Date: May 28th, 2013 11:03:05 am - Subscribe
Mood: pissed off
Janey Godley's Blog: comedian, comedy, life, stand-up comedy, blog, Scottish, Scotland, twitter, empty nest, housework, Star Trek, daughter, motherhood, independence, therapy, Glasgow, funny, humour, Canada, tour, life,

"MUM, can you get my washing out of the machine and hang it up?" my daughter Ashley asked at the weekend. She is 27 years old and still lives at home as a self employed comic and writer. It's good fun.

My husband and I had made all sorts of plans for our 50s. We love travelling. Toronto, the Netherlands and Los Angeles are just some of the destinations we have visited in the past with my comedy act, but we were going to do so much more.

These plans have been scuppered, as Ashley doesn't like her dad going with me. He is her full-time father and she is not about to let that go.

Underneath her pretend adult facade is a wee girl who likes having her daddy around.

I inevitably end up going on tour alone, husband stays at home and Ashley commandeers all his attention.

Ashley lives a charmed existence - one that requires no real decision- making, except which shoes to wear or what kind of shellfish to have for tea.

I am not underestimating her abilities or work ethic.

If only I had had an easy life when I was 27 years old.

My mother died when I was 21 and I accepted her death and assumed I didn't need a mammy anymore. In my head, I was all the woman I was ever going to be. How wrong I was, and still am. I was just a child playing at being an adult.

I was already six years married at 27 years old. I was a mother, managed a bar and a home. I was just a kid, yet I dealt with wee drunk Glaswegians who spent ages trying to figure out if you liked King Billy or the Pope.

Sometimes they challenged you to a boxing match or sex - it depended on the day, really. You learned skills you never knew you had, like speaking Spanish to confuse them or being handy with a bleach spray.

Life in the bar was hard work, especially in Glasgow's tough East End. I am sure Ashley would have coped admirably, though I am glad she didn't have to go through such experiences.

We left the bar when she was eight, and by then she had seen enough scary stuff to ensure a few years in therapy when she reaches her thirties.

Her CV is mainly performing in comedy. She had a "one-woman" show at the age of 13 on the Edinburgh Fringe and went on to help run a comedy club in Glasgow at the age of 15.

We both had very different job experiences in our youth. I did work she would hate and she entered a career that I would never have dared to step into or had the confidence to carry off at that age.

But, despite her admirable self-assurance, she is not leaving home.

I encourage her to stay within my wee nest. Having a child at home, despite her full formed adulthood, means I get to be a mother for all time, no date-expiration on my parenting skills.

I am needed, I am wanted and my child is nurtured and loved. Empty-nest syndrome will not be added to the litany of my mid-life crisis problems.

I still check on her as she sleeps, I ensure she has her breakfast and I grump contentedly as I fold up her freshly laundered clothes and lay them on her bed.

I suppose I will have to adjust quickly when she starts bringing guys over to stay. Maybe that will be the time when her bags are packed and she learns how to pay a phone bill.

Then husband and I will finally get jiggy on the sofa at teatime, run naked through the house and play Jackson Browne on full blast without the Iphone plug being ripped out of the wall.

I am looking forward to that golden age, but who will show me how to download music without crashing the PC, cook bread that doesn't taste like a raffia mat or apply eye-shadow that won't make me look like a victim of domestic abuse?

I suppose I have to conclude that there are skills I still need to learn - and letting go of my child is only one of them.

Maybe next year? Meanwhile her Star Trek fanaticism drives me nuts.

I AM sick to death of Star Trek episodes. My husband and Ashley, love everything sci-fi and I grit my teeth through every show.

To me, every episode has the same format.

Each week, the crew let some sexually alluring woman on to the ship and the visitor turns everyone into a tree and then they finally expose her as a Cardassian death lord and, by the end of the show, they all agree to never let that happen again. Of course, the next week they invite yet another scantily clad woman aboard!

Ashley screamed: "Mum, there has never been an episode where people get turned into a tree! I checked, so shut up!"

To make matters worse, Ashley wants to buy her dad the entire box set of Star Trek: Voyager.

I am going to go live under the sea.

