Tag Archives: shampoo

Romantic time and why not to shower together

My friend, sweetly, refers to sex as ‘romantic time’. Which, after I had referred her to a therapist to deal with her repression issues, meant I was thinking about romance. ‘I don’t have time for romance,’ I told her later that day. She looked at me blankly, possibly because we had been discussing the humorous possibilities implicit in the opening of George W Bush’s library.

‘I don’t mean I don’t have time for romance like I don’t have time for whining children, or people who act like it’s no big deal when you break their shoe pretending to be a person from the past who has never seen a shoe, and is examining it closely, but then go about telling everyone that Lucy is a terrible actress and prolific shoe-breaker. I mean I geuninely, literally do not have time for romance.’ My friend, now a little more on board, nodded slowly. ‘I agree,’ She replied. ‘Being romantic is hard. But I think you can fit it in.’

‘Fit it in?’ I spluttered in horror, forcing myself to ignore the blindingly funny double-entendre and carry on with the conversation like a grown-up. ‘I just don’t have the space. Honestly, between cleaning my teeth, and dressing myself, and putting things away, and washing…’

‘Well,’ My friend responded sagely. ‘You just have to multi-task. Take a shower together, for instance.’

‘Two people in a shower is the worst idea ever,’ I responded staunchly. ‘For a start, once person is always out of the water, and therefore freezing. For seconds, I never get to wash my hair properly, because the other person complains about shampoo being flicked into their eyes (I really value clean hair, and believe that flipping one’s head upside down and pouring shampoo onto the underside of your head will help ensure the shampoo is able to penetrate every strand). Thirdly, there just is no way my breasts are that dirty. What about my armpits? Next time I share a shower with someone I’m going to go in with both my arms raised above my head. That should ensure I am properly washed.’

My friend stared at me. ‘Yes,’ She replied finally. ‘That should certainly lead to some excellent romantic time.’

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No need to be naked

This morning, I had a meeting with Nike. Initially, I misread the email, so thought the meeting was from 8.30-10pm. i had been told I could bring a guest, and, unable to find anyone decent who wanted to be awake at such a hideously early hour, I invited my Mother.

As it turns out, it was less of a ‘meeting’, and more of a ‘Train to Run’ class, with an ‘Nike Master Trainer’. This was annoying for several reasons, the first being that I had to stop laughing at my Mother for turning up in running kit.

The class was a Women’s only training group.

I personally can think of few more competitive, judgemental situations a person can put themselves in. Luckily, I had brought my Mother. We had a perfectly splendid time, falling over in the balance drills, yelling in the strength portion, laughing while we failed to understand the partner training bit.

By the end of the hour, we had achieved the perfect ‘instantaneous-move-from-lounging-to-doing-the-proper-exercise-because-the-coach-was-approaching’ manoeuvre, and were feeling tremendously proud of ourselves.

‘Quick,’ I whispered to my Mother. ‘There’s going to be a rush on the showers.’ In a burst of speed unseen in the actual running class, we dashed from the studio to the changing rooms.

I grabbed my towel, my Mother grabbed someone else’s washbag, and we hopped into the showers. ‘This is not my washbag,’ My Mother called out to me. ‘I know,’ I replied, slathering myself with the fancy free shampoo attached to the wall. ‘I thought you were upgrading.’ Apparently she was not, so she hopped back out of the shower and returned with her own toiletries. (I personally feel that everyone uses far too many toiletries. There is only one thing you need in a shower. Shampoo. It is the all-purpose washer. Think of it as the ketchup of washing. It goes on everything).

Due to my Mother’s unusual approach to other people’s possessions, I had plenty of time, bored, fully-dressed, in the female changing room. Here are my observations:

1. No-one is able to look elegant when trying to remove their knickers whilst holding a towel around their waist. It is the most ungainly and attention-drawing position of all poses, despite the forced nonchalance of the performer’s face.

