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March 1, 2009 at 9:12 pm Leave a comment

Going to the Dogs: V Day in Blackpool

molested 1molested-2molested-3molested-41evening cocktails 2He wot lurks at the top of the stairs

What better or more fitting way is there to spend Valentine’s Day than with a bottle of Lambrusco, copious packets of Walker’s crisps, a slew of horror flicks, two pervy cats, and four psychotic bison frise dogs breathing down your neck? Yup, that’s exactly how I spent what’s supposed to be the most romantic day of the year.

Rather than endure Valentine’s Day on my own (last year I’d given a talk on erotic writing to creative writing MA students at Roehampton University, which was followed by a “date” consisting of my being allocated one token drink, my evening culminating in a delayed train home due to a “fatality” on the line at Romford – not sure if the suicide was a result of a broken heart or a result of living in Romford), I decided to head to that exotic gem of northern England known as Blackpool. Bear in mind that this English seaside resort town has as one of its claims to fame a “space invasion” (where’s Ziggy Stardust when you need him?) featuring several hovering spaceships on Gynn Island (in reality a roundabout), not to mention copious doses of the clap from all those hen nights (a more sedate version of which can be found in my short story “Hen Night” on Amazon Kindle) and stag dos and assorted dubious establishments catering to – dare I use the word – gentlemen.

Now I’m not going to diss Blackpool. I’m sure it’s a damned sight better than Skeggie (aka Skegness, home to the proverbial “dirty weekend” – a place where I’ve yet to go and may well manage to live without having gone). Blackpool does have some good things going for it (other than the Tower, Blackpool rock, and zillions of cheap trinkets on offer) – one being that my good mate Ashley Lister and his lovely wife Tracy and their lovely son Ashley Jr. all live there, the other being that it’s known as “the gay capital of the North”. Although I always seem to miss the Gay Pride Parade, I did go to a drag club called Funny Girls there a couple of years back. It wasn’t too bad as far as drag revues go, save for the fact there was no place to sit and I ended up with a hell of a backache by the time the show ended. Plus the place was packed with raucous females out on a hen night which – in my humble view – is enough to turn even the most masculine hetero male into a raging queen. What made it even worse was the fact that these creatures all wore these cute little furry bunny tails clipped to their rather uncute and unlittle posteriors. The sight was enough to make any man’s mars and venus shrivel up and die.

Meanwhile back at the ranch. At Chez Lister, we partook of a romantic orgy of blood, zombies, cannibals, vampires, and crazed killers all weekend long, the lineup of which included: Sweeney Todd; Dracula, Prince of Darkness; 30 Days of Night; 1408; Hannibal Rising; and Vacancy. Now I must confess that I did feel a bit of the old amorous Valentine’s Day tingle while watching Hannibal Rising. That Gaspard Ulliel isn’t too shabby. In fact, I can conjure up some very romantic scenarios featuring him in the lead role (no pun intended). Oh, and Andrew Garfield too. Okay, let’s throw in Jamie Draven while we’re at it; I do want to be fair here. And if anyone out there knows one or more of these nice lads, kindly pass on the word that I’m single and an absolutely lovely lass – they’d be hard-pressed to find better! (Hey, if I can’t use my blog for my own sinister purposes then what’s the bloody point?)

Did I mention that I played Upwords with the two Ashleys? For those of you unfamiliar with this board game, think of it like council estate Scrabble, with the words forming those grim tower blocks you see all over Britain which were built in an effort to provide public housing and which in London you can now pay full market rent to live in – no extra fees for the graffiti, broken lifts and muggings. During our tourney, I somehow managed to end up with too many tiles of the letter U; I suspect it was part of some father-son plot to cause me to lose the game. Things really began to disintegrate when I was forced to repeatedly place words such as “oh” and “uh” on the board. I mean,  how lame is that? Three games and I’d had enough. I next embarked on a jigsaw puzzle, but got annoyed after about an hour, retiring to the living room for a PlayStation game featuring Darth Vader and a host of other butch animated male characters, along with a handful of pneumatic animated female bimbos emitting noises like their flesh-and-blood pneumatic counterparts in porn. I must admit that while playing I became increasingly aggressive, experiencing a killer instinct the likes of which I hadn’t experienced since I lived in Los Angeles – an instinct that usually kicked into gear whenever I drove on the freeways, which was pretty much all the time.