So thanks for reading, if you want follow me on twitter @JaneyGodley for updates.

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Abuse and Threats Online
Date: May 2nd, 2013 1:12:47 pm - Subscribe
Mood: perturbed
Janey Godley's Blog: comedian, comedy, life, stand-up comedy, blog, Scottish, Scotland, twitter, abuse, threaten, online, Stephen House, Susan Calman, Reggie Hunter, death threats, sectarianism, comedy, independence, facebook, twitter, criticism,

Seems to be a theme this week of attacking comedians, what with Scottish comic Susan Calman getting bullied for her non- opinion on Independence and Reggie Hunter getting booted for being himself at a corporate gig- the papers raged on with accusations of 'fees to be returned' in Reggie's case and 'Bullying from the Nats' in Susan's case.

Either way it was a bad week for comedy, especially as the Scotsman and various other newspapers emblazoned their headline "death threats for comedian" never since Salman Rushdie have we seen adverse reaction to an art form. Though I still don't know who threatened death to Susan as it hasn't in itself been publicised (maybe due to a police investigation) and can only imagine the horror that it rang- having been threatened online two years ago myself for talking about Old Firm's scary stuff.

I took screen shots and reported the website and death threaten-ers to the police and made an official complaint. So what is this special new Scottish force Police Scotland doing about this onslaught of abuse towards female comics?

In my case they took all the details and assured me to watch out for more abuse, but they basically told me not to be contentious on Twitter....I explained "I am a comedian, I am allowed to make jokes and contentious remarks without being threatened by death" But I was happy I reported it and made sure the cops were aware of the people who being abusive for future reference.

So many politicians came out to support Susan and quite rightly so, but it's just lip service....we want to be protected for our freedom of speech without being threatened by death....what's next a Scolds Bridle for 'cheeky women'?

I would like a Police Scotland and Chief Constable Stephen House to have a full investigation into the death threats given to comedians and am appalled that Susan had to turn to a newspaper to highlight this issue as clearly the cops are so far doing nothing.

Having been a victim of online bullying and name calling, and threats of 'getting my house burnt down' I know how this feels and the police did reassure me they would help me, but by telling me 'not to be contentious' on twitter? what the hell is that about? I will quite happily face criticism and tell me you hate my comedy, explain how much you think am a fat ugly woman...fair play...but to THREATEN ME WITH DEATH? It's not on.

On a side issue I speak about this situation in my recent show, how famous people get the press to highlight their online abuse and how the cops will kick doors in at 6am if some Olympiad is abused, but if you are wee Betty McDade from a housing scheme and someone is threatening you on are on your own. I know this to be true as some of my Facebook followers have testified to such....there shouldn't be a law for one and separate law for others. This isn't Victorian times, where the Middle classes are protected and the lower classes are left to defend themselves. All online abuse should be treated seriously, whether you are an Olympic swimmer, a comedian or someone who is living on benefits trying to use social networking sites.

I want the death threats to stop and the only way they will stop is if we constantly report them, screen shot the tweets and facebook threats and remember there is always a way to trace them. Everything every written on the web can be traced. Stay safe and lets all work together to stop death threats online.

So thanks for reading, if you want follow me on twitter @JaneyGodley for updates.

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Life sucks sometimes...
Date: Apr 16th, 2013 1:41:20 pm - Subscribe
Mood: amorous
Janey Godley's Blog: comedian, comedy, life, stand-up comedy, blog, Scottish, Scotland, twitter, Shatner, marathon, Boston, London, Thatcher, Bombs, podcast,

So there I was finally on a train to London with my happy daughter Ashley. We travel well together, she has tour managed me in Australia and NZ so she knows when to shut up and when to make me tea. We sat in the first class bit of the Virgin train, listening to music and then I checked my twitter feed to find out Thatcher had died and I announce it loudly to the elderly people surrounding us as they don't have twitter and might want to know, plus I like being a death announcer.

"That's Thatcher dead!" I said as everyone stared at me.

