Wednesday, February 13, 2008


I watched Supersize v Superskinny last night and having seen it a couple of times previously, I have to conclude that the people who are majorly overweight are much nicer than those who are really skinny. Maybe it’s just that they are less self absorbed. I’m not trying to give anyone a complex and I’m also not trying to say “ooh aren’t all overweight people funny and nice”. I have just found that the people who were overweight were less defensive and generally more friendly, which is maybe surprising given that they probably wanted to gnaw the leg off the sofa.

I am still reading Brideshead Revisited and yesterday I read something in it that until about 6 months ago I had never heard of:

“Does your family always talk about religion all the time?”
“Not all the time. It’s a subject that just comes up naturally, doesn’t it?”
“Does it? It never has with me before”
“Then perhaps you are an agnostic. I’ll pray for you.”
“That’s very kind of you”
“I can’t spare you a whole rosary you know. Just a decade. I’ve got such a long list of people. I take them in order and they get a decade once a week.”
“I’m sure it’s more than I deserve”
“Oh, I’ve got some harder cases than you. Lloyd George and the Kaiser and Olive Banks”
“Who is she?”
“She was bunked from the convent last term. I don’t quite no what for. Reverend Mother found something she’d been writing. D’you know, if you weren’t an agnostic, I should ask you for five shillings to buy a black god-daughter.”
“Nothing will surprise me about your religion”
“It’s a new thing a missionary priest started last term. You send five bob to some nuns in Africa and they christen a baby and name her after you. I’ve got six black Cordelias. Isn’t it lovely?”

Er... so, with all its kind of racist ovetones, it's the “black baby box”. G was talking about this a few months ago and I slightly incredulously asked what it was. Basically it seems that the Catholic church used to (I know very little about the Catholic church, but I assume no longer does) get school children to put money (maybe a few pence) in the ‘black baby box’ and then it would be sent to Africa to do – I’m not really sure what specifically, but apparently it would be noted if you didn’t put money in (incidentally I’m sure it wasn’t to get babies named after you as in the quote above). Is it just me who had never heard of this very strange Catholic act of charity??

Anyway, on other matters, yesterday I helped C to prepare for an interview this morning. We went through each of her answers and I gave her some advice on how she could make them a bit more high level and maybe put herself across a bit better. Given that we don’t actually want her to leave, I’m not really sure why I am willing to help her prepare, but I guess it seems a bit mean not to do so. So fingers crossed that she doesn’t get it...


Spudgy said...

Jez there's 3 girls in the office here that are slim and they are usually talking about wanting to get into size smaller jeans. Maybe I'm just a bit older and wiser but I can't be bothered wasting time obsessing over something like that.

titration said...

O my word this is provocative! Crazy history. That is a discussion prompting quote to be sure!

Random Reflections said...

spudgy - absolutely. There are are much more important things in life than worrying about the size of your jeans.

titration - I was stunned when G told me about it but had we not had that conversation I would have thought it was something that had been made up for the book. Utterly bizarre, but I imagine was thought to be very virtuous at the time.