CHRISTMAS! YAAAAAAH! CHRISTMAS! No, wait, I’m a Christian now, I have to go all holy and worshipful and transcendent and whatever. THIS IS HARD WHEN THE CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS HAVE BEEN UP FOR WEEKS AND EVERY SHOP WINDOW IS TELLING YOU HERE IS WHERE YOU WILL FIND THE PERFECT PRESENTS FOR THE SIX HUNDRED AND FORTY-SIX PEOPLE ON YOUR CHRISTMAS LIST* AND FURTHERMORE HERE’S A LITTLE SOMETHING FOR YOU AS WELL.**
I’ve had a hard weekend*** of alternately clicking on yet another web site and weeping in a desperate and abandoned manner. But I now have several half-reasonable presents for my hideous and abominable husband.† After twenty-two years I still haven’t adjusted to being married to someone who not only is FRELLING IMPOSSIBLE to buy gifts for—and he’s getting worse as he gets older—BUT WHOSE BIRTHDAY IS TEN FRIGGLEWHACKING DAYS BEFORE CHRISTMAS. This really should not be allowed. If you’re going to be hard to buy stuff for, have the decency to be born in the summer. Give your nearest and dearest a dingdoramping break.
Now the presents had just better frelling arrive and none of this Out of Stock nonsense. Or I’ll revert to the desperate and abandoned weeping.
* * *
* Note: they’re lying.
** A nice little snort of pure white powder. Finest customer service. It may kill you when your heart explodes but you’ll die really happy. And you won’t have to wrap any Christmas presents.
*** And that was after being out with the Street Pastors on Friday, including staying out extra-late looking for a missing person. Who was found, but by that time we were all thrumming with adrenaline. I got to bed finally after dawn . . . and you know how late dawn is at this latitude in December.
My heated waistcoat did its weird trick of being brilliant for two hours on one-third power and then signing off. I added the heated socks this unpleasantly gelid duty watch and spent the first half hour thinking these blasted things are useless, they’re not giving off any heat at all . . . till it occurred to me that my feet weren’t cold. The socks produce no discernable heat but apparently they wrap your lower extremities in an intangible cold-resistant force field. Hey. Whatever works.
. . . Although that was with me upright and moving.^ I wore them again to Saturday evening contemplation at the monks’ AND JUST ABOUT DIED OF THE COLD. It’s been inconveniently cold a lot of this week^^ and while yesterday and today have been warmer this amelioration had not found its way into the monks’ chapel by last night and you could see your breath. I swear my hair had turned to icicles by the time I limped back to Wolfgang and turned the heater on. Next week I may bring two blankets.
^ Llewellyn is on Maxine’s team# and he is also skinny and long-legged—and a lot taller than I am—and we bonded over the fact that we’re both fast walkers and we hate the Street Pastor stroll. But you have to stroll: it’s how you have time to look around and see stuff: our remit includes looking out for bottles, which are harder to spot than people, and which we empty down gratings [the bottles that is] and put tidily in rubbish bins.##
# Those of you who are having trouble following the playlist . . . you are not alone. But this Friday was my first turn at swapping with Maxine, so it was her team. My schedule will not usually be this chaotic: henceforward I should be going out once a month, either the second, or occasionally the first, Friday.~
~ Although they are looking for extra bodies for a team on New Year’s Eve. It would make a change from ringing bells, not that I’m tired of ringing bells. But I was assuming the Street Pastors would be looking for people with some experience—and I like ringing bells. But I saw Jonas at church tonight+ and he said he was on New Year’s Eve duty and they were still short-handed, and he laughed when I said they’d be looking for experience. Just tell Llewellyn you’re available, okay? he said. Um. Well, I can tear open a packet of hot chocolate and pour hot water over it and stir as well as the next person wearing a Street Pastors hat.++
+ Where I was also asked if I could come early to the carol service and pass around the mulled wine? I think this is known as the thin edge of the wedge. I said yes.
++ Note that we carry both hot chocolate and soup, and requests run about nine to one in favour of hot chocolate. I suppose if you’re homeless and can perhaps be assumed not in the best of moods as a result, your first thought, when some bozo with a knapsack% and a reflective logo ambles up to you and says hello, is probably not for nutrition but a hit of something fun. That would be the hot chocolate. You can usually get a Twix or a lollipop or—at the moment—a candy cane to go with it. A balanced and healthful repast.
