Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Yes, I have finally been caught out. You see last week Paul Burman started a desk meme and showed the world a picture of his writing space and it was wonderful - a lovely room, a beautiful view and even a desk he made himself. Mmm - I love a man with creative hands and a creative mind! Luckily for Paul he lives in Australia otherwise I might have popped over and asked him to rebuild my kitchen worktops. (Ahem.)

Yes, well the reason I've been caught out is that Paul said he had been inspired by my post A Book Tag Which Went Disastrously Wrong where I'd posted a picture of my desk. Shocked by this news, in a moment of rare (?) foolishness and down right stupidity I sent Paul a picture of my desk as it was at the very moment I read his blog.

Well as you can imagine, the truth was a little messier. Okay, so here's the original picture of my desk (taken in soft focus!)

Oh how neat and tidy! And thoroughly charming! before I show you the other picture I would like to say in my defence;

1. My desk is the only place in the house where Mr T's beady eye for cleanliness is not allowed to trespass therefore I consider it my sworn duty to make it as visually displeasing as possible. It's petty I know but a gals gotta some satisfaction somehow....

2. It was a particularly bad day. Normally I have less than 7 cups on my desk. I usually average about 4 or 5 and at this very moment I only have 1 although I have now acquired a box of Maltesers. (Yummy) Unfortunately the box is now empty but you know I'll admire it for a few days because it's such a long, long way to the bin on the other side of my printer.....

3. I don't normally have plastic bags on my desk - I think I'd picked up the one in the piccy below off the floor where it possibly may have been accommodating a red box with chocolaty things inside it. The bag was on route to the bin it was just having a temporary respite from the journey to Carrier Bag Heaven. (The recycling plant obviously not the landfill site - I'm still trying you know.)

Okay so here you are. And try not to grimace please. Just remember I'm an underpaid and overworked housewife. (Emphasis on the underpaid bit please. ) By the way I'll gratefully accept any contributions for a new, larger desk and if you're feeling generous, a larger house as well.

With a cleaner.
And a cook.
And a manservant. (Either variety.)

Well there you go. A bombsite. Sorry, that's the illusion of Mrs T as a wondrous housewife obliterated then.

Well you might as well have some info on my desk. It's solid oak and I think I paid £45 for it - although it could have £35. Either way it was not more than £50 because Mrs T has eye for such things and she is also uncommonly good at bargaining. The geezer at the junk shop where I bought it wanted to make up for his losses by charging me £10 for transporting it 3 miles. Can you believe that? Anyway, at that point I said,

" I've got a Volvo. Ner, ner, ner, ner."

I stuck it in my car (well he did) and I drove home.

Okay here's a list of what was on my desk at that moment. ( Mainly because it's actually impossible to tell.)

Left to right.

1.My PC - notice I have my "calling card" (I'm so old fashioned it's untrue!) stuck to the top. This is just in case I forget who I am. (A distinct possibility.)

2. A Bob the Builder mug. ( Yuck.)

3. A Harry Potter mug. ( Damn those Easter eggs.)

4. Several tissues. (I cry a lot.)

5. Empty silver foil packet which contained caramel flavour crispy rice thingies. (The wrapper was on route to the bin.)

6. The orange thing is an empty glasses case. Situated next to that only just visible is a ceramic pot with assorted pens and pencils in it and a silver plated paper knife. There was also a pair of gold hoop earrings under the tissues. Oh yes, my mobile phone was under the tissues as well.

7. A wine glass. ( Well, you know - sometimes I need a tipple to keep me going......)

8. A pen that doesn't work with "Do more, Play tennis" on it. Again. it was on route to the bin....

9. A small tape deck - this is relatively new. I don't like it all and hopefully I'll find one a bit more atheistically pleasing in due course but for the moment it does the job of playing my CDs which I find seem to get scratched on my laptop so I try to avoid using it if at all possible.

10. A cloth for cleaning glasses, acquired from Mr T. I regret to inform the world that since Christmas I've needed to use glasses for prolonged close up work. Yes, I am getting old. The good news is I still have my own hair! And what's more I don't need to dye it!

Hats have a lot of benefits you know.

