Confessions of a Cold-Blooded Hedgehog Murderer

I am a bad person with a dark secret.

Last year I murdered a Hedgehog. Not my proudest moment…nevertheless it’s time to confess. (ooh, Im a poet and I don’t know it).

Arguably It was manslaughter, I mean, I didn’t  plot to massacre the flea-ridden shrew, so I imagine I could have my sentence reduced in the absence of a calculated conspiracy.

It all started when we moved into our new home last May, a lovely leafy area, advancing to a 3 -bedroom house, little garden and it’s very own hedgehog… a real one! How lovely, we thought, with very little consideration placed on the fact that we have 4 cats.. a potential nightmare for “Harold”, we’ll call him.

Harold had brought the community together, and for the last 4 years had been fed and watered by the previous occupiers of our house, coupled with our neighbours on either side. Christine at number 78 had let him into her house on occasion  and fed him pedigree chum, and Lynne at number 76 (the toilet attendant), had crafted a little wooden hutch so he could seek shelter on cold nights.

Harold was loved.

The first two weeks in our new home, we kept the cats inside so that they could get used to their new surroundings before we set them free to roam their new neighbourhood, but before long it was time to let them out. You may think you can see where this is going….but the cats had absolutely nothing to do with the death of Harold. I am completely to blame.

You see, the previous occupiers had let the garden go a little bit and on the  first ‘dry day’ I decided I would cut the grass. A day I will regret forever. The grass was getting on for 8 inches in length (not quite 8 inches….I know exactly what 8 inches looks like).  So out of the garage came the fly-mo.

With the lawn-mower powered up and strimmer at the ready, I began to hack through the thicket with haste, so I could get back to season 4 of ‘Ru-Pauls’s Drag Race.’ I was surprised at what a good job I was doing …with the £39.99 ‘Homebase bargain purchase’, and had lovely straight lines of  ‘crew -cut’ grass.

After I emptied the first load , I continued on the third line of my landscaping master-piece, when all of a sudden I hit a snag. The sound of the blades working harder to cut through the obstacle, combined with a sinister and aggressive juddering of the fly-mo, could only mean one thing.

I daren’t look down and stood silently for -what felt like 5 minutes -calling my husband for moral support as I remained frozen in the assumed position.

Yes….I had mowed down Harold in cold blood. He lay there motionless and a little (a lot) worse for wear as he took his final breath. As I said, Im not proud and I felt a wave of guilt sweep through my body.

“Shit – the neighbours”, shouted my husband. “We’ll have to dispose of the body” he said.

He was right, Harold was the epitome of community spirit….and his body lay cold in the half-hacked grass in full view of each one of our neighbours…What would they say? What would we tell them?

We had to act fast…no time for a ceremonial burial… and we couldn’t draw any more attention to ourselves..there had already been sufficient commotion to generate concern, and my husband was now an accessory.  So Harold’s final resting place was  the wheelie bin of number 80 (we don’t know them), encased in a Tesco Bag for Life.

That was the end of it…or so we thought. Bin day wasn’t for another 6 days…I wouldn’t rest until he  had gone, for fear of his homicide being traced to us at number 77.  That Friday morning I breathed a huge sigh of relief as the Hedgehog hearse arrived to take Harold away…but this still wasn’t the end.

A few nights later, I saw Christine leaning over our fence attempting to summon Harold with a tin of dog-food…this continued night after night for about 2 weeks. When this stopped, Lynne knocked on our door to see if we had seen ‘the hedgehog’…she was worried that she hadn’t seen him for a while.

Karma – I was being punished for my crime, with constant reminders from our neighbours, confirming how much Harold was adored, this only added to my guilt. Of course I had to play dumb…and blame the cats.

“They must have scared him off” , I suggested. Little do they know that within 2 weeks of joining the neighbourhood, I had killed their beloved communal pet.

So …the truth is out.