% Our second bloke went home at the break, which left all us retirement-age girls looking at each other shiftily about carrying the second knapsack after the break. I lost. But I felt better about my aching shoulders when even Llewellyn admitted he was glad to be getting rid of his by the end of the evening. It makes you extra enthusiastic about offering stuff to the people on the street however: HERE. LET ME GIVE YOU SOMETHING. THEN MY KNAPSACK WILL WEIGH LESS.
^^ Which includes the night that the local weather report said, oh, there may be a light frost in outlying districts, but there will certainly be no frost in the TOWNS! WRONG. I got home that night to a hard frost and a lot of half-dead tender geraniums—which are usually tougher than are given credit for—AND I WAS CROSS. I’ve certainly lost a couple for good, but I think most of them will come through although they are not going to be things of beauty till we start getting heat and sunlight again, which means I will have to keep them in a sort of compound out back for the rest of the winter where they can’t offend the neighbours—but the hellterror can’t dismantle them.# ARRRGH. If the winter turns severe and I have to keep them seriously indoors . . . I may have to move out and sleep in Peter’s spare room. There isn’t space for plants, the overflow from Third House and three hellcritters and a hellgoddess in what was a small cottage when I had a Third House and only two hellhounds. Feh.
# She likes smelly plants too.^ And a lot of my geraniums are the scented-leaf variety.
^ It should be nice to have things in common with other members of your household. But . . .
† Who reads the blog. Yes.
I am glad I’m not doing this EVERY Friday. Although there’s something to be said for getting your first few nights on the street over with in relatively quick succession so you can batter your way through the Very Early Utterly Clueless stage a little faster. I will still be mostly clueless by the end of tonight, my third official night, but I won’t be UTTERLY clueless. Er. I hope. So maybe by next month, when the schedule should settle down into something more nearly resembling one night a month which is what the official commitment is supposed to be, I can maybe not spend the day before duty night hyperventilating and feeling too overwrought to eat. You’re going to be on your feet for most of six hours, you ridiculous woman. You need calories. Feh. I like eating. But not when my jaws are clamped together in anxiety. Tension level is re-ratcheted up for tonight when I meet my alternate team for the first time—Maxine’s team—this being one of the months when her free weekends don’t fit with the Street Pastors’ rota.
. . . The jaws-clamped-together thing was especially awkward today when I FINALLY got to Oisin’s for a slash and bang at singing with accompaniment for the first frelling time in several frelling months. I wouldn’t ordinarily have sought a Street Pastors duty night for this extremely threatening additional activity, but first Oisin was on holiday for several weeks—the nerve of the man—and then our diaries have been bad-tempered with each other since he’s been home again and I was anxious (there I go being anxious again) to get Oisin back in the system especially now that I have a little more voice to play with and WOULD LIKE TO MAKE ANOTHER ATTEMPT TO GET USED TO THE IDEA—INDEED THE PRACTISE—OF AN ACCOMPANIST.
And then I managed to forget to make copies of the moderately death-defying new stuff I wanted to sing. So he had the music on the piano and I sang ee—oo—aaah over his shoulder because I can’t read the lyrics from several feet away, although at least, squinting, I had some idea when the accompaniment went up or down and where my entries might be. Ugh. Need to work on those entries. . . .
But it wasn’t a disaster. I don’t think. Maybe I was just preoccupied by the evening to come.
And now I have to hurtle hellcritters and feed them what they will consider disgracefully early and then GO OFF AND LEAVE THEM FOR HOURS AND HOURS. I’m not sure they’re too with ideas of Christianity and social responsibility when there might have been a sofa instead. What about responsibility to hellcritters?
My feet are already cold. . . .
* * *
While the Bechdel Test is useful in the aggregate (and I liked Bechdel’s Fun Home, which had the honor of being challenged not at the high school level but in two different COLLEGES), I do not like to see it institutionalized. I know Sweden means well, but the ultimate effect of content ratings is often that writers/directors end up artificially altering the story in order to get a more inclusive rating. If this were applied the same way MPAA ratings are here, I guarantee we’d start seeing movies where two women talk to each other for 10 seconds just to pass the test.