11. A red lamp. A recent purchase from that god forsaken place, IKEA. Mr T forced me to go there one day so I felt duty bound to buy something. The lamp is okay but I find it a little chunky but it is better than that green one which I loathe. The green lamp is one I used to use as a small light for the boys rooms for when I was on "sick duty" and somehow it landed up on my desk. It is actually very useful because its small and manoeuvrable and I can position it anywhere but visually I find it quite revolting. I guess one day I'll spot the perfect lamp but as yet I haven't.

12. The base set for the regular telephone. The telephone is under the plastic bag.

13 A clock. I like that clock. Good - something I like on my desk. Hurrah!

14 Next to the clock squashed next to the dictionary is a musical mother's day card. It was the one I gave to my mum last year. I found it in her apartment when I was clearing it out and I decided to keep it. I remember her telling me how she showed everyone it and they all laughed. It still works and when you open it, it sings in a mickey mouse type of voice "Your the best ever mum, yes you are, yes you are..."

Oh well.

15 The Collins English Dictionary I used at university. I use the on-line dictionaries a lot now but I still love the feel of this dictionary and I feel -well -clever seeing it there - you know like I actually know stuff... although on second thoughts dictionaries are for stuff you don't know.....hmm...maybe I ain't so clever...

16 A burgundy, leather bound dictionary with The New Little Oxford Dictionary emblazoned in gold on the front. It was a gift from some work colleagues and used to sit on my work desk which was of those cute ones with a roll top shutter. The dictionary used to have a brass engraved plaque on it with a birthday inscription but that's fallen off now and is in a drawer somewhere waiting to be stuck back on.

17. A Pile of CDs. It would be too boring to list of all of them so here's just a taster; Joss Stone - Mind ,Body and Soul, Seal - Soul, Simply Red - Greatest Hits, Shakira - Oral Fixation, Blue Eyed Soul - Compilation disc, Robyn - Robyn, The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra - Easy Listening and Jason Mraz - We sing, We dance, We steal things who Mrs T is going to see at the Hammersmith Apollo very shortly. Hoorah! In amongst these DVDs is a prayer book I was given on my confirmation in 1976 - I found it amongst my mother's books. Inside is my name, school and is signed + Mervyn Alexander, Bishop of Clifton. If your interested my confirmation name is Cecilia - patron saint of music - which is kind of ironic as I am about as musical as Simon Cowell. If you know what I mean.

18. 2 DVDs - The Notebook - A love story I've yet to view and the other is Coach Education - Long Term Player Development, 6 -16 (physical) produced by the Lawn Tennis Association. This is because Master Jacob and Master Ben are performance tennis players and currently Master Jacob is the County Champion! (Says Mrs T gloating profusely as Master Jacob did it without the assistance of the county training squad who had previously kicked him out so Mrs T is inordinately thrilled that the young master thrashed the pants of their squad in their championships. And just in case I haven't gloated enough - Ha, ha, ha, !)

19 Three old diaries. One I hardly used but since it has those removable sections I might use it next year. Question - why is it that the year you buy yourself a diary you get given three and the year you don't buy one you don't get any?? Somebody tell me the answer. Anyway, I'm hopeless with diaries - I hardly write anything in them and prefer to store things in my memory which is why I've been making lots of mistakes recently - the old grey cells used to be good but now they're dying off rapidly. I do use the diaries for addresses and telephone numbers and notes but just not for dates. Yeah I know, crazy.

20. A wadge of plain paper in a green flowery cardboard box that my mum had next to her phone.

21 2 metal tea caddies which I use for storing cartridges and new pens and pencils. ( I'm addicted to pens, pencils and stationery.) On top is a light bulb which I took out of the old lamp which was in residence before the red lamp. I didn't like that one either.

22 A photo of Master Jacob and Master Ben.

23 The blue bottle is a pump action glass cleaner solution. Humph.

24. In front of the photo is a box of paper clips which also contains address labels, a rubber, lip salve, a button, loose change and a jeweller's eye glass.

25 Just underneath the plastic bag to the right is a silver owl which I gave to my father on his 7oth birthday.

26 A pale green Denby mug with autumn leaves on it; I like this mug it has nice, shape, texture and colours with a matt finish rather than Denby's usual more glossy look.

