17 things we worried about when we were 17

This week, I woke up worried about the future of my unborn eggs in a world that is now being run by reality TV stars.

I have things such as health, bills, career prospects that play on my mind these days. It’s boring and grown up and I don’t like it.

If only it were 10 years ago. When, to be brutal, I couldn’t  have given two shits who was sitting in the White House and I certainly paid no thoughts to the gas bill.

If only it were 10 years ago when all we had to worry about were things like;

  • If you could actually handle overtime at your Saturday job.
    Because, you know, between doing four hours in a shoe shop and completing a whole two bits of coursework a month, you were pretty stressed.
  • If you were going to get found out for not actually having had sex yet.
    Because apparently the earlier you do it, the cooler you are and THE CLOCK IS TICKING.
  • If you were going to get found out for not actually finding thongs comfortable. Because everyone was wearing them. But your mum didn’t really want you to wear them because in her middle aged mind they just meant sex. And you didn’t really want to wear them because they felt like you were being inappropriately touched up by dental floss.
  • If you were going to get rumbled for using Sparknotes.
    Like every teacher in the land didn’t secretly praise the day that got invented and the day you were smart enough to use the internet so they didn’t have to actually converse with you.
  • If you were going to get embroiled in a teacher/student affair like the girls in the North you heard about on Newsbeat.
    Because, I’m not gonna lie, we all saw how Mr Allback looked at me in AS Chemistry. And it was a look that just screamed ‘let’s elope to France’. Trust.
  • If your EMA was going to stretch out far enough for you to go bowling AND underage drinking in one weekend.
    Or if you were going to have the heartbreaking decision of having to choose.
  • If your Mum was going to find out that you smoked at lunchtimes.
    Like she wasn’t wise enough to smell it on your uniform but was just storing it in her armoury to completely and utterly obliterate you one day.
  • Parent’s evening.
    And potentially getting found out for not going to 3rd period History two weeks ago because you and Sexy Sean were bumming a zoot and having a snog at the back gate.
  • Saturday’s.
    And the risk of having nobody to walk round a shopping centre with, with absolutely no purpose whatsoever.
  • Having to convey your emotions on text messages before the invention of the emoji. How did one even let a boy know that she fancied the living shit out of him without the invention of the monkey. HOW GODDAMIT!
  • Having to manage your time.
    You know, how does one teenager fit in doing her Art & Design homework at the same time of spending ample amounts of time flirting with that boy from the common room on MSN messenger. I’m not a magician, Mum.
  • If the overall look of your MySpace really reflected you as a person.
    I mean, can you tell this is the real me? Maybe I should add on some more pictures of B2K.
  • Wondering if you ever will truly get over the fact that Ben Anderson snogged Sian Blackey at that party EVENTHOUGH he’d been texting you for like 3 whole days. And after he’d told Josh from next door that he thought  you were decent. This is what real heartbreak feels like. This is it.
  • If you were able to grind correctly.
    Like, am I doing the right thing with my hips to this truly awful dancehall song at this honestly frightening house party in the middle of South Norwood?
  • If your bum looked peachy enough in your acid washed jeans from New Look.
    Or if you needed to go down another size so that you couldn’t breathe, but so it really popped out so boys would chirps you on the bus.
  • Dealing with the gut wrenching, agonising pain that even though you are full blown grown up with your own mind (ahem) and your own money (all £25 a week of it) you still have to actually LISTEN to what your parents have to say and still live in their house. What. A. Drag.
  • If you were pregnant.
    Because that girl in J17 said she got pregnant just from fingering ‘outside clothes’  and you kissed Reiss from work last Saturday so you’re pretty sure you are next in line for a teenage pregnancy.

    Life was so hard.

    LL x


boxpark croydon

9 reasons we are too excited for Boxpark Croydon

The crates are going up! I know right, I walked past the station yesterday morning with a Monday blurry eye and perked right up at the fact that Boxpark is finally on it’s way. Let’s not mention the fact that I thought it was due to happen last summer. It’s finally coming!


And why are we all so bloody excited. Well I’ll tell you why.