             

If you like my blog, please get to know me better and visit my social media pages by clicking the links below

Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest

Instagram

There is no such thing as American-English…there is English and there are mistakes

Let's dothings together!

I am fully expecting a tirade of commentary for this post and I would just like to assure my American friends now that this is nothing personal and I’m a really nice guy really. However since I started blogging and reading other people’s posts from around the world, I can’t help but notice….even more so, how the English language has been diluted and become a little lazy across the water. I won’t apologise for pointing some of these mistakes out, because I live in England, where the English language was originated……so I can.

My motivation for this post all began, when one of my American readers kindly pointed out to me that I had posted an article tagged with the word ‘humour’.

“I think you mean humor” , they said

” No.. I mean humour, that is the Oxford Dictionary spelling of the word, and that is what I meant” I replied.

“Oh ok…is that British -English? they asked.

“No!…. it is English, there is only one version, There is no such thing as American- English…there is English and there are mistakes” I confirmed.

It didn’t go down very well….I’m a tolerant guy, and ordinarily I would never point out the differences in how American people spell words versus how it should be spelled, but I do draw the line at being corrected into dropping vowels that have existed in the English language for hundreds of years.

So just to clear things up….before you have the bare-faced cheek to correct an Englishman on their own language….here are a few common words and grammatical errors that are used differently (correctly) in England:

For the purpose of clarification and  explanation..I will refer to the ‘mistakes’ as ‘American English’, as much as it pains me to write…it will make it easier to understand and point out the differences.

‘American English’ / Mistaken Spelling English
color, humor, neighbor colour, humour, neighbour
fulfill fulfil
center centre
analyze, authorize analyse, authorise
aging ageing
dialog dialogue
anesthesia, anaesthesia

Differences in the use of Prepositions

There are also a few differences between British and ‘American English’ in the use of prepositions. For example: While the British would play in a team, Americans would play on a team. Another example: While the British would go out at the weekend, Americans would go out on the weekend.

Most annoying Pronunciations

Moscow – This is pronounced Moss. Co, not Moss. Cow

Route (pronounced root, not rowt)

Vitamin (the ‘i’ as in little not as in bite)

Aluminium (Its A.luh.mi.nee.um and not A.looo.me.num)

Differences in Verb usage

Americans use the past tense dreamed while in English you would use dreamt in past tense. The same applies to “learned” and “learnt”. Another example of differing past tense spellings for verbs in American and British English is “forecast”. Americans use forecast while in English you would say forecasted in simple past tense.

Time telling in English vs American English

Both nations have a slightly different structure of telling the time. While in English you would say quarter past ten to denote 10:15, it is not uncommon in America to say quarter after or even a quarter after ten.

Thirty minutes after the hour is commonly called half past in both languages. Americans always write digital times with a colon, thus 6:00, whereas Britons often use a point, 6.00.

Differences in use of tenses

In English the present perfect is used to express an action that has occurred in the recent past that has an effect on the present moment. For example: I’ve misplaced my pen. Can you help me find it?

In ‘American English’, the use of the past tense is also permissible: I misplaced my pen. Can you help me find it?  In English, however, using the past tense in this example would be considered incorrect.

Other differences involving the use of the present perfect in British English and simple past in American English include the words alreadyjust and yet.

English: I’ve just had food. Have you finished your homework ?

American English: I just had food. Have you finished your homework already?

English: I’ve already seen that film.

American English  I already saw that film

The most annoying difference and the one that grates on me the most…as it seems to be migrating to the UK.

“Can I get a Cheeseburger please?”

Of course you can get a cheeseburger….but the correct way of asking for one is

“Please may I have a cheeseburger?”

Here is a non-exhaustive list of other differences – so please, before pointing out any mistakes… check the correct English terminology first….sorry (not sorry).