An elderly man wearing a cardigan with elbow patched leaned over and said "What age was she?" as if there was a cut off point for all old people. "I don't know" I answered and went back to reading the words 'DING DONG' 'miners' 'witch' 'Pinochet' repeatedly on Twitter. Not for me, I will never celebrate anyone's death, and to be honest if the whole country hated her so much why do we have a Tory in power now?

So me and Ashley finally get into London and headed straight to Groucho club, as we had a meeting and were just desperate to get off the train.

London is my favourite city of all time, I love the mad hustle and bustle. In Soho there are just people screaming into their phones and pushing the homeless to the kerb as they have 'important business', I don't like those people to be honest. The city itself I adore.

Me and Ashley got to spend some quality time with mates, try on each other's make up, flick through someone else's DVD collection and eat someone else's food...awesome stuff.

On the Saturday night after a heap of meetings, parties and a few wee gins, I finally fell into bed at 1am.

I was awakened at 4am with Ashley bursting in my door, I thought the flat was on fire but no it was merely the news that William Shatner (her ALL TIME HERO) had finally tweeted her. Many listeners of our podcast (Janey Godley's Podcast) knew how much Ashley loves the man and have been repeatedly tweeting the Star Man for ages and finally he got in touch. Not only did he get in touch he chatted for ages with her (and me, I always get in on the act) and Ashley had to scream into a cushion as my mate Monica was fast asleep and it would be rude to wake her up at 4am with Shatner news! Can you believe he said he listened to our podcast and LOVED IT!

Suffice to say Ashley got a birthday wish from the great man himself and is still on cloud nine....

So back to Glasgow...but not without a drunk Glaswegian causing that much offence to the surrounding passengers on the train, he was taken off at Wigan by the cops. I had taken video footage and tweeted about him as everyone knows how much I like a good train fight on twitter....anyway upshot is, the cops have the video and shouty stupid man had to catch another train and am now a witness.

Life is ok, am sick to my stomach though as last night my beloved Boston was bombed during a marathon. I love Boston, me and my wee pal Shirley were there last year when I took part in their comedy festival, it was shocking to watch. People are utter bastards to bomb any city...but you know what there are good people in the world and we have to focus on that as well.

Here's hoping there is peace in the world.

So thanks for reading, if you want follow me on twitter @JaneyGodley for updates.

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Why do I panic about RockNess Festival?
Date: Mar 19th, 2013 3:47:16 pm - Subscribe
Mood: hollow
Janey Godley's Blog: comedian, comedy, life, stand-up comedy, blog, Scottish, Scotland, twitter, anti social, panic, Rockness, Festival, camping, Ashley Storrie, flooding, Kevin Costner, Glastonbury, rain, weather,

Me and my stand up comedy daughter Ashley Storrie are doing the comedy stage at RockNess, despite the press releases mistakenly calling her Ashley Godley and me Janey Godle....yes I know sounds like 'coddle', ok typos worried.

Glastonbury was amazing when I performed there a few times, but the flooding and extreme cold and the day Ashley jumped into a bloated stream to save someone, hasn't quite left me. I am scared of biblical flooding, especially when we are far from home and the nearest thing surviving better than you is a gnarly cow-makes me feel jittery. We used a rowing boat to get to the comedy tent, it was that deep under water, where is Kevin Costner when you need him?

Now I know RockNess isn't as isolated than Glastonbury and it may or may not have better facilities for artists, I don't know yet. Am now planning my 3 day stay the way some people get ready for an apocalyptic survival situation.

"We must have water tablets, heat packs, freezer pack, dried apricots, solar panels, sausages and packs of bacon" I explain shrilly to Ashley who is questioning my sudden desire for survival food and weird shit pork based products.

"Mum, we don't need all those fancy perishables, just some cans of tuna, dried pasta and teabags for the 67 pints of tea you down daily" she added. I stared at her. Ashley is so excited about Rockness, in her head there are sexy men, sunshine, nights round a camp fire, days filled with camping camaraderie and hours spent making daisy chain in the long grass as music fills our ears.

I see a nuclear wipe out and cholera.

Ashley looked at my food packing list.

"Are you having a Nigella type dinner party, with a Campari fountain, some home baked cheese quiche and sorbet served on fresh mint leaves? No, mum you will eating beans from a can and sitting near a tent in the rain" she laughed at me.