  1. Err, for starters it is actually going makes us cool as fuck. Croydon is finally going to be on the map – and not for high crime rates, riots or people that still think wearing Adidas tracksuits on the street is OK. Side step the obvious gentrification and just wallow in people no longer backing away when you say you live in Croydon. Finally.
  2. The influx of bearded men is going to sky rocket. And for the women of Croydon this is an exciting bloody time. Because it’s a known fact that temporary structures that  house ‘pop-up’ shops and restaurants are a hot bed for hot men with hot beards. The number is doubled when said structure is made from crates. Don’t ask me – it’s science ok. It’s bloody science.
  3. MEATLIQUOR yo! Yes, you heard me right. Meat fricking Liquor is coming to Croydon. And hopefully for at least 6 hours nobody will really realise so we won’t have to queue up for 17 weeks like we do in the West End. Get that burger in my face immediately.meat-liquor-logo


  4. Our Uber bill is going to fall through the floor. Because the novelty of having this here will run until at least Christmas. Which means all us commuters will just come home on a Friday night at a normal time, and hang out with the rest of the hipsters and be able TO WALK HOME. Ok, worst way we’re going to have to hop on a tram. But still. HELLO CONVENIENCE.
  5. The Breakfast Club. Because, you know what I don’t mind lining up for an hour for a full english if I go there in my PJ’s. Making me get dressed to schlep to Soho on a Saturday morning to line up for sausages was never going to happen. But now, I’m all over that shit. Can you imagine the brunch dates. Behave.
    breakfast club

    Hey pancakes. Every day


  6. The Cronx. Oh yeah….apparently now we’ve got our own craft beer company because we are just all of the snazzy. And they’re going to have a bottle shop & bar that serves grilled sandwiches. Incase you’re looking for me between now and March – that’s probably where I’ll be.
  7. There’s going to be other places to go on a date night other than Bugattis in South Croydon. I know right. The boys of Croydon Tinder behold and get to know that you can know suggest somewhere else for date 3. Phew.
  8. We won’t have to make arrangements ever again. Long gone will be the days of ‘so if we catch the 19.45 from West Croydon, we’ll be in Shoreditch for 20.30, can stay for a few hours and catch the last Overground because we live in the sticks and are skint. Hello to days of ‘hello mate, see you in like 5 minutes, let’s go for Fish, Wing & Ting’. Wahoo.
  9. Wine & Deli. If you live in Croydon then you’ve got to have been living under a rock to have missed Brgr & Beer in Matthews Yard. Well the geniuses behind that have come up with yet another hold-the-motherf*ckin-phone plan. Wine & Deli. Yes. Wine and small plates.Literally. Cannot. Even.

    bgr and beer

    these guys tho picture courtesy of the londonist.com


See you there kids

LL x

Croydon boy

25 things you need to know when dating a boy from Croydon

Ah Croydon boys. You’ve got to love ’em. They are a law unto themselves and a real individual breed.

However, if you’re not used to them (or you aren’t from Croydon), they can take some adjustment. And if you’re dating them, even more so.

So here’s a little fail safe checklist of things you need know if you’re going out with a bloke from The Cronx.

  1. You’ll never mean more to them than Palace do.
    Until he’s ready to marry you. And then you’ll be on an even footing with the Red & Blue army. Before this point, don’t you even dare try and suggest that he sacks off a home game to ‘spend quality time’ with you. He won’t. And he’ll hate you a bit for it.


    EAGGGLEEEEES Image: skysports.com

  2. If you can’t get hold of him for any reason, but need to talk to him urgently, just try walking into Riley’s.
    He’s probably there. Taking pool ever so seriously. And ignoring his phone.
  3. He’ll probably still live at home.
    At least until he’s about 25/26 anyway. Because he was born in Croydon, he’ll die in Croydon and in between times staying at his Mum’s is cheap as chips and he still gets his washing done. She’ll be quite accustomed to making two bacon sandwiches on a Sunday morning for his lady friend ‘he met in the pub’.
  4. Ask him what he did for a Saturday job as a kid.
    He either worked in Sainsbury’s (probably Selhurst Park to be nearer Palace) or in any one of the 18 phone shops in the Whitgift Centre. He probably still knows a bloke that knows a bloke that works in one so will hook you up with a good phone contract.


    The joys of a Saturday job Image: theretaildatabase.com

  5. He’ll know a lot of ‘blokes that know blokes’
    Who will be able to get their hands on anything from trainers to 50″ TV’s to joints of meat.
    Don’t ask any questions. Just leave it. Relish in the cheap nature of your Sunday lunch.
  6. He’ll wear a long-sleeved Ralph Lauren polo shirt on at least two of your first four dates.
    Smart Cas, mate. Smart Cas.
  7. His first date suggestions with either be The Treehouse (esp in the winter and the fire’s on), going out in Wimbledon (fancy init) or going to Westow House in Palace. Standard Croydon boy chirps.


