Becky says things about … reasons to be cheerful

Oh, brave Listener. We’ve all had a bit of a rough time recently.

There are several reasons why we are all feeling a bit peeved, irked, and somewhat vexed:

1) It is February. February is an obnoxiously depressing month, it knows it, and it doesn’t care. February is insufferable.

2) We are still paying off our Christmas credit card bills. This is intolerable.

3) Our New Year’s resolution diet and exercise regimes have failed miserably and we are eating more doughnuts, peanut butter, and full fat milk than ever before to cope with the depression of February and Christmas credit card bills.


4) The couples amongst us have had a relationship-busting argument on Valentine’s Day, and the singletons amongst us have just been reminded that they are SINGLE and ALONE and destined to remain that way for the rest of their sorry lives.

5) There is nothing to look forward to. Sorry, Easter, no one looks forward to you. You are not exciting. You are a legitimate reason to consume biologically harmful amounts of chocolate, and therefore you are a beastly contribution to our self-loathing about our failed diet and exercise regime, and also the reason we are alone.

6). THE WEATHER. Oh, the weather, Listener. We in Englandland have had the shit beaten out of us by the weather. For the last 3 months, this has happened on a daily basis:


Some of us are underwater. Some of us have no roofs. Some of us have lost everything. The print journalists amongst us are fed up with trying to find synonyms for ‘wet’ and ‘flooded’ and ‘catastrophic’, and never want to see or write the word ‘deluged’ again. Several of our politicians have spent a considerable amount of time in Wellington boots pointing at floods. 


And over in the US of A, you have had a POLAR VORTEX.


A POLAR VORTEX, Listener??? What is this, The Day After Tomorrow??? Polar vortexes happen in disaster films, in comics, and in the dark nubs of my brain when someone asks me to do Maths, but SURELY NOT IN ACTUAL REAL LIFE???


Unfortunately, the only explanation for this deluge of catastrophic shitness is that we are finally entering the Apocalypse and will very soon all be dead, and because of this irrefutable fact, I would like to try and cheer you all up. I can’t make it stop raining, or thaw out Lake Michigan, but I can give you some reasons to be cheerful.

Becky’s Reasons to be Cheerful

1) You weren’t presented with this cake for your birthday:


My mum was. She was presented with this cake for her birthday this weekend. My cake-baking skills are normally phenomenal. This time they weren’t. I failed. My mum had a failed cake, presented to her by a failed daughter.

Fortunately, once we stuck a candle in it, it looked MUCH better.


2) Life is full of small joys that make you realise how ridiculous it all is; the brief and unexpected moments of such tom-foolery and slapstickery that happen to everyone: that little trip up the kerb that you have to turn into a jog, or the poorly-judged lunge of your foot into your knickers that gets your toe caught in the elastic and sends you hopping across the room and eventually colliding with the wall, or the premature opening of the dishwasher while it’s still on.


Yes these moments initially make us want to kill ourselves, but next time they happen just imagine you’re the person next to you watching the whole ridiculous scene unfold, and remember that your idiocy is extremely amusing.

3) This joke exists in the world:

What’s grey and can’t climb trees?

A car park.

Thanks to my cousin’s 4 year-old son Oscar for the greatest contribution to the world of comedy EVER.

4) You did not arrive at work this morning and realise that your securely-fastened Tupperware box had spilt a lot of homemade soup into the bottom of your recently-purchased bag, and consequently your worldly goods, including your make-up, phone, and wallet, were smothered in pureed beans, spinach, and peas.


5)  If you just had a relationship-busting argument on Valentine’s Day, or are a lonely singleton, or are generally friendless, isolated and alone, and have no one to talk to but the voices in your head that tell you to make questionable advances towards badgers, HAVE NO FEAR!! Talk to yourself! Talking to yourself, out loud, is one of the many joys of life. I have spent most of this evening talking to myself in a Northern Irish accent. No reason. I just fancied it. I made a beef stew whilst enjoying the lyrical twang of my verbal commentary. I once had an entire conversation with myself in a supermarket that went thus:








See? How fun is that? Talk away! Ignore the strange looks and harsh judgement of society, and cheer yourself up with the wittiest, most intelligent banter around!*

*Actual attempts at talking to oneself may not be as successful, profound, or as imaginative as mine. I accept no liability for attempts at talking to oneself that result in boredom, anger, sexual arousal, or mental illness. 

6) There is dancing in the world. And there is plenty of space to do it in. Do you think a crowded station platform prevents me from performing an incredibly small jig that is invisible to the naked eye, yet gives me insurmountable glee? NO!










There is no reason to be peeved, irked, or vexed when there is dancing in the world.

And finally…

7) There is love.

Yes, there is love. There are people in the world who will give you a huge, enormous, squashy hug when you feel a bit low, when you are depressed about your credit card bills and your lack of exercise and your heinous doughnut consumption and the fact that your house is underwater or your local supermarket it totally out of beans because people are panic-buying due to the impending Apocalypse, but throughout all that, there is LOVE. And yes, I may be saying this predominantly for my American listeners, because you LOVE a bit of mushy talk about love and emotion and whatnot, and my English listeners will be sitting in front of their computers thinking ‘Blimey, Becky’s gone a bit overboard with the slushy love stuff. I feel a trifle nauseous’ – but, Listeners of all nations and values, there is a whole heap of love in this world, and no one loves you more than my friend Stickman.


