Hands off my fair Verona


There’s a new product in town and it’s one that’s for the ladies only. The problem I have with it is it’s targeted at women who, well, perhaps don’t accept their bodies as they naturally are. You see the product is a vaginal cleanser and goes it by a name that’s no doubt purposely alliterate and uber-romantic. It’s called Verona.

I stumbled across this range of “intimate washes” when I was at the gym recently. Its marketing had pithy taglines such as: “Let’s not pussy around” and “We’re not going to beat around the bush”. Oh ha ha. Lord knows what the gym was thinking when they decided to stock free samples of its products in the ladies change-rooms. It’s a big fitness chain (perhaps the ‘first’ big one) so perhaps it was a deal made at the top and filtered down to the nether regions of its gyms across the nation. One can only hope that it wasn’t a woman who ticked the relevant box to get this Shakespearean tragedy across the line.

According to its website, Verona has “Intimate care products adjusted to your needs!
Verona offers a complete range of intimate washes, tailored to all life stages. Feel fresh and protected all day with our intimate cleansing & soothing products.” Seemingly, if Verona has its way, girls as young as 12 should be using its feminine hygiene cleanses to ensure everyday “freshness and odour prevention”. I think girls on the verge of adulthood have enough body issues already without getting brainwashed into believing that their front bums are a tad squiffy.

Helpfully Verona has developed a plethora of “intimate washes” for every life cycle including teens, everyday, pregnancy and menopause so that women from 15 to 55 can soon be hooked into washing their lady bits with their specially formulated gels and whatnot that “respect the intimate zone’s natural protections” – whatever the fuck that means.

I guess it’s not like Verona is the first company in the world to trade on women’s insecurities about the natural state of their bodies to make a quick buck. Douching has been around for hundreds of years but thankfully has mostly fallen out of favour. In fact, according to Wikipedia, “many health care professionals state that douching is dangerous as it interferes with both the vagina’s normal self-cleaning and with the natural bacterial culture of the vagina, and it might spread or introduce infections.”

While Verona may not be in the same league as douching, its products trade on the belief that women’s bodies are in some way unclean and, you know, a little bit pongy. Indeed, if we ever want Romeo to come knocking at that front door, it seems we have to not only clean our house but also our poonanis – preferably daily inside and out.

While I was aghast at the array of fanny-cleaner freebies in the gym that day, the next day I was mortified when I returned to find they were all gone. Now, I wasn’t distraught because I’d actually wanted to give my va-jay-jay a bit of an internal spruce-up for an extra special date night with B, it was because it meant that dozens of women had actually swallowed the “you’ve got a smelly vagina” bait and taken one of the samples home. I didn’t know whether to feel sad or angry.

I hoped in vain that perhaps management had had a change of heart and withdrawn the offending products. Alas, several weeks later, the Verona shelves still stand empty and the “hilarious” marketing lines still taunt us disapprovingly from the change-room walls. If you ask me, unlike Shakespeare, there’s nothing remotely dignified in that. I was going to write a letter of complaint about it but thought I’d write this blog instead to publicly state that the welfare of my twat – just as it is – is in very safe hands… mine.

The A to Z of cohabitation

The A to Z of Cohabitation image

After nearly five years of mostly happy singledom, it’s been one whole day since B and I started “officially” living together. It’s been quite good so far. He hasn’t farted in front of me once. It’s a pity I can’t say the same. We even managed to shift into our new abode without an argument – although I did say “I have no opinion on that” quite a few times during the course of our very long moving day. But as we head, eyes wide open, into the next phase of our relationship, there are many things I need to keep in mind to help me stay relatively sane.

A – Alcohol or lack of it. Unbeknownst to almost everyone bar a few, after 28 years on the piss I gave up the grog nine months ago. I feel awesome and this is the first relationship that I’ve ever had that didn’t start with one of us wearing beer googles. Winning!

– Blow-jobs. One must remember to give these from time-to-time when one is cohabitating.

C – Commitment. As a 42-year-old who has never married, I am perhaps a commitment-phobe. It might be time to change this. C also stands for clitoris, naturally.

D – Dementia. When your mum has dementia. It sucks. Every single day.

– Ego. One must keep this in check even when one gets to be on the telly.

F – Friends. Through the good times and the bad and especially during the heady days and months of new relationships when one may tend to go AWOL these are the peeps whove stuck by me, even when they didnt like me that much.

G – Grace Land. My screenplay which I had written the first 10 minutes of before some wanker broke into my (now former) apartment and nicked my laptop. That said, G is also for Grateful. This year I have learned to be this. Finally.

H – Handjobs – see entry above at B.

I – IVF…

J – John Butler Trio. Some 15 years after I first saw him play in Fremantle, I still love him. Not in a stalkery kind of way though. I just admire talent.

K – Kale. I really really like kale, raw or cooked, which makes me a knob I know but I just don’t care.