 English American English/ Mistakes
anti-clockwise counter-clockwise
articulated lorry trailer truck
autumn  fall
barrister attorney
bill (restaurant) check
biscuit cookie
block of flats apartment building
Bonnet (Clothing) Hat
bonnet (car) hood
boot trunk
caravan trailer
car park parking lot
chemist’s shop drugstore, pharmacy
chest of drawers dresser, chest of drawers, bureau
chips fries, French fries
the cinema the movies
clothes peg clothespin
coffin casket
crisps potato chips
crossroads intersection; crossroads (rural)
cupboard cupboard (in kitchen); closet (for clothes etc)
diversion detour
drawing-pin thumbtack
drink-driving drunk driving
driving licence driver’s license
dual carriageway divided highway
dummy (for baby) pacifier
dustbin garbage can, trash can
dustman garbage collector
engine engine, motor
estate agent real estate agent
estate car station wagon
film film, movie
flat apartment, flat, studio
flat tyre flat tire
flyover overpass
gearbox (car) transmission
gear-lever gearshift
Girl Guide Girl Scout
ground floor ground/first floor
handbag handbag, purse, shoulder bag
high street main street
holiday vacation
hood (car) convertible top
jam jam, preserves
jug jug, pitcher
juggernaut 18-wheeler
lift elevator
lorry truck, semi, tractor
mad crazy, insane
main road highway
maize corn
maths math
motorbike motorcycle
motorway freeway, expressway
motorway highway, freeway, expressway, interstate highway, interstate

Sources:

http://www.diffen.com

http://www.englishclub.com

 

 

If you like my blog, please get to know me better and visit my social media pages by clicking the links below

Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest

Instagram

This is how you run things President Trump….A lesson from Bet Lynch

 

Bet_lynch_50th

Donald,

Alright cock, I heard you just got top job over’t water and having been’t most successful landlady of  t’Rovers, I thought I’d teach you the ropes as nobody knows nowt better than me for pulling in’t punters. Get it? Got it?….Good!

As a former ‘Miss Weatherfield’, factory worker  and barmaid, I , like you, wanted bigger and better things, and landed the Manageress’ job of t’Rovers Return in 1985. (After Annie Walker retired, I was voted in by the local residents – it was a clear victory).

I was hugely admired by everyone on’t Street, so I thought I would give you a few pearls of wisdom that will help you out, chuck, cause I saw more in my lifetime before I was 20 than you’ll probably see in your entire life- and I didn’t even leave my own back yard.

  1. Teamwork – It’s always good to have people that look out for ya chuck, and it works both ways…..don’t go building any walls between you and ‘t neighbours…you never know when you’ll need a kidney. I’ll never forget when ‘t  Rovers burnt down…..if it weren’t for Sally and Kevin Webster….I’d be a gonna!  Look after ‘t neighbours
  2. Boost people’s self esteem – You ‘ave to take an interest in the people beneath ya and stick up for them in times of need, I could tell you a thing or two about when I helped ‘our Liz MacDonald’ escape from her Jim…and even though Betty’s hotpot tasted like bowl of bin-juice..I still complimented her on her efforts. It’s not all about you Mr. Trump.
  3. Empathy – A good leader stands in the shoes of their people and sees things from their perspective, so it’s no good forking out on Ralph Lauren ‘get  up’, when there’s nowt wrong with leopard print…tell Melania I’ve had some lovely bargains in C&A!
  4. Integrity -Leave the pussy alone love, if you want people to like ya, you’ll have to lead by example and stop fraternising with women.  I learned a very good lesson myself when I was mucking about with Len Fairclough….Rita and I have never really spoken since.
  5. Gravitas – How can people take you seriously when you’ve got ‘mop on ya head ….I’ve always gone for a “Croydon Face lift’ when it comes to hair styling…always tidy and kept of t’face….and twitter?- for pity’s sake love…your the President not Katie Hopkins…gerroff it!! Spend less time being a racist bigot and more time in’t salon. Our Audrey would work wonders on ya love.

