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This is a question Bizarre habits

Sandettie Light Vessel Automatic tells us: "Until I pointed it out, my other half use to hang out the washing making sure that both pegs were the same colour. Now she goes out of her way to make sure they never match." Tell us about bizarre rituals, habits and OCD-like behaviour.

(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 12:33)
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Weird things I say
A few rhymes/sayings that I always recite and make sure I do so, without fail:

When my dog farts:
Naughty dog, smelly dog, go outside and lay a log

Putting my daughter to bed:
Coconut head, coconut head, my little tiny baby has a coconut head. She’s got bananas for arms and bananas for legs, but my little tiny baby has a coconut head
This can only be sung if she’s lying in her cot, I won’t sing it in any other location. Not sure why.

When the missus is applying make-up in the bedroom:
Here I go, I’m gonna pat the boobies. Sneaking ‘round the back, to pat me some boobies. Up come my hands, to pat the boobies. I better get a grope before she kicks my goolies
(She hates this)

When her phone rings I always say ‘Your phone is ringing’, even if she is holding it

If I walk into the pub with my brother:
Bounce, bounce, bounce on the ground, you get a table, I’ll get a round. What do you want, you cunt?

Upon seeing a magpie:
Hello Mr. Magpie, how are you today? How are your wife and children? Apologies if you’re a female magpie
Always followed with a salute

Greeting my mums’ two cats (Yeti and Snowy) and the sheepdog Heidi – sung to the tune of Moloko’s ‘Bring it Back’:
Yeti’s white, Snowy’s black, Heidi’s both, but she’s not a cat

When descending stairs, I alternate the words ‘Bomp’ and ‘Splat’ in my head with each step. If I'm at home, I never look into the mirror at the bottom of the stairs in case I see a figure pass by on the landing behind me

Whenever I hear the ‘tax doesn’t have to be taxing’ bit of the related advert, I always add ‘But it helps’.

If I hear a car sound it’s horn:
Honky honk, he’s done a honk, beeping his horn like a twat.
(, Mon 5 Jul 2010, 11:10, 18 replies)
When I was a kid and saw the film Jaws.
I was convinced Jaws would get me in my sleep. This despite the fact I lived in Lancashire, at least a mile from the nearest river with a sea connection and a long way from Amity, which I was dimly aware was probably somewhere off the south eastern United States.

So, assuming Jaws survives the end of the film, can navigate the river Irwell as far as Bury, hop out of the water, thrash his way across fields and two major roads, open a garden gate latched on the inside (which even human beings with their opposale thumbs found nigh on impossible to work), break down a door, climb upstairs and manouver a complicated bannister arrangement to my childhood bedroom to bite me, he would then have to have a bite length of at least 23 inches as I habitually slept as close as possible to the wall in order to avoid this admittedly remote possibility. Fuck you Jaws, you were never going to get me.
(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 14:07, 7 replies)
Like many of my fellow b3tans...

I HAVE to keep my music in strict alphabetical order. I fully believe that to do other wise indicates that you are sub-normal and not to be trusted. Most people recognise this and respect my general alphabelical system however:

It drives me gibbering-batshit-mental when browsing friends disrupt the 'internal' order of each letter category. eg ABBA, Aretha Franklin, Adam and the Ants.

AGGGGH.

I find myself checking, album by album, after any guest leaves.

Whether or not we were listening to music.


But that's not the funny part.


I bought and assembled a full wall of slick IKEA CD shelving. One shelf per letter, to fascilitate my alphabetical obbsession, because I have a further problem: Artists beginning with J CANNOT share a shelf with those beginning with K (and so on).

The trouble now is the uneven distribution of my musical preferences.

My favourite artists are:

Oasis
O.A.R.
The Ocean Blue
Oceansize
The Octopus Project
Odds
Of Montreal
Office
The Offspring
Oh No! Oh My!
OK Go
Okkervil River
The Olivia Tremor Control
Olenka and the Autumn Lovers
One Republic
Oppenheimer
Operahouse
Orange and Lemons
Orgy
Beth Orton
Ostava
The Others
Our Lady Peace
Ours to Destroy
Out Of Sigh
Owen
Owls
Oxford Collapse


But all the albums wont fit on the shelf!




My 'O' CD's are out of control.



Thank you.
(, Tue 6 Jul 2010, 13:20, 11 replies)
Water
When I was younger I had a deal with the water spirits who lived in the bathroom pipes. Or more accurately, I understood their nature and was both terrified and took advantage of it on a regular basis.

