Pet presents, static disasters and a mystery photo…


I've set out so many times to write this and the most ridiculous things have stopped me! Firstly walking to the drawer to take out my lap top charger and stepping on something soft yet spiky – the head of a blue tit which Willows thought I might enjoy!! Still makes me shudder thinking of it… worse still where the rest of it might be! 

Willows' presents

I hope you're not eating and reading this,  as I did want to share with you my pet's innate ability to devour some of the tiniest creatures and yet leave a perfectly untouched heart or one claw or a pair of lungs… well that's what I'm hoping they were! The time it takes me to bone a chicken – and in truth it took so long I've only done it once – with three knives, a chopping board and a great deal of profanity, makes me wonder how, with just sharp teeth and claws, cats manage to be quite so expert. And why is it  that hulking great men like Sam and Colin are rendered gibbering wrecks when faced with the carnage?

Just a ploy to get out of wrapping in kitchen roll and flushing the remains? That's my favoured way of getting shot, but it only works on small things – as I found to my cost when the washing machine repair man asked to use the loo the other week, and returned to his work a rather unflattering shade of grey. The headless vole I'd flushed just minutes before he arrived, was still in the pan. Hey ho…

Car trouble

Well it was a busy week at QVC Towers with so many of my friends stuck at home in the snow, and so I stayed in town and was safely ferried backwards and forwards by cab rather than risking the roads myself.  I have to admit my initial journey into London down the M1 was terrifying!

My little car and I seemed fine until we got to Junction 5 and then her wheels stopped turning and we sort of slid, mercifully in a straight line as I had no control over the steering, for what felt like miles. I was in the slow lane thank heavens but these huge great lorries kept thundering past me and I was certain I was going to glide into their path! I finally arrived at work some time later with  a neck like a coiled spring and more lines on my face than I was given for breaking wind in class! 

And then static struck…

We've not a had a great deal more snow since then, but it's stayed really cold, and this has brought about another peculiar side effect… static! My hair is invariably vertical unless sprayed into place (think Bridget Jones after riding in a sports car with Hugh Grant) and on Saturday night when I was on with the Kipling TSV, I was having a nightmare with the dress I was wearing! It was a two-layer jersey affair with a little chiffon overskirt, and talk about cling! It was all over me like a rash! 

Luckily my first hour with Gatineau was seated, but obviously when I was standing the problem was apparent, my hem line a good foot shorter than it should have been and the outline of my backside looking like two boys fighting under a blanket! As we were continually walking from one part of the studio to another, I lost count of the times I was self-consciously pulling at my hem, but the more I pulled the worse it got. 

Now Ceri -  who does a sterling job backstage and on the floor bringing us all the products – sprayed the fabric with hairspray after our Wendy (also backstage and also doing a marv job) suggested it. I'm not sure Dennis from Ojon would have been too happy to have seen it used this way, but needs must.

Anyways, whether it was the denseness of my denier tights or the warmth of my body I have no idea, but it really didn't solve the problem, and so I am asking you ALL, if you have any remedies to get rid of static?  With the exception of walking around with a piece of chain hanging out from under my skirt (as they do with cars) I'm happy to try anything. 

Alison's friend playing the mystery party game The mystery photo

In fact the photo this week is pretty reminiscent of the outline of my outfit, but I thought you might like to exercise your imaginations a little further and see if you can guess which party game was taking place when this was taken!! 🙂

Have a great week and I'll look forward to hearing your suggestions – on both!

Love Ali xx


  1. Nicola Rippon January 12, 2010 at 11:00 am -  Reply

    I suffer horribly from static at this time of year! Because I am allergic to a lot of natural woolly fibres (mohair, angora for example) I have to have scarves and hats made of man-made fibres – about the worst thing you can have with cold air outside and heating on inside, but there you go! Of course my fine hair sticks up, floats about and generlly misbehaves and my cats refuse to let me stroke them until the static disperses. I once actually saw blue sparks fly between my woolly glove and my cat’s ear! Have you tried some of those fabric softener cloths that you put in with your drying? If you gently rub them around your legs (etc!) before putting on the static-prone garment it can help prevent static building up.

  2. Maria Johnson January 12, 2010 at 1:47 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison,
    I do love reading your blogs and the things that happen to you!!! You look so in control when on air, not at all out of your debth!!!! Noone would know what is going onbehind the scenes!! You are a breath of fresh air. Please don’t change. You make me laugh and cringe at your exploits.
    It must have been very scarey driving into work in all that snow and to end up skidding like that must have been a nightmare! Hats off to you for accomplishing it.
    Keep safe.