I hope you take my advice, I know how tough it is starting out…but mark my words chuck, if you do as I say…one day you may be just as successful as me.

Yours Truly

Bet Lynch

 

If you like my blog, please get to know me better and visit my social media pages by clicking the links below

Facebook

Twitter

Pinterest

Instagram

 

Lazy Cow Hot-Pot (Beef Stew and Dumplings in the slow cooker)

Here’s another recipe for those of you that are time poor…and far too fabulous to be slaving over a hot stove.

Beef Stew and Dumplings is an old war-time favourite dish (not safe for lesbians vegans). A very simple recipe that you can prepare in the morning and come home to a hearty meal waiting for you on a cold winter’s day.

img_0422

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 3 medium carrots, cut into 2.5cm (1in) pieces
  • 3 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 kg  diced steak, cut into 4cm (1½in) chunks (If you don’t want half a cow on your plate reduce to 800g)
  • Plain flour, to dust
  • 200 ml  red wine (Excuse to buy a 750ml bottle and drink the rest on your lunch break)
  • 600 ml (1 pint) beef stock
  • 3 fresh rosemary sprigs. ……Thats the herb…not the anorak model…fullsizerender-2-copy-10
  • 125 g (4oz) self-raising flour
  • 60 g (2½oz) suet
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley

Method

  1. Put the oil, vegetables and tomato purée into the bowl of your slow cooker. Dry the beef pieces with kitchen paper and dust with the plain flour (tapping off excess). Add to the slow cooker together with the wine, stock, rosemary and some seasoning.
  2. Cover and cook on high for 5hr or until the beef is tender.
  3. After 5hrs of cooking, make the dumplings. Sift the flour into a large bowl and stir in the suet, parsley and lots of seasoning. Add 100ml  cold water and stir to make a soft (and slightly sticky) dough.
  4. Remove the lid and discard the rosemary sprigs. Pinch off bollock-sized pieces of dough, gently roll into a ball and place on top of the stew, spacing apart. Recover and cook for 1hr more. Check the seasoning and serve with mashed potatoes.fullsizerender-copy-4

 

RECOMMENDED

                    

A Good Suffolk Sausage Every Second Sunday…

….Try saying that when you’ve had a drink

Why not try a good old fashioned ‘Toad in the hole’ this Sunday? Its so easy….you could even get the kids to make it while you put your feet up and contemplate your navel.

Here is a ‘Toad in the hole’ my step-daughter rustled up earlier.

fullsizerender7

Ingredients

  • 225g Plain Flour
  • 2 tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • 4 Eggs
  • 300ml Milk
  • 12 sausages (ordinarily you would use 8 but we are greedy…so the philosophy is…as many as you can fit in the dish)
  • 2 tbsp Sunflower oil.
  • Salt and Pepper
  • A large gin and tonic

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees/Gas mark 6
  2. Pour the oil into the bottom of the dish and make sure the bottom is well lubricated….ooh I sayfullsizerender-copy-3
  3. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 15 minutes
  4. While the bangers are baking, whisk together the flour, eggs and half the milk until smooth, then start to mix in the rest of the milk, add the dijon mustard and season with a good pinch of salt and black pepper

fullsizerender1     fullsizerender2     fullsizerender3

5. Remove the sausages from the oven and ladle the batter over them (make sure they are not completely covered, otherwise you’ll have a soggy ‘hole.)

fullsizerender5                                              FullSizeRender[6].jpg

6.Bake for 35 Minutes until the centre has raised and gone brown

7. Serve with vegetables, mash potato and onion gravy (don’t be pratting about with making your own gravy….nothing wrong with bisto gravy granules.)

8. Now stuff your face….and leave the washing up for ‘mañana’ Then get on the gin.

fullsizerender8

For Proper recipes please see fellow blogger: Call me Trav

Your blog or your wife: A lesson from Bob and Shirley

1

Bob and Shirley had been married for 16 years and to all their friends they were a happily married couple…with 2.4 children a beautiful home and ‘artex ‘ ceilings to die for.