2. There are women who, if I looked like them naked, I would never ever bother to clothe myself, but instead occasionally, Anna Karenina like, drape the odd fur across my exquisite body if I felt chilly, yet are bizarrely shy in public changing rooms. (Naturally, as they hid in the corners and tried to change without an ounce of skin being on show, I sought to put them at ease by staring at them and smiling broadly).

3. I am all for body-confidence. However, there simply is no need to lovingly blow-dry one’s hair stark naked. it is almost impossible for the women who are sharing your mirror to apply their eye-liner in a straight line.

4. Not enough women, despite my continued, bullying efforts, are wearing matching underwear. I am considering spot checks on the tube in the morning. I am pretty sure Boris will back me.

5. My Mother takes forever to get showered and dressed. I am not sure if this is because she is tall, or because she is old. Either way, I had very much outstayed my ‘casual observer’ position by the time we left the changing room. I hope you all enjoy these insights, because I’m not sure I’ll be in a position to make any more anytime soon.


Gil took us through drills from Nike Training Club’s new running specific classes. These specialised drills will be available for all runners free through the Nike Training Club app and Live classes around the UK –

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I give all the good advice

Possibly my favourite thing is when people ask me for advice. It happened to me yesterday.

‘I am going to the IMAX cinema for the first time,’ My friend texted me. ‘I am terribly excited. What shall I wear?’ ‘It’s sauna rules,’ I quickly texted back. ‘Towel only’.

This, you will be surprised to hear,  is not even the best piece of advice I have ever given. At the risk of showing off, I will now share some of my pearls of wisdom:

1. ‘I can’t come,’ My friend said sadly. ‘I need to do some training, and I won’t have time to shower and change before dinner. I’m so sorry.’ ‘Do not panic,’ I replied cheerfully. ‘Sweat is self-cleansing.

There is no need to shower. It’s like those people who follow Brad Pitt to Tibet and don’t wash their hair and then they come home and everyone’s so jealous because their hair is so clean. Despite no shampoo.

2. ‘I am so poor  this month I will be subsisting entirely off condiments,’ A former housemate told me. ‘Nonsense,’ I replied briskly. ‘You simply need to stop throwing your money away on things that you can easily get for free.’ My housemate looked at me, perplexed. ‘As in,’ I explained kindly. ‘There is absolutely no need to pay for ketchup, or salt, or napkins- all of which can be taken freely from MacDonalds.

Need a fork? Head to Waitrose- they have stacks of them by their salad aisle. Forgo expensive bottled water and instead, when out and thirsty, pop into the nearest pub. They’ll always give you a glass of tap water if you’re feeling a bit dry.’ If I remember correctly, my housemate was, in fact, so overwhelmed with this excellent advice, that she had to leave the room to contain herself.

3. Often people call me up, complaining about how tired they are. (It is possible I am the one calling them, and it’s 2.30am, but I can’t get bogged down in minor details). ‘There is no need to be tired,’ I explain cheerfully. ‘Whenever you feel tired, have a little nap. If you are in private, have a long sleep. Publicly, retire to the toilet and nap there for 20mins or so. You will notice that toilets have an inbuilt pillow in the toilet roll.

Impress upon your boss how keen you are to take advantage of every opportunity.

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My housemates are idiots (and I’ve run out of shampoo)

I have run out of shampoo. I usually steal shampoo from my Mother’s house when I go over to visit, but the last time I was there my hands were full of stolen wine, and I forgot. So, this week, I have been experimenting. Not with different types of shampoo, but with the varying levels of generosity and attention to detail of my two housemates.

The shower room (which, handily, is separate from the toilet) is a very useful source of information. In fact, I might go so far as to say it has yielded more personal data to me than the time when my housemates were out, and I went for a quick rifle through their stuff. Let me quickly describe our shower room. It has a mirror which opens to reveal 3 shelves (of which we each own one). We have put in a freestanding set of drawers (there are 4, but the bottom one holds bathroom cleaning products), and along the base of the bath (at the opposite end to the shower-head), are three further baskets.