    Classy little drink, babes. http://www.westowhouse.com

  8. Getting him in a pair of shoes will be like pulling teeth.
    If he can’t wear his trainers to the pub, like fuck is he going. He’ll wear shoes when taking you for a nice dinner. Or to a funeral. That’ll be all.
  9. Talking of which, he’ll often offer to ‘take you for a bitta dinner’.
    Not ask you if you’d like to go for a meal, or try out this new restaurant he’s heard about. Bitta dinner it is. And that could be anywhere from the Savoy to Mexican Monday’s in Spoons.
    Bitta dinner babe.
  10. He’ll have grown up drinking in Blue Orchid and Lloyds No 1 Bar which means his ability to down a Smirnoff Ice is world record breaking. 
    milan bar

    Let’s go Lloyds, drink Smirnoff Ice and dance to Sean Paul, mate. Image: beerintheevening.com



  11. He’ll also know every UK Garage song that was ever released from nights like this. If you want a laugh, watch him sing all the words to an Artful Dodger track one of these days. Quite heart warming.
  12. Due to the savage nature of his early life drinking habits, he’ll be able to back Jager-Bombs like there’s no tomorrow.
    Don’t think this makes him a functioning alcoholic, he’s got a decent job and a nice car babes, he just learnt to drink shots like a champ in Walkabout.
  13. Don’t get offended if you’re doing a ‘bitta shopping’ in the Whitgift Centre and a few girls pass him and smile/smirk/hurl abuse at hi.
    It’s Croydon. Everyone’s slept with everyone.

    croydon girls - comso

    And if she looks like this, don’t cry. He was young, drunk, and lonely at the end of the night in Tiger Tiger. Image ; cosmopolitan.co.uk

  14. He’ll go out on what you might class as a ‘lad’s night’ about three times a week. Because all of his mate he’s known since he was 16. And they live down the road. So they just go out – all. the. time. And get carried away. And forget to come home.
  15. If you ever see his year book from school, he will look a reject from Blazin’ Squad. Don’t dump him for it. He was young, and naïve, and at the time having tram tracks shaved into your head was the done thing.


    Meet you at the crossroads, babes. Image: metro.co.uk

  16. He also would have had a moped. Or a a Ford Escort. Or a Ford Fiesta. Or a shitty old Golf the minute he turned legal.
    If he had any of the latter 3 he probably lost his virginity in it. If he had a moped he probably tried to loose his virginity up against it.
  17. He also probably had a ‘tag’.
    No, not an electronic tag (although, not completely unfeasible) but like a tag that he would graffiti on his school books. Or on his pencil case. Or on like, trains.


    But bruv, where’s my sharpie at? Image: graffitisamples.BlogSpot.co.uk

  18. He will call everyone babe.
    Not just you. His mum, his boss, his dog, the postman. Everyone is babe. It doesn’t mean he fancies them more than you. It’s just a natural filler for him.
  19. You know you’re special if he’s got another nickname for you. Croydon boy’s love a nickname.
    Bubs, Moosh, Treacle. Pumpkin. Those ones will be saved just for you.
  20. Talking of natural fillers.
    Fuck is also one. They just say fuck like there’s no tomorrow. They often just say it to fill a silence.
  21. He will have got stoned in South Norwood lakes as a teenager.
    It’s like a Croydon rite of passage.
  22. If you want a laugh ask him if he ever owned an Avirex jacket as a teenager.
    Go on. Ask him. See his face. Ha.


    I worked 18 double time shifts for that jacket, man. Image: islandmix.com

  23. Also ask him how many times a week he goes to the chicken shop and/ or Nandos.
    Double whatever his response is to get the actual truth. If you learn nothing else from this list, learn that they love a bitta chicken.
  24. Sometimes they revert back to being a teenager.
    And try and get you to go Valley Park for a date night. ‘But babe, we can go Frankie & Bennies and go to the pictures’. Except it isn’t a fancy Warner Bros. cinema is it anymore? And basically you want to take me for dinner on an industrial estate, babe. Nah.


    Cheeky calzone and a night at the pictures, moosh. Ah come one, it’ll be like old times. Image; tripadvisor.com

    25. Make sure you never slag Croydon of in front of them.
    They are loud and proud about The Cronx. Don’t ever let them hear you rinsing it. Or they’ll never take you for a bitta dinner again.


rickman gif

Things not to do when you’ve got the hump

I hold my hands up. I’m pissed off. No majorly specific rationale behind my feeling of new found humpness, just several shitty things making me feel like I want to stay in bed.