Now don’t go thinking that my Valentine’s weekend was all bloodshed, mayhem and crisps. There was some romance (other than that provided by Monsieur Ulliel). I got to lie back on the sofa in peel me a grape fashion listening to Ashley Jr. play the piano. Then there was my toast thief Spike, who courted me all weekend long by performing The Spike Dance. I tell you, it’s a real talent to be able to get your head and your arse at the same angle. Imagine a U-shaped dog and you get the picture. And hey, if you think it’s easy, YOU try doing it!

Hmmm. I wonder what’s in store for me next Valentine’s Day…

View the rest of my holiday snaps on Flickr.

Watch videos from my “dirty weekend”!



February 25, 2009 at 3:19 pm Leave a comment

Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Day Out: Shopping at Ikea

Ikea before photo


I’ll tell you this for free: you just haven’t lived till you’ve visited the Ikea in Thurrock, Essex during school half-term. For those of you not in the know, this is the Ikea located at the (in)famous Lakeside Shopping Centre, a large American-style shopping mall full of the usual retail chains with the requisite disgusting food court and the requisite annoying crowds of shoppers dragging their screaming and bawling children behind them. Lakeside even has a West Ham shop (no surprise, that). Believe it or not, I actually saw a pink tea kettle at a department store in Lakeside. I kid you not. Would you want to drink a cup of tea that came out of a pink kettle? I know I wouldn’t. But plenty of people in Essex do. And no, they aren’t gay men! It’s a Essex girl thing, apparently. (Insert “grimace” emoticon here.)

I had the displeasure of “shopping” at Lakeside once with an ex-boyfriend. Well, I didn’t exactly shop. He only took me there so he could use my wrist to try on watches; he wanted to buy one for his sister’s birthday, and my wrist was daintier than his. I didn’t even get a Starbucks latte out of the gig. Having said that, he did give me his West Ham shirt. I won’t go into that torrid tale; let’s just say that he enjoyed that shirt far more than I did! And if you know anything at all about Essex boys and their single-minded passion for West Ham United… Mind you, I should’ve known the writing was on the wall when he took me to The Kelvedon Hatch Secret Nuclear Bunker on an Easter Sunday afternoon. There’s nothing more romantic than graphic images of nuclear annihilation when you’re out with your bloke. Let’s just say that THIS wasn’t the fantasy I wrote about in The New Black Lace Book of Women’s Sexual Fantasies (Amazon US/UK/Ca).

As for Ikea (umm… that WAS what we were talking about, right?), I’d finally managed to intimidate one of my loftmen into driving me there. (The begging didn’t work.) Well, you’d have thought you were in Disneyland. Talk about cheap entertainment! Seems like everyone had taken the kiddies out for a day of fun and frolic at the local Ikea. The place was bursting with sprogs (rugrats to you Yanks). If I had been maneuvering the shopping trolley instead of my loftman, I’d have run over a few – and no doubt let out a great big guffaw while doing so. Instead I clung valiantly to my sanity and tried to keep from going beserk. After all, when you’re running short of loftmen (I think I’m going to have to fire one, and the other whom I’ve recently recruited is still having visa issues), you can’t let an opportunity to go bye-bye car ride to Ikea pass you by. I needed to buy a lamp for my bedroom and another for my living room (they died within days of each other – no doubt one of those bonding things you find in long-term relationships where one can’t live without the other). I also broke my very last drinking glass the other day, so I needed a set of new ones. Plus I needed a new kitchen rug, having spilled bleach onto its hapless predecessor. Oh yeah, and I needed some coasters too.

My loftman thought I was a bit overboard in my attitude toward the brats – oops, I mean children. Mind you, I didn’t criticise him for nearly running over an elderly couple in the car park, especially when he thought he’d recognised the man as his old boss. The pair were heading back to their vehicle sans any shopping, clearly fleeing the retail mayhem and thanking their chosen deity that they were done with all that child-rearing nonsense and were now well and happily on their way to their graves. Frankly, I couldn’t blame them. Had I known what lay in wait for me inside the Ikea, I would have taken a rain cheque on the entire shopping expedition and stayed home to do my ironing.

I can hear you saying “Oh, Mitzi, how terribly mean-spirited of you! Children are such a delight!” To that I say, keep them at least 100 feet away from me, if not 1,000! Believe me, I had the patience of a saint trying to get to the department I needed, which inevitably was at the tail end of the store – meaning we had to traverse the entire managerie of this Scandinavian retail warehouse as well as make our way past a hoard of happy breeding families all having a grand day out in gloomy wintry Essex. Were any of these families actually buying anything? Not from what I could see. No. They existed merely to spite me and interfere with my requirement to get what I needed and get the hell out of there. The only thing that offered any respite were a handful of gay male couples out selecting things to feather their nests with. It was obvious they were gay: they were physically fit, good looking, and groomed. No hairs sticking out of their noses or ears or, I’m certain, other locations in which you SO don’t want to see hairs sticking out from. I’ll say this much – in my next life I plan to come back as a gay man. And don’t try to talk me out of it!

