It’s been a funny old week.
I went to do a little early (or late, if you’re my sister) Christmas shopping. The machine refused my credit card. We tried three times but…na da. I couldn’t understand it. Just two nights previous The Old Boy handed the card to me and told me to cut up the old one; which I did. The card should have had plenty of credit on it. Turns out the new card, which looked exactly like the “old” one – black, Visa – was a different Visa card. It was one I’ve never used. I’d forgotten that I even had it. I don’t know why he persists in giving it to me because, not only do I not use it, I can’t use it as it’s never activated. So, I cut up a perfectly good Visa card and replaced it with one I can never use. sigh.
Later that same night I put a dozen eggs on to boil. I remembered them two hours later. Home-made hand grenades.
We got a letter from the Tax Department. The Old Boy can no longer claim the spouse rebate for me. They’ve changed the rules. I missed out on being old enough by about four months. I’m not decrepit enough: I can still dress myself. I’m not in the armed forces serving overseas, and I’m not a full-time carer for a disabled child or demented parent. Therefore, I should find myself a job that pays enough to cover the shortfall.
There’s a little problem with that scenario: who’ll employ a woman my age (mumble-mumbly) who has collapsed discs in her spine with arthritis mixed in so she can only stand or walk for about 15 minutes; with lymphoedema in her right arm; chronic tendonitis in her left caused by medication she’s on because she has terminal cancer? Hmmm… Let me think… Yep; it does wonderful things for my self-esteem.
Then I heard that there was a kerfuffle about the Booker Prize. Hilary Mantel had won it for the second time. This is an extraordinary achievement. However, some people complained that the prize should have gone to someone else, to give support to the smaller publishers; to spread the publicity around; to give someone else a go, as Ms Mantel had already won it so she didn’t need another one. WHAT?!!
If she was the best, then she deserved to win. Otherwise, why not just put some names in a hat – all the politically acceptable/artistically fashionable names – and then draw one out. Of course the prize will have no particular significance any more but what the hey: everyone should get to hold the trophy at least once, right? Tell that to Mark Spitz. Tell that to Brazil’s soccer team.
The world is crazy. A 14 year old girl is shot in the face for wanting to go to school. A woman is verbally shot down for daring to win a prestigious literary prize, twice. A female Prime Minister is ridiculed for falling over in public. Yet, I can remember a male Prime Minister having a similar experience – and a US President, come to think of it – and the fellas basked in the sympathy.
I feel for you, ladies. I could put it down to misogyny, bigotry and sexism…but it’s just as possible it’s because it’s been a funny old week. Perhaps the next one will be better.
PS. I redeemed the eggs. I cut away the burnt bits and then mashed up the rest. I added some mustard, some salt and pepper and some mayonnaise, and made egg salad. It’s nice on toast. Waste not, want not.