For you see - the water spirits that live in all water want our love - and our souls, you can tell by the way the water holds you and caresses and strokes your body when you are with it - and the gurgling sucking angry sounds it makes when it's forced to leave us down the drains, bitter and aghast at how we've tossed it aside.

As long as you're in water - things are ok, the water likes to be close to you, it likes to share your body and time and attention and it thinks things are happy and, like an innocent young woman believing that the man she adores truly loves her and isn't just using her body - Water more than willingly helps with cleaning up, taking care of whatever is going on, participates in the weirdest of play - and does basically whatever you might desire.

But when you thoughtlessly, causally and uncaringly pull the plug on this relationship, and the water suddenly realizes you were just *using* it all this time, that the love it felt for you was not returned - it's scorned heart turns in a downward spiral and it cries out as it's drawn away against it's will and the hurt from your loveless rejection changes it from warmth and acceptance to despondence and need - and then, heedless of the consequences - the water tries to take you with it.

It pulls at your body, you can feel your self get heavier and heavier as the bathwater tries to pull you down with it - it grabs at your spirit, causing you to shiver as it leaves your body - each evaporating bit taking your life energy with it leaving you cold and lifeless (if it had it's way...)

Water would take your heart out of your chest and swallow it whole... if you let it.

Toilets are the worst of course - the relationship in that situation is so one sided, the poor water just takes and takes everything you dish out - only ever accepting you and being there for you through all your worst moments, whether you're sick or in pain or wretchedly suffering through punishment that's only ever really your own fault... the water is there, it catches all your mess, all your disgust, all your wasted results of poor choices and unthought out decisions... it takes it all and, at most - when you're particularly violent and horrible to it - it might reach up to touch your cheek for just a moments caress in return, offering all the solace it can in your moment of vulnerability.

But do you stay with it? Do you carry it with you? Do you care about it's hopes? it's dreams? it's love? do you, ever *once* ask it how it's day was?

No.

You, with the meerest tug of a finger, the smallest acknowledgment of a goodbye wave - pull a handle and discard it from your life, throw it not just to the ground - but under it, because you don't want to see it, you'd rather it just go away.

Is it any surprise it sounds so upset and angry and sad and desperate as it goes down?

I recognized all of this as a child, and did the only thing I could ... I made sure I was far far away before the toilet was done flushing, or the bath or sink water was done draining - recognizing the mystical protection of the threshold, I crossed as many doorways (closing them if possible) as I could while the water raged behind me. I would count them as I passed through and promise myself anything - wishes for every doorway! - as long as I kept moving, and got as much space and time between me and the angry, waiting, hungry, poor spirits as I could.

Being trapped in the room with a draining bathtub... or a flushing commode... especially one that had TASTED me... filled my small frame with such a sinking dread and terror like nothing else - I knew it was a surefire way to lose my soul, to have to fight for my eternal essence against water spirits ancient and powerful (though thankfully usually smaller than me) - I could *feel* it in every gurgle and moan from the drain.

So I ran (if no one was looking) and went through room after room - from public restrooms (so smart to put doors on the cubicles in there! that's one door for sure!), from home bathrooms (going floors away to use a bathroom on the other side of the house, so I'll have plenty of space afterward to escape into), all from that horrible wailing gurgling lonely noise.

I'm over it now, I've grown up and put my old superstitions away, I made my peace and I don't believe such silly things anymore - heck the other week I even flushed the toilet and then confidently walked directly into the running shower - nakedly putting myself at the mercy of the water in it's place of utmost power - utterly unafraid!

...

I may never need to apologize for length again.
(, Tue 6 Jul 2010, 17:09, 23 replies)
I have incurable OCDMC.
It's just like that, and that's the way it is.
(, Sat 3 Jul 2010, 13:12, 5 replies)
Vive la France!
I once knew a girl with the bizarre habit of singing La Marseillaise whenever she had an orgasm. Actually it wasn't really singing, more of a breathy 'ha-ha-hah' but you get the idea. It all started off as a bit of a joke but soon got to the point where she had to sing it whenever she came.

She was Mathilde: she ran the shop at the campsite in France where I was working as a courier for one of those fancy camping holiday firms, where the luxury tent is already put up for you when you arrive. We'd started flirting from the moment we met and after a week or so were shagging whenever the opportunity arose. She was beautiful, had long, wavy brunette hair and a body that an entire platoon of Foreign Legion soldiers would desert for. Our favourite sex location was in an old barn on the campsite where I'd put some blankets over a heap of hay, just under an open window, as it was very hot that summer.

