Bog Blog

New research reveals that 23 million of us take our phone into the bathroom with us. According to the doctors the bacteria that lands on our mobiles is horrendous. I was invited onto GMB, this morning, as the spokesperson for lavatorial etiquette. I am not a toilet tweeter I don’t surf the net in the … Read more

Bank Hols

Maggie the Magpie is shouting at Dennis the cat, cluck clucking, like an old football rattle. Dennis sits under the red maple, and watches and waits. Mrs.Magpie is protecting her babies and we’re protecting ours. Maggie swoops into the garden and Dennis looks fearful. It’s like a ‘B’ movie version of the Blue Planet, only … Read more

Borborygmus

Outside the studio we’ve planted runner beans and lettuce, beetroot and courgettes. On the other side of the path there’s two rows of kale, garlic, broadbeans and some pac choy. I scattered over organic slug deterrent, I lay sliced cucumber on metal trays to deter the snails – they don’t like the smell. This morning … Read more

A Rose by Any Other…..

As a teenager I spent an inordinate amount of time practicing my signature on the cover of my rough book. Jen Barnett/jj barnett/Jennifer Joy/Jeni with a circle over the ‘i’, Jenufa and Kim. I had a mind to be called Kim Kent but my mother told me it sounded like a swear word so I … Read more

Skimming the scum

Chicken soup is to the Jews what the blood of Christ is to the Catholics. You cannot come from the Russian Diaspora without knowing about the bird of youth. Mrs Gold, in 1953, took her big Kosher hen into the public baths in Whitechapel, and behind closed doors scrubbed it under the hot water tap. … Read more

Ashes to ashes

I was thinking about funerals, what with the Queen’s Escort and Helen McCrory, I was thinking how sombre and dignified the piper was as he played out the lament on his bagpipes. I was so shocked and saddened by the death of Ms M. that I felt the helplessness that we all feel in the … Read more

Love Thy Residential Occupier

My family are immigrants. The old gits family are immigrants. Most of my friends are from Irish, Indian, Caribbean or some other shipped-in stock. Given that the earth is home to 7.674 billion people it wouldn’t be surprising if all of us aren’t related to me or to somebody who knows me or to somebody … Read more

What next eh?

I sat in the garden, with Dennis the cat, my face to the sky like a sunflower, I ate a salad with fennel and my new best ingredient chile oil. The cottage is filled with Irish music, because however lethargic I am I cannot resist a little jig to a band of drummers and penny … Read more

‘Orrible ‘istory

Meghan and Harry? I really can’t be arsed. She said what she said, whether it was fake, or true or just a brilliant acting job, she said what she said. Whether it was learnt, remembered or improvised she had her say. Harry stood by her, sat by her, holding her hand whilst she said what … Read more

Desert Island Playlist.

Even people who don’t listen to BBC Radio 4 know about ‘Desert Island Discs’. Eleven o’clock of a Sunday. After the ‘Archers’ and before something else. Every Sunday at 11.45 I get a phone call from a woman living in Goudhurst, then I get a call from a woman living in Medway. We pick apart … Read more