So I’ve had some recent constructive criticism about the pessimistic/negative vibe some of my blogs give off. To them I say “meh, what cha gonna do?”.
To my remaining readers I say – well let’s look at where I learnt it. And so begins the introduction to my wacky upbringing.
When I was a lot younger I had a neighbour called Mrs Dufty and she was/is the most negative person – ever. If you could invent a person who was so against everything whilst wearing a floral dress you would have thought of her. She use to look after me a lot when I was a kid so it’s not surprising where my attitude stems from. Now let me start this description by saying Mrs Dufty was the nicest neighbour ever – so don’t get the wrong impression.
When you think of older female relatives two archetypes come to mind – the loving, timid, soft and cuddly woman who bakes you assorted goods and appreciates the drawing you did of her made entirely out of woodchips even though it kind of looks like she has three noses and then there’s the older woman who scolds, snarls, hits children with her walking assistant (cane, walker or caregiver) and has the fragrant aroma of urine.
Neither of these fits Mrs Dufty. In fact she is some sort of amalgamation of the two – and in a very entertaining way. She would always comment on the activities of “you young kids today” which she learned from the television – and when I say television I mean those awfully crooked “documentary” programmes that are so hideously biased and ridiculous it makes any slightly informed person shudder in horror. There was a segment on Schoolies (or Spring Break whatever you call it) which showed hordes of youths staggering up and down the streets squealing and showing off their...physical maturity (A.K.A. special bits). To this Mrs Dufty turned to me and said “look at those girls showing themselves off! Anyone can do that. Look!” at which point she suddenly lifted up her dress and for a flash in time I saw my elderly neighbour’s enormous knickers. After another audition for the Flasher’s association Mrs Dufty cackled away eventually asking if I’d like anything to drink.
Now here comes the negative part (and you thought a mad old woman somewhat exposing herself to me wasn’t the negative part!). Mrs Dufty had taken it upon herself, personally, to hate every part of this elaborate world. Now she’s old... and I know life gets tough when you get old so I went to her house to clean her fish tank as a sign of my good will. Well I cleaned it as best I could given my hopelessly chubby child arms and hands and after spending hours cleaning the water, scrubbing away the algae and managing to somehow choke on some fish poo water I finished it. I presented this sparkling aquatic wonderland to my neighbour who replied “ugh. I hate that fish tank.”
“But, doesn’t it look nice now? You can watch the fish swim about.”
“I hate those fish and I don’t want them. Do you want them?”
“No, they’re yours.”
“Well I hate them and I’ll be dead soon anyway.”
From this little episode you can glean how she reacts to any good deed that is shown to her. You bring her flowers “I HATE flowers and I don’t have a vase anyway because I gave it away because I’m going to be dead soon”. You bring her a nice bun from the bakery “I HATE buns from the bakery – especially THAT ONE. I don’t want it – I’ll be dead soon anyway”. Basically bring her anything and she will tell you how much she hates it and tries to sneakily place it in your backpack while giving you a cuddle when you leave. If you don’t bring her anything she will try to offload everything in her house. “Here, do you want all my pots and pans?” ... “But, what will you cook with?” “I don’t need them. I’ve got this one which will do. I survived on more than that when the Japs where flying over our heads! Besides... I’m going to die soon anyway.”
So there you have it. My negative neighbour. My pessimistic guardian.
And if you didn’t like this blog...well... I’m going to die one day anyway.