  3. Julie January 12, 2010 at 7:22 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    You do make me laugh-we could all do with that couldn’t we especially in this weather? I had a car once and everytime I closed the door I had static, doesn’t it hurt?
    Weather really bad here tonight we just about got home our 4×4 was skidding everywhere-even they can’t perform miracles!!Bek has been on the road for 3 hours as I write this, she works in Cardiff and is still there now-3 hours later hardly moved! Well done you for driving in it.
    Keep making me laugh!!
    Julie xx

  4. elaine sallis January 12, 2010 at 7:36 pm -  Reply

    Your blog really made me laugh, apart from the skidding down the motorway bit!!!!. Using fabric conditioner is supposed to stop static but it never worked for me so guess that is a piece of useless information!! We had a mouse in our house my daughters boyfriend screamed at it, the cats ran away from it which left me chasing it up and down the stairs with my husbands size 11 slipper in my hand. Luckily (for the mouse and me) it ran straight out the back door and I didnt see it again. Dont ever change you are priceless.

  5. Susan Kerslake January 12, 2010 at 9:30 pm -  Reply

    Rub hand cream or moisturiser on the top of your legs to stop your skirt clinging. I rub it through my tights, keeps legs looking good too.

  6. alison keenan January 12, 2010 at 10:46 pm -  Reply

    Nicola your poor moggy! No wonder she’s scared of you stroking her currently if your mitten virtually ignited her!!! 🙂 I’ll try the conditioner sheets. I haven’t used them since I used to tumble Lucy’s baby grows so the smell will take me back if nothing else. Thank you so much for your lovely reply – and you have my total sympathy about your hair. I might have lots of it, but it’s very fine. I used to wear Brentford Nylon nighties – you should have seen the sparks fly then! Love Ali x

  7. alison keenan January 12, 2010 at 10:48 pm -  Reply

    Bless you Maria – it was particularly scary driving in, but mercifully the roads are now clear, so fingers crossed we escape the next snow fall 🙂 I’m glad all appears to be running smoothly on air, although I think it’s great to be able to share with you exactly what’s been going on sometimes…! Watch this space 🙂 Have a lovely week, and do keep in touch. You stay safe too, love Ali xx

  8. Valia January 13, 2010 at 8:07 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison,
    Like you I also suffer in cold weather from static. I am always giving myself & others small electic shocks, I see blue sparks coming from my fingers & going to my office furniture on a regular basis (think metal filing cabinets etc). You can buy anti-static keyrings on the internet, they discharge any static build up – I had one but it broke, but it did work great (perhaps QVC could start selling them!!)
    Hair wise – you can get some shampoos/conditioners that have anti-static properties (like Aussie smooth mate), they help a bit, but as I have long hair I always put it in plait if it gets too bad.

  9. alison keenan January 13, 2010 at 9:48 am -  Reply

    Hi Julie, Yes, car doors, lift doors, and walking on nylon carpets all cause problems for me!! Poor Bek – do hope she got home safely eventually. I remember the big snow in 2003 when it took me five and half hours to get home! Amazingly I didn’t need the loo! Take care and stay indoors. 🙂 Love Ali x

  10. alison keenan January 13, 2010 at 9:53 am -  Reply

    Hi Elaine, lovely to hear from you and your story about the mouse really made me laugh. As I type Dodge has brought some poor little brown mouse in and it’s hiding behind my boot in the kitchen. I’ve shut both cats out and plan to approach cautiously with a lock and lock in the hope of catching it. Trouble is so much snow outside I don’t know how it’ll get home if I let it out! Thank you for the conditioner tip…. I do use them, but perhaps need to change brand – incredible choice out there now – they read like a range of Yankee Candles!! Thanks for keeping in touch, always lovely to hear from you. Ali x

  11. alison keenan January 13, 2010 at 9:56 am -  Reply

    Susan that sounds a good idea to me! I will try it next time I’m on wearing a skirt. Will have to make sure I rub it in well though as my tights are invariably black!!Hope you’re coping well in the snow and are managing to keep warm. Any ideas on what the picture might be of? I hear it’s a game rugby players also play! Love Ali x

  12. alison keenan January 13, 2010 at 10:09 am -  Reply

    Valia, some great ideas there! I shall speak to our buyers about the key rings – reckon they’ll be interested! Thanks too for the info on shampoos and conditioners, and I’m hoping that Nicola who wrote to me earlier reads this, as it sounds as though her hair may be even worse than mine! Take care and thanks for taking the time out to write as it was lovely to hear from you. Love Ali xx