After all this murder and mayhem, I nearly wept with relief to experience the peace and quiet of my flat again. Well… except for the fact that I had to spend the next hour fending off yet another proposal of marriage from my loftman, who proclaimed in a rather sinister tone that one day he will marry me. Christ, I didn’t realise I made that good a cuppa – and it was only from a PG Tips teabag, too! Alas, I had to let him down once again, as I simply cannot play favourites with my loftmen. Besides which, I suspect he doesn’t quite believe that a woman can exist who does not desire marriage, let alone harbour the desire to play incubator for the future inhabitants of this doomed planet. I have to admire the lad for his tenacity though, especially since I forced him to go up into my loft again to store some empty suitcases and boxes. But hey, such is life. He left my flat dejected, but nevertheless, warmed by a nice cup of tea and a biscuit.

As for me, I’ve got my two new lamps, six new drinking glasses, and six new coasters. And let’s not forget my new kitchen rug!

Ikea after


February 19, 2009 at 4:03 pm 9 comments

Waiting For Godot (or Rather the Argos Delivery Man)

It’s now Day 2 in – dum da-da DUM – The Adventures of the New Vacuum Cleaner!

…Well, if it ever bloody gets here, that is.

Don’t you just LOVE waiting around for delivery men? I say “men” because they are usually always men, therefore it figures that everything will be a complete cock-up (no pun intended) when men are involved in having to sort anything out other than their dirty socks. Though come to think of it, they can’t even get that right. Indeed, the world is run by men. Do we need any further evidence of their incompetence? Having said that, I’m no great fan of women either. On the contrary. In fact, I think we need an entirely new gender since neither of the two we’re now stuck with appear to be of any benefit to society, or the world in general. Back to the drawing board, Mr. Darwin!

So, yesterday while I waited at home all day for the Argos delivery van, my little heart pounding with excitement over the prospect of finally being able to vacuum my carpets after more than two months (my previous vacuum committed suicide) – forgoing an urgent trip to the post office I should add – an attempt was made to deliver my new vacuum cleaner to the occupant of another flat. I find this most disconcerting, seeing that my address was correct on the order and has since been confirmed and reconfirmed and reconfirmed yet again. I’m certain they all went down the pub last night while I left the outside light burning my carbon footprint even deeper into the earth’s soil as I waited for an after-hours delivery that never arrived. If this keeps up much longer, I’ll be thirsting for revenge (Amazon US/UK/Ca).

The thought that someone else might be vacuuming their flat with my lovely new bagless vacuum cleaner with hose and attachments which was ordered for me as a gift by one of my loftmen really sticks in my craw. I can’t abide infidelity of any sort, not even if committed by a vacuum cleaner. As for the bestower of said vacuum cleaner, I have a suspicion he’s trying to make up for the rather lax service of late I’ve been receiving from my original loftman, who’s ignored my numerous and increasingly desperate pleas to take me to Ikea to buy some lamps (I had two die on me) and a new kitchen rug (spilled bleach on the old). I also have several empty suitcases on the landing along with two empty boxes that need storing up in the loft. I’m now at the point where I’m calling this catastrophe on my landing “Installation Art.” Tracey Emin‘s got nothing over me!

I tell you, things are getting so grim round ‘ere that I’ve been forced to advertise for a new loftman. I mean, what’s a single girl living on her own in Blighty to do? As I’ve found out, you can’t count on anyone these days, especially men. I did get some replies to my job posting, however, and yes, I’ve pretty much decided on my new loftman. He’s cute, foreign, and he really likes my bear. As a matter of fact, they’re becoming quite chummy! The only problem is, my prospective loftman doesn’t have a visa for the UK. But other than that, he’s perfect!

Meanwhile, from the upstairs window I peer down at the street below, hoping to see the Argos delivery van pull up outside. How much longer must I wait?????


February 10, 2009 at 4:38 pm 2 comments

Who Be That Flying Over My Head? (How I Survived the Mosh Pit)

Fun and Merriment in the Queue

I guess they don’t call it a “mosh pit” for nothing…

…as I found out on Monday night.

