Monthly Archives: March 2013

On… A babydate

Last week my friend Joanna came over with her son Toby to do a lovely ‘baby spa’-themed photoshoot for her blog Cup Of Jo. 

The photos are so cute. Errol wasn’t the best child model. He was mostly interested in the lollipop. But he has a huge mancrush on Toby.

You see, Toby is nearly 3, he’s very fast at running, and knows how to sing the Beatles and play the guitar. Errol is just over a year and a half old, and can’t even talk yet. He also falls down a lot due to his abnormally large feet. So in the playdates they’ve had, it’s more like Toby plays and Errol follows him around to see what he’ll do next. Errol is somewhat like a tiny ginger hobbit-toed stalker. It is hilarious and adorable.

PS This is Errol at one day old. I truly cannot remember him being this tiny… those are my hands, not Fox’s. TINY!

  1Gemma Blackberry 020

This is Errol a couple of weeks ago with Fox. They look so alike it freaks me out a little bit. In a nice way.


On…. All I Want Is You by The Cars

New Girl played this song for about three seconds this week, and I got all excited about it. So I figured I’d share it.

All I Want Is You by The Cars.

And then it made me think about this song, which is FANTASTIC. What I Like About You by The Romantics.

That, by the way, was the theme song to a play that I directed at university. Bedroom Farce by Alan Aykbourne. It’s a very very funny play, if you get the chance to read or see it, I highly recommend it. Coincidentally, the gorgeous and talented Daisy Aitkens, who played Sass in the book trailer I made for my first book THE DATING DETOX, acted in a UK production of Bedroom Farce last year. Oh, and if you can’t see Bedroom Farce, then just watch Noises Off on DVD. It’s another hilarious Ayckbourne play that they made into a very good movie, and Carol Burnett and Michael Caine are in it! Win, winwinwin.

* Yes, I give everything I do a theme song. The theme song to this blog post is this.

On… what you should watch this Sunday

Let’s say you have a huge party on Saturday night, or no party at all. You’re in love, or out of love. You love your job or maybe you absofuckinglutely hate it.

Regardless, on Sunday nights, you need to binge-watch TV and you need to do it NOW.

The problem is choosing the right show.

Choose the right show, and you start your week loving humanity, cheerful and optimistic and full of quippy one-liners. Importantly, you feel like you’ve accomplished something with your Sunday.

Choose the wrong show and you’ll feel useless and restless and hopeless (the trifecta of LESSer evils… boom). You’ll get in the bath and cry for no good reason whatsoever. And you’ll dread next Sunday like a 360 review.

If you’re anything like me, you’ll trawl through channel after channel, searching in vain for the perfect TV show to pick up your mood. Consider yourself lucky that you have the internet, by the way. In the olden days, we used to take our hangovers through the rain (it was always raining) to Blockbuster and wander around the aisles, calling things out to each other like ‘What about Cheaper By The Dozen?’ Or, if we were banned from Blockbuster for, oh, I don’t know, never returning Dazed & Confused or something, we’d mooch over to our local no-name video store, and trawl the cramped, messy aisles. We’d pretend to look at the Independent Film section and wonder if we should watch Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! and end up with a Buffy The Vampire Slayer omnibus and that disgusting powdery popcorn they sell in places like that. God, it was exhausting.

Anyway, I digress.

Here are my top six seriously good funny Sunday binge-watching shows that you may have missed.

(Crucially, they’re all sitcoms, which means they never have any giant plot developments that you need to pay attention to if you’re not up for the mental challenge of The Wire*, there is no violence**, there are no subtle-yet-oh-so-fucking-meaningful plot developments that you need to be aware of like in MadMen, and there are many episodes, so you’re unlikely to run out in one day. You can just let the fast smart banter wash over you via Netflix or Hulu or iTunes or whatever content-streaming channel they have in your country of abode…)


I am in love with this show right now, and it inspired this post. It’s about two London screenwriters who move to LA and make a TV show starring Matt LeBlanc. Fast, smart, surprising, and makes me bark with with laughter several times an episode. Matt LeBlanc is hilarious to the point where I keep rewinding bits to watch him do stuff again. I am so glad he won a Golden Globe or whatever it was. He deserved it.


This is a British show from about ten years ago. It is hilarious. It’s mildly weird and very cool and deeply, deeply funny. It’s sort of about a bunch of doctors and nurses in a hospital somewhere outside of London. Several of the lines have stuck with me over the years, including the immortal: “You know what I like about you?” “What?” “FUCK ALL.” And “Can I tell you a secret? I am COMPLETELY SHAVED.” (Okay, maybe it’s in the delivery.)

Incidentally, it has two of the actors from EPISODES in it.


It’s kind of like Seinfeld in that no-one is even slightly likeable. But it’s also nothing like Seinfeld. Charlie Day could say anything and I would find it funny. Danny DeVito turns up in the second season.


I missed this when it was first on. Then Fox introduced me to it when we started dating, and it changed my life. No. Really. It did. I have friends who say ‘I watched five minutes, I didn’t get it’ and my answer is always to tackle them to the floor, hogtie them, and make them watch an entire episode. It’s one of the best shows ever made. I used to think that watching a show that’s been cancelled was a bit like reading a biography of some old historical figure – what’s the point when you know they died?  But then I laughed at this show so much that I started to cry a little bit, and I changed my mind.


I was disinclined to like this show, mostly as, um, no reason at all. But it’s fantastic! Mindy Kaling is brilliant. The Dr Castellano dude is amazing. Someone needs to give that girl a ten-movie romantic comedy deal. She can save the genre.


This show was just cancelled, which is a damn shame, because it was great. One of the actresses is called Lucy Punch. She’s English and was also in Woody Allen’s You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger, and she is extremely funny. If anyone wants to make a movie of my first two books, she is the person who needs to be in them. Anyway, find the episodes they managed to make and enjoy. Another great show that was cancelled after just six episodes – or is on hiatus or something  – is BENT. Which starred Amanda Peet, who is awesome, and a very tall handsome dude with serious eyebrows whose name I should google but am too lazy to. Worth finding if you can.

*I am never up for the mental challenge of The Wire. I KNOW. I’m SORRY.

** Shows I have trouble being in the mood for because of violence even though I love them: Homeland, Breaking Bad, The Sopranos. And probably The Wire.

On… Antigua

We’re almost at the end of a two-week break in Antigua. I wasn’t going to say too much about it because firstly, we weren’t totally sure we’d be able to go because of worky stuff, and secondly, who the heck wants to hear about someone else’s blissful sunshiney beachtime if you’re not there with them? I don’t. I suffer from severe vacation envy. (I know. I’m really not very emotionally mature.)

But then Fox and Errol and I were on the beach at dusk the other night, and it was so beautiful I wanted to share it with you guys.


Dance and point



last photo

We point, and dance, and stare, and swim, then point and dance and stare some more… And then he naps and we read. Best book of the holiday so far: The Paris Wife by Paula McLean. Best read in tandem with A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway. Beautiful and heartbreaking.

Fox Errol Antigua

PS Fox and Errol.

PPS One more Errol, in case you missed it, and one tiny last Errol because he is ace.