Bob ran his own building firm and Shirley was a domestic goddess.. they holidayed twice a year and enjoyed fine wine and gourmet dining…what could be better?

However Shirley was missing something in her life, she hadn’t been intimate with Bob in months, as Bob had just started writing a blog which took up all of his free time. When Shirley retired for the night, Bob was still busy pinning his favourite posts, liking stumbles, re-tweeting and sharing.

Bob was addicted to blogging….he’d finally found his niche and had read around 426 articles on “How to make money from your blog”. His intentions were in the right place…he just wanted to get enough followers to be able to earn some money and buy Shirley the conservatory that she had always dreamed of.

One evening when the children were at Tae-Kwon-do, Shirley slipped into her finest Ann Summer’s negligee  and danced seductively behind the laptop, where Bob was busily editing a post on “How to replace a drywall’.  So consumed by getting the post finished, so that he could share on social media before the  8 pm deadline when the traffic on Twitter was notoriously more difficult to get any re-tweets, he didn’t notice her advances.

Shirley decided to confront Bob and asked him directly…..”why won’t you sleep with me?”

Bob was too tired, he had worked all day and he just had to get his post finished. This went on, night after night, week after week until a massive row ensued.

When Shirley threatened to leave Bob, he finally agreed that Shirley’s idea to go and see a marriage counsellor was a good idea, aside from the fact that he could then write a post about his experience and engage with other bloggers in the same predicament.

The marriage counsellor advised Bob to take some time out and socialise with his friends, away from the computer to alter his mind-set about  “Bobthebuilder.com” and refocus on becoming intimate with Shirley. Bob agreed to this, and as a compromise, Bob went for a night out at the “Bloggers Unite” convention. Still a tenuous link to his addiction, however, it took him away from the computer and ..well…small steps.

Bob really let his hair down with the computer geeks and Dad bloggers and one Jåger bomb led to another.

That night Bob came crashing through the door, steaming drunk and called out to Shirley..

“You …upstairs now!”

Shirley’s heart started to race and she practically fell up the stairs ripping her clothes off as she ran. Bob was right behind her and they made haste to the bedroom. By this time Shirley was naked and ready to partake in Bob’s newly- found assertion.

Without making it to the bed, Bob demanded that Shirley do a hand-stand at the end of the bed.

Wow!, thought Shirley, this marriage  counsellor deserves an OBE for services to sexual activity…not only has Bob been cured of his reluctance to become intimate….but now he wants to be kinky…..my prayers have been answered.

Shirley hadn’t done any form of acrobatics since the honeymoon 16 years beforehand so performed her hand-stand aided by her husband. As Bob approached her, he pulled Shirley’s legs apart with one hand, while he held his mobile phone in the other. With legs akimbo, Bob buried his face deep between Shirley’s thighs as her hands took the weight.

Shirley began to cry….not through sadness but from relief. For so long she had wandered whether their sex -life was finished forever.

“What’s the matter?” mumbled Bob, his face still buried in Shirley’s loins

“I’m so happy’ exclaimed Shirley, “I can’t believe that we are finally going to have sex!”

Bob pulled away suddenly, “Sex??” he asked, “Oh no, sorry we’re not having sex” he affirmed. “I met a blogger tonight from Queereyeforthestraightguy.com and he said I would look better with a Goatee, I was just trying to take a selfie so that I could be sure and pingback.”

Moral to this story: Have fun with your blog, but don’t let it take over your life ……he says

Belated Christmas gift to the disgruntled Neighbour

As many of you know we love our pussy cats and they love us, but one person who doesn’t love them is our next door neighbour…..or the toilet attendant as we now affectionately call her.