My Massachusetts lads were back in town again. Now if you don’t know who my lads are, we’re talking Staind, who have become somewhat of a grand musical passion of mine. Seether was opening for them, and I happen to like them too, although not with the same fervour which I reserve for Aaron and the boys.

Luckily, my mate “Alexi” is mad enough to queue up at gigs hours in advance in order to secure a good spot at stagefront. When I arrived at The Forum in Kentish Town at half past 6, I heard my name being called out – and there they all were, my mates from the Staind Hard Rock charity gig last September, including Steve the Headbanging Glaswegian, who’d given me that drumstick Aaron Lewis signed for me.

The heavy steel barrier was swung open for royalty to step through (that royalty being me of course!). And there in the freezing London night, we stood waiting for the venue’s doors to open, having a gay old time snapping pics and engaging in lighthearted banter. I even found a fellow Hungarian in the queue whose smile, when he found out my surname (and knowing its meaning), grew ever bigger. Not sure if anything else grew bigger – that would be a topic for another blog post!

Once inside, I managed to secure a place at the stage right in front of the barrier and right in front of the mike stand reserved for the lead singer – no one save for the security guys and the professional photographers could get any closer. This was going to be great. Or was it? To be honest, I nearly didn’t go to the gig at all, then pretty much decided to on my flight back to Blighty the other day. Having seen Staind back in September, I had misgivings about how I’d react and yes, I’ll admit that when they performed “Believe” I lost it and cried. The song has particular meaning to me, and when it was first released I really DID believe.

Still, it was worth it. I mean hey, when a bloke in the audience shouts out “I love you, Aaron!” you just gotta know these guys are good. Talking about love, I was certain I felt the little Scottish lad behind me pushing his erection into my bum (no it wasn’t Steve!). I figured he was just caught up in the excitement of the gig and the mosh pit (and having my fine self right there in front of him). I didn’t want to make a fuss, as he did seem like such a sweet lad, but enough was enough. It was then when I realised it was probably the box from my earplugs, which I’d stuck in my back jeans pocket. Guess that accounted for the wee laddie’s rather unimpressive… umm… stature?

When Seether first came out, I thought the mosh pit would be a breeze. Yes, I’d been warned by my mate who’d gone the night before that the Birmingham crowd had been a bit wild, but these spoiled Londoners shouldn’t be too bad. I felt confident I could stick it out – and stick it out reasonably unscathed. More fool me! Everything was fine until Seether launched into what lead singer and hair-dye afficionado Shaun Morgan referred to as “a love song.” Well, guess what that love song was? “Fuck Me Like You Hate Me.” This sentimental little ditty set off a near riot, and I had images of myself at A&E with broken ribs and a punctured lung. Talk about Dying For It (Amazon US/UK/Ca)…

This hysteria continued off and on, and I began to hope Seether would finish their set and go back to South Africa on the first flight out. Having been to two Staind gigs already, I thought conditions would improve. I should have known – the lads always get into some of their heavier songs at live gigs (I’m dying to see Aaron do an acoustic show). The moshing began in earnest and, despite signs at The Forum warning that crowd surfers would be ejected, so did the crowd surfing. At one point I had to duck down so low I was nearly on the floor as the very same lad once again sailed over our heads, with the crowd control guy dragging him out of our way. I’m not sure who I wanted to get away from more – the surfer or the crotch of the crowd control geezer, which was right in my face. I can only imagine what this scenario looked like to those who couldn’t tell what was happening.

Of course there’s no greater climax to a good evening out then the commute home. As usual, I’d checked the National Rail website in advance to make sure I wouldn’t be stranded. The only glitch in the system from what I could see was that I’d have to change overground trains at Stratford. I left Kentish Town dying of hunger and in plenty of time to get home, only to arrive at Liverpool Street station to find it virtually empty of people, and no sign of anyone working there except for some bin men who were ready to go home. According to the electronic board, a train was about to depart within minutes to Stratford, but it didn’t say which platform. I ran up and down, seeing no such train. I realised I’d better get out of there and quick, so I raced back to the tube (where I’d just come from) and jumped on the Central Line to Stratford.

