I’m looking hot, in a Playmobil kind of way

I have had most of my hair cut off. I now look like this…

… apart from the fact that my bob has added ‘treacle and caramel slices’ (not Mr Kipling ones, unfortunately) which look suspiciously orange in artificial light. If you were feeling kind, you’d describe my new look as ‘austere’. Never mind, I am taking a sort of grim pleasure in looking like a Plantagenet monarch. My new ’do is the follicular equivalent of a bracing walk across a muddy field, or a newly cleaned-out cutlery drawer, or a particularly taxing A-level Sociology paper. Vanity and frivolity, begone!
By the way, in a telling example of gender stereotypical behaviour, my son didn’t even notice I’d had a haircut, while my daughter burst into tears at the sight of me.
Now it’s time for ‘Philistine’s Corner’, my latest rant about contemporary art. I was browsing se1.co.uk for old times’ sake (used to live there), when I came across a listing for a piece of performance art by Laura Wilson, whose exhibition, ‘Horse of a Different Colour’ features ‘Quite a Stranger Aren’t You’, ‘a duet of identical rotating heaters silently moving from one side to the other in unison, almost appearing to be dancing with each other’.

‘• 5 February, 7-8.30pm: Flaming Fuse at Siobhan Davies Studios. This performance piece involves the striking and extinguishing the contents of an entire box of matches in a darkened room. The sizzle of each match is amplified and the performer illuminated before discarding the match and starting again until all the matches have been used.’

Sadly, there are only 20 tickets available, but for all those who are disappointed, I’m hosting my own installation – ‘The Quantum Marmoset Says “Boo!”’ – tomorrow, here in my kitchen. I will be opening a can of tuna and droning, ‘Your tea’s ready, kids,’ in a monotone, over and over and over, in a statement on how cooking utensils illustrate the symbiotic relationship between motherhood and thwarted ambition. Or something.



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18 responses to “I’m looking hot, in a Playmobil kind of way

  1. Oh that’s a brilliant post, as ever.
    I seem to have done the opposite of late. Have changed my “Velma” cut of many years to “Shaggy”.

  2. Oh – what made you do it? Not that it doesn’t look fab I’m sure but usually when one has something drastic done to one’s hair (one finds) it’s often a symptom of something going on! My mother in law says I’m too old to have long hair now.

    You would have loved the art installation I saw recently. A room full of empty pallets stacked on top of one another, mountains of old newspapers and chandeliers made of bones. To signify the futility of life and death.

    • notwavingbutironing

      I know what you mean, but this wasn’t a ‘Sod it, I’m getting a divorce’ haircut, more of a ‘I’ve neglected all those six-week maintenance trims and now I look like Catweazle’ job. BTW, how charming of your mother in law. Does she also try to drag you into the Windsmoor concession at Debenhams?

  3. I’m sure you look absolutely fabulous! Always nice to change your image from time to time. I do it often!!

    CJ xx

    • notwavingbutironing

      How kind of you, Crystal. I’m afraid I look functional rather than fabulous, but you’re right, it’s best not to get stuck in a rut. I was looking at photos the other day and my hair has been more or less the same for 20 years. Which means I’ve got one more thing in common with Bryan May and Rick Parfitt than I’d ideally like. x

  4. I’d like to come and see that. Did you get a grant?

    • notwavingbutironing

      You could have participated, Coffee Lady, by turning the gas burners on the hob on and off. Hey, maybe we’re on to something! Pass me that grant-application form…

  5. fabulous, I’d come and see it.

    Will it just the one tin done over and over to signify the ground-hog day life of a stay at home mother or perhaps an endless row of unopened tins stretching as far as the eye can see as a way of expressing the futility of life itself?

    Perhaps if we exchanged the tuna for wine and the kids for boxes of chocolates we could just get pissed. I’d even bring a copy of Dirty Dancing.

    • notwavingbutironing

      I like that idea! I’ll get the Coffee Lady round too and we’ll use our Arts Council funding to buy some dry-roasted peanuts. Thanks for visiting all the way from Lapland.

  6. ELS

    Snap. Am back from London in time to open my own installation, ‘A crab. Smiling.’ It’s a contemporary interpretation of a Marie-Antoinette-esque uncaring consumption and consists of a stuffed Jo Malone bag spilling over onto the kitchen floor while I stand in front of it lecturing the children about Haiti to cover my guilt at not making it to Hamleys cos I was having a swanky two-bottle lunch in Soho.

    I LOVE what you did with the tuna. Inspired, darling.

    • notwavingbutironing

      The worrying thing is that to me, that actually sounds like it REALLY COULD be a genuine art installation. My husband says I ‘just don’t understand art’. This, from a man who is planning to buy a lamp shaped like a bowler hat, and a bin designed to look like a giant pencil sharpener!

  7. How odd – I had my hair cut into a bob last week too. Spooky.

    I swing from thinking I look mysterious and foxy (about 2% of the time) to thinking I look about 20 years old, 20 times tireder and like I spend my Saturday nights surfing the internet.


    I am crying with laughter at the art installations. You couldn’t make it up. I’m going to send it to my OH – he’s keen to hear about such things….(having once worked near the Tate Modern and regularly gone in for a WTF? lunch break).

    • notwavingbutironing

      The power of the bob! It draws us all in in the end! I’m sure you look fabulous, Stickhead – you have such abundantly thick, lustrous hair in your photograph. You probably look very French and chic.

  8. I either cut my own hair or Alpha Sassoon does it for me – usually when I’ve done it myself and he comes in from work and shrieks ‘What the fuck have you done now?’ In the immediate afterglow I always think ‘Yeah – funky angular punky sharp Pulp Fiction attitude-bob’. When the scales fall from my eyes (all too soon) I see 75 year old German supply teacher. A week ago I was wearing a huge red jumper and sticky-outy skirt and caught sight of myself – did someone previously mention Thelma? It’s not sexy.

    • notwavingbutironing

      Hee, hee! Actually, don’t know why I’m laughing, I look like a German supply teacher, too. Frau Schittherr.

  9. Your marmoset thing made me laugh so much I nearly choked on my pizza. Read it again – without pizza – still laughing.

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