And as you mentioned, the setting of whatever story is being told does not always lend itself to multiple female characters. The one that’s coming immediately to mind is 12 Angry Men. And hooboy, that film prof is right about The Help. I should say no more…
ETA: Oh yeah. Parents and other adults who are disturbed by certain things in books frequently ask why they can’t have an age rating system like movies. Well, that’s why. Even though ratings are applied to finished products, it would lead to (some) authors and publishers self-censoring before the fact. Never mind the question of who would actually apply the ratings!
All of this is true. But humans remain the list-making and test-creating animal and as long as they’re going to make lists and apply tests I want to see something like this one—even if it institutionalises something that is much better uninstitutionalised, and yes, I’m a Bechdel fan too—out there making people think about what gets left out of the standard tests. Like women. The film industry is still overwhelmingly male and male-oriented. Anything that shakes that cage is worth considering. I’m not sure but what forcing directors to insert a wholly superfluous ten seconds of two women talking to each other is better than the fact that at the moment they don’t feel they need women characters who, you know, just talk to each other because that’s what people, including women, do.
* * *
Arrgh. I’m late. Story of my life. . . .
YAAAAAAAH. I got to bed at . . . a little short of 7 am Friday night/Saturday morning.* The rest of the weekend is a bit of a blur. I’ve kind of lost track of when daylight happens, it is so easy to mislay this time of year.** Meanwhile I’ve been playing phone tag with my removal man about getting the big stuff from Third House that Atlas and I can’t shift in his trailer up to the storage warehouse place; I missed Mr Removal Man on Friday and assumed that was it till Monday, but I got a phone message from him today that I picked up on my way out the door to go to church, arrrgh arrrgh arrrgh arrrgh arrrgh . . . phoned him as requested when I got home again*** AND HE WANTS TO COME TOMORROW AFTERNOON. I HAVE A FRELLING VOICE LESSON MONDAY AFTERNOON. EXCEPT TOMORROW I’M HAVING IT EARLY. VERY EARLY.† AND THEN I HAVE TO COME HOME AND DEAL WITH REMOVAL MEN?††
I need to sing††† and then go to bed. Fast.
* * *
* It was a slightly odd night out on the street.^ I would have put it down to the fact that it was only my second official night and I still don’t have a clue, but several of the others on the team, including Fearless Leader, mentioned it, that there was a restless unease in the (cold) air that was unusual. I was home by four a.m. but the adrenaline aftermath was bad; the only two at all really tricky incidents were near the end of our watch, and I was actually engaged in one of them—yeeeeeeeep—and came out of it having done the right thing but jangling. And . . . it’s going to take me a while to get used to seeing real live very drunk and/or drugged up people doing the kinds of things real live very drunk and/or drugged up people do, both the hostile and the happy, and also the mere absolutely absolutely legless. It happens on TV. It doesn’t happen, you know, here. Oh yes it does.
^ Although my HEATED WAISTCOAT worked brilliantly, I only turned it on after the break. Ah yes, the break, during which the weather apparently yanks the rug out from under the temperature which, obviously, plunges dramatically, like a keystone kop engaging with a banana skin. So when you come outside again, full of hot tea and a warm glow of self-satisfaction+, it’s like walking into the Yukon in January. I noticed this last time. I think we must snap a trip wire or something and the ice gods all leap to their feet and shout NOW!, and then bang their icicles of office together in solidarity before dashing out to do their worst.
Anyway. I didn’t turn my waistcoat on till after the break when I figured I’d need it worse and it did brilliantly. Except that it was so brilliant that I had it turned up only a third of the way . . . and it was dead in three hours. It’s supposed to last up to six hours depending on how high you set it, and it only lasted for three at one third power?? I may ask the seller a polite question.
I have a set of neoprene toe-socks—they only cover the front half of your foot, which is clever, because your feet don’t sweat that way—that were sent to me by a very nice person++ and I decided to use them Friday night. Another couple of degrees in the wrong direction and I’m changing over to the heated socks, but they worked a treat this time—while I was moving, tramping those mean streets and trying to look like I had the faintest idea what I was doing.+++ What’s interesting is that they don’t work a FILBERT sitting still in the monks’ chapel.++++ Next Saturday night prayer with the monks: heated socks.
+ I’m doing WHAT? And it’s WHAT time of night/morning?
