Tag: life lessons

The Unbearable Lightness of Being Happy

bokeh images

Happy lightness

A very good evening to all my followers! As winter draws (and drawers) ever nearer, I felt you might need some help and encouragement in seeing your way through these cold, dark nights. I have previously written about looking at the positive side of things, but I now have some further support to offer, having had some experience this week of looking on the bright side of life (hmm, that could be good title for a song…). Much of this advice is particularly pertinent to those of you who wear glasses or contact lenses – and for those of you who don’t, believe me – it will happen at some point!

sun glasses

sun glasses

You will need to visit your local, friendly optician for an eye test (free for those of us over a certain age) and casually drop into the conversation that you will be going to Africa in the near future so you wonder if you should get a pair of varifocals with light-reactive lenses, because it’s bound to be sunny and at the moment you only have a pair of boring, non-light-reactive bifocals (again, age will bring these delights for those of you who don’t need them just yet) which you wear as little as possible.
You think this might be a sensible (but expensive) idea in case you get some grit in your eye whilst on safari or lying on a sandy beach on Zanzibar (your local, friendly optician may start to look annoyed at this point) and have to remove your lenses and wear glasses instead. You explain that a few weeks ago you had to wear your glasses for longer than usual AND out in public (a rare occurrence) and it happened to be a sunny day (you may recall that day – August 17th, if my memory serves me well), so the only solution was to wear a pair of plain sunglasses on top of the ‘ordinary’ glasses. Now, while the Lifestyle Support Guru can get away with such a look, it is not something that ordinary mortals should cultivate because people will look at you in an odd fashion.

old shoe

old shoe

Your local, friendly optician, realising that you have already spent a fortune on the forthcoming trip to Africa (threadbare clothes, shoes with no soles, that sort of thing), will suggest a much cheaper option of daily contact lenses to take with you (I think he was still trying to picture the LSG driving around wearing sunglasses on top of ordinary glasses), which you agree sounds much more acceptable – and probably less frightening for those one might meet on one’s travels!
Your local, friendly optician then asks if you have any other questions and you mention that you have seen a product which might relieve your ‘dry eye’ problem (which is a bit misleading because ‘dry eye’ actually makes your eyes water!), which is an eye mask that is heated in the microwave before placing it over the eyes for 5-10 minutes. He agrees that this might be helpful and this is where the ‘looking on the bright side’ comes in – instead of feeling sad that you are getting older and things are starting to fall apart, you can feel happy because you now have an excuse to go back to bed for 10 minutes because you need to lie down in a darkened room twice a day!

woman lying on bed for rest

Lying down for 10 minutes

And the other experiences of looking on the positive side? An acquaintance offers earlier in the week to come round on Saturday morning to discuss possible plans for your garden (I use that term loosely), but you realise that you’d rather go and see ‘Spectre’ on Saturday, so you seek him out in the pub (where I meet most of my acquaintances) to offer your apologies and arrange another date. However, before you can say, ‘I’m really sorry, but something really urgent has come up tomorrow morning, so could we postpone the garden inspection?’, the acquaintance apologises profusely for not coming around THIS morning! ‘No problem!’ you reply sweetly, ‘We’ll rearrange it for another time. I can’t do tomorrow, though.’
And, finally, that ‘bright side’ moment when you realise you are up there with the ‘big players’. You have finally filled in your Tax Return (this is not a BIG Tax Return, believe me) after putting it off for months and you give details of the interest earned on your current account – a MASSIVE 13 pence! I think that’s probably more than Starbucks, Amazon and Google have paid put together, so I think George Osborne should be really grateful!

Always look on the bright side of life, dadah, dadadadadadah…
Enjoy your weekend, devoted acolytes!