27. A mug with lions and rhinos on it from Whipsnade Zoo. Yuck. It was for the kids.

28. A china mug by Wedgewood with green teapots on it. I like this because teas tastes so much better when drunk out of a china cup. However, I still don't like the shape.....

29. A pot of Clearsil face cleaning pads. (Yes, yes I know I'm not supposed to have spots at my age...what can I say? God blessed me with youthful looks... and spots.)

30. A packet of Nytol. (Herbal remedy for insomnia)

31 A packet of tissues

32. A pen

33 The silver shiny thing is the contents of the packet of Nytol....

34. Those damn glasses.

35. My mouse. This had been playing up and has now been exchanged for a funky bright red metallic one. Which incredibly folks - I like! ( I chose it.)

36. An empty yogurt pot and spoon.

37. My box of calling cards! I keep these handy because I don't know my mobile tel number even though I have had it for 3/4 years......

Now to the right is a bit more clutter you can't fully see including; another mug, a menu for the Chinese takeaway, a tablemat (no mug on it though) a pot of face cream etc etc etc.......

Also amongst that debris are various pages of my multi coloured jotter pad on which I scribble many things. The latest one reads;

" Remember to never, ever send photos to Paul Burman....."

Well there you go, I'm ousted. This desk is the real me. Messy, creative, silly, sentimental. Just some of the many faces of Mrs T, Housewife Extraordinaire.

Ps - Just spotted the orange bag by the clock - um that's a bag of minature jaffa cakes - enroute via Mrs T's tummy to the bin....


  1. Don't think I didn't notice the message you slipped in ahead of this post; no doubt so that people thought THAT was your latest post and not this one! Tricky, Mrs T. However, I think your real desk has character -- heaps of character. And so many stories attached to it. Not a fraud at all, Mrs T, just a Cecilia come good!

    And Maltezer boxes are great for that extra whiff of chocolate, even if there's none to eat. Nothing like snorting chocolate fumes when you need a little pick-me-up.

  2. Now, that's a working desk, Mrs. T!!! The first just didn't seem right. The second is the desk of a writer extraordinaire!

  3. Jesus Christ, Mrs T, it looks like one of the kids have emptied the kitchen bin on there! How could you? If there is so much as an extra cup on mine someone is in extreme danger - eithe in the real world or on the page :)

  4. Mrs T, you may be a fraud but in my opinion you are also a genius- how did you manage to get so many things on that table. This alone qualifies you to that title of Madame extraordinaire!
    C'est vraiment terrible!

  5. Wow.

    And I thought my cubicle at work was cluttered.

    But as they say, if you can find everything and anything, then who's to say you aren't organized?

  6. PB,

    Hmm...I'm not so sure I like that "snorting fumes" know it sounds sort of piggish.... And Mrs T is not a pig where chocolate is concerned ...more of a wild hog.....Mmmm Maltesers.....

  7. Tamera,

    Well "working desk" is a nice description - I like it! I'm going to use that from now on....

  8. Um, Jane? I think that's my desk. How did you get a picture of it?!? Are my kids trying to blackmail me?

    You are so sweet to try to cover for me though. (hug)

  9. Gary,

    Huh, I know how fussy you guys are about your desks! And pretty much everything else. Except of course putting yor pants in the laundry, putting the loo seat down, leaving your footie boots caked in mud.....
    need I go on??!


    Yeah, I maybe I am rubbish at cooking and cleaning but at some things I am really, really good. I would like to point out at this point that my desk is organized according to the principles of Feng Shui so whilst it may look like a random mess it is actually a carefully controlled placement...(cough, cough)


    You are a man after my own heart! Exactly my point - "if you can find everything and anything who's to you say you aren't organized?" Perfect! I always know where my chocolate is located which is why on the depressing occasions I can't find something because Mr T has "tidied up" (read "binned") I always have something to cheer me up before the suicidal thoughts kick in...


    Ah yes, I am full of noble gestures. In fact, I offered to take over from Aunt Lilibet should she wish to abdicate but for some reason she was concerned my interest in Feng Shui would not increase the popularity of the monarchy. How bizarre.


I am always delighted to receive comments!

My Nominees for the US and UK Elections and Other Waffle

It's the early hours of the morning, and I have had a large gin... Late-night alcohol is always a good recipe for writing gibberish. And...