We have got to know her quite well over the summer and one of the girls often plays with her granddaughter. However a couple of days ago the turncoat  ‘bravely’ posted a note through our door because, evidently one of our cats has defecated on her side of the fence. I say ‘bravely’ but it was in fact, quite the opposite, as we watched her run down the garden path, post the letter and then run back to her house like a bad player at ‘knock down ginger’.

Ordinarily we would have been mortified that one of our neighbours was upset with us, if it were not for the  condescending tone of the note that she posted addressed to ‘the boys’. Coupled with the fact that it could also have been one of a plethora of cats that roam our neighbourhood, or foxes, she is now demanding we build a higher fence.

So as not to get into an argument, we decided we would offer to clear said mess from her lawn and get on with our lives, however today, with clearly nothing better to do with hers, we have received note number 2.

The note, more condescending and derogatory than the 1st and with clear intention of action, describes that she has counted 29 deposits.  Firstly, who counts cat poo and keeps a tally?, and secondly, if the cat has done an extra 28 poos in the 2 days since the last note then we seriously need to get the cat seen to….maybe Gillian McKeith would be able to identify the real perpetrator responsible for providing free fertiliser to her garden.

So the moral is….be neighbourly  and ask nicely  and thou shalt have  the mess removed from your lawn…until then the offer is withdrawn.

Foxtrot Oscar

Living Next Door to the ‘Junglist Massive’

13a6ef78e1be9e78f73aa4ad430c3521

Yo ! Yo! …Word up!   Booyaka!

In our suburban dwelling in the ‘lovely part of Hemel Hempstead’ we are a far cry from the hustle and bustle of city life…..or are we?

Since moving to our new home, we have tolerated the weekend antics of our neighbour- the 38 year old -‘coke head’ with a mis-spent youth, and sufficient time spent doing ‘bird’.

Of course we have never had a conversation with him, but due to his uncouth and ‘less than dulcet’ tones that resonate at 100 decibels down the street, we know about his time inside, how he’s been sacked from every job he’s had, how his girlfriend likes it in the bedroom (and believe me we’ve heard her fulfil  those fantasies) and the details of his bank account….pin number etc.

We live next door to a moron of the highest calibrations, who has shared much more of his life with us than our tiny minds can comprehend. A truly annoying oik that speaks at one volume and has no respect for himself , let alone the people he lives alongside.

If that wasn’t enough… we are treated to (on a weekly basis) a ‘full -on’ club night, whereby he sets up his decks, opens his windows, grabs his vuvuzela and continues to DJ to his crowd of ….nobody….(except maybe a few hedgehogs and stray cats that happen to be nearby) until the early hours.

Now David Guetta he is not…in fact he’s more of a fatboy slim (without the slim) and his girlfriend rocks up in her “Fat Bird’s uniform” (leggings and a mid-drift top), and they party until the break of dawn (I think her name is Kelly, not Dawn).

Now please don’t get me wrong, I do love a bit of a boogie when the mood takes me, but please let me watch the Strictly final before you inflict ‘old school Jungle’ on the entire neighbourhood. And do we really need a commentary in between tunes?…you don’t have an audience you idiot….and you are 38…get a life!

Last night was the straw that broke the camel’s back….apart from a very small interlude when he played ‘Here comes the Hotstepper’ and ‘Lady, hear me tonight’, which I quite enjoyed, the music went on from 8.30pm until 5 am this morning at full volume and with the bass vibrating through our bedroom walls, I needed to do something.

I googled online, on how to make a complaint to my local council and rest assured, after I have completed my ‘noise diary’ he will be receiving an abatement notice….but as revenge is a dish best served cold I thought I would give him a taste of his own medicine.

So here I am this Sunday morning, windows wide open, stereo on full pelt…..but not giving him a selection of classics from his favoured genre…oh no…we have a medley of Steps, S Club 7, and the best of the musicals from Calamity Jane to Les Miserables.

