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Friday 16 August 2019

Five for Fri-Yay! Podcasts, Books, Brooches And More

Close up of a bee bug brooch from Marks and Spencer, AW19

It's Fri-Yay! Aren't you glad? Mr Mutton is off on another extreme cycling holiday tomorrow, to Scotland and the Hebrides. The weather is promising hail, rain and winds of 30 miles per hour on Sunday and Monday, so good luck with that one, darling :-)

Here are my Five for Fri-Yay, a quick update on what I've been using, reading, listening to and watching - plus a cute brooch!

Podcasts for Mid Lifers

Putting aside my liking for true crime podcasts  (and a rich seam with "Canadian True Crime"), I have been listening to a few of the podcasts for mid life women which have started popping up.

The Hot and Moody Podcast, as its name might suggest, is aimed at peri and menopausal women.  It's now in its second series.  I listened to episode 1 of the new series where the two presenters spoke to Lisa Dunnington from Hempworx who was talking about the latest wonder product, CBD Oil. She started using CBD Oil to improve her sleep;  relieving menopause symptoms came later.

The Older and Wider Podcast has a great pedigree. It's presented by well known comedian Jenny Eclair and producer/writer Judith Holden. They chat about general topics and the menopause, and have guests. A good listen, professionally produced.

In similar vein, middle aged women being very funny, is Fortunately With Fi and Jane. This one can be quite hit and miss. I love the banter between Jane Garvey (Woman's Hour) and Fi Glover for the first few minutes of the show, where they expatiate on all manner of crazy topics (as we do). They then have a guest, and sometimes if the guest is not entirely to their liking (Will Self), it fizzles out. But when guests are great value, like Emily Maitlis, Gyles Brandreth and Matthew Banister, it's a joy. Please ladies, let's have fewer of the woke millennials that we've never heard of.

Magnificent Midlife with Rachel Lankester celebrates the older woman. Topics and interviewees have included Professor Joyce Harper on rethinking menopause and HRT,  and becoming a professional bodybuilder at 48.

The Experience 50 Podcast is a long running US production. Again the formula is speaking to women who have had amazing mid life transformations, plus topics such as fitness, health, finding love over 50.

You can find all these podcasts at your normal podcast provider. I'd love to know your recommendations.

Busy Bee Brooch

I like to wear a few brooches on my jackets in winter, and the little bee brooch at the top is so cute! Just £12.50.  It would make a great tree present for those of you, like me, who start collecting presents early on.

Favourite self tanner

You may think I'm a bit late with this one but summer may yet make a reappearance.  I had a trial tube of St Tropez Gradual Tan Watermelon Infusion in a holiday beauty box, and I really liked it.  It's described as an everyday body lotion, and you can apply it straight after the shower without needing to moisturise first. Plus it doesn't sting if you've just shaved your legs. It gives a slightly darker colour than the Dove product I had been using, so you don't always need a second application.  The scent is pretty and the fake tan odour is very slight, a few hours later.

The pink and green bottle of St Tropez Gradual Tan Watermelon Infusion

What I've Been Watching

This time of the year is a bit of a desert. We're quite fussy and we've tried a lot of the dramas doing the rounds but not liked them.  So we're currently re-watching Line of Duty.  

I enjoyed the first of Kathy Burke's three-part documentary series, All Woman, although it was lacking in journalistic rigour.  Actor and producer Kathy is a national treasure, outspoken, funny and straight talking. She told us she's perfectly happy with her own fat self, and then went on to explore why so many young women seek to improve their looks, taking a warts and all look at the beauty industry.

Kathy Burke star of Channel 4 documentary All Woman. Image: The Guardian

The chat with "Fat Sue," a friend of Burke's and the muse painted by Lucien Freud, wasn't very illuminating:  Sue didn't get much of a word in. And I felt Burke should have been directed to be tougher on some of the people she interviewed, such as the plastic surgeon who had given his wife a few little "refreshes."

What I've Been Reading

Candace Bushnell is 60 now, and single again after a divorce a few years ago.  She still looks fabulous as you can see, and has probably been to the plastic surgeon in Kathy Burke's programme. 

Her new book  Is There Still Sex in the City? reflects on life after things have gone wrong for some of her peer group.  It starts off with Bushnell's experiences with Tinder, and how women of a certain age invariably get pursued by "cubs" who are looking for places to live. Then there's a diversion about plastic surgery to rejuvenate the lady bits. And then we're back to "Take Tia" "Take Melissa" and more depressing stories of ladies conned by men, left high and dry by men - you get the picture.

Candace Bushnell, writer of Is There Still Sex in the City?

I found it all a bit depressing. Men are variously dismissed as losers and low lifes, and there's a deep vein of cynicism.  The vaguely cheerful note at the end, as she reflected on good friendships with women, came too late for me. 

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