It’s fine.  I’m not about to take on a bus or anything. I’m just cheesed off. Maybe one of these days I’ll go into why. Probs not tho, cos who wants to be reading that sad noise.

I have, however, spent a few days doing that thing when you wallow. Yeah. Dumbest thing to do if you’re blue. But I have and it’s made me realise that in life, when people have the hump we do the stupidest things and never learn that they never make us feel better.

You know, like.

Eat McDonald’s. Because at the time, you’re all ‘I’m too pissed off to cook and I want some comfort food’, but then you’re standing in the queue ordering up a side order of deep fried cheese to go with your meal and you realise you feel more shit than you did when you walked in. Have a salad and go to bed without wondering by how many miles you exceeded your monthly recommended salt intake. And if you’ll have a heart attack in the night. And how shit it would be to die now when you’re so down in the dumps. It really escalates.

Tell you what else you shouldn’t do. Go on Facebook. It does a number of things. Primarily leads you to look at all the filtered pictures of people you don’t care about and what a smashing Saturday night out they are having, whilst you’re knee deep in your fourth boxset, whinging that the ‘large fries isn’t as large as it used to be’. Secondly, it gives you scope to look back at photos of yourself from 8 years ago when you were slim, and on holiday and beaming. Delete the app until you cheer da fuq up.

In fact, throw your phone away in general. Because the phone means talking to people and responding to messages and your far too busy  being shitty to ever answer the 65 new WhatsApp’s you seem to obtain on an hourly basis. My advice. That beautiful ‘turn off notifications’ option. Silence really is bloody golden.

Another good one to avoid. TV shows that involve emotion evoking closing scenes. Normal people can go ‘aw’. People that are in the state of ‘having the hump’ will scream cry into a pillow at one well chosen score to one well timed kiss. Trust. It’s grim.

I’d also say steer clear of Adele. Or Celine Dion. Or Whitney Houston. One bad lyric from them whining bitches and next thing you know you’ve turned your car into a morgue of misery where you flit between Angry Power Goddess to Hot Fucking Mess in the change of a traffic light.

Tell you what else isn’t great to do at the minute either. Read the news. Because one minute your watching the weather and the next minute you realise it’s 2016 and everyone you grew up loving and idolising in  the world of show business has dropped dead at an untimely age. Mood – gone.

Step back from people that irritate you at the best of times. Because when you’re in ‘hump’ mode you literally stop giving a tiny rat’s arse about what they have to say and you’ll probably tell them. Like, straight to their face. And that is just hella awkward.

Finally, I would steer clear of the booze. At the best of times having a little tipple might make you dance, maybe become funnier, perhaps fall over and flash your arse on the Central Line. When one has the hump, one turns into one of two things. Angry Gin Man who wants to throw stuff at pigeons because the mood weren’t great when you started boozing but now you’re a plain arsehole. Or you become Crying Uber Girl who decides to spend the 40 minute journey home looking out a rain soaked window like you’re in a bad 90’s music video slowly weeping at your woes.

Probably whilst listening to Celine Dion. The bitch

LL x



dial up

The painful things kids today will never understand

What a shock, it’s a week before my birthday and along comes another blog referencing how old I feel.

Tradition right?

Well as I turn twenty-bloody-seven next week I thought it appropriate to hark back to yesteryear and all the painful things that us twenty something’s used to have to suffer as kids, that the brats of today will never understand.

Let’s start.

The agony of having to make a £10 top up last you an entire month. And having to draft text messages that were short enough to go into one message so you didn’t get charged a whole 50p!

The worse agony of not managing your 0ne2one balance correctly and being lumbered with no credit for ten days before your Mum would top up again. Kids today will never understand the pain of not being able to reply to the text from a boy you proper fancy because you spent all your credit downloading the new Luck & Neat ringtone for shit brick Nokia.


bro, I can only take incoming calls this week.,

Scratching your favourite CD. Balling. Your. Eyes. Out. Spending a week rubbing it with your polo shirt to try and bring it back.

The heartache attached to dial up internet. Restricted use so your Mum could still use the phone. The slipper to the head when you went over and the phone bill came in. 20 minutes waiting for it to connect. Slow loading pornographic  imagery. Hell on earth.

dial up

Having to convey your emotion without the use of emojis. Where am I?!

Getting so lost because your Dad’s A-Z was from 1979 and you checked that before you left the house because nobody knew what GoogleMaps was.


so, I come out of here and turn right, yeah?