Enjoy your ‘come-down’ you big twat…..Happy Sunday!

The Devil wears….leggings

I don’t, nor have ever proclaimed to be a style advisor to women or ‘queer eye for the straight guy’ but I have got to get one thing really clear so that we can spread the word and eliminate a large amount of humiliation and low self esteem in the world..

‘Leggings are not clothes!’

There you have it ladies. When you don a pair of leggings, essentially you are leaving the house with your knickers on (only they are knickers that happen to have 2 legs attached).

If you are going to wear these awful lycra- based ‘skin huggers’ because they are ‘so comfortable’ , then please spare us the accompanying mid-drift top and wear something loose that reaches your knees. (Especially if you have the physique of a fruit machine and the arse the size of Belgium).

I wonder whether you ever notice that at the top of your legs there is a part of your anatomy that is not conducive with skin-tight fabric , with it’s many folds and flaps, leggings make it look like you are smuggling oreos. Equally the stretched thread-bare fabric ‘covering’ your posterior points out every dimple and imperfection, often making it look like a scene from Buzz Aldrin’s cine camera of the Moon landings.

‘But they are so cheap’ , I hear you say.  Well yes they are, thats because they are shit, you wouldn’t see me walking up the shops in my thermal long -johns- I’d probably be arrested.

Nobody wants to see your clam when they are fetching the daily newspaper, no matter how agile and inviting it may be, so please stop this appalling practice now. Throw the leggings away and buy some clothes.

Spread the word…..

The Modern Nativity

fullsizerender-copy

Mary had only known Jozef for 6 months, they hooked up one Wednesday evening after both swiping right on tinder earlier that day. Mary was in the doctor’s surgery waiting  for a letter confirming her whiplash injury entitled her to renew her disability claim, and Jozef was taking a comfort break from a 4 hour session of Grand Theft Auto on the X Box.

They met in Olly’s bar in Hemel Hempstead as it was happy hour  from 8 -11pm. After 12 Jaeger Bombs each, they realised it was love at first sight. Shortly after their date, Mary passed out on the cab journey home ,so Jozef made do with a large chicken kebab and cheesy chips in place of a night of passion.

Over the next 6 months they grew closer. Jozef stayed over 3 nights a week (he would have stayed more often,  but as Mary was in social housing, she was careful not to risk losing her housing benefit). Staying at Jozef’s was more difficult, he shared a house with 7 other men- not an ideal set-up, but his uncle had offered him a fantastic opportunity in his car-wash business near the magic roundabout and he was struggling to find work in Poland.

One Tuesday morning, Mary received a friend  request on Facebook, from Angel Gabriel. Mary didn’t usually accept requests from randoms but this guy looked  awfully like a Spanish barman she had spent the night with in Kavos, back in the summer. (She usually holidays in Yarmouth, but thanks to the pay-out from Injury Lawyers 4 U, she treated the girls to a fortnight in Greece).

Lo and behold, Angel wasn’t the Spanish guy from Kavos, but the Health Care assistant from the doctors surgery in Warners End. Angel had been trying to reach her mobile to discuss the results of her recent smear test, but since trading her iPhone 5 in at CeX for the latest model, Mary’s sim was blocked and she hadn’t managed to get to Bovingdon market to get it unlocked.

Angel tells Mary that she is with child,  it will be the son of God, and she is  already 7 and a half months pregnant. (God had really wanted a virgin , however realised that in 21st century Hemel Hempstead this would have been unrealistic if not impossible).

Absolutely flabbergasted by this revelation, Mary began to cry.- It’s true that over recent months Mary had started to put on weight, but she’d put that down to over-indulging in Dominoes ‘2 for 1 Tuesdays’ and the plethora of cheap chocolate she had stocked up on when the new Aldi opened. With little over a month to prepare for the birth of her baby, Mary sobs uncontrollably. Angel tries to comfort her, assuring her that everything will be alright. “It could be worse- Sonia Jackson didn’t know  she was pregnant until she gave birth on Dot Cotton’s sofa”, he explained.