‘It is quite impossible that we need this much storage in the shower’, I told my little sister when we bought it. ‘No-one can possibly possess so many toothbrushes.’

I was right about that, although we currently have 5 toothbrushes in the toothbrush mug (former houseguests- please feel free to re-claim your possessions. Though not those awesome theatre binoculars, I use those to make myself feel like a giant when I read articles).

What I had failed to consider was the amount of cleaning product my housemate and little sister would think it was appropriate to possess.

The bath baskets are open, so every single time anyone accidentally wanders into the shower room looking for the loo, they can instantly see the profligate and excessive spending habits of my housemates.

My own basket, it is true, looks particularly scarce this week, its facewash and razor in the midst of an existential crisis about their role in the grand scheme of things as they lie in the black expanse on basket. But even with the reassuring presence of their shampoo friend, my basket remains a Zen-like zone of simplicity, when compared to the brilliantly coloured, stuffed baskets of my housemates.

This week, I have been forced to examine their contents more closely than usual (obviously I don’t want to start washing my hair with exfoliating wash or leave-in colour-protect conditioner), and I have come to the conclusion that my housemates are mugs. Which is brilliant, because it means I can happily continue to ‘borrow’ shampoo from them both, in the full knowledge that they are just dying to return to Boots and give more of their money to Herbal Essences.

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In which it is oddly dark

It’s very dark in my room, which is unusual because I rarely bother to close the shutters on my Velux window. (There are several reasons for this. Firstly, I am terribly lazy. Secondly, I like to know as soon as I wake up what the weather is like. It’s the closest I’ve ever come to being a farmer. Once when I was a child I was taken to stay on a farm, but I had a harrowing experience egg-collecting and asked to never return).

It takes me a few seconds to realise that my stolen-from-an-airplane eye mask is still in place. This is also unusual, because I am not a particularly still sleeper. (Most mornings I wake up with my sheet on the floor, stroking the pleasant softness of my mattress protector, my face wedged between my pillow and my wall. I was once asked to babysit for my baby cousin, and I noticed that she slept in an identical fashion.

I was reassured until my Aunt pointed out that babies sleep like this because it reminds them of the safety of the womb. I don’t want my Mother to get ideas above her station). I removed my eye mask and surveyed my room. (I would like to quickly clarify that I didn’t spend the whole night creepily watching my baby cousin sleep. I just popped in every hour or so. They keep changing the advice on cot death prevention, so this just seemed easiest).

It seems it is dark in my room because it is 5 am. I am not quite sure what to do. I sit up and think about how productive I’m going to be today. I’ve just been given 5 extra hours! I could re-organise my wardrobe! (I think my cleaner is doing this unasked though, because last week she told me I had ‘too many knickers’ and explained that she had ‘divided’ them. I’m still not sure what criteria she used for this separation, or where most of my knickers are). I could learn the phonetic alphabet! (My little sister infuriatingly already knows this, and never misses an opportunity to tell me so. I personally prefer to book restaurants telling people, ‘it’s K, as in knife’. My dream is to marry a chap whose surname begins with P, so I can say, ‘it’s P, as in pharmacy’).

I couldn’t really think of many other things that would take a whole 5 hours to do, so I popped to the loo. (I’m sure some people would realise here that they could organise their bathroom, but I only have one thing in my shower- shampoo. It’s all-purpose. Don’t let the toiletries industry dupe you). I returned to my bedroom to think of more chores I could complete before the rest of the world woke up. I sent a few texts to people asking if they were awake. They did not reply. I was bored. I could have read my book, but it was very dark in my room. (My bedside light is broken, I have to get out of bed to turn on the overhead light). I closed my eyes briefly to concentrate on the very best use of my extra hours. It came to me almost instantly, and I quickly wedged my face between my pillow and my wall.

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