Am now thinking of getting a pop up tent with a big gazebo over that, some waterproof curtains round the gazebo, a gas fire, a fitted carpet, a three piece suite, some Egyptian cotton sheets a few occasional tables and a full cooker and microwave....basically I want a bungalow in a campsite. I am a twat.

Ashley is horrified at my panicking and my planning for Armageddon and not a happy three day camping trip with performing in between. I suppose I have to shut up and just accept it will rain, I will get close to a beetle or worm, I will get cold, I will want to kill people who talk too loud when I am trying to sleep, I will cry and want to go such a feeble minded shit bag.

So if you are going to RockNess and you have a luxury campervan and you will parked near the comedy tent where we are...can I be your best pal?

So thanks for reading, if you want follow me on twitter @JaneyGodley for updates.

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You are either out or you are in
Date: Mar 15th, 2013 3:14:08 pm - Subscribe
Janey Godley's Blog: comedian, comedy, life, stand-up comedy, blog, Scottish, Scotland, twitter, anti social, Comedy, London, TV, 1960s, 1970s, society, abuse, crime, Glasgow’s, East End,

I was in a supermarket in London last month.

I watched three young children, around five or six years old, sliding up and down the store squealing and pulling stuff off the shelves. They were like chattering, screaming meerkats on a hunt through the Kalahari Desert.

I looked for the parents and spotted three women chatting to two men. Every now and then, the kids would huddle round them and then bound off screaming again. The parents were pushing those extremely expensive three wheeled prams and feeding organic seaweed sheets to a baby who was spitting it all back out. One child had one of those wooden bikes with no pedals, let's be honest pedalling is SOoooo last year.

That wee munchkin was crashing into giant displays of organic cereal. One child ran up and kicked it's mum right on the shin, she merely rubbed her leg and limped off.

It made me recall childhood shopping trips with my mammy in Shettleston. She would frequent the King-Co shop, the nearest thing we got to a supermarket in Glasgow’s East End. It contained about seven aisles of food, a few shelves containing bleach, carbolic soap and some household goods, with maybe four till points. There was a cold meat counter and usually two women in men's socks wearing slippers, pushing a steamie pram full of washing tied in a tight bundle.

Before we entered the glass doors, my mammy would grab me by the neck of my damp duffel coat and read me the riot act: “If you touch anything, I will stamp on your neck”

I would walk the cool aisles of that store, scared to even look at stuff. If my mammy caught me making eye contact with the ice-cream freezer, she would hiss: “Don’t even think about it!” The rest of the shopping trip would be spent with me staring at the ground.

Then we would waddle down the road, struggling with our shopping, a string vegetable bag full of papery onions scratching my legs and plastic bags full of cans cracking my knees. Once we got home, she would take the bags off me.

“Go out and play!” she would yell. “Take your skate with you!”

Rain or shine, we all went out to play, even if it was with just one broken roller-skate tied to the ankle with a discarded brown nylon our mammy could no longer wear. That was how I spent my long summer holidays. You weren't allowed back in for ages or your mammy would shout "you are either out or you are in bastard face" It was illegal back in the 60s to open and shut a door too many times (obviously a joke).

I know I must be getting older, now that I start to tut at other mothers’ parenting skills.

Today’s kids even answer their mammy back! I don’t know anyone who was born in the 1960s who would have dared to mouth off at their mammy. We didn't come from mothers who tolerated a kick to their shins. I would still be in a coma ward to this day if I had.

I know better than most people that the old days weren’t as good as we think. I know there was a lot of poverty, abuse, robbery and murder, but I still believe that kids didn’t dare disrespect their parents the way they do in today’s society.

Then again, in our day we didn’t have shedloads of TV shows that explained how to make your child behave. We had The Golden Shot and The Avengers: two things my mammy was already good at. She could fire a sling-back shoe like a warrior and – trust me – she could avenge like no one I knew.

Ah …the good old days.

So thanks for reading, if you want follow me on twitter @JaneyGodley for updates.

Comments: (1)

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