Tuesday, August 13, 2013

My Most Self-Indulgent Post Ever

Having a blog means never having to say you're sorry. I've been going through an old folder on a computer and looking at stuff I wrote over the years. I came across this list.

I don't know what to do with this list. It's a list of things that give me what Coca-Cola executives (regarding their nostalgic marketing) call "the warm fuzzies". I've wondered whether I can work it into a poem or an article or-- well, goodness knows what.

I spent a fair amount of time and energy writing it out, a few years back. I remember I decided (being rather addicted to random and mildly strange behaviour) to read it out when meeting some friends at the pub. One gentleman present (who I'd never met before or since) was a German with all the stereotyped Teutonic earnestness of that race. (He is a communist, to boot, which only deepens the earnestness.) I smile when I remember his polite but perplexed expression as I read the list. My other friends were well-acquainted with my whimsical ways and didn't bat an eyelid.

I wasn't kidding, though. I was (and I am) just as earnest after my own fashion.

Here is my list of things that give me the warm fuzzies. (Or rather, the idea of them gives me the warm fuzzies. I have no direct experience of many of them.) Who knows? It might make you smile or cry, "I feel exactly the same way you do!". Here's hoping.

Christmas trees

Christmas decorations

Christmas baubles

Christmas carols

Christmas wrapping paper

The jokes in Christmas crackers

Christmas dinner

Christmas pudding

Decorated Pub Mirrors

Hanging Signs

Ships in Bottles


Nursery Rhymes

Fairy Tales

Old Wives’ Tales, and the term "old wives' tale"

Playground Songs


Woolly jumpers, especially colourful and chunky woolly jumpers

Artistic Window Displays

Sandwich Men

Sepia (the colour, especially in photographs, but also the word)


Halloween bonfires


Office sweeps


Big white mugs for tea

Cloth caps



Handwritten Signs in Shops, especially when they have spelling errors

Jumble Sales

Coffee Mornings (though I hate attending them)




Dust motes dancing in air

Seeing out a back window through a front window

Rubber Ducks

Hot Water Bottles


Gingerbread Men


"& Sons" in the names of companies

School Uniforms (not in a pervy way, obviously)

Cinema Usherettes (though I've never seen one and doubt they exist anymore)

Round Towers and Greyhounds and Harps on copy books, shop signs, pencil-cases, and so on, as symbols of Ireland



Singing in the Bath (though I don't)

Jukeboxes (though I've never used one)

Peanuts in pubs

Popcorn in cinema (though I don't eat it)

Cigar store Indians

Barber poles

“Licensed to sell beer and malt” etc. on pub signs

Campfire tales

Photo albums

Jokes, especially formulaic jokes

Regional accents

Regional jokes

Movie studio logos

Family jokes



Trade terms

Clockwork toys

CB radio


Toffee Apples

Ornamental biscuit and sweet tins (Quality Street, Season's Greetings, etc.)

Silhouettes, and the word silhouette

Mythological and Classical names for Restaurants, Entertainment Venues, etc. like the Odeon, the Apollo, etc.

Commonplace Books

Shadow Puppetry

Town Rivalries

Discussions over the Proper Making of Tea

Sitting Down Together for Meals

Hopscotch and All Other Children’s Games

Debating Societies

Amateur Dramatic Societies

Knitting Circles


The past imperfect



Pub Debates

Board Games

National Personifications (Uncle Sam, John Bull, Kathleen Ni Houlian)

National symbols (leprechauns, bulldogs)

House Names

Vehicle Names

Breaking Champagne Bottles over Ships

Names for Occupations, such as Clippies, Gofers, Trolley-boys etc.

So, if you can cobble a view of the world out of all that....well, that would be my philosophy of life, I suppose.

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