Social Networking Anxiety Disorder



I cannot access my Facebook account.  I am just getting some stupid message that my account is under maintenance and to check back in a few hours.


I’ll have started shaking by then.  Possibly even hallucinating.

Goodness KNOWS how many Scrabble games will be waiting for me when I am eventually allowed back in!

My Fairy Garden will be overrun with weeds!

HOW will people know what is happening in my life today????  There will be dozens all wanting to know just how many more words I’ve done on my thesis (not many as it happens because I’m too busy having an anxiety attack about not getting into Facebook).

And how am I supposed to write highly informative and intelligent comments on my friends’ walls??  I expect they are already sending out search parties for me…..

My dog can still get on there.   This isn’t right.  He’s crap at Scrabble and he has nothing of note to tell the world, other than how nice his balls taste.

I suppose there’s nothing else for it

I will just have to do my course work

Wanna buy some…..paper?


I blogged a few days ago about my paper fetish.  Well, it wasn’t exactly about that but I mentioned that I do love paper.  Paper and books and all things stationery.  I always have done.  I am an artistic soul and my love of paper comes from seeing that fresh, white, virgin space just waiting to be drawn on I think.  I love new books that haven’t been opened before and I love the feel of good quality paper.

Am I odd?

It would seem not.  Many of my friends share a love of books and not just because they like to read them.  There really is something quite satisfying about seeing books on a shelf.

I have a friend who loves to smell paper.  Well, magazines to be precise.  Although I suspect she gets off on the fumes really.  (Magazines are a  more ‘specialist’ addiction I think).  Paper, though, is so beautiful.

And what about this stationery thing?

I had it, my daughter has it, I have friends who have it – a walk round Staples or Office World is like a day out in Thorpe Park to me!  All those THINGS!  Sticky notes – staplers – pens – PAPER!!!

I know too many people who feel the same as me for this to be a minority fetish, it’s a BIG TIME addiction.  I can spend a fortune in Office World and never use half the stuff.

And as for PAPERCHASE – stationery junky heaven!!!!

I wonder if there are any self-help groups for this?

I suppose it only becomes a problem when you can’t see your desk for paper and small items of office equipment. Or your shelves are overflowing with envelopes.  Or you have too many pens (is there such a thing as too many pens?). Or maybe a big box of elastic bands you know you’ll never use.  Or Pritt Sticks.  Three of them…..


“My name is Flossie and I am a Stationery-aholic”

A New Language

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So I was reading the latest posts and saw one about customising fonts and CSS yesterday.

Ooh, I thought, I must read this, since blogging is going to be my new, all-consuming hobby after I have finished my studies in a week’s time!! I already intend to upgrade to premium so that I can use different fonts so this seemed like a VERY IMPORTANT BLOG for me to be reading.

However, rather than inspire me, all it has done is make me realise how stupid I am! Well, as far as web-based thingies are concerned, at least!!

I have heard of CSS – It’s something I’ve been aware of for a long time, just like HTML and all those other abbreviations. I just never bothered to find out what they stood for…..

Having looked up CSS I find it stands for ‘Cascading Style Sheets’

I’m still none the wiser…..

(I can’t even work out how to link to the post I’m talking about!)

Clearly, I need to do some reading. This is a new language for me. I may have to go to evening classes or something.

Or should I just learn how to speak Spanish?

Poo Mist


I am sorry to lower the tone of my blog but this really does have to be said

At work, we have a ‘mystery poo-er’.  Someone who uses our (unisex) loo and leaves the most terrible STINK there.   It’s been going on for some while but now it is beginning to upset us all.  We have air freshener in there and we have a window we can open but this is a particularly potent odour and even a squirt of Forest Glade doesn’t get rid of the smell.  If anything, it makes it worse.  A sort of mingling of fresh forest greenery and sewage – not pleasant at all.

For some while everyone was under suspicion.   It was difficult to pinpoint who it might be because there are a lot of people in our offices but, eventually, we narrowed it down to three suspects.  Today, we confirmed who the culprit was, by process of elimination (as it were).

We think this person ‘holds it in’ until he (yes, it’s a he) gets to work.  Possibly because his wife has threatened him with divorce if he continues to contaminate the house with his foul stench.  I know I would.

Up until now, everyone was nervous of being accused though.  One poor man was so worried that he would get the blame he has been holding it all in.  To the point he now can’t go.  A sort of ‘performance anxiety’ you might say.

Really though, it isn’t nice at all.  It seeps under the door, this ‘poo-mist’ and invades the corridor.

We need to take action.   I’m not sure what sort of action though.  How do you tactfully tell someone to go and poo elsewhere? 

It’s a bit like the body odour problem. We’ve had that in our office too, actually.  We tackled that head on by speaking to the offending, or should I say, offensive, person directly.  But poo – that’s different somehow.  You can’t really tell a person to defecate more fragrantly, can you.  We can’t even burn a jostick.  The sensors would set off the alarms!!!  

Although, maybe that WOULD work.  I mean, if you had to stop, mid flow, every time you sat on the loo and started to empty your bowels because the fire alarm went off, it might make you think twice about settling down in the work toilet. 

Actually, you know – I think I might be on to something!