I was lucky enough to be there in 1989, the 200th anniversary of the French Revolution, and all the Frenchies were going wild. National symbols were everywhere, and the hunt was on to find 'Marianne', a symbol of the revolution, usually depicted as a pretty girl with a revolutionary cap and her breasts bared. The campsite owner had decided to put on a barbecue, dancing and then fireworks, like most of the rest of France.

After the meal and a little dancing, Mathilde and I sneaked off to the barn for some drunken celebratory shagging before the fireworks began. The disco and the tables for the barbecue were in the yard in front of the barn, just below our window, but the music was loud and we thought no one would be looking our way while they were still dancing. She was on top, and had tied her hair up in a loose bun to stop it drooping over me.

Mathilde, squirming on top of me, soon started to come. Now I don't know whether it was her nationalistic pride, revolutionary fervour, or simply a bottle of cheap red wine, but this time she started to sing La Marseillaise at the top of her voice, really singing the words out loud instead of her normal breathy panting. She strained upwards, her delightful breasts thrusting forwards. She sat up straight, appearing like a vision in the window of the barn. At that very moment the music stopped, a huge firework went off behind the barn, and the entire campsite, gathered in the yard below, turned to look up.

Two hundred drunk french campers saw this vision of beauty, perfectly lit by the lights from the disco, her bare breasts gleaming, brunette hair cascading round her shoulders, the unfolding bun on her head looking a little like a revolutionary cap, loudly declaring their national anthem, and they stood up as one and joined in, saluting her and calling 'Marianne, elle vit!'.

We were both beyond the point of no return, the fireworks were going off around us, and with the huge chorus below, yelling La Marseillaise at the tops of their voices, Mathilde nobly carried on to the end, ending with Abreuve nos sillons ! to which the campsite responded with the traditional 'pom pa-pom'. At that moment someone had the presence of mind to switch the lights off and we disappeared from view. The campers ooh-ed and aah-ed at the fireworks, apparently thinking that she had been an additional show put on by the campsite owner. We crouched down beneath the window, got dressed, and sneaked back down to the party.

Next day everyone got up late, mostly nursing hangovers. Mathilde was in the shop as usual, selling croissants and pains au chocolats, and receiving many strange looks as people struggled to put two and two together. The campsite owner came in, gave her a big hug, and told her she was a star and that her idea had been wonderful; could she do it every year on National Day? Disappointingly, my part in the whole affair was never acknowledged.
(, Mon 5 Jul 2010, 8:24, 11 replies)
Have spanner, will travel.
I'm an engineer, my dad was an engineer, his dad was an enginner and so on. Run it back all the way, we're engineers of various types. From the chap many generations back whose hobby ws drawing beautifully detailed pictures of various steam engine gear linkages down to me and my delight in building intricate little solar powered devices from cast off electronics.

Unfortunately all this selective breeding has left us with one very solid quirk. Every male on one side of the family becomes uncomfortable in the presence of broken or badly adjusted mechanisms. It seems to be the same kind of feeling that some people describe when seeing a picture hung askew or a disordered bookshelf and occasionally it gets strong enough to require us to do something about it.

From the Washing Machine Incident*, to the day I had to spend sitting on my hands when visiting a girlfrind's parents. On the wall they had an old wooden clock, a stopped clock, a clock which GF's father had inherited from his father and was just sat there not working, a clock which I could almost feel ticking like some kind of mechanical phantom limb pain. Eventually GF's mother took pity on my twitching and handed me the clock with a look to her husband that clearly said "well he can't make it any worse, can he..."
For the next hour I was happy as a pig in cheltenham. Disassembling, cleaning, straightening, rebuilding and balancing to my little ticky heart's content. Finally finished, hung the clock on the wall and was rewarded with a good solid regular tick that even now I remember with a certain degree of pride. Even better was the slightly odd look that GF's father gave me when the clock ran, and stayed running. He'd been told that it was a hopless ireparable case and would never work again.

Some children are born with a silver spoon in their mouths, mine I expect will have a screwdriver in one hand and a spanner in the other.

