

  • rosie says:

    Happy birthday Joules, sounds exciting!

    fiftynotout, yes you’re right, I was thinking the text might not have reached him. Am going to check with my sister that I did at least get the right number. I’m not not phoning him because no one in England does it but because asking a complete stranger – who I’ve never even clapped eyes on – out on a date scares the bejeezus out of me!

  • MissM says:

    Happy birthday Joules, hope you had/have a lovely time, though I can’t see any reason why you wouldn’t. Lucky you visiting Vienna and Sweden in rapid succession.

    Rosie, what a shame your sister can’t arrange a casual get together at her place where both you and this man are invited along with a few other guests. Or even an after work drinks session at some pub so that you might at least get to see this guy. Last thing you want is to be on some date with a fellow you don’t find remotely appealing in the first place.

  • Twinkletoes says:

    MissM, that’s a good idea.

    Rosie, when you hear back from him, you could always ask him to text you a photo of himself. Though if he’s anything like some of the dating website men, it might not be of his face… 😮

    Joules, many happy returns! Look forward to hearing about your surprise.

    Ms P, chin up and carry on. I’m waiting patiently for more when you’re ready. x

  • rosie says:

    Twinkletoes, chance would be a fine thing… only kidding, yuck!

    MissM, I’d rather go on a date with him on his own (not that it’s going to happen anyway), the thought of having onlookers freaks me out. Years ago me and this guy were set up on a blind date by mutual friends, most of whom seemed to turn up on The Date, whereupon lover boy and I spent the whole night studiously ignoring each other. Excruciating.

    I did see him again a few times but he had strange bedroom habits, ie tried to quiz me about what I’d ‘done’ with previous boyfriends while we were between the sheets. Double yuck.

  • Twinkletoes says:

    OMG, Rosie, that’s revolting. Euw!

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