++ You Know Who You Are
+++ Although I’ve now heard my more experienced colleagues answer that—er—diabolical question, Street Pastors? What are you?, often enough that I’m beginning to stop hyperventilating about what I’ll say# the first time someone asks me this in a way I can’t hastily pass on to one of said more experienced colleagues. One of our first training lectures had us trying to come up with an answer and . . . none of us covered ourselves with glory.
I haven’t entirely stopped hyperventilating. But I’m hyperventilating less. But there is also the first time I’m going to have to PRAY ALOUD to worry about. Noooooooooooooo. Usually you can give prayer requests to the Prayer Pastors back at base, it’s what they’re for. But occasionally someone you’ve been talking to asks you to pray for/with them, right there. Right now. Eeeeeep. I’m still in the early hyperventilating stage about praying out loud. I tell myself that I don’t radiate the kind of centredness and authority that would inspire anyone to ask me to pray over them. Reasons Not to Acquire Authority. I wouldn’t mind a little centredness though.
++++ The monks’ chapel is sooooooo cooooooold. By the time I’ve sat there an hour, muffled up in my heavy winter kit and a blanket, in contemplation,# when the abbot finally does his rapping thing and we’re all supposed to climb to our feet . . . I can’t. Although trying to find my way out of my excellent, steadfast blanket does not assist this awkward process.
# Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, I’m so cold, Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, I’m so cold. . . .
** Three weeks till the shortest day and then we start climbing back OUT of this pit.
*** And note that Peter is away till tomorrow afternoon so I’m having to do things like steam my own broccoli and cut up my own carrots.^
^ And Pav’s. Very fond of a nice carrot, is Pav.
† Way too frelling early. Just by the way. For someone who doesn’t expect to speak in complete sentences till after noon. Let alone frelling Italian complete sentences. The things one does just because one’s voice teacher is now a slave to the school schedule.
†† Hellcritters aren’t going to like it either. Hellhounds, who are in the 90 mile an hour couch potato category after all, are somewhat placated by Rides in the Car with the Hellgoddess but Pav eventually gets bored with yet another kong and wants to climb the walls and practise her trapeze artist routines for a while.
††† I’ve been having a fabulous time with the [Song of the] Nightclub Proprietress this week. Who is at least in English. For better or worse.
I’m out on the street again tonight—Street Pastors. The weather has warmed up a little—which is why we could handbell at the cottage yesterday evening, because the sitting room was not full of plants—and it’s GOING TO RAIN. Either that or turn cold again. Depends on who/what you read/listen to.* I have my new battery-pack-operated heated waistcoat charged up and ready to go, and ordinary batteries for the socks and gloves poised for action . . . so it will probably rain. I haven’t ordered my waterproof trousers yet.**
And . . . I think it’s going to become official that I don’t write a proper blog on SP nights.*** Maybe I’ll use it as an excuse to post the links I never get around to posting, because they’re too wonderful and I want to celebrate them properly, like this one, which most of you author-blog-following readers will have already seen, but for anyone who hasn’t†:
. . . or because they’re too infuriatingly CONFIRMATORY of what you’ve known forever:
ARRRRRRRGH. LOTR fails? Am I surprised? I am not surprised.†† But I’m not sure you can rate SHAWSHANK REBELLION down: It’s laid in a men’s prison, for pity’s sake. On the other hand, I’m appalled that all but one of the HARRY POTTERs fails.††† What was Hermione doing all that time? Not talking to girls, evidently.
Right. Okay. I have to go put a pair of dry jeans in a bag to take with me in case I need a change during the break.‡ Night-night. Those of you so inclined, please pray for me. We’re supposed to go out there radiating the Armour of God or what-have-you. Also I can use all the help I can get chatting to strangers, even if I’m wearing the Armour of God.
* * *
* One of my favourite things about the BBC weather site, which I have bookmarked, is the way the graphic at the top often says something different than the text at the bottom. This feels like the real experience of English weather.
** Chiefly due to a failure to find enough info on line to be sure of trousers that are long enough in the inseam AND don’t make horrible slushing noises with every step. You know they don’t give you any help with these crucial outfitting questions during the lengthy and arduous Street Pastors training.
*** Of which I have another one only next Friday, due to the inevitable stupidities of clashing schedules and the occasional inconvenient fifth Friday in a month.
† Thank you, b_twin
†† Yo, Jackson, you gonna mess with the story, how about you messed with that?