*In which my dad and I were visiting my uncle. A brief mention by my aunt that the washing machine was making a funny noise and the three of us had the thing disassembled on the kitchen floor within 15 minutes.
(, Tue 6 Jul 2010, 16:18, 10 replies)
Desserts.
It's a weird thing but every year, when summer arrives and the weather picks up, I set up a table in my garden and sell desserts. I'm not sure why, I think maybe I picked it up from my grandmother, she was always making cakes.
I used to concentrate solely on cheesecake, but in recent years I've branched out a bit. This year my little table was covered in all sorts of goodies; jellys, cheesecakes, sponge cakes, butter cakes, bread and butter pudding, all sold to the people who live on my street.
I must say, it is a trifle bazaar.
(, Fri 2 Jul 2010, 16:42, 3 replies)
I have CDO...
it's similar to OCD, but I have to put the letters in alphabetical order
(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 13:17, 3 replies)
Just think of the size of the sting!...

I remember I was just 9 years old, and at the time was fully immersed in my standard pastime of playing silly-buggers in my room on my own, (as I had no friends). So there I was, slap-bang in the middle of a particularly detailed and intense fantasy of deploying both Airwolf and K.I.T.T to destroy the Death Star, when my attention was suddenly hoofed back to reality by a sound eminating from our back garden. It was something I had never heard before, so being an inquisitive little shitehawk I went to the window to incvestigate.

What I saw shocked me to the very core and changed my life forever.

Now, we all knew about the small hive at the bottom of the garden. It was a wonderful nest, up in a tree that had developed naturally to being a couple of feet high, and my childlike curiosity was left in no doubt of the requirement to leave it and its inhabitants well alone, and by no means to poke at it with sticks and wotnot. Mostly it kept itself to itself, but today, the noise coming from the hive was different. It was a sort of:

“buzz, buzzzzzz, sniffle, *twitch*, buzzzz-sniffle-*twitch*”

As I continued to stare I began to notice that the occupants of the hive were dropping out of it like stones. They little yellow-and-black-how-do-the-fat-bastards-fly-anyway? fuckers had somehow ‘mutated’ overnight. Not only had they grown exponentially, but their middle legs had completely dropped off and their antennae had somehow transformed into sort of large, floppy ears.

Shaken to the very gizzards, I sprinted downstairs to my parents and screamed at them, asking if they had seen what was going on, and hoping beyond hope that they could provide some sort of explanation.

However, my folks seem nonplussed at their yelping, incoherent son as I grabbed them and directed their glance towards the window to present them with the phenomenal sight of these incredible new creatures, who by now had abandoned their natural instinct for pollen in favour of munching carrots…and the occasional cabbage leaf.

Yet as I turned towards my parents for some sort of assurance, they merely fixed me with a look of supreme nonchalance, before turning to me and fixing me with a knowing smile. Then, they simultaneously went over to the stereo and ensured the volume was on an even number, before going to the light swtch, turning it on, then off, then back on again. They then proceded to knock a piece of wood three times with the little finger of their left hands, before arranging every item in the house in alphabetical order, backwards, and doubling every inanimate item up so that it wouldn’t ‘get lonely’.

Gobsmacked, I thought it was the weirdest thing I had ever witnessed, but my Mum & Dad just treated it as if it was ‘one of those things’. With my mouth agape and my trembling arm still pointing towards the window, I enquired as to what the clattering cluster-fuck was going on, and why they were behaving this way. ‘Don’t worry” they replied reassuringly. “It’s just a simple case of ‘Bees-are-rabbits’”

And I wonder why I’m so fucked up.
(, Fri 2 Jul 2010, 10:28, 8 replies)
Volume control...
Like many ladies of the female type I suffer from an issue with spatial awareness. As in, I’m rubbish at it. Whilst this so far hasn’t lead to too many problems, I’ve recently been engaged in the process of buying a house (got my offer accepted last night, yay, go me, etc) and have found translating measurements on floor plans into actual room dimensions quite challenging. So, being the uber nerd that I am, I decided I would try to train myself to be better at resolving 2D objects into 3D and generally trying to process spatial relationships. I did this by every time I went in a room, imagining a square one foot by one foot (which I had previously drawn out at home) and placing the squares across the floor so that I could measure the floor area. Then I imagined a cube, one foot by one foot by one foot and practiced filling the room with cubes until I could get an idea of the volume of the room.

Once I got the hang of this, I then started turning everyday objects into rough 3D geometric shapes and filling rooms with those, for example, imagining a chair as slightly elongated cube. I even toyed with different packing efficiencies of spheres and tried filling rooms with imaginary footballs.

