mammy’s bday / Dying by XTC

-it’s her bday now, so I’ll stop on this for the next year minus 2 weeks


about 2-3 years before she died

about 2-3 years before she died

Skylarking is a fantastic album by one of the influential bands of my youth. It has grown with me, as I’ve aged.

This included the first time I heard ‘Dying’ after my mammy had dropped dead. When it got to  ‘sweet jar on the sideboard and the multi-colour tea cosy,’ I lay on the floor sobbing. It popped up today. I don’t cry when I hear it anymore but I’ll always ever think of her.

‘Dying’ starts at 3:34. Youtube says it’s set for starting there but it ain’t a-workin’. Song before is a good song, mind you, but I’m talking about the one starting at 3:34. Sorry for BS.



Heart, Gram

Gram and my cousin once removed

Gram and my cousin once removed

Gram had a pacemaker for over 5 years and then had it removed.

When I was little (before the pacemaker), I mean a TODDLER, she trained me to NEVER take them but how to put nitroglycerin under her tongue when she couldn’t respond to me.

‘If Gram can’t wake up, put 1 of these under her tongue. If it doesn’t work right away, put another one.’ She spoke of herself in third person most of the time. ‘Grandma loves you.’

I also knew how to dial the phone as a toddler (rotary) and my numbers, so there were taped phone numbers on the phone by her bed (which she had installed so I could reach it!).

My mammy’s bday is 15 May and while normally I think of her often and many things remind me of her, I become hyper-sensitive around this time every year, hence the old photos. I sat down for a few minutes and flipped through an album.

I can still feel her saliva on my finger tips, it’s that kind of sensory detail from 40 years ago. I don’t think you get over losing your mammy (she passed 15 years ago), exactly. -if you had shitty parents and one person stood out to try to protect you, I think it’s normal to cling to her. I’m not alone, that’s for sure.


Mammy story: 1st plane ride

I’d gotten a job in Europe and since the QEII wasn’t sailing, it was an AEROPLANE! 20140505-110234.jpg-I was just shy of 23yo and had never been in a plane  That’s saying g’bye to The Duchess. Mammy* was at home with the vapours. Poor thing said I was to go ahead and see what it was like but to climb right back on a plane and return. She tried to talk me out of going for months. While not addled/elderly, she was rather shell shocked from losing virtually all her male peers in their small town to the war. She thought everything was still ‘all blowed up’ and drinking water was a commodity. She ended up being right about potable water but the place had been fixed up since the 40s, being it was 50 years later. Bless her.   * I’m in mammy-memory heavy rotation as her bday is coming up. She dropped dead 15 years ago and I usually get into a fixation of remembering Lois Stories.