Monday, 12 July 2010

Monday, and a prize

Posted by Tania Kindersley.

I always imagine, in the twisting corridors of my own mind, that each Monday I shall be galvanised and box-fresh. The moment the clock hits midnight on Sunday, I think the accumulated detritus of the last week should fall way by magic, and I shall be able to rise, like a shining phoenix, to greet the new dawn. Actually, what usually happens is that I get monkey mind on a Sunday night, fail to sleep, and go into Monday with a haunting sense of lost chance. A vicious caffeine buzz is the only thing that keeps me going. I do bad work. I think to myself: ah, Tuesday will be better.

I think almost certainly Tuesday will be better.

In the meantime, the enchanting LibertyLondonGirl has given me a Beautiful Blogger award.

Beautiful Blogger

I am quite overcome. LLG is a bit of a legend in these parts. Despite the fact that she was an established, ocean-going, five-star concern when I very first dipped my tentative foot into the waters of the blogosphere, she took the time to welcome me, give me excellent advice, and offer generous encouragement. It was an act of kindness and grace which I do not forget. 

I am intensely flattered.

Into every ointment, however, a tiny fly must fall. The rule is: you pass on the award to ten or fifteen people. Part of me loves doing this, but part of me hates it. There are so many blogs that fascinate and enchant me, how can I choose between them? In some cases, the choice is easy. I think that Major Paul Smyth at the fabulous Helmand Blog might be a bit surprised, in the heat and dust of Afghanistan, if he suddenly got a Beautiful Blogger award from a women of whom he has never heard, even though I read his blog with admiration each day. Obviously, it would be absurd to send an award to Andrew Sullivan over at The Daily Dish, although my day would not be complete without him. But for the rest, I feel that singling out ten is an invidious task. You know I love you all. Every blog on my blogroll is read with appreciation and delight. I also follow many more on Google Reader. I am always quite amazed by how much talent is out there.

Still, I must bite the bullet. As LLG says, ten or fifteen is too many. She chose six, and I shall follow her lead. Here are this week's six recipients:

Miss Whistle and Mrs Trefusis Takes a Taxi were early discoveries in my blogging life. I am rather shocked to find I had not sent them awards before this. I think it is because I mention them quite often in my posts, and so must have assumed that I had made it Official before now. They could not have been kinder when I was starting out, knowing nothing. Both they and their blogs are the epitome of beauty.

The Spice Spoon and Capers in the Kitchen are very different and equally wonderful food bloggers. They are also lovely readers, and leave interesting and generous comments.

Recipe Rifle is a new discovery, and makes me envious, because she is so damn funny.

Motherhood: The Final Frontier is a surprising and touching and funny writer. Not surprisingly, she got an award not very long ago, so this might feel like a redundancy. I give it anyway, because she is so good.

And now, my seven things. I think they are supposed to be quirky or obscure. I shall try not to tell you things you know already, which is practically everything.

1. I do not like the colour yellow. I cannot love daffodils, for this reason.

2. I have a slightly out of control cockle habit.

3. I can recite every line of dialogue from The Big Chill. I am slightly ashamed of this fact.

4. Sometimes I talk to my dogs in French, even though I do not speak French very well, and I am pretty certain they do not understand it, despite the auld alliance.

5. I really wish I could play the guitar. I did try to learn once, but it made my fingers hurt.

6. I love the words: spurious, egregious, rebarbative, pomp, chastened, melancholy, baffling, and horrid. I also like to use nice in its fine sense, as in: a nice distinction.

7. I wish I could understand what happened before the Big Bang. I have a suspicion I am not alone in this.


Pictures of the day are all in black and white, for no particular reason at all:





Happy Monday.


  1. Well, firstly....what GORGEOUS photos Tania, I am growing increasingly fond of your dogs!!

    I do not know exactly what "monkey mind" is....altho I can imagine! I do know that feeling of hopefulness that Monday morning brings...I often feel that things are more likely to happen and progress just because it's Monday - often not the case of course!

    I am intrigued by the two male bloggers you mention and will be visiting them after this.