So cheer up, my courageous listeners. The weather cannot continue to be this crap, your credit card bill will eventually be paid off, you will make up with your other half after your horrendous Valentine’s Day bust-up (unless it was over food, in which case that will take a lot of healing), and you can tell the excellent car park joke to all your friends and family and spread the general glee and merriment.


572 thoughts on “Becky says things about … reasons to be cheerful

  1. Becky, you know how to cheer a lady up. I was laughing so hard I though I was going to pee. I might have.

    Another reason to be cheerful? You weren’t presented with this on your birthday, like my husband was.

    And THAT was supposed to be a moustache.

  2. This post makes the impending apocalyspe bearable. I will be saddened when we lose all power and I won’t be able to read it while zombies feast on my face.

  3. You (and stickman) made me laugh out loud several times – as usual. Cheer yourself up with the thought that we’re nearer the end of February than the beginning of it, thank goodness.

  4. February is ashamed of itself, thus it only has 28 and sometimes 29 days (it’s also wishy-washy)…it just couldn’t go on – OR maybe its pissed b/c it got shafted a few days compared to December and those OTHER months with at least 30 days.

    Love & mush and all that American-y emotional stuff –

    1. It’s a good point. February SHOULD be ashamed, and the fact that is deficient in days is like the calendar equivalent of hiding its face under a large coat hood. That’s what I think anyway.
      Lots of love and must and American slush to you too! 🙂

  5. Hey! Did you know that ‘Reasons to Be Cheerful’ is an Ian Dury album?! Do you know who that is? Thanks for the earworm.

    I’ve been reading about how you guys are under water. It’s in the New York Times a lot. Sad. But we’re getting a proper ass-whooping as well. Snow! And lots of it! Don’t cry for me, London.

    That’s a cake? It looks like it fell out of the car on the way home from the baker.

    Here’s a perfect 4-year old joke for Oscar:

    Who’s there?
    Little old lady.
    Little old lady who?
    I didn’t know you could yodel!

    Please hold your applause.

    Not for nothing, but it kind of serves you right for eating pureed beans, spinach, and peas. What’s wrong with you?

    There is love. Like, I friggin’ love this blog. That speech sounded like Hugh Grant’s opening monologue from Love, Actually.

    1. Ohhhh I have SO heard that joke before,but it doens’t stop it from making me laugh!!
      Everything you say is true, especially the part about getting my comeuppance for consuming pureed beans, spinach and peas. I deserve everything I get for that heinous concoction of doom.
      Thanks for reading 🙂

  6. As an American, I sincerely appreciate the mushy love stuff. Let us unite like Olympians!

    Unless we’re talking about hockey, in which case, y’all are on your own.

    P.S. It is raining in Baltimore today, so it’s kind of like England.
    Kind of.

    1. Hockey??? Seriously, you can have hockey. It’s the most ridiculous game ever.
      I heard it always rains in Baltimore. In which case, you understand our pain. Therefore, we can unite not just like Olympians, but like sisters.

  7. You totally made me smile, Becky! Which cracks me up (see, smiling?) because you’re the cynical grumpy one and I’m the one who smiles through it all. Or used to until the winter knocked us down with the PV. I am increasingly grumpy with each new day and I am no longer overly fond of my husband or my kids. (still like my cat, though–which I know you won’t get) Most everything makes me either sad or mad. And then you went and made me smile 0-: Many thanks for that. And I do love your cake–really. It’s the thought that counts and I bet it tasted fantastico. And next time, just chop it all up, layer it with whipped cream and a lovely liqueur and call it a trifle.

    1. Ohhh Liz, I’m so glad I made you smile! And do you know what, the cake WAS delicious!! But your tricks about smothering it with cream and liquer and passing it off as a trifle is SUCH a good idea and one I shall remember for next time I completely cock up a cake.
      Thanks Liz 🙂

  8. OMG awesomesauce! Much laughing out loud.
    And just so ya know, that polar vortex thing was brutal! Since I got the Canadian version of it, I stayed indoors for days…

  9. I looked at that cake you made your mum and, before I read what you said about it, I immediately thought “Mmm that looks tasty – wish I’d had that for my birthday”. I admit it has the look of a tasty pud – nice with custard maybe?

    I completely agree about February – especially this one. On my birthday (on Friday so very near your mum’s), I came down with full blown influenza! So thank you for the love, Stickman.

    I particularly enjoyed the station platform jig – fabulous. Keeeep Dancing!

    1. Thanks, Mum’s friend’s sister! The cake was strangely delicious and definitely tasted like a pudding – if only i’d had the foresight to whip up some custard!
      Sorry to hear about the flu – maybe a nice stodgy lemon pudding would help 😉

    1. And your blog helps husbands make their wives’ feet smell like cheese. Everyone is a winner 🙂
      Seriously, I am so chuffed your blog got Freshly Pressed – men NEED to know how to make their wife’s feet smell like cheese!
      I’ll pass your comments on to Oscar – I imagine his reply will be ‘I don’t remember making up that joke – come on, Auntie Beck, I’m only four years old, I don’t remember saying stuff.’