A few weeks back I went with some friends to Canterbury Cathedral. Now, I’m a filthy stinking atheist, but I love me some church architecture. So I had a pootle round and look at the dead people and the lovely stone work, then I sat at the back of the nave and contemplated the glory of the building. Pretty soon, I’d started calculating the floor area adding in the transept and working out how many people I thought the building could comfortably seat. Calculating the volume was more tricky, the cathedral isn’t a regular shape, so I had to divide the ceiling section into triangular based pyramids.

I must have been sat there for a while, with a look of bafflement and consternation on my face, so a cathedral employee (presumably on stand-by to see if anyone looked in need of spiritual guidance) came over to ask me whether I was okay. I admit, I may have been a little brusque, as I was very close to having the answer to the ultimate question. They pressed me some more. I was fine, I assured them, I was just thinking. But it was too late. The moment had gone, never to return. And now I fear I will never know the answer to the question I had posed myself which was:

Just how many kittens would it take to completely fill Canterbury Cathedral and how cute would it be?

Sometimes I wonder why my mother didn’t have me drowned at birth...
(, Fri 2 Jul 2010, 9:20, 13 replies)
My boss
Complete fucking nutter. Insists I arrive at a certain time, eat lunch at a certain time and not leave before a certain time. I have to sit at the same desk every day or he gets all confused, I have do my job "properly", can't swear at colleagues, can't idly surf the web etc etc etc.
Fortunately he turns his back a lot, like right now, but then eventually he tu
(, Fri 2 Jul 2010, 8:13, Reply)
I spent about 5 years not stabbing sausages while frying them
because I had a dream once that doing this causes cancer, and just never questioned it.

This went on until one day my flatmate was cooking sausages on a BBQ and as he went to stab them I panicked and shouted "NO DON'T"

He said "why"

I said "because it gives . . . " and at that moment I realised that I'd dreamt the original issue.

Its odd the things we'll do subconsciously.
(, Sun 4 Jul 2010, 11:11, 6 replies)
In which Chickenlady puts up with the bizarre habits of nuns
I'm bored, here's an anecdote about knickers from the life of Chickenlady.

I've always had a strange relationship with knickers and have often exhibited odd behaviour surrounding them.

Okay, let's be honest - this qotw is producing some fairly dull stories so I thought I'd join in


A cold winter's day, Chickenlady is about seven or eight years old and suffering from extreme knicker envy.

My parents were not particularly well off and most of my clothes were bought in the local market or during the sales - nothing wrong with that, except that I went to a private prep convent school (long story involving Roman Catholic nepotism and pity) and I was surrounded by children whose parents only purchased outfits from John Lewis and Marks and Spencers. One girl, Katie, that everyone (read:me) thought was beautiful and amazing (actually she was a spoilt brat) had frilly cotton knickers with the days of the week embroidered onto them. I had banana yellow stockinette with 'Ranebow' (sic) printed on them.

Day after day I'd see Katie and her gorgeous knickers - when you're that age and frightened of the nuns you tend to all go to the toilets when you're told and leave the doors open so we all knew what knickers (actually, why am I explaining all of this?)

Anyway, the venial sin....or was it a mortal sin? Hmm....the sin of envy - probably considered mortal, particularly bearing in mind what I did to Katie....

During playtime I collected up some mud and rolled it together just as Sister Patricia had showed us for making coil pots. I made a big fat mud sausage.

You can see where this is going, can't you?

I decided to place the mud sausage, well, more a mud cigar actually, onto Katie's chair in class where everyone would see it and think that she'd pooed herself! Excellent plan, Chickenlady!

I managed to get into class first and surreptitiously dropped the mud cigar onto Katie's chair - we all sat on miniature wooden chairs pulled up to miniature wooden desks - I say miniature but actually they were simply in proportion for small children rather than the Borrowers or midgets, although on reflection they'd have been ideal for midgets but we didn't have any of them in the school - not that the school was anti-midget and in fact some of the nuns were very short but they looked less like midgets and rather more like gnomes - beards and all.

Anyway, the rest of the class files in and everyone stands behind their places - Bizarre habit insisted upon by the nuns - we had to stand until the teacher entered the class, said a prayer and then we would be allowed to sit down and get on with our lesson. So we stand there, Sister Patricia comes in, we all drone, 'Good morning Sister', she replies,
'Good morning class. Let's begin with our prayer' - she then drones the prayer, we all join in and with each breath I'm thinking about the mud poo! It's just sitting there on Katie's chair. Beautiful Katie that everyone loves. Beautiful Katie who won't be friends with me because of my cheap banana stockinette knickers with the misspelt transfer print on them. Beautiful Katie who invited me to tea once and I told a rude joke to her entire (posh) family and they didn't think it was funny. Beautiful Katie who everyone loves.

