OK, so I’ve finally gotten round to do a Tuesday Tune on this here Thursday (hey, it’s been a long week), and this week’s is courtesy of Sucre. The video is all floaty dresses and flounces and really reminds me of an article I spotted on Lady Fox’s Facebook wall about a German Dad who has taken to wearing skirts and dresses in solidarity with his dress-wearing son:

Father of the Year Helps Dress-Wearing Son Feel Comfortable By Putting on a Skirt Himself. Neetzan Zimmerman

“My five year old son likes to wear dresses,” says German Dad Nils Pickert.

Back when he lived in West Berlin, it was certainly a conversation-starter, but not much more than that. Now, however, Pickert and his son live in a “very traditional” South German village where his son’s predilection for dresses is the talk of the town.

“I didn’t want to talk my son into not wearing dresses and skirts,” Pickert tells the German feminist magazine EMMA. “He didn’t make friends in doing that in Berlin already and after a lot of contemplation I had only one option left: To broaden my shoulders for my little buddy and dress in a skirt myself.”

At first, Pickert’s son was reluctant to wear a dress in public, fearing he would be laughed at, particularly by other kids at his preschool. But that all changed one “skirt and dress day” when he and his dad made a resident of the town stare so hard she slammed into street light face first.

“My son was roaring with laughter,” says Pickert. “And the next day he fished out a dress from the depth of his wardrobe. At first only for the weekend. Later also for nursery-school.”

As you might imagine, this story has a happy ending:

And what’s the little guy doing by now? He’s painting his fingernails. He thinks it looks pretty on my nails, too. He’s simply smiling, when other boys ( and it’s nearly always boys) want to make fun of him and says: “You only don’t dare to wear skirts and dresses because your dads don’t dare to either.” That’s how broad his own shoulders have become by now. And all thanks to daddy in a skirt.

Parenting win.

Dog Shaming

Following on from the success of Chicks in Hats, I give you Dog Shaming:

When I was growing up I had a labrador called George. He was mad as a biscuit and once had to be taken to the vet because he tried to drink from a bowl of frozen water and got his tongue stuck. Animals never fail to improve my day.

For more shaming:

My first job

Yesterday, having decided that 4 days bed rest was sufficient down-time from surgery, I attempted to leave the house and go for a spot of lunch with members of the extended skulk. Obviously, this was both over-ambitious and wrong, and, having had a good yank on my stitches (18, to be exact, and in a place where one would least like to have stitches), I am now actually bed-ridden. Lesson learned? Watching Holby City (don’t you judge me) does not qualify me to make informed medical decisions. And I’m an idiot.

Moving on.

This thread popped up while I was pissing about on the interwebs: My First Job. Always a fun thing to ask new people – everyone ends up trying to out-do each other for the honour of having the worst first job. Mine? I worked for Next, hawking candles (they called them wax pots for some reason, which made me irrationally angry) and cushions. You were contractually obliged to be there at 4.30am when the sale started, and had to check all your payslips to ensure that they’d paid you properly (they had a habit of ‘forgetting’ that you were supposed to earn more on Sundays).  I quit after 10 months when my upstart shit of a manager threw the rail of skirts I had just tidied onto the floor at my feet, and demanded I replace and re-tidy them before leaving. I declined to do so. All for the princely sum of £3.93 an hour.

Some of the IdeasTap contributors:

Comedian and improviser Cariad Lloyd: “My first paid job was working at a local bakery. I had to wear a straw boater with a hairnet, as it was a traditional bakery that kept up its Victorian values. But we did get free bread, pastries and pasties at the end of the day. My brother was absolutely devastated when I quit. “

Theatre designer Jo Scotcher: “My first paid job was doing punting tours along the River Cam. I probably made better money than you do as a theatre designer.”

Lead singer of Wild Beasts, Hayden Thorpe: “I was in charge of the dairy section of the local supermarket. But, being lactose intolerant and incapable of not vomiting at the faintest whiff of stale milk on my hands, I spent most of the time developing strange OCD habits involving manic hand-scrubbing and frantic dashes for the loos. I lasted three weeks.”

Actor Glyn Pritchard,  “I worked in a fun fair back in the early ’70s, to buy Alice Cooper’s Billion Dollar Babies album with my first wage. It was a great job until some skinheads came and made me ride around on my own merry go round for what seemed like half the day.”

Costume designer and stylist, Laura Clayton: “My first proper summer job was doing data entry in a portakabin on a giant trucker park. I was the only female and regularly subjected to smirking renditions of “Tell Laura I Love Her”. I still shudder every time I see a car transporter.”

Textile designer and illustrator Ellie Curtis: “I found a job in my village pet shop where I had to crawl on all fours among quails, scraping their poos off the floor, or smashing up blocks of frozen chicks from the freezer for owls to scoff. I was paid £1.75 per hour and after a few weeks I saved up enough for a pair of unflattering baggy red dungarees from Camden Market, which was my goal.”

Writer and independent publisher, Kit Caless: “Cleaning up old people’s sick on P&O Ferries aged 16.”

Novelist, writer and columnist Kirsty Logan: “Mine was dressing up as Maisie the Mouse for a children’s book event.”

Digital storytelling producer and theatre-maker Lisa Heledd Jones: “My first paid job was as a checkout girl at Kwik Save. I absolutely loved it.  I was a big fan of the massive freezer where I’d attempt to trap and flirt with Jake the Stacker. After I’d graduated and got my first ‘proper’ job I went back in to buy some flowers. Weird Phil the Freezer was now the manager, earning double what I was earning and driving a sports car.”

