Successful Sharp Knife Test

Battle of the Sharp Knives

Battle of the Sharp Knives

 

Content Note: people of a nervous disposition should read no further, discussion of blood and body horror below.

For years, I’ve lived without owning any sharp knives. Or, if they once were sharp, that memory has long since been lost in time. Maybe they were sharp when I first bought them, along with the sharpening tool that I’ve never learnt to use properly. I’m thinking I’m not the only one with the not-quite-blunt kitchen knives. They get used everyday, but even cutting a tomato is a double-skills job – first prick the skin with the tip of the knife to break it then cut with the length of the knife, otherwise it’s a bit of a mess.

I never realised how much strength was needed in my cutting activities until I discovered ceramic knives. My mum has one and it was a revelation when I first tried it. Ceramic knives are the Daddy. They are also easy to maintain, you don’t ever need to sharpen them and they come with a cover. The only downside is that they can’t be used on really hard surfaces like glass or marble because the shock might cause them to break.

The main point of them though, is that they are flippin’ sharp. They cut through tomatoes like butter. They cut through broccoli like butter. They cut through human flesh like butter. I speak from experience, as it was my flesh they cut through like butter yesterday afternoon. It was an ugly scene.

The culprit

The culprit

Within minutes (after attempting to stem the blood flow with toilet paper and calling a couple of people), I was doing what comes most naturally to most of us in 2014, making an appeal on Facebook along the lines of ‘my brain has stopped working, what do I do next?’ and within minutes was receiving a fluttering of offers of help from wonderful friends. Seriously, it was amazing.

It also reminded me that I really should have a vague plan for this sort of thing. After the initial shock of ‘OMG my thumb is falling off’ came the ‘idontknowifineedtogotoa&edoineedtogotoa&eandifyesWHATDOIDOWITHTHEKIDS?’ – through this, it has to be said, I wasn’t panicking at all. I could tell it wasn’t life or death and so the kids had no clue for at least 30 minutes that anything was amiss. That is, until a friend came over with her collection of first aid kits and we took the toilet paper off. Poor Little Girl definitely laughed nervously at that point. Despite my reassurance and smiles, she definitely spotted that something was wrong. Like a bit of skin flapping, something like that. Damn.

Badgerman came home at this point and after a bit of faffing about deciding what to do with kids and dinner time and all the bleeding, I did eventually make it to A&E where I waited for a couple of hours feeling dizzy and ravenous, but in good spirits and with the engrossing companionship of A Dance With Dragons (Part 1).

Turns out, it might have looked like I was going to have to live with a chunk of thumb missing and it wasn’t even deep enough to need stitches. So now, I’ve got to keep the finger away from water for the next five days, which means I can’t do any washing up or bath time with the kids, or cleaning of my own hair. What fun that’s going to be!

thumb cut

the surviving hero

 

One thing I can guarantee: these are good knives. They know their business and they take no prisoners. Other advice I may offer: it’s good to have a plan; and be careful with knives. They cut and make you bleed, and then you end up with no dinner.

The One With 20 Years of Friends

Photo from Wikipedia

Can you believe that it will be 20 years this year since Friends first graced our TV screens? It aired for the first time in the US on 22nd September 1994. We had to wait ages for France to catch up of course, until April 1996 for those who had cable, and June 1997 for the rest of us poor souls. Dubbed of course, which was… well, interesting for sure, especially in hindsight (and they changed the voices for the last 2 seasons – dubbing, it’s the spawn of evil in so many ways).

I was seventeen in 1997 and not allowed to watch the show because of all the adult sex talk yet despite the fact that I don’t remember how or where or when I first started catching up, it still feels like Friends is part of my young adulthood and my psyche at some subconscious level. That’s certainly how it felt a couple of weeks ago when I suddenly decided I wanted to watch the entire show from start to finish. Everything felt so familiar; it was like slipping on a comfy sweater and settling down for a night with a, well, a friend actually…

I watch lots of boxsets but I’ve never thought of watching Friends this way so this has been a bit of a treat. I also realised that I missed many episodes of the latter seasons over the years so I was very excited about this ‘project’.

