ALEXANDRA SHULMAN’S NOTEBOOK: Put on your silk pajamas and celebrate the days of the blob
Ok, now what? We are at Boxing Day, which is a great relief for those lucky enough not to have had their Christmas disturbed.
My family had held our breath in the hope that our gathering could take place. Finally, a third of our group had to give up. Sad, but not the disaster that struck some families whose plans were shattered by the rampages Omicron.
So in the spirit of joy, it’s time to celebrate the blob days, that gap between Christmas and New Years where very little is happening. When perfecting the art of doing nothing is the only achievement worth it.
These blob days are pretty wonderful. Warm and cozy, they demand self-indulgence and a narrowing of horizons (which, come to think of it, is reminiscent of the other “blob”, the Civil Service – except for the warm and cozy part) .
Instead of making any attempt to shake things up, blob days are made for delicious laziness.
After the mad rush to do it all before Christmas, the fact that you can’t do anything at all is a merciful release. The pressure is off. Which brings me to the important issue of pajamas.
Pajamas are great for wearing drops. You can pretty much get by with wearing them all day this week (I can’t be the only one who’s known to rush to local stores with a coat thrown over their pajamas).
It’s unclear exactly when pajamas – once considered, complete with a pipe and slippers, as old-fashioned grandfather’s garment – became the desirable item it is today. But I do know that in 2016, Dolce & Gabbana gave all the fashion press a pair of branded satin pajamas and, to my astonishment, several colleagues wore them to the front row of the parades in Milan. Not me, I hasten to add … even if it wasn’t the first time that I was late. I just didn’t realize that pajamas had reverted to their Hindi origins and morphed into daywear.
There are, of course, pajamas and pajamas, and a pair of grubby plaid viyella’s are not at all the same as those in pristine cotton or sumptuous silk, both of which are wasted on sleeping.
And wearing pajamas this week isn’t the same as during the lockdown when it was an admission of defeat – a measure of our trapping.
No. Pajamas during blob days are blissful personal care. Preferably accompanied by a good book and a movie in the afternoon.
Pretty creatures that do ugly things
Speaking of afternoon movies, I watched Dr. Zhivago the other day for the first time since I was eight – and I really couldn’t remember a thing.
At first, we see Yuri Zhivago – the young doctor played by Omar Sharif with chocolate eyes – examining specimens using his microscope.
At first we see Yuri Zhivago – the young doctor played by Omar Sharif with chocolate eyes – examining specimens through his microscope.
His superior approaches in a white coat suggest he has the brains to undertake medical research. “You will find that pretty creatures do ugly things to people,” says her mentor.
A message that accurately describes the tiny particles that are currently wreaking havoc in the world.
The great mystery of the Covid results
It’s great news that Omicron may cause less severe disease than previous Covid strains, but it would be even better if we knew if we had it.
Of the many people I know who have contracted Covid in the past two weeks, none know what blood pressure they have. Lateral flow tests at home obviously tell us nothing more than a positive or negative result, but neither do more substantial PCRs. Only something like a third of the tests are reviewed by the NHS to determine variations.
While I don’t recommend the Covid one-upmanship – “my strain is better than yours” – if I get it, I’d like to know.
My freedom trumps Princess £ 550million
The settlement of Princess Haya’s £ 554million divorce seems staggering, but some might argue that her ex-husband, the ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum, got off lightly.
Princess Haya’s £ 554million divorce settlement looks extraordinary, but some might say her ex-husband, ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum got away with it
His legal team was originally looking for £ 1.4bn, almost three times that amount. In terms of the sheikh’s total wealth, the payout could be considered relatively small.
He was, after all, a man the princess had fled from and who was accused of being involved in the kidnapping of two of her daughters.
Princess Haya might have gotten the biggest divorce settlement ever granted by UK courts, but I would trade the many jewelry, high fashion dresses, private jets and racehorses so as not to demand hundreds of millions of pounds. sterling for my safety and that of my children – especially if my greatest fear was my ex-husband.
The new way to furnish your home
No one could accuse me of not having done any research for this column during the holiday season.
In the spirit of further investigation, I counted 2,148 pounds in our house, plus or minus a few. And that was after we took a big cut in Oxfam earlier this month.
After Christmas, the number swelled. What to do with them all? We love our books. They aren’t just something you read and throw away – they become an indelible part of our lives.
In the spirit of a thorough investigation, I counted 2,148 pounds in our house, more or less
The familiar thorns on the shelf are a sign of home. Many of these books have accompanied me from my childhood to my first apartment in 1985 and beyond. But we clearly ran out of space – even to build more shelves.
If I count the cookbooks, I can add 44 more. Currently, there are 160 pounds in a pile in front of our bed. There are more piled up near the fireplace. You can sit on it.
It’s gotten to the point where books don’t furnish the rooms here anymore – it’s the furniture.
Why is “vacation” such a dirty word now?
When did the joyless term “annual leave” replace the much more rewarding word “vacation”?
Ironically, while all HR talk is about promoting a better work-life balance, the enjoyable notion of taking a vacation seems to have been banned.