  13. Margaret January 13, 2010 at 12:13 pm -  Reply

    Oh Alison you are a real tonic , love your blog arnt men wimps when it comes to the mm cat gifts, would love to have been there when the washer repair man had his shock but Im afraid I might have had an accident laughing at him it was priceless. Glad you stayed safe driving its wearing thin now is this weather snowing heavy here again today just want it to go now, taken photos got the memory so would love to wake up and find it gone!I watched the Kipling show and thought you were wearing a shorter dress than usual but didnt realise it was static , get it myself and I find touching something wooden takes it away , my fingers have given so many shocks to people its like Im wearing one of those buzzer things ,Thank you for all the entertainment you are like a best friend,Margaretxxxx

  14. dorothy January 13, 2010 at 4:54 pm -  Reply

    hi alison
    you sound like you live a mad house, BUT WITH GREAT LAUGHS witch it is all about. would’nt like to think what laura would be like she was on phone histerical in summer because there where ants coming in so god help us, hope she does not get a cat. when i push a shopping trolly the static is awfull and really hurts you can hear the cracks, davy just laughs so when he’s rubbing his fingers when they go white with the cold i just say R BLESS HE IS LEARNING.hope sam is keeping well and no more accidents.
    love best wishes
    dorothy xxx

  15. Marg January 14, 2010 at 12:12 am -  Reply

    Hi Ali, my you were in great form tonight,quacker facory. I thoughtthat nice presenter was going to fall off her chair at your description of your thermals, she just isnt a blog reader,we regulars take these incidents as part of every day life (for You).
    I have a little shiz tu Bitch shes nearly seven and I still forget how to spell the name of the breed, shes a tough little thing called Midge, when she was still a puppy she patrolled our garden, we have a lot of nesting birds, and there are a lot of fledgings who get pushed out of the nest, Midge was there and that was one less to feed in that nest,she only ever brought the heads into the house,I’m sure she had a meal of the rest. Everything came to a stop one day when she was chased by two adult birds,I am afraid of birds and I couldnt do a thing but she got away and that was the last of the bird feasts,mabye the same will happen to your cat,but then cats have that hunter instinct.You may just have to put up with her diet.I think she’ll grow out of it and go on to bigger prey,Ha Ha.I’m sure nothing you cant deal with,Good Luck.
    p.s. hope everyone is getting over their health issues.

  16. Kristina Moore January 14, 2010 at 7:51 pm -  Reply

    Hello Alison, aren’t rubber soled shoes supposed to help with static. I wonder if there are insoles (or partial ones) that you can try. We have a nylon carpet and when I kiss my husband we always get an electric shock across noses!!
    Glad you coped with the skating rink roads. I haven’t been outside since it started snowing. My husband kindly marched to the supermarkets when it was at its worst here in Ipswich. But things are improving now – having said that it will probably be white again in the morning. I do hope not.
    I don’t think there is a lot you can do about cats hunting. Carol and Jim down the road are always brought squirrels heads and tails, the rest is eaten by their cat.
    Hope you continue to survive the weather and you never know it might be a prelude to a good summer (except I don’t like hot weather at all).
    Hugs to all

  17. Roisin Montgomery January 14, 2010 at 9:01 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Watching colour your bedroom…… Is that an engagement ring?????????
    Best wishes
    Rosh xx

  18. janice reeves January 14, 2010 at 10:23 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali, Loving hearing about all your cats exploits and scary journeys into work, also remember Brentford Nylon nightdress in Bri Nylon my sister and I used to sleep together on winter nights when we were small, and we used to rub our nightdress together under the covers and yes the sparks really did fly it was quite funny and scary at the same time, Lots of Love Janicexxxx

  19. Marg January 15, 2010 at 5:03 pm -  Reply

    Ali I had to laugh when I read Tina’s anti static suggestion, it whizzed me back to when my sister and myself were dragged out of bed in darkness and were made put our plimsoles on,my mother was obsessed with lightning storms,and we were safer with rubber on our feet,said she.She used to read every weather forcast and watch all on the tele,and if there was a hint of a thunder storm in the Brtish Isles the house would be in a frensy covering mirrors,and getting everyone in their rubber footwear. She could tell you how many people had been struck by lightening at any one day worldwide.I just had to add this it came back so vividly,wish she was still around to have us tease her about her phobia,she was such an elegant woman with a very gentle
    sense of humour,but could never see the funny side of her fear,poor thing.