Lady Fox also had to dress up as Maisie Mouse at a children’s book event! There’s even photographic evidence:

Lady Fox: “It was the day after my 21st and I was absolutely hanging. Every time a child hugged me I had to hold my breath to stop me vomming all over the inside of the Maisie suit.”

Lovely, isn’t she?

What was your first job? Virtual gold stars for the most horrific.

Camille O’Sullivan

I’ve just this morning had a rather nasty operation, and am therefore veering between being hopped-up on drugs and pain, so do bear with me for a few days.

Whilst I am bed-ridden, Lady Fox has come round to help feed, wash, clothe (I say clothe, but I fully intend to wear nothing but my dressing gown for at least a week, if not two, depending on the stitching situation. Hopefully, I will soon be able to remove the complimentary surgical stockings, though, as Lady Fox has been swift to point out that they’re not exactly ‘fetching’.) and entertain me. She has been attending to the latter by showing me pleasing YouTube clips of small animals, interspersed with a nice, cheery bit of Camille ‘little Irish bunny’ O’Sullivan. But before I get to today’s Tuesday Tune, a tale for you:

Coming round from my general anaesthetic, I look up at two, smiling Jamaican nurses welcoming me back to Earth. I beam at them. I am high as a fucking kite. Presently, I start to recite the Lord’s Prayer (?!), and we all hold hands and cross ourselves to say our amens. Back on the ward, I believe I have had something of an epiphany. Surely the nurse handing me a cheese and tomato sandwich, in conjunction with my spontaneous theistic outburst, is a sign that now, finally, I will have joined the ranks of real adults who can eat tomatoes without gagging – a tomato epiphany (!!), if you will. I tear into my sandwich…

And heave.

Back to Atheism, then.

God is in the house (but only when you’re on morphine – Miss Fox), by Camille O’Sullivan:

The Burning House

The Burning House tumblr asks:

If your house was burning, what would you take with you? It’s a conflict between what’s practical, valuable and sentimental. What you would take reflects your interests, background and priorities. Think of it as an interview condensed into one question.

And what an interview that would be! As one of the many surplus Graduates this fine country has amassed, attending interviews has become a regular feature in the tedium of my life. One thing I’ve noticed – they all ask the same bland, tiresome and interminably boring questions.

Presumably, an employer asks someone to interview to figure out if they’re a) capable of the job and b) going to fit in with the company. Both of these you should have a reasonable idea of anyway from the person’s CV, so why not make the most of meeting an actual person by talking to them, not at them; finding out what they’ve got to say for themselves, and what they’ll be like on a day-to-day basis rather than the vapid robot they’ll inevitably be when asked a standard question. There  is little more demoralising than going into an interview like an exam – getting the same questions you had anticipated and then rattling out the answer you had prepared. Yeah, the answer may be correct, but it will also be really fucking dull. More than likely, it will bear an uncanny resemblance to the answer given by the next poor, unemployed bastard as well. ‘Scuse my French.

What I would give to attend an interview that asked me a question like this. Simple, interesting, and you would learn more about the suitability of the person in five minutes than if you spent an hour reeling off the list of questions you downloaded off

A selection of my favourites:

Name: Fifikoussout Age: 29 Location: Stockholm, Sweden Occupation: Illustrator Website:
  • A kimono my Grand Ma gave me
  • A box (filled with photos) i bought in Spain when i was 11
  • A copy of the Gradute i received from my danish friend
  • A box my mum used to keep coarse salt
  • An old salt shaker
  • A snake bracelet i bought when i was a student in France
  • My wisdom teeth
  • A locket medallion with a photo of my mum insdideA clay ocarina i bought in Portugal as a kid
  • An old glasses case 

Name: Mårten Bläckberg
Age: 22
Location: Umeå, Sweden
Occupation: Technician at a Recycling Center

  • Ernest Hemingways selected letters
  • My collection of Western DVD’s
  • My favorite backpack that i use everyday
  • A horrible painting from the 50’s made by a crazy starving artist found in my mothers childhood home picturing – – the death of Stefanus.
  • My stratocaster
  • The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt by Edmund Morris, to remind myself who the man is.
  • Nikon F4, the only camera i will fail to break, built like a tank.
  • The first shirt i bought which founded a life-long interest in blue shirts, you can’t have too many.
  • iPhone
  • My beautiful loving girlfriend (pictured in my iPhone)
  • My favorite records:
  • Pebbles vol. 2, a collection of super rare 60’s garage punk singles, love it!
  • Them!
  • My humble collection of 7” punk singles
  • Snus
  • Hungarian mustache wax, got to keep it under control
  • The key to my bicycle

Name: Alejandro Sosa
Age: 36
Location: Venezuela
Occupation: Technology consultant


  • Everything is recoverable, except my daughter

Name: Andy Forch
Age: 27
Location: San Francisco, CA
Occupation: Sous-chef, Huckberry


  • Toms Shoes: They smell horrible and gave up the ghost years ago, but they’re still my go-to.
  • Infinite Jest: DFW is my favorite writer, it’s a first edition, and yet I’ve never read it despite having it on my bedside table for over two years. It’s coming with me.
  • iPhone: Never. Lose. iPhone. Again.
  • Pipes: My uncle smoked these bad boys in law school. Incredible smell and patina.
  • Tag Heuer watch: The most expensive thing I own. If my apartment burned down, I’d pawn it.
  • Boxers: My favorite pair from college. Close second to my Toms on most-comfortable-(and smelly)-thing-I-own-scale.
  • Thinkpad: Worst computer on earth. I just got a Mac, and only included it because I want to be the one to throw it in the fire.
  • Jameson: I’d first use it to stoke the flames around my Thinkpad, and would then swig it on the street.
  • Favorite shirt: Wear these threads way too often.