The Perfect Guest

Welcome sign


A very good evening to you all from the Lifestyle Support Guru! This evening I am going to give you an important lesson on BEING A GOOD GUEST. It is always useful to know how to behave when visiting other people, as they will inevitably have different habits from your own, so you need to learn how to ADAPT! I have drawn up a list of easy-to-follow instructions which will ensure that you will always be welcomed in future as the PERFECT HOUSE GUEST!
1. DO make sure that you give as little notice as possible of your intended arrival, even though you may have been planning your trip for weeks, maybe even months – an hour, maybe two, should be ample. This is, of course, entirely for the benefit of your host, to save him/her spending hours cleaning and tidying prior to your arrival. You are thus saving your host days of stress and worry.

cat licking its paws


2. DO make sure that you arrive at least an hour later than you had said. Again, this is for the benefit of your host, who will have been able to put that extra time to good use by doing a little more cleaning and tidying, thus alleviating any earlier concern he/she may have had about the house not being spick and span. It also means that the friends the host had arranged to meet at the pub will have had a whole extra hour to drink more alcohol, thus making them far more relaxed than the host!
3. DO make sure that you bring a gift for the host – I suggest a box of kippers. This will ensure that the host’s house will be gently perfumed with a tantalising smell which will entrance the host’s cats, even if the host hates them. Again, this is all for the host’s benefit because it keeps the cats happy and the host is also able to use up a large number of carrier bags wrapping the box of kippers to try and mask the smell.
4. DO make sure that you have some unspecified leg injury which means you are unable to walk for long and need to spend the evening resting when your host had been thinking about a meal out, perhaps Chinese or Italian. Once more, you are doing your host a great favour because he/she needs to lose some weight anyway.

wet floor

wet floor

5. DO make sure that, when you have a shower, you fail to put the bath mat down, so that the floor is lovely and wet when the host goes for a shower. Once again, you are selflessly helping your host, who is thus able to practise long-forgotten skating skills and who hadn’t realised he/she could do the splits!
There are other instructions, but I think these will suffice for now; there are certainly enough to ensure that your host will have a BIG SMILE on his/her face – WHEN YOU LEAVE! Sleep well and don’t forget to put the bath mat down unless you have a wish to become another Torvill or Dean. (For those of you who may be worried, the PERFECT GUEST has a sense of humour!)

Life Lessons from the pub

London buses

London buses

Good evening from the Lifestyle Support Guru! I have several LIFE LESSONS to share with you tonight and, since there is nothing to watch on telly on a Saturday night (which is why I’m in the pub), you may as well do something constructive and learn from my experiences. But first, I have something desperately sad to communicate to you (apart from Wales losing to England last night, that is). My friends and followers, I have had a complaint… yes, A COMPLAINT!!! Someone has had the temerity to say that my posts (sorry, ‘LIFE LESSONS’) are inconsistent – a bit like buses, really, in that you get nothing for a while and then several come along in short succession. Well, MR WHINGER (I’ll keep his full identity secret, but his first name is Richard), that’s what it’s like for LIFESTYLE SUPPORT GURUS. We cannot control when the Muse may strike us – actually, I say ‘us’, but I don’t know of any other LSGs (although I have now recruited two Deputy LSGs, but they’re still in training), so it’s a lonely life in reality, but I carry on because I know that there are people out there who NEED my support and help.
Now, on to the LIFE LESSONS, all of which are pub-related – this may surprise some of you, but someone has to support local businesses, and it may as well be me… oh, the sacrifices I make!
1. Picture yourself in a quiet, pleasant, little real ale pub where sartorial elegance is not the first thing on your mind – you’re only there for the beer (or wine), after all.

John Collins

Joan Collins

2. In walks the equivalent of a blonde Joan Collins, accompanied by Benny Hill. She is wearing a short, lacy black dress and black lacy stockings with a seam and pattern up the back, topped with a faux leopard skin coat. He is wearing grey trousers, a black overcoat, a mulberry-style scarf and a grey beanie, the ensemble completed with heavy dark-rimmed glasses on a rather pale face.

news nerd

news nerd

So, what is the LIFE LESSON? Don’t judge a book by its cover (or its leopard skin coat or beanie) because they are sitting opposite you and obviously observing you as well, judging by the looks they keep giving you – what’s wrong with an orange jumper paired with green and navy trainers?
I was so impressed with the Joan Collins/Benny Hill. combination that I’ve completely forgotten what the second LIFE LESSON might be! However, look out for a LIFE LESSON in TRANSLATION – coming soon to a pub near you!

Have a lovely evening (what’s left of it!).