L – Loony. This year, I have stopped focusing on the things I can’t change and concentrated instead on the things that I can. It’s been rather good for my mental health so I’m slightly less loony than I was. Only slightly, mind you.

M – McJones. Potentially the name of our new cat, although Montague McPussyCat is also a frontrunner for this soon-to-be adopted moggy.

N – Never say never. At the start of this year if someone had told me I’d be shacked up with a smart and very sexy man by year’s end, I would’ve laughed heartily, called them a fantasist and then popped off to the pub to drown my sorrows.

O – OMV. This blog, which I must give more attention to. Oh and it stands for Oh My Vagina in case you were wondering.

P – Property porn. One must not indulge in so much property porn on for sale listing websites that one finds oneself talking about it constantly and boring almost everyone one knows apart from work colleagues who are paid to listen.

Q – Qi. Seemingly a word one can use in Scrabble to beat your girlfriend on her birthday while holidaying on a Pacific island.

R – Rabbit fur. Random.

S – Scrabble. My boyfriend beats me in Scrabble with questionable words and a sexy smile (see entry at Q). I love him for it.

T – Truth. It’s a pretty good way to start a relationship I have learned. Who knew?

U – Uranus. I once told B that I thought it was a cliché to say “I love you to the moon and back”, plus it didn’t seem quite far enough if you really did love someone. So I often tell him “I love you to Uranus and back”. I think he likes it.

V – Vulva, naturally.

W – The Wend. The only place to live. Full of hippies, hipsters, homeless and then there’s us.

X – X-Factor. If I was to write a list of all the attributes I was seeking in a man, B would have every single one, plus a few I didn’t even know I was looking for. He’s also cool that I wrote a blog that appeared to insinuate (completely incorrectly) that he had erection problems. What a chilled dude.

Y – YOLO. Just fucken do it I reckon.
Z – Zouk. A very sexy Latin dance that makes your whole body tingle. B learned this just for me. Z also stands for zzz’s. He’s an early riser. I am not. Since we met, I’ve begun to wake earlier and he’s started to sleep in a little later so nowadays we wake at the same time somewhere in the middle of these two former extremes. I think that’s kinda neat.


The a-hole quotient


It appears that in life, no matter how chilled you try to be and how much you attempt to accept people for who they are, you can still encounter a-holes. And sometimes they’re in your bedroom.

I was chatting to a friend recently who’d just come out of a tumultuous relationship, which likely lasted longer than it should have. Within a few weeks of their initial meeting, a number of warning signs were apparent. But you know what it’s like in the beginning you’re prepared to forgive almost anything, because you’re often thinking with other parts of your anatomy and not your head.

In such circumstances I’d like to say that I’ve always stood my ground, and upheld my long-held, probably slightly over-the-top lofty, principles when it comes to new relationships, but I can’t.

In the first few weeks and months of a new coupling, I’ve been known to turn a blind eye to glaringly obvious issues such as massive age differences and a general lack of suitability on every single level full stop, to signs of chronic alcoholism and potential homosexuality. All because I thought I was in love or maybe just because I was lonely.

It’s obvious to me now that it was my clitoris that was doing the thinking back then. And it clearly was not used to thinking at all because its decision-making (if it was at all possible of doing such a thing) was utterly appalling. That can be the only reason that some of my ex-boyfriends were ex-boyfriends and not one night stands whom I should’ve quickly forgotten with the passage of time.

But one thing I can say, regardless of their long-term suitability, none of them were a-holes. They all were generally nice fellows who would make someone – male or female – a good husband, just not me. It appears I’ve always had a fairly good barometer when it comes to spotting an a-hole before getting into a relationship with them.  Thank the lord for small mercies.

Unfortunately others are not so lucky. I’ve heard stories from friends or just acquaintances – many with a rather beautiful ‘rescue gene’ which a-holes seem to prey on – about time squandered on people who at first seemed worthy of the effort but in the end were just a waste of time, space and energy. They definitely had an a-hole quotient.

Often they have excuses, many many excuses, for their bad behaviour which usually results in the innocent party being sucked into their a-hole vortex for longer than is ever advisable. They will also usually offer to change, even though they’ve been displaying the same narcissistic behaviours for decades with or without the help of a shrink.

Of course when one has the misfortune of being married to an a-hole then it becomes a whole lot harder to walk away, especially if there are kids involved.

Another friend and I were talking about this concept the other night and came to the conclusion that forgiveness is always a good idea but only when it’s warranted. But in life you also can come into contact with a-holes in the workplace that you have to put up with because that’s what professionals do. Even if they do display the attributes of being megalomaniac monsters bent on destruction because of their world-beating narcissism – or so I’ve heard.

And sometimes, unfortunately, your path crosses with an a-hole and there’s naught you can do about it but try very hard to not get sucked down into the depths of their despair.

And, if all else fails, it’s always a good idea in my opinion to shout “Go fuck yourself” as you walk out the door and into the light.