The prayer finishes with a communal scraping of chairs on the parquet floor and an echo of 'phuts' as eighteen seven year old bottoms drop onto their wooden seats.
Wait for it....wait for it....any moment now.....she'll scream.....someone will laugh.....wait for it......

Sister Patricia begins the lesson - hundreds, tens and units. Katie is asked to hand out the Cuisenaire because Katie is beautiful and all the teachers love her. Katie has huge brown eyes that remind me of a Jersey cow, she also has very hairy legs but she always wears lace edged ankle socks and not knee high socks from International Stores (I know, that really dates me).

Katie stands up and the cigar poo is stuck to her dress!!! And then, as if in slow motion, the mud cigar slowly and without leaving a single skid mark, slides to the floor and rolls under the table.

No one has noticed. Not one grubby fingered, snotty nosed, sticky-out eared or lazy-eyed child in the entire class has noticed.

The rest of the maths class continues without event. We all get on with sorting out how to add up and subtract using the Cuisenaire rods and the equal addition method - which coincidentally I had to unlearn when I taught in primary schools and decomposition was the new way of doing subtraction. Nuns probably couldn't teach decomposition because the Lord God Jesus didn't decompose, instead the Lord God Jesus ascended into Heaven, unlike His blessed mother, Mary who assumpted into Heaven but us poor benighted sinners will have to pray that the dear Lord God Jesus takes mercy upon our wretched souls and allows us to suffer in Limbo until we have atoned for our sins.

All of this was going through my mind as I wondered what would happen to the mud cigar poo.

The end of the class eventually arrives, it's time for lunch and the bizarre habits and rituals begin again.
We all stand - communal chair scraping and foot shuffling - did I mention we were only allowed to wear slippers inside? All outdoor shoes were left in the cloakroom.
We all put our hands together, eyes closed, heads bowed.
Make the sign of the cross.
Sister Patricia begins the Angelus.
We all drone the prayers.
Make the sign of the cross.

"Holy Mary! Mother of God! Who has left that on the floor!" Sister Patricia's face was the exact shade of the four Cuisenaire rod and it looked like it was going towards the two rod. My mud cigar poo had been found.

It was under Katie's chair. My dastardly plan was coming together; everyone would hate Katie and her perfect cotton knickers with the days of the week embroidered on them. Everyone would see that Katie was a stinky poo pants.

Katie began to cry.

It really did look like a turd lurking under her chair.

Sister Patricia kept Katie's table behind and sent the rest of us off to lunch. Everyone was giggling about the escaped poo and guessing who might have done it. We all waited expectantly with our lunch bags ready to file back into class - another bizarre habit - we ate in class with napkins as tablecloths because there wasn't a dinner hall.
Then the girls, including Katie, came out.
Then two of the boys came out.
This left only Smelly Peter in class - Katie sat next to him and that was the only thing for which I didn't envy her - Peter only bathed about once a month and after PE lessons he put his trousers over the top of his shorts.

Peter had got the blame for the mud poo.

And that's where I'd rather messed up - it was winter time, all the girls (including me) were wearing tights.


Everyone still loved Katie. She became Head Girl.
(, Tue 6 Jul 2010, 14:38, 8 replies)
I got up ten minutes late for work
one day, so dressed somewhat in a rush. managed to arrive just on time, and after half an hour got summoned into my bosses office to be given a verbal warning for "Not wearing clothing of sufficient standard for the company" It turns out that he'd noticed that I wasn't wearing socks that match. as I left he screamed across the office "And you're not wearing a tie" at which point I burst out laughing., getting my second verbal warning on the spot.

Since when for over 20 years I have never worn socks that match on the grounds that if an employer is going to complain then they're obviously even more of an asshole than most bosses and Id might as well know.
(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 13:11, 2 replies)
Underneath the Habit.
At university I spent every Sunday afternoon hanging out in the University Parks with my mates. I suppose we went there because it was a suitably open space in which to batter each other with swords, spears and Dane axes.

Yes. I'm a Viking at weekends. (Hi Wychwood!)

But this is not a tale of bizarre Dark Age habits. Oh no no no.

This is a story about another Sunday afternoon regular in the Park. The 'OH MY GOD, HE'S TAKING IT OFF' monk.