††† I know, I know. I didn’t see them past the first one which nearly bored me to death. But you know I’m hopeless. I didn’t see RETURN OF THE KING either.
‡ You’ll have seen Blogmom’s post about her taking the forum off line to wrestle with elderly technology. THIS MEANS THERE WILL BE NO FORUM TOMORROW FOR KES. I WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT I LIVE FOR FORUM COMMENTS, ESPECIALLY FOR KES, SO WHILE I AM GOING TO BE A BIG PERSON AND POST IT ANYWAY^ PLEEEEEEEEASE SAVE ALL THOSE COMMENTS YOU WOULD HAVE MADE TILL THE FORUM GOES UP AGAIN. ::wipes fevered brow::
^ Also, I assume if I didn’t, some of you would hunt me down and kill me. You don’t want to do that, you know, I’m not quite finished at the far end where things are still Very Bad.
It’s been a beautiful if cold late autumn/early winter day* and since you never know when the English weather is going suddenly to develop unending sleet for the next twelve weeks it seemed like a good idea to get everyone out for a Glorious Country Walk today. Which would explain why I am shattered. One of the rather expensive-in-other-ways aspects of no longer having a dog minder is that not only can I wedge in another Glorious Country Walk at a nonstandard time but I’m motivated to do so because with two shifts of critters seven days a week** it would be easy to go frelling nuts with only the standard local half-dozen hurtle possibilities. I find that I’m using the poor hellterror as a kind of advance scouting party: countryside we’ve fallen out of the habit of using in the last year, since the hellterror, and the second hurtle shift, arrived, I take her first, to look for new bad-tempered Mastiffs having moved into the neighbourhood. Because I can pick her up. And while you still get idiots who are brass-faced enough to tell you as their ****** dog is jumping all over you as you stand there with your critter in your arms that if you’d only put her DOWN you wouldn’t have a PROBLEM, generally speaking the owners of discourteous off-lead dogs are embarrassed if the frelling beast attacks you because you have uplifted your delicate little four-legged furry flower and are clutching her frantically you hope above drool and gnash level.*** Arrrrrrgh.
Hellhounds and I had a lovely extended hurtle out Jenny’s way and then farther into the sheepy hinterlands—you are slightly less likely to meet off-lead monsters in active sheep country. Slightly. I took Pav for a hurtle over a piece of ground I haven’t been to in yonks . . . and there appear to be no ill-natured Baskervilleans newly installed. Excellent. But it’s a longer stretch than I remembered and we were kind of each holding the other up by the time we got back to Wolfgang. And this might explain why when I let Herself out of her crate after dinner to do her dangling-from-the-chandelier thing at the mews† she trotted around a bit, had an uncharacteristically mild go at a toy or two . . . and then came and nested . . . in EXACTLY the place I LEAST WANT HER. I’ve been putting her long-down ‘bed’ to the other side of where I sit at the kitchen table with my computer because the side next to the bookshelves is also where all the wiring lives, the computer, the telephone, the electric fire, the glibberzinge. And my knapsack(s) with their interesting ends of knitting yarn and lovely velvety-textural laptop sleeve and so on sticking out the tops sit leaning against the bookcase.
So that’s where she wants to curl up like a normal dog instead of a perpetual-motion hellterror and have a snooze. Siiiiiiiigh. She had quite fifteen more minutes of semi-structured pootling before I was going to make her long down. And she went and frelling pre-empted me. Here I am, with a nice quiet well-behaved dozing hellterror in the wrong place so when she woke up enough to ask for a lap, well, clearly this was the easy way out.†† Except of course that she takes up most of the space on the seat of the chair, because I need both hands free to type instead of holding a hellterror in place, and I am hanging by a thread and RATHER UNCOMFORTABLE.
It’ll keep me awake long enough to torture you a little in anticipation of tomorrow.
Robin!! Did you HAVE to do that when I’m spending the night in a hotel room??
When I don’t sleep tonight I’m holding you responsible!
I dooooooo hope you aren’t in a hotel room tomorrow night. Mwa hahahahahahaha.
All RIGHT then…(glancing at the swords in the hall.) NOW we know where we are…(wondering where the dagger is. Yes, that one.)