Later that evening Mary told Jozef the news that she was pregnant through ‘immaculate conception’ and that he wasn’t the father. Jozef was angry and even considered taking Mary onto Jeremy Kyle to take a lie-detector test. After further consideration he realised that meant they could be granted a flat of their own  so he decided to stick by his woman.

A week later, Jozef proposed to Mary in Chiquitos and hid the engagement ring inside her enchilada . As he couldn’t afford a diamond ring- he managed to set up a crowd-funding page and raised £65 for a cubic zircon ring instead. Mary was overjoyed and instantly accepted and they agreed to raise the son of God together.

With little funds, and ccjs preventing both from obtaining credit, Mary and Jozef trawled through Schpock and ‘Free and Cheap in Hemel Hempstead’ and managed to acquire second hand clothes and a cot, all from the kindness of strangers. The money that Jozef saved from replacing fags with an e-cigarette allowed them to stock up on nappies,  and there was always the food bank if things got too tight.

The Angel Gabriel warned that they must keep the immaculate conception a secret, but Mary was an ‘over-sharer’ and one freudian slip on instagram and she had given the game away. News spread far and wide and the couple were invited onto Alan Carr’s chatty man, The One Show and even a special edition of ‘Benefits Britain’. The line of questioning was all very similar. “Is he really the son of god?’, “Will he save humanity?”, “Will he be having the MMR vaccine?”

On Christmas Eve, Mary was busy nesting and finding homes for all the gifts they had been sent by various charities and celebrity sponsors, when she suddenly realised they had no pickled onions for boxing day, so she summoned Jozef immediately.  Rather than walk to Aldi in Grovehill, Mary suggested they take Jozefs car to Tesco as they had a good deal on  Prossecco, and it was double club-card points on Christmas Eve.

In a quick turn of events, on the way to Tesco, Mary’s waters broke so they headed to the hospital. At Hemel Hempstead General, they were turned away…the A&E department had closed down along with the maternity wing a number of years ago so they headed to Watford.  Stupidly, Jozef had not put any petrol in the  Nissan Micra so as soon as they hit the dual carriageway towards the M1, the car gave an almighty splutter and came to a stop outside the Holiday Inn Express. Mary had always wanted a water birth, and with no time to waste, Mary checked out the hotel on trip advisor. After discovering it had 3 stars, she booked a room with a double bathtub via the app.

Since learning of her pregnancy, Mary had watched all the available episodes of ‘One Born every minute’  on catch up, so was clear on what to expect. Later that evening,without gas and air nor epidural, Mary gave birth to a beautiful baby boy who they named Jesus (after the mexican waiter at chiquitos where Jozef proposed). Jozef updated his followers throughout the birth via Snapchat and updates on Twitter.

Shortly after the baby was born, Mary and Jozef were visited by three wise men bearing gifts. (The Hotel Manager, a Fitness Instructor from the hotel spa and the Night Porter). The first brought a packet of B&H Gold, the second a Toblerone, and the third a large poinsettia. They quickly made their apologies for their hasty choice in gifts, but understandably it was late on Christmas Eve and the only thing open was the Shell Garage.

Mary had been through quite an ordeal, having only found out she was pregnant a short while before and then forced to give birth in a hotel bath to the Messiah, and so a few days later, it came to pass that she was suffering with post-natal depression.

At her 1st session of cognitive behavioural therapy, her counsellor helped her to explore her feelings and come to terms with her troubles.

The couple were now very much in the spotlight with a wave of media attention and the odd troll on social media, which only contributed to Mary’s symptoms. Mary and Jozef were now reality star celebrities.  Not only did Mary have a newborn baby to look after, but she also had to carry the burden of raising the son of God- all while trying to lose the baby weight as quickly as Rochelle from the Saturdays did.