Now, Oxford has several Permanent Private Halls. These are religious foundations which admit undergraduates. Some of these undergraduates are monks. And they wear habits, sandals and beards. Really.


I believe the protagonist of this story to be a Franciscan.


So we're all strapped into our armour and fighting a pitched battle in the shade of the large tree by the gate, when this chap wanders towards us along the path. And he does look just a little like he just got off the set of Monty Python's Holy Grail.

No one bats an eyelid, men in habits are a familiar sight in Oxford, and anyway a bunch of Vikings are in no position to go "Ha-ha, a man in a dress".

Then he bends over and grasps his ankle length, brown woollen habit by the hem and starts to pull it up...




...revealing pale, nobbly knees...







(now we're staring)






...and a pair of enormous...









...bright red...











...running shorts. He was going for a jog.



Healthful exercise in the fresh air. He's a friendly chap, we wave at each other from time to time.

But it's always a joy to watch the faces of passers-by who have a different preconception of what's under those robes, or have mistaken this Godly fellow for some kind of habit-wearing-flasher-pervert.


Jogging monk, we salute you.
(, Wed 7 Jul 2010, 12:02, 1 reply)
I have problems 'relating' to 'people' on an 'emotional' level
It's cost me girlfriends befor. I only do things that are 'utilitarian' She was appalled at my lack of any moral code or compassion for others.

Her: "If you heard a young boy being murdered near your apartment, would you aid him?"
me: "Only if it would benefit me in some way."

We had lots of conversations about morals, and she was disgusted that I was so selfish and cold. She hated the fact that I think a lot of people act "moral" due to guilt, or out of the fear that if they didn't act morally, the undesirable situation might be reciprocated upon them some day. A twisted form of karma.

She also didn't appreciate her greenness or attempt at being green being made fun of and continually mocked by me.

I am thoroughly disgusted by people who act a certain way or change around their S.O. because it is what the other person desires. It's one thing to compromise, but god damn, you might as well go to acting school.

We'd still be together if I lied about my feelings. If I was an actor. Unfortunately I don't believe people should be together if they have to tip-toe around a single issue. Total honesty, or no relationship.

She was angry one day and I said "What most people don't realize is that emotions are a choice we make to fit a situation. You don't have to be angry.

What you have to realize is that there is nothing and nobody that can "make" you feel, act, see, think, etc. a certain way. Its all a choice. When you say "He MADE me angry" , you're giving your self control to that person. If you have any pride and self respect, that's unacceptable.

Its ok to be angry and whatever other emotions you feel. What's important is WHY you feel them and you make sure that its because you choose to feel them and not because you gave control over yourself to something else."


then she left. i felt... nothing.
(, Sun 4 Jul 2010, 18:05, 68 replies)
Get over it
You wouldn't say to someone with depression "Just cheer up!". It's a bit on the tasteless side and it's not going to work anyway. It's not just being upset, it's a lot deeper than that.

And I do understand that a lot of OCD behaviour is like that. And getting rid of it is neither easy nor quick. But am I alone in that every time I hear about some OCD quirk like "I have to have the volume on an even number" or "If there's two different coloured foods on my plate touching I can't eat it" I have the same mental reaction

"Just grow the fuck up and get over it!"

I can't help it. You do not *have* to have the volume on an even number. Try setting it to three. And then put up with it. If you were hungry enough you'd bloody well eat the food, even if a prime numbered set of peas were directly adjacent to a piece of fish that wasn't at 90 degrees to the setting sun in Tunisia. You might prefer that the books are lined up in alphabetical order but YOU DO NOT NEED THEM THAT WAY. WANT. NOT NEED.

Please tell me I'm not the only person to have that instinctive reaction even if it's wrong.
(, Sat 3 Jul 2010, 14:37, 10 replies)
So I'm a nun
and I bought my last set of clothes at a middle eastern market.
(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 14:19, 5 replies)
A chap I work with...
...was getting ribbed one night when a few of us had gone out for drinks, because whenever he went to the loo at work, he was gone for ages and his colleagues had started to notice.

He sheepishly explained that it was because it took him ages to take all his clothes off and then put them back on again.

Ever since he was a child, he had been unable to 'go' with clothes on. Every time he went to the loo, for either a number two or a number one, he had to take his clothes off and hang them on the peg of the room (naturally, he couldn't use urinals) before he could relieve himself. He would then wash his hands and get redressed.

