Monthly Archives: April 2015

Dianne with Roz

Seriously, this could only happen to me!

We all have moments in our life where we wonder how exactly did this happen don’t we? Those mornings where weird things happen & we think “this could only happen to me”. Well this morning was one of those for me. Let me tell you more.

The sun has finally come out in West Cumbria so this morning so, thinking about the shorts coming out & the tights going away, I decided I’d better do the world a favour & sort out the hairs on my legs. Ladies you know where I’m coming from here don’t you? Gentlemen, fear not it is safe for you to read on.

I should explain at this point that my beautiful dog Roz is unfortunately in the early stages of dementia, this can be horrible at times but can also, as today, provide some moments of hilarity. One of the symptoms is that the umbilical cord between her & I has become even shorter. If I’m peeling veg at the kitchen sink she will fit her body between my legs and the cupboards. If I’m wandering round the house doing stuff she’s wandering around with me.

So back to this morning & I quite happily pop the Veet onto my legs (for my gentleman readers this is a hair removal cream) & take a note of the time to give it the required 5 minutes. At this point Roz follows her natural instincts & rubs herself against my legs resulting in more Veet on her than on me. With an image of a dog with bald spots I grab a pack of wipes & reach for her collar. Seeing the wipes & the look on my face Roz decides the umbilical cord can stretch further than she thought & heads off down the stairs with me in pursuit, still covered in Veet! Bearing in mind:

  1.  for a dog with the human equivalent age of 96 she can still move incredibly fast when she wants to
  2.  the curtains downstairs were open

I am incredibly proud to tell you the story ended happily. The dog, as you can see here:


has no bald patches, though she is still sulking because I used wipes on her & no neighbours saw anything they shouldn’t have.

What “it could only happen to me” moments have you had lately? I’d love to hear about them.



Policy or Personality?

As I watched the leaders debate last night I got to wondering whether we vote on the basis of policy or personality? Do we, in this age of reduced attention spans, take the time to investigate the parties policies or do we react to soundbites and our reaction to the leaders characters? Or do we not even do that but simply vote for whichever party our parents voted for?

I’ve been watching the political parties trying to “market” themselves to us in the lead up to the election with interest. The major parties spend a lot of money on marketing and communication advice so why are they failing to connect with us? Why are we turning to the smaller parties for a new voice? Are we tuning out from their policies or their personalities?

I’m giving away my age here but I grew up in the days of Margaret Thatcher, MIchael Foot and Neil Kinnock when there was a definite left and right to British politics. Although there are still ideological differences now the two main parties have undoubtedly both grown closer to the centre in order to appeal to the mass of the population and this has made it harder to see the space between them. Hard as they try to ignore it the fact that the major politicians tend to come from a similar background and area also doesn’t help.

Their communications experts have obviously told them to push their “key message” which is why we keep hearing David Cameron talking about the long-term economic plan & Ed Milliband talking about supporting the working man not big business. This constant pushing of their message goes against virtually everything in marketing nowadays. Modern marketing is much more about pull than push, much more about human connection and shared empathy. Are our potential Prime Ministers getting so caught up in their own message that they’re failing to see how potential voters are tuning out?

So the question I’m asking myself is: are we turning to the smaller parties not because we’re looking for something different in politics but because their leaders seem more human? In which case what matters most? Their policies or their personal likeability and trust factor?

So how do you decide? Is it policies or personality that you base your decision on? Or do you always follow the family tradition?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.