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Friday 22 January 2016

This Week The Mice Have Mostly Been...

It's F... F... F...
And thank goodness for that. 

I think we definitely all deserve a lie-in or two and a couple of days of hardcore hibernation. I don't know if it's the plummeting temperatures, the vast expanse of time that seems to have dragged by since my last pay cheque, or just general January malaise, but right now there's nowhere I'd rather spend the weekend than sprawled out on the sofa. So you know what? That's exactly where I'm going to spend it! 

If you're feeling similarly languid, let us run you through what's served as our lounging entertainment in the past seven days - this week the Mice have mostly been...

Neglecting work, household chores and husbands because I can't get my nose out of my Kindle thanks to Rebecca Thornton's brilliantly unputdownable debut novel, The Exclusives.

I was tipped off about this little gem when Esther Coren blogged about it last Friday (if you haven't discovered her new blog, The Spike, yet, say hello to an amazing weekend treat...). By Monday morning I'd been dragged back a couple of decades and immersed in a world Mallory Towers meets Gone Girl. Download it now and be prepared to do nothing you meant to do until you reach the last page...

Beginning to work my way through the Oscar nominations list and kicking off with what has to be the favourite for this year's best picture - the Revenant. This epic survival-adventure film is made even more exceptional when you read about the lengths that director, Alejandro González Iñárritu (21 Grams, Babel, Birdman), and his long-suffering cast went to in order to make this stunning piece of cinema. Insisting on shooting using only natural light, in the remotest of locations where at times temperatures reached as low as minus 27 - it's hardly surprising that this project took an arduous nine months to shoot. Beautiful, heart-wrenching and without a doubt the performance of Di Caprio's career.

Next up - Steve Jobs, Joy and Carol... Pass the popcorn.

Getting max use out of my brand new Frends Laylas with an iPod full of Podcasts. I recognise I'm monumentally late to the Podcast party, but having heard a zillion people raving on about Serial last year, I finally decided to download a couple of Podcast episodes, and within a couple of listens, I was well and truly obsessed. Swapping my usual morning Spotify session for half an hour's Podcasting makes me feel like I'm using my commute for something constructive and now I finally feel like I have a bit more of substance to discuss at the coffee machine with my colleagues.

(Hyper intelligent earphone face clearly illustrating the point).

A few of my current favs:

Answer Me This - fortnightly Podcast during which Helen and Olly answer a set of random questions sent in by listeners which run across a range of ridiculous subjects from the proper name for the insert in a box of chocolates that tells you what flavour each chocolate is to why there are so few paintings of the pregnant Virgin Mary. This makes me laugh out loud on the train - you've been warned.

Stuff Mom Never Told You - Like a night in with your wittiest older sister and her super cool best mate, Stuff Mom Never Told You tackles any and all girl-related topics from the skinny on the science behind juice cleanses to knitting and the history of abortion to feminist witchcraft...

Jeremy Vine's Being Human - brilliant BBC 2 radio show which each week asks a celebrity guest what defining feature makes us human. With guests ranging from Caitlin Moran to Ruby Wax and Terry Waite to the Archbishop of Canterbury, each episode starts with the week's subject reading an essay on their defining feature and finishes up with the guest's lifestory. 

Planet Money - great commute-friendly, sub-20 minute bubbles of really clever but genuinely interesting stuff that's loosely economics-related. Think everything from the marketing strategy behind keeping the Hermes Birkin the number one "it" bag to why the price of Coca Cola didn't change for 70 years.

5 Live Hit List - a great source of coffee machine chatter - this 5 Live show counts down through the most shared stories on social media during the previous week which makes for a guaranteed mix of crazy weirdness, key current affairs stories and odd celeb titbits. 

And now we think it's time to leave you to crack on with the weekend's adventures. 

The Mice

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