A catastrophic start to the day

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Well, it’s not a very nice day out there (again).  More grey, miserable, rainy weather and I am starting the day tired because the local cats decided to have a sing-song outside the window around five this morning.  Obviously, the dog had to join in and the cats were even lucky enough to have the geese making a brief appearance, just to add depth to the sound…..grrrrr

On a positive note, whilst lying there thinking hateful thoughts about cats and wishing I was asleep, I suddenly remembered that I have a spare car key.  This may not seem very important to you but, since my central locking has packed up, I am unable to fill the car with petrol. I estimate I have one more day of fuel before I’m grounded….

So, when I got up, the first thing I did was check out the spare key.  “BING BONG” (that’s the noise my central locking makes) – it works!

So, what I thought was a MAJOR electrical fault turned out to be just a dead battery in the key.

Not that I over-dramatise or anything….

Paper vs Screen

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Call me old-fashioned but I can’t sit and read stuff on my screen.  Well, not academic stuff anyway.  I like to have that article in my hand, in paper form, to flick through and scribble on.  I am sitting here surrounded by paper at the moment, my phone is somewhere under it all and possibly the dog as well, it’s that much of a muddle, but it suits me.  I can sit here with my lap top in front of me, rummage around and read a paper, type something relevant and not have to keep switching screens or anything.

It costs a fortune in printer ink and paper and, yes, I know it isn’t environmentally friendly but I promise to take it all to the recycling place when I’ve finished.  It is just so much nicer.

I’m not a technophobe, far from it.  I certainly wouldn’t want to go back to the old days of having to HAND WRITE a dissertation!  Shudder!!!  It’s so simple now, a quick type, a spell check, a cut and paste and the track changes option (although I have to admit I find that a bit untidy).  And you can’t beat having the whole world at your finger tips to do your research.

So, the pros of modern technology are how fast it is to write up something HUGE and how easy it is to do research.

The cons are that my new router seems to be having an off day so I cannot connect to the internet for much of the time at the moment.

The pros of the old-fashioned paper method are you don’t have to rely on your router working and it’s nice to have lots of lovely paper all round you (or is that just me with the paper fetish?)

The cons of the old-fashioned method are that you have to tidy it all away when it’s dinner time

Like now

Change isn’t always good


Last night was one of those nights.  One of those nights where you go to bed tired but wake up in the small hours wide awake.    For me, lately, 1.50 a.m. seems to be the significant wake up time.

Two hours of half sleep and fidgeting and I finally drifted off again.  This is happening a lot these days.  I blame my hormones.  I am in the midst of the menopause.

Before it started, I must admit that I thought women who went on about how awful it was were a little melodramatic.  Come on, I thought, it’s just like PMT only more erratic, surely?  Well, I got THAT wrong, didn’t I?

The menopause can consume you if you let it.  I won’t let it but it has a damn good try every now and then.  Hot flushes that wake you hourly, the insomnia that seems to kick in at any time, usually when you HAVE to be up early or have a very long day ahead of you, the feeling that everyone around you hates you (yes, paranoia is a symptom of the menopause) and the general tiredness that can only be compared to the feeling of being drugged.  This is not an exhaustive list either, it is just the way I experience it.

I think the worst bit is that you have no way of knowing when it’s coming or how long it will last.  It isn’t present ALL the time thankfully but, when it happens, it’s a nightmare.  I am not alone in this experience, I know.

However, some research into the symptoms, and how they are experienced by women worldwide, shows some interesting differences.  In Japan, for example, the most reported symptoms are headache and pain in the shoulders.   They do not seem to experience the other symptom I have described above, yet these are prevalent in Western society.  A possible explanation is the diet, rich in soya protein.  Here, we eat very little soya protein, generally, and too much processed food.

In some cultures, there are no physical symptoms at all and there are various possible explanations for this, aside from the dietary aspect.  In some cultures, women are perceived as unclean when they are menstruating and the menopause provides a welcome sign that they are no longer outcasts at certain times of the month.   The menopause signals the end of the reproductive phase of a woman’s life and this can be a blessing in some places where childbirth carries a high risk of mortality or where it takes women away from being a useful member of the labour force.  This positive connotation is thought to affect the experience of the menopause.

Here in the west, we see the menopause differently.  It announces that we are getting old and that we are no longer able to compete with younger, fertile women.  It means sagging skin, osteoporosis, lack of sex drive.   Here, the social construct is against the menopause.   It provides one explanation of why women in more developed countries find it so difficult to cope with and, possibly, experience it in a less than positive way.

Exercise is also known to help with symptoms and it is probably fair to say that we are not as healthy as we should be here in the UK (I am using the UK  as an example purely because this is where I live but this is just as true of the USA and many other countries).   A woman living in a small tribal village, with no car and no job that involves sitting in front of a computer all day, is not going to have to worry about fitting in time to go to th gym – indeed, her daily activities probably amount to more exercise than I get in a month!

Obviously, I am generalising.  There will be women reading this who lead a very healthy lifestyle and who do not experience major problems with the menopause (or they have taken the cheat’s option, like me, and opted for HRT!).

Clearly, there are a lot of factors that influence how we experience this time in our life, I haven’t even touched on genetics, but I think it’s fair to say we CAN help ourselves to a certain extent. 

So why don’t I??