So anyway, two weeks in and four seasons later… I have a few thoughts! I was watching the pilot and was amazed at how completely and utterly Friends-like it was. The tone, the jokes, the setting, it was a typical Friends episode right there and then in the first few minutes, strong and funny and utterly addictive. It was like stepping into a time-machine and coming out in the mid-nineties, which was such a formative time for adolescent me. And then, OMG the fashion! Honestly, early Friends is a crime against clothing; they all look so middle-aged with their big-golden-buttoned cardigans and big shirts over t-shirts. What were we thinking, honestly…

I am looking forward to so many things, and I also have questions, so here it is, my ‘things I can’t get over’ Friends List:

1. Everything Chandler & Monica: Yay! Their relationship is one of my favourites across all shows and I can’t WAIT to revisit it. I love relationships based on friendship, and theirs is the best. They’re cute and honest and had so many perfectly-captured moments, kudos to the writers.

2. Phoebe’s triplets: I remember nothing about this at all, apart from her brother is Giovanni Ribisi and he is adorably young in this.

3. Question: In Season 3, after Monica breaks up with Pete Becker (Jon Favreau, what a lovely man), why does she not continue to work at his restaurant? All you see after is Monica and Phoebe going on their catering venture, unless I missed a major plot point in a moment of distraction. She was the head chef, right? Why would she give that up even though they were no longer together?

4. In which Ross is the worst: Fact. I get the fangirling over Ross & Rachel as a pairing, I really do. But Ross? The guy who sleeps with Xerox girl the day after his break-up with Rachel, who is supposed to be the woman of his dreams? And then has the gall of getting angry at Rachel and demanding she forgives him because they were on a freaking break? He is the ultimate Nice Guy, and I don’t like him at all. I know we’re supposed to find him sweet and clumsy but No Thank You.

5. Rachel’s Assistant: I’d forgotten Eddie Cahill was in Friends! I loved him in CSI:NY and it took me the longest time to place him. I really should be quicker to visit imdb.com.

6. Paul Rudd: Even though I feel terrible for Hank Azaria’s physicist David because competing for Phoebe against Paul Rudd is harsh, man.

7. This one thing that Friends taught me: when Badgerman and I got married, we decided that we would start trying to conceive after one year. I was 29 and I didn’t want to get too deep into my thirties before trying for a baby. One of the reasons was the Chandler and Monica storyline. It’s not like I thought about this consciously but I was aware of it and I knew that there was no guarantee that we could just have kids because we wanted to whenever we wanted to have them; sometimes, things happen outside of your control and I didn’t want to take our fertility for granted.

8. Watching Friends makes me hungry: when it’s not Monica making candy or Thanksgiving dinner, it’s Joey and his sandwiches. I watched the cheesecake episode today and that cheesecake looked so good, had it been me, I might have eaten it off the floor too.

9. The age thing: It’s very different watching Friends in my thirties than it was in my twenties. I’ve caught up with them age-wise! How very strange, and, well, it started 20 YEARS AGO!!!! What the hell is that about??!!! I suddenly feel so ooooold…

10. And finally: there are so many other wonderful things I could mention… So tell me, what’s your favourite Friends moment?

The Cool Baby Dribble Solution

Being new to this baby malarkey, I have very little idea as to what exists to make a mum and a baby’s life easier, so it’s always fun to discover new things. That’s one of the reasons why baby cafes, Mums & Tots groups and the like are great; you get to meet lots of new mums from all walks of life and sneakily check out their baby accessories for ideas. I do anyway (and also for the cake).

One of my friend’s baby was sporting the coolest bandana ever, grey with pink skull and crossbones. These bandanas are not just like any other bib, they are designed especially for dribbly babies; they are double-layered, with a funky upper layer and a fleecy bit on the other side in a coordinated colour. No matter how dribbly the baby, their clothes and body stay dry! And in the winter, I guess it can also act as a scarf.

You can find them in Sainsbury’s, like the one in the picture below, but my favourite is the Funky Giraffe website; not only has it got loads of great designs, but the more bibs you buy, the cheaper they are, what’s not to like?

A very dribbly bear