Having to have change to get on a bus.

Having to lie about your age when you didn’t have enough change so you could still try and blag child fare even though you’d been working 2 years. Shocker.

The blisters you’d get from rewinding your favourite VHS. Cos it got hella tangled in the machine when you were watching it for the 19th time that week.


erm, my finger is stuck in the white wheel of death.

The pain of having to actually be home in time for your favourite programme because your Mum was already recording something for your Nan on BBC2 and you had no other chance of seeing it.

Having to wait a whole other week for the next episode because damn box sets didn’t even exist.



Knowing if you missed a film at the cinema you’d have to wait the best part of a year for it be released. On video. That would cost about £20.

Walking somewhere without music. Cos your Walkman was hench and you couldn’t be bothered to carry round 8 CD’s at a time wherever you went.


miss, I didn’t bring any books to school cos I’ve got 8 albums in my bag

Having to have batteries for EVERYTHING you owned. Like now, these kids are going on holiday with one charger and all the entertainment they’d ever need. Us? 18 packs of AA’s just to keep our GameBoy going for the flight.

Having to actually stick to a plan made on a Friday for Saturday night because you had no way of contacting each other in between times. So actually having to be where you said you’d be, when you said you’d be there. Mind blowing.

Having to handwrite entire pieces of coursework. Remember that bump we all had on our fingers by the end of term from our biros. These kids ain’t got a bloody clue!


but, remember these bad boys!

& lastly

The terror of having to talk to someone you fancied on your home phone. In your living room. When your Mum was watching Corrie. Mortifying.


me and mum2

I’m turning into my mother

Ever get them moments, when you catch yourself in the mirror and think ‘my lord, I’m turning into my mother’?

I’ve had about seven this week.

Maybe it’s a getting older thing, maybe it’s a genetic thing, either way it’s bloody scary.

Here’s my Mum. The delightful Sue Irwin. She’s a treat. A tyrant, lippy and for someone of a mere 5’3 she’s often quite frightening. Ask my dad. 6’3 and at times, honestly, scared shitless.

me and mum2

I caught myself this week doing the ironing. Now, for those of you that know me, you will know that I’ve lifted the iron all of twice since moving out of home. Once to test if it worked and once to iron a top that I subsequently ruined. But this week, out of nowhere I decided that I’d actually rather have crisp clothes. I also realised that ironing them kind of locks in the Comfort so they smell nicer for longer. I know, 26 years that took.

 In that iron wielding moment it dawned on me that I had been acting like my Mum all week.

Want to know what else I did? Came to the very harsh conclusion that I actually have a preferred brand of floor cleaner. How petrifying is that? I used to stop at favourite brand at crisps or vodka and now I’m there bigging up Flash like there’s no tomorrow.

Sorry, who am I?

Domestic wise, turning into my mother didn’t stop at floor cleaning and ironing. Oh hell no. I went all out and swept under the sofa. Yep I moved furniture to clean in a place that nobody else would ever see. Who else do you know does that? Oh yeah there is one person.


For years I’ve never understood why my Mum has always got up so early when actually she could easily lay in bed til 10am as she no longer has toddlers to worry about who might be up alone sticking their fingers in plugs.

That was until this week.

When I had one week off and decided that I needed to get every solitary bit of life admin done before I start my new job. So what have I been doing? Without even thinking about it?

Waking up at 8am. And getting up at 8.30am. Without needing to be at work. Sorry, what?

And’ why’ I hear you cry? So that I can get everything I need to do, done in the morning. Because like my Mum, I quite enjoy having the afternoon indoors. Probably to subconsciously rank my cleaning products or alphabetise my herb rack or some shit.

That isn’t even the scariest thing. You know what the most frightening thing I did this week was that hammered it home that I am turning into my dearest Susie Pants Irwin?

I wrote lists. No, not a list for the Metro to make you all laugh. A list for my shopping.

Know what was more frightening than not trusting myself to rely on my 26 year old memory?

I wrote it in the bloody order of the shops I would need to go in from my flat so, and I quote my mother now, ‘I didn’t have to go back on myself’.

Because real women do not waste time.

I am a freedom pass away from actually enjoying Countdown and remembering the birthday of every person I’ve ever met.

If someone finds my youth and a bottle of gin. can you send it my way?

I’m that girl at home at 9pm on a Tuesday, because I didn’t want to get drunk, because I have stuff to do tomorrow.


LL x