Sometimes I love the internet so much it actually hurts.
I just want to run right up to it and hug it, it’s that much, my passion.
That’s just sometimes.
There are other times, other emotions, of course there are. Times when the internet makes me sick with its wickedness and cruelty, or times feel like I do when I’ve had a sugar binge. You know, so very happy in the moment but then a bit icky afterwards.
When I saw that Beyoncé pic, the one on Instagram that has been viewed about a zillion times, it was a loved-up moment. Not for the fabulous one, but for the Net.
There she was, a month after giving birth to her twins. How did she look? Superhuman obviously, why else post the pic?
She is posing before a bower of flowers. There is her signature veil flowing down her back, there is a huge off-the-shoulder gown thing, there is flowing, glowing hair, there are flowing, glowing legs.
Beyoncé is a racehorse in human form, except she doesn’t look like a racehorse, she looks like a goddess: languid, liquid-eyed, luscious of lip. And nested in there somewhere, quite hard to spot at first, are her month-old twins.
It’s enough to make any mother spit.
But here’s the thing. Courtesy of the internet we can spit. Sort of. This isn’t an untouchable, unassailable image in a glossy magazine, this is the internet and we can all get stuck in.
So mothers of twins have got stuck in. And how.
They have posted pictures of themselves after giving birth to their own babies. Pictures that show them stupid with tiredness, or beaming lop-sided, drug-induced grins from the delivery suite.
They have shared knowledge of their own post-birth complexions (grey) their own stomachs (jellified) their own outfits ( elastic stockings and hospital gown).
They have come up with their own theories about Beyoncé’s outfit. The general consensus is that it’s that massive because there is a nanny, a make-up artist, a hairdresser and a stylist hidden in its folds.
They have accused Beyoncé of stealing her style from their own post-birth photoshoots, they have scanned the picture for evidence of cold cups of tea and coffee waiting to be reheated in the microwave.
They have poked fun at beautiful Beyoncé in any way they can think of, not to be nasty for the sake of it, not in a fit of mean-spirited jealousy, but just to save themselves and each other by keeping it real.
Real motherhood is very much a coal-face activity. After a few solo hours there you are exhausted, filthy and lonely .
But the days when anyone could pretend that for some it is otherwise are gone. If you’re stomach is flat as Lincolnshire, you’re hair sleeker than the tail of a show pony, your complexion dewier than a summer’s morn, then it’s because you have all the help fame and fortune can buy. Because you are, in short, Beyoncé.
And, thanks to the internet we can reassure each other of this.
We know it is frontier land, with all the wildness of unchartered territory. We know it has its dark, demonic side, we know it needs rules and barriers to stop evil flourishing.
But sometimes it’s reassuring, and sometimes it’s fun – and not just for mothers.
Everyone can pile in and have their say in a spirit of solidarity. You can find your tribe and join in the frolics. During the election campaign, every day was enlivened by responses to the current electioneering.
Sometimes the responses were daft, sometimes they were witty, but it all added richness and colour to what was going on.
Egos were pricked, silly slogans were mocked, verbal battles raged.
So though we don’t quite understand it, that thing up in the clouds somewhere, just sometimes it can help keep all our feet on the ground.
DOCTOR WHO - THE PLOT THICKENS
It’s been a secret more closely guarded this summer than Pippa’s wedding dress, more vehemently protected than Donald Trump’s hair.
But finally the identity of the new Doctor Who was revealed.
Jodie Whittaker has been given the key to the Tardis and, yes, we all spotted it – she’s a woman.
You will have seen her, probably, in the ITV drama Broadchurch where she played the mother of the murdered boy.
It was a part I thought she played a bit woodenly if I’m honest – I don’t think my face would have been quite so composed in such circumstances – but others disagree and Jodie has the BBC’s flagship job.
Opinion is divided, of course. Lots of people think it’s about time a woman became the Time Lord, now he/she is into the 13th incarnation. Others think it’s all a Leftie plot to curry favour with the “PC Brigade”, whatever and wherever that is.
Me, I don’t have strong feelings either way. Here’s what I feel strongly about: the stupid plots.
When Doctor Who was revived after a gap of many years it was great, with simple stories, simple monsters, lots of simple fun.
But then, just like the original, it got more and more geeky and ridiculously complex, until attempting to follow any episode was too much of a headachey hassle.
So never mind the sex of the Doctor, what about some decent storylines?
WONDERS OF THE SHOPPING AISLES
There is a website devoted to pictures of people shopping in the supermarket.
People of Walmart, if you’re interested.
It’s only reason for being is to showcase the unusual outfits worn by those who browse the aisles.
You’re probably thinking pyjamas and such, because we had that little controversy not too long ago. The general view in the UK is that shopping in pyjamas is a bad thing.
The pictures on this site are mainly taken in America though, and they take unusual to a higher level. There is a picture of a man who appears to have created hooves where his feet should be.
What to make of it? I think it is further evidence that a lot of people spend a lot of their time indoors, alone. Far too much time, so much time that they have forgotten what the accepted norm is in terms of dress code. Either that or I’m just really boring, walking around in heels when I could be wearing hooves.