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Funny songs
Monday 7th December 2009 9:16 pm

This would be me not working on Yuletide, but it's all ISIHAC's fault. They mentioned the rhyme, I remembered it from Brownies, I had to look it up and it all went downhill from there. There were various funny songs I remember from Brownies, usually based on another song, or just using the tune. Here are a selection: Read more...

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Happy Chanukah
Sunday 24th December 2006 12:53 pm

I know there were 8 days for me to say that and I entirely missed them. But it didn't really feel like Chanukah till Friday night when I was home, so we had candles, song and presents. I now have an Avengers calendar, some knickers, some bowls to make flapjacks in, kitchen scales, Hogfather poster, puzzle book, some oil to make the microwavable rabbit hot water bottle smell nice again. Thank you to everyone who put something in my Christmas stocking, they were all very cool things.

I did completely fail to pack any jeans, though, so I'm wearing an old pair of mum's I'm slightly amazed I can fit into them because I thought I was fatter than her. Although she's taken the legs up, so they're just short enough to look silly.

Coming down was a bit of a trauma because after a while my car decided to get slower and slower. I almost made it to the services, but not quite. The RAC man who came out was great and very helpful. Turns out there's a switch in the engine which was still on summer and mean the carburettor was full of ice. Apparently they changed this to be automatic in the 80s but as my car was born in 1989 it's obviously a bit of a throwback. But I got home in the end. It was quite strange to get no fog once I reached the M3. And I'm now doing much better at roundabouts.

Thursday ended up being a bit of a traumatic day since a bulb went and I discovered what I thought were trip switches were actually fuses. But now I have lots of fuse wire and know how to change them.

It's nice to be home now, catching up on my sleep, trying to get more bed space and quilt than the cat, watching all the stuff dad's got on his hard disk recorder, and generally lazing about. And gradually catching up on my RSS feeds.

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Saturday 9th December 2006 12:36 pm

This morning I've filled up four crates of stuff. And taken all the small things off my walls so sitting at my desk I'm looking at suicide yellow walls, with brown patches where the blu-tac has taken the wallpaper off (there's something about this wallpaper because it has nothing to do with the amount of time the blu-tac's been on there). This is the depressing bit now, where I live in a room where I can't get to anything round the crates and can't find anything because I've packed it.

Tonight is the Rotaract District Christmas party, which should be fun. And at some I have to brave the crowds to buy more crates and some food. What I'd really like is to sleep in. This morning I gave up at 10 to 8. Although as the heating doesn't come on till 8.30 I finished my book, my magazine and my DVD from amazon before I was so hungry I had to get up.

Very excitingly, though, I got a virtual gift yesterday. Definitely from an American given the message, but an otherwise anonymous mystery benefactor. Thank you, whoever you are.

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Travel games
Monday 10th October 2005 10:27 pm

Looking back through old posts to categorise them is quite interesting. And it's reminded me, for some obscure reason, of games we used to play as children when travelling.

There was the alphabet thing. We did boys and girls names, but our favourite was 'I went shopping'. So the first person would say, for example, "I went shopping and I bought an apple". The second person would then carry on with, "I went shopping and I bought and apple and a banana"'. It would always start off sensibly and end up buying houses and planets.

Sometimes dad would challenge us to make up a story without using any e's, and less often, a's.

We would challenge each other to sing an ode to something. One person would think of the thing, the other person would have to use an existing tune or make one up, and sing a song about that thing. I say thing because it could have been anything. Perhaps not a small lump of green putty I found under my armpit one morning, but certainly as silly sometimes.

There was sausages - one person has to answer all questions by saying only 'sausages' and the first person to laugh loses. As we were kids we decided 'down the loo' was much more funny than sausages. It didn't matter either way, I laugh easily and always lost.

Another one I always lost was similar. One person was not allowed to say 'yes' or 'no' to any questions. I always forgot in the heat of the moment. Perhaps I'd be a crap politician 🙂

There would also be ordinary singing. A particular favourite I remember was 'There's a Hole in my Bucket' with one of us and Henry and the other as Liza. To save me reproducing it I found the whole version here.

There was the number plate game where you had to get all of the letters in the alphabet in order from number plates. My sister always won that one because she sat on the right and we always drove in the slow lane of dual carriageways (we didn't go on motorways because they were boring and we didn't always go out of the county).

There was I Spy - always more interesting when the thing you're guessing might no longer be in view. Although always manages to get boring quickly.

Another one we had was asking each other questions, the answer to which depended on the colour of the car passing. We'd gradually add in more colours and types. The fun in this question was to check what was coming up before asking (so the answer to 'are you clever?' had to be 'no').

Duck and Jump could be played at the same time as other games. When you went over a bridge you had to jump - lift your legs - and under one you had to duck (as best you could sitting down).

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Childhood Reads
Monday 12th September 2005 10:44 pm

For some reason today I started thinking about a series of books I read some of when I was younger. After a google hunt I found a list of titles (here). I have a secret American High School passion (well, a bit of one). Plus they were cheap (�1.50 each - and they did some of them as four books in one). I also probably liked them because absolutely everyone else was reading Sweet Valley High and that put me off. I must get that from my mum - although she loved the films she never read Lord of the Rings because everyone else was when she was younger.