  20. alison keenan January 16, 2010 at 5:05 pm -  Reply

    Margaret, bless you for your message, and I shall make sure I touch something wooden in the next time I have that dress on! Luckily I haven’t passed the static on to anyone else, but I do remember when the children were small and had fleece romper suits that static used o set in up in their car seats. Major sparks when I lifted them out! Not funny really, but the look of surprise on their faces was priceless 🙂 Glad to consider you a friend too, and have a lovely weekend. Love Ali x

  21. alison keenan January 16, 2010 at 5:09 pm -  Reply

    Dorothy, your Laura and her ants sounds like my Lucy and spiders! Have to admit to being none to keen on either myself! Sam is grand and away with his girlfriend this weekend. Much easier for him now the snow has gone. You should get Davy to push the trolley and then the static would keep his hands warm! 🙂 Only joking! Off for a night out with friends for a 40th party tonight and then work tomorrow – Elemis, lovely 🙂 Hope you have a great weekend. Love Ali xx

  22. alison keenan January 16, 2010 at 5:13 pm -  Reply

    Hi Marg, lovely to hear from you and your story about Midge! I can’t blame you for not being able to bat the birds away…..something rather scary about the haphazard way they swoop around! I’m not sure they’d bother either Willows or Dodge as along with birds, voles and mice, they’ve brought us squirrels and rabbits too! I think the car flap is the only thing stopping them from bringing home a small dog! 🙂 Hope you have a great weekend and enjoy the thaw. Keep in touch, Love Ali xx

  23. Alison Hill January 17, 2010 at 6:08 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison…
    I couldnt help but laugh out loud reading this blog entry…thank you for sharing it, its always nice knowing that presenters have funny events going on in their lives.
    I too suffer from static constantly…I have to comb hairspray through my hair to tame it every day otherwise you can actually hear the crackle of the static. I cant touch the metal railings you get in stores either on their stairs or the rails where clothes are displayed, sparks fly. If I wear certain fabrics they make a right racket when I take them off at the end of the day…ironing is a nightmare and even touching people Ive had nasty static shocks. I hate it.. As soon as winter kicks in and the heating goes on, I know its all going to start again!
    QVC definitely ought to sell some sort of gadget (if there is one?)that can stop it!
    Happy new year to you and your family x x x

  24. alison keenan January 17, 2010 at 7:47 pm -  Reply

    Hi Tina, Lovely to hear from you, and to hear of your passionate kisses on the nylon carpet – did the earth move? NO, but the sparks flew!! 🙂 So glad that things are improving for you in Ipswich, and glad too that your husband is clearly a gent and has stopped you from needing to venture out in the frozen world. In truth while writing this, all the snow has finally gone, and the sun has been shining today. You’re not the first person to suggest we may be getting a hot summer….and although I like the idea, it’s a little different when you can sit on a beach and enjoy it, rather than sitting in traffic sweating cobs! I guess we’ll have to wait and see 🙂 Thanks for writing – always lovely to hear from you, love Ali xx

  25. alison keenan January 17, 2010 at 7:50 pm -  Reply

    Hi Rosh, you don’t miss a trick do you!! 🙂 No, it’s not an engagement ring, it’s just that I’ve caught my middle finger and it’s uncomfortable to wear a ring on it, so am using the 4th finger instead. Did feel nice though! Thank you for taking time out, and trust me if it was an engagement ring, I would have told you 🙂 Love Ali x

  26. alison keenan January 17, 2010 at 7:51 pm -  Reply

    Oh and Tina, I think the rubber insoles sound like a great idea – may well pass that on to our buyers! Thank you…. might make your feet a tad hot though! Ali x

  27. alison keenan January 17, 2010 at 7:54 pm -  Reply

    Janice, thank you for making me laugh 🙂 My mum bought my sister and I those ‘baby doll’ nighties with frills and all – mine was fuschia pink. Bad enough on their own, but if you had the nylon sheets too you daren’t move in bed for fear of fire! Wonder what happened to the company and what they’re making now? Take care and keep in touch, love Ali x

  28. alison keenan January 18, 2010 at 7:08 pm -  Reply

    Alison, I think it’s official. You’re clearly HOT STUFF!! So embarrasing when you start to ‘ping’ off the clothes rails and escalators in stores which is why shopping from home is such a god send I find :)! I am now seriously considering patenting something that will stop all this, and then hopefully QVC would buy it! Thanks so much for writing to me, you made me laugh 🙂 Just off to serve roast dinner for 5 – and I’m the only female, hence the cook! Love Ali x

  29. Kristina Moore January 18, 2010 at 8:02 pm -  Reply

    Ali, I can’t keep my feet warm at present. Don’t know why! I have taken to wearing two pairs of socks. Maybe I will invest in some insoles. Hope the insoles idea works for the static.
    Marg, I used to work with a very calm lady who hated thunderstorms. So every time one started it was down with the blinds and hope nothing happened.
    Hugs to both

  30. alison keenan January 19, 2010 at 6:39 pm -  Reply

    Tina, sorry to hear about your cold feet!! I often blast the hairdryer into my shoes/boots before putting them on when it’s really cold and that helps 🙂 Make sure your socks aren’t too tight cos that can defeat the object – bit like gloves that fit too well I find. What about sheepskin innersoles? Although they may be a bit large to fit inside shoes rather than boots! Big hug back to you Ali xx

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