Of course, this caused great amusement, so we told absolutely everyone, and he is now known to all and sundry around the company as 'that guy who can only poo naked'.
(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 13:02, 3 replies)
QOTW Stories
I occasionally repeat QOTW stories to real life friends with the prefix "I know someone who..."

*for shame*

But you do it too.

edit - not exactly a bizarre habit I suppose, but it is a habit.
(, Thu 8 Jul 2010, 10:53, 4 replies)
Punctuated equilibrium.
Some of you may have noticed that I can be a grammar pedant at times. For a while, I was worse.

For a couple of years when I was 12 or 13 I was beholden to the idea that the punctuation marks in a sentence had a kind of numerical value, and that a well-constructed sentence would be one in which the value of the punctuation added up to an integer (in rather the same way that a bar of musical score has to have the right - whole - number of beats in it). If a sentence didn't meet this criterion, it'd be somehow unbalanced or unfinished.

A comma was worth one half of a "beat", for example; a semi-colon was worth one and a half beats. A colon - notwithstanding that I didn't use them much - was worth two. So a sentence could have two commas, or a coma and a semi-colon, because that way its value'd be a whole number. Just one comma in a sentence, though, would have been unacceptable - unless there was a semi-colon as well.

I commited syntactic atrocities just to get enough clauses and subclauses into my sentences in order that they obey the rule.

And then, suddenly, I stopped caring, at roughly the same time that a small number of my classes at school became co-educational. Odd coincindence, that.
(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 14:40, 7 replies)
Mrs Vagabond says pen lids must be on pens - either end, but definitely they must be on the original pen.
This is, in essence, her code for "Please entertain me by distributing pen lids around the flat at random".

I think.
(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 12:53, Reply)
i can't be the only one
after watching a certain episode of the simpsons, i cannot listen to sweet dreams by eurythmics without singing "i travel the world and the seven seas, i am watching you through a camera"

damn you, artie ziff!
(, Wed 7 Jul 2010, 0:29, 10 replies)
Mon Dieu
These betans are crazy

paf paf paf


(, Mon 5 Jul 2010, 12:55, 1 reply)
Super Happy Lucky Number! In Quiet Street!
More of an in-joke than a bizarre habit, I guess.

I studied Mandarin Chinese at school. It was great fun, but other than some politely baffled smiles from my local takeaway staff, it has availed me naught.

Fast forward several years to when Hubby and I are looking to buy a house. One of the neighbourhoods we had our eye on, had a high population of Chinese residents. Lovely, they make great neighbours.

The Engrish in some of their 'For Sale' ads in the newspaper was just magic. My favourite was the title of this piece; "Super Happy Lucky Number! In Quiet Street!" After I'd picked myself up off the floor and fetched a mop, I had to explain the joke to Hubby. Are you sitting comfortably? Good, then we'll begin.

Numerology is very important to many south east Asian cultures, particularly to the Chinese. 4 is super dooper bad. It is pronounced the same as the word for death. There is no 4th or 14th floor in any Chinese owned building, just as there is no 13th floor in most Western buildings. The number 8, however, is just lovely. It sounds like the word for prosperity. Therefore, to a Chinese person, an auspicious house number is much more important than, say, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms.

So many years later, at tea with the in-laws, the father-in-law was reading the paper and announced, "Look here, the Beijing Olympics is starting on the 8th of the 8th, 2008."

Hubby and I looked at each other and loudly declared "Super Happy Lucky Number, in Quiet Street!"
(, Mon 5 Jul 2010, 6:10, 2 replies)
christ i might be busy this week
quick one to kick off

if mrs spimf is trying to discuss something serious and i'm getting frustrated or just want to throw her off track i'll reach over and 'unscrew' the top of her head - just like a jar of sweets.

to say it freaks her out is an understatement - she HAS to screw her head back on the exact degree and number of turns. naturally this looks every bit as bonkers as she is.

works particularly well in public places
(, Fri 2 Jul 2010, 16:02, 4 replies)
holding my breath
if i'm watching a film or t.v show where someone has to hold their breath for any length of time, i will always hold my breath, too, just to see if:
a) i can beat them, or
b) it's actually possible to hold your breath for that length of time
(, Thu 1 Jul 2010, 19:59, 12 replies)
Merry, Pippin
Samwise, Frodo

The whole race is a bit queer if you ask me.

Oh wait, bizarre habits...
(, Wed 7 Jul 2010, 13:12, Reply)

This question is now closed.

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