And then, later it occured to me that a popular topic of conversation is children's TV programmes you remember. But never books - perhaps because there are too many. And early on, it's pretty much going to consist of Enid Blyton, and later on be scarred from being told you have to read pre-20th century books for GCSE English. And in my case being forced to read 'improving books' that I didn't understand a word of. Hence my retreat to Sweet Valley High and Cheerleaders.

Beyond the ones I mentioned, though, I can't remember many others (although it's amazing how much you remember once you get started). There was the Four Marys but that was in a comic, I think, which must have been my (very) brief comic reading period. I spent all the time wishing they'd get rid of the pictures so there'd be more room for words.

I remember stories about boarding school. And they'd get measles and have to be quarantined at home and not allowed back to school at the start of term. I think that was Enid Blyton as well

I remember sitting at the doctors reading a book full of so many long words I didn't understand a word of. I'd love to see it now, see if it made any more sense, but I don't remember any more of it than that.

I remember Thomas the Tank Engine was all in little books and lived on my top shelf. I remember Judy Blume, although that's as much as I remember. Except that I was 13 when I read that one (incidentally, I've just discovered that Ctrl-U gives you view source - I was going for underlining but forgot I was in html). Oh, and there was one where two girls wanted their breasts to be bigger, which I didn't understand even when I didn't have any.

I remember the Demon Headmaster, although not what it was about him.

I remember a series about a girl called Gemma who had to live with her cousins. They converted the attic for her, so she could sleep there. I never understood this until I visited the house of a rich friend of mine and they had stairs up to their attic, which you could stand up in. Something I've never seen before or since.

I remember a series about Sadlers Wells and some of the - probably girls - who went there. One of them decided she was more into Spanish dancing. I'd like to point out at this point that I've never in my life done ballet.

It does all sound a bit girly but until I was 18 boys were an alien species, and who would want to read about them?

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Childhood games
Saturday 20th September 2003 10:02 pm

This song has been bugging me for ages and I finally remembered to look it up. I remember singing it at Brownies - I knew all the words once.

On top of old smokey,
All covered in cheese.
I lost my poor meat ball,
When somebody sneezed

It rolled off the table,
And onto the floor,
And then my poor meatball,
Rolled out of the door.

It rolled down the garden,
And under a bush.
And then my poor meat ball,
Was nothing but mush.

And then in the springtime,
My meatball tree grew,
And then there were meatballs.
For me and for you.

If you have spaghetti,
All covered in cheese,
Hold onto your meatball,
'Cos someone might sneeze.

We were talking about games we played when we were kids so I was trying to remember them with the help of the internet. It doesn't help that there are so many variations, but these are the ones I remember.

What's the time Mr Wolf?
There was a wall in the middle school playground perfect for this game. One person is the wolf and stands facing the wall. Other people ask 'What's the time Mr Wolf?' Mr Wolf answers and everyone takes one step forward for each hour. Once Mr Wolf answers 'dinner time' then everyone runs away and Mr Wolf tries to catch them.

Hot Chocolate
One person tells a story and the third time they say 'hot chocolate' everyone has to run away before they are caught by the person telling the story. We always seemed to get the first two hot chocolates in quite quickly, then there were quite a few 'hot coffee's and other things that could start 'hot ch'.

Wink Murder
One person is the detective and stands in the middle of the circle. One person is picked as the murderer, but only they know who it is. They then kill people by winking at them. The trick is to not always wink at people when the detective's back is turned, otherwise they'll work out who it is. The fun is in trying to work out who it is yourself and dying, which of course, was always long and drawn out.

Duck, Duck, Goose
I vaguely remember this one. Everyone sits in a circle and one person goes round tapping people and saying 'duck'. One person they say 'goose' to instead and that person has to chase the original around the circle before they get back to their place.

Murder in the Dark
One person is the detective and goes out of the room. One person is the murderer - but only they know who the murderer is. They then pick someone to kill who screams when they die. The detective then comes racing back in and questions all the living people to work out whodunnit. We tended to play it in the daytime, so it was more Murder in the Light. We also had variations where the murderer could commit suicide and also where the detective could question the dead person.

One person shouts out commands and everyone has to do them - if you don't do them right you're out. The commands I can remember are:
Port/Starboard - Run to the left or right side of the room
Bow/Stern - Run to the front or back of the room
Climb the rigging - Pretend to be climbing a rope ladder
Bombs above - Lie on the floor
Bombs below - Jump (these are the ones that got mixed up the most, along with port/starboard and bow/stern)
Captain's coming - Stand in a line and salute
Cook's coming - Stand in a line and pretend to be holding a bowl and stirring the contents
Crocodile's coming - I think someone was the crocodile and you had to not be caught (and 'killed') by them, but I can't swear to it.

Rice pudding
I think that's the name. I remember standing in lines and running but nothing other than that. I keep getting recipes when I search for it though

No idea of the title
You all pass a pair of scissors round and say 'crossed' or 'uncrossed'. Those who know will tell you whether you're wrong or right. The trick is to sit in a circle on chairs - the crossed and uncrossed refers to your legs.

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