    Loved reading your list too :)

    Thank you for always making me smile and often making me laugh :)

    Hope the sun is shining up there and the skies are as blue as in that beautiful photo you took last week :)

  2. Simone - you could not have said anything nicer. Especially the bit about the dogs. Thank you.

    Monkey mind is a Buddhist idea. I don't know much about Buddhism, but for some reason I know this expression. It means when your brain is jumping about everywhere like a monkey, and won't settle, and won't let you alone. I think I get it on Sunday nights because I always have such grand plans for Monday, which then come to nothing, because of the crazed insomnia.

    Hope you have blue skies too.

  3. Kudos, Tania...deservedly so. And I, too, love the list. In fact, I'm compelled to make one of my own which even family members may not know. Thanks for that.

  4. ooh, thank you so very much. How kind. I will gaze at my award and try not to boast too much that I got it twice ;)

  5. I know that Monday morning feeling. Still - "You gotta have a dream...."

    I love the photos of your dogs, which are always uplifting and make me smile, because they look so happy and uncomplicated - well, dogs have their own preoccupations we don't know that much about, but on the other hand they don't have to worry about their writing, deadlines, the political situation etc. And they're obviously such happy dogs.

  6. I am most honored by the Beautiful Blogger Award. Thank you and please continue to inspire us, daily.

  7. What a wonderful post! I will have to pop by for a visit to some of these corners of BlogLand you mentioned...

    something for you here..

    you inspire me to write

  8. Thanks for making everyone happy!

  9. Hi Tania - you remind me of my English teacher in sixth form - who by the way was one of the biggest influencers on my whole life! He to had your quirks! Take that the right's a big compliment! And that final picture of your doggie - what a face. That is a dog face that has wisdom in it. Lou x

  10. Hu-RRRAH!!! Finally someone has recognised MY GENIUS. Lawd above, this may ruin me: I respond badly to praise by getting overexcited and then I start to show off.

    Bless you, by the way, for your great quotes. They really made the piece.


  11. T you are a sweetheart and a gentleman and I am tremendously honoured. I might craft myself a rosette. Thank you x

  12. Love the sound of 'rebarbative', will endeavour to use it at least twice today.

  13. Jean - love the idea of secret list. I think you should.

    Mothership - excessive boasting is definitely in order.

    Vivien - what a nice thing to say. I like to think the dogs ARE happy. They get to live in a perfect place for canines - woods, and rabbit holes, and a burn to swim in, and all manner of small mammals to sniff out and run after. And they are touchingly attached to each other, which must induce contentment.

    Miss W - Right back at you, as I think they say in California. (Might be making that up in my head.)xx

    HHL - THANK YOU. How kind you are. Have just discovered your blog and am amazed by what you have been through. Hope you are mending well, day by day.

    Mystica - thank YOU.

    Lou - incredibly kind thing to say. Of course I do think the dear canine has the wisdom of the ages in her, although she may just be contemplating what is for lunch. They are eleven now, and are definitely taking on a patina of gravitas, which makes me laugh.

    Esther - your genius must be recognised. It's an imperative. So know the thing of getting excited and then showing off. I know you are joking about that (bet you don't show off at all but are gracious and restrainted);I have done it all my life. Have acute memories of driving of all the grown-ups round the bend when I was six. Never really grew out of it. Must, must try harder.

    Jo - YES. Rosette essential.

    GoonerJ - excellent news. I was thinking about it because some clever columnist, can't remember which one, used it last week in reference to Lord Mandelson of Foy. You must admit.

  14. I always rather love finding out more about fellow bloggers so very much enjoyed this. It is a shame about yellow, I think it's beautiful- but I have read having yellow walls can lead to depression (which seemed a bit odd to me) so I steer clear of too much of it- daffodils though are most definitely always cheering- perhaps you could love those creamier coloured ones?

    I talked to our family dog in broken French- I think she quite liked it- it sings more than English doesn't it and they like singing. Plus i liked calling her petite chien

  15. Rose - you are quite right about yellow. I must work on my unfounded prejudices. So very pleased to hear I am not the only one who does the absurd French. I am ashamed to admit that I have taught them to give me a lick on the nose if I say: donne moi un petit bisou.


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