Sigh. I do have some weaponry: I have a fencing sabre, which . . . well, it looks like something you take fencing lessons with, rather than something you repel burglars or Yog Sothoth or invaders from other dimensions with. And I do have a Blue Sword, I’ve told you this story, haven’t I? How it arrived in the post LOOKING like a sword, with a tactful little label on the obviously sword-shaped parcel-wrapping saying ‘ornamental arme’? (It was from a friend who makes swords in France.) But I envy you being able to say ‘glancing at the swords in the hall’. And ‘wondering where the dagger is . . .’
So how much of this, I wonder, is because Kes has refused to call her agent back (unless I missed that episode somehow while traveling or something.) Or has whatsisface the ex-husband sent trouble after her because of those rosebushes? And do hobs who are happy with their new householders ever go stick a knife in an invader’s ankle?
I am under the impression, although I have often been wrong in stories past, that Mr Wolverine is being held in abeyance for future atrocities. And I don’t actually think Gelasio is a villain. He’s just some dork in midlife crisis with bad taste in relationship hopping. Although I think possibly his second wife outclasses him as much as his first one does. We shall see. I hope. Oh, and the hob! Well . . . um . . . †††
Eeep! I know you are having fun with cliffhangers, but gosh! I don’t know how I’m going to wait a whole week to find out what happens next! You really weren’t kidding yesterday.
It’s only going to get worse, you know. I may have mentioned that it’s only going to get worse?
I wish you many more years of terrorizing your readers with cliff-hangers!
Thank you! Thank you very much! Heh heh heh heh heh.
I’m really hoping KES comes out in a hard-copy version for off-screen reading..
So am I.
I am now very glad that when KES is posted on the blog and I get to read it it is in daylight hours!!
Hmm. Now that is something I hadn’t planned on. Yo, Blogmom, is there any way to delay posting the blog in Australia till NIGHT TIME? ‡
As for KES – where do I even begin to comment on this? The world is ending! Hoofbeats and candlelight and Sid barking (and Sid’s collar change)
Well observed. Extra points.
and Caedmon rousing himself and Rose Manor shuddering and the driveway-rut universe descending and then… ?!?!?!?!
Yep. Definitely ?!?!?!?!
In true hellgoddess form, that was a frelling ratbag of a cliffhanger!
Can’t wait til Saturday – will there be resolution? Will our heroine finally find herself irretrievably swallowed up by the alternate reality that has been shadowing her?
We-ell . . .
(I should just mention, by the way, that if Murac and all the scaries get horses, Kes better be given a magnificent, swift and sure-of-foot steed PDQ. Maybe Merry transforms into a glorious fleet-footed steed? I wonder if Caedmon will play an alternate-reality part? Protector, maybe? Although Sid seems to be covering that part pretty well…)
Hee hee hee hee hee . . .
Halfway through the week now. Only 72 hours left until KES tightens the rack on us…
::falls down laughing:: Only twenty four hours now. . . . Is that the creak of rack-screws I hear—?
* * *
* Summer is in many ways to be preferred, because in the first place there are roses, and in the second place there is A LOT MORE DAYLIGHT^. But there is nothing like the long golden afternoon light of this time of year, especially when you are fortunate enough to be watching it lying over countryside—Hampshire’s, for example—that is pretty fabulous to begin with.
^ You will observe I have my priorities clearly in order. Even if perhaps the latter has a critical effect on the former.+
+ Note also that latitude has a lot to do with it. You do get more sensitive to daylight, and lack of it, as you get older, and I was still relatively (!) young when I left Maine. But the south of England, despite the friendlier climate#, is a LOT farther north and the swings of daylight-plus to daylight-minus are extreme. My fantasy of the castle in Scotland didn’t founder so much on the standard questions of money and so on, but on the realisation that Scotland has even less daylight in the winter. I don’t know how people in, oh, say, Lapland, or Barrow, Alaska bear it.
# Thank you, Gulf Stream, please don’t go away
** Which is twenty-eight hurtles a week, plus tiny round-the-block/churchyard/park sprints of about another two a day . . . this does not bear thinking about. What a good thing my arithmetic is really bad.
*** Cough cough cough. I like to think that it is a development of trust in my goddessy abilities that appears to make Pav enjoy these confrontations.
† The mews does not have chandeliers. I have the chandelier(s).
†† Clever little ratbags, hellterrors.
††† Mwa hahahahahahaha.
‡ No, I’m not a nice person. You knew that.