Fortunately, there was a train scheduled for when I arrived, but not only was it to be on the wrong platform, but I’d have to stand in the cold for another 30 minutes for it to turn up. I made friends with an irate journalist from the Times, who blamed all these transportation cock-ups on the London Olympics. (All I can say is that I’d better emigrate the hell back out of here before 2012!) We killed time by chatting on the journey home as our train kept stopping for no discernible reason outside nearly every station, with us sitting and sitting as the hour grew later and later. (I’d like someone to please explain to me how I could leave Kentish Town just after 11pm and not get home till half past one. This journey shouldn’t have taken too much more than an hour.) As I despaired of ever seeing my bear again, I heard the sound of angels. Some passengers seated nearby were listening on their camera to the exact same music I’d heard earlier – we’d all come from the same gig!

Anyway, at least I got to hear about the journalist’s night out in the West End, which consisted of seeing an updated version of Romeo and Juliet which, unbeknownst to her and several other members of the audience, was a hiphop hodgepodge of the old version. According to my new buddy, the original cast had walked out due to the musical’s financial woes, leaving the new cast to read from scripts. Apparently most of the audience had walked out too, save for three old ladies, one of whom finally hobbled out of the theatre on one crutch.

And people wonder why I’d rather go to a gig than go to the theatre.


(see the rest of the photos on Flickr: http://flickr.com/photos/mitziszereto/sets/72157613019561795/)

Staind video I shot: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=IFvg69cAlWI

Seether video I shot: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=oHTZNNDrIn4

January 30, 2009 at 12:16 am 4 comments

Three Chavs and a Packet of Crisps


Well, I’ve barely been back in the UK for 24 hours and I already have an all-new train adventure to tell you about. I mean, I didn’t expect this much excitement so soon after returning home to Blighty, but as they say, “It’s all go round ‘ere!”

It all began when I dragged my jetlagged self into Central London on Saturday to meet a friend for lunch, with us starting out in the South Bank and ending up at a curry house in Soho. Okay, so the vindaloo nearly killed me (more like blew the back of my bloody head off), but I managed to survive both it and the usual swarm of Saturday afternoon humanity one tends to encounter on Oxford Street. I’m sure my face was still beet-red from the crowds and the vindaloo by the time I reached Tottenham Court Road tube station, having to reroute myself there after the big Gaza demonstration screwed up any chances of making it into the Oxford Circus station, let alone crossing the road to John Lewis, where I’d hoped to find an adaptor. Instead I glommed onto two confused-looking women and hurled myself in the opposite direction, just wanting to get the hell out of there asap.

The tube wasn’t very interesting, but my train ride back to Essex was. (If you’ve been keeping up with my blog posts you’ll know that something always seems to happen on my train.) Being an early Saturday evening my car was crowded with passengers on their way home from their various outtings in the city, so I sat with a trio of lads, who instantly took me under their protective wings and welcomed me to their little party. I must’ve looked more lost and forlorn than usual, so I was happy for the distraction and hilarity they provided – and they provided it aplenty! Indeed, there was never a dull moment with this charming troika, who started out by offering me polite little smiles, after which proper introductions ensued. Obviously I didn’t tell them that I was a famous author of both erotic literature and revenge stories (Amazon US/UK/Ca). After all, a woman must maintain some aura of mystery, right?

I had a front-row seat as one of them received a phone call, the booming male voice on the other end giving him a right bollocking for not turning up for a job interview. The rest of us were trying to contain our laughter so as not to make the situation any worse for the hapless job seeker, but we weren’t too successful. I don’t usually like to laugh at other people’s misfortunes, but in this case I made an exception. He probably wouldn’t have gotten the job anyway. I mean, if he’d wanted it badly enough he would’ve gone for the interview surely? He soon saw the funny side of it after the caller rang off, whereupon he decided to discuss Michael Jackson until I cut him off, informing him that I can’t stand Michael Jackson.

After disclosing that two of them were aged 19, with the one next to me a seasoned old man of 20, the lad across from me (their chief spokesperson from what I gathered) played a game of “Guess the Accent” and got mine right on the second try (Canadian is usually the first guess). He next began to interview me as to my relationship status, gaping in disbelief when I told him. He digested this information for a moment, then asked politely and respectfully if I’d consider going out with him, only to engage the shy lad beside me into this romantic discussion, suggesting to him that he might “walk the nice lady home” from the train station – that “nice lady” being me. Seems all three of them wanted to walk me home, and it wasn’t even dark yet! Who says there’s no gallantry in the Englishman? – or, for that matter, the Essex chav? And before you scoff, let me say this: I didn’t hear one single curse or foul word pass through the lips of these lads. Now if that isn’t proof that God exists, I don’t know what is.

Anyway, they invited me out for a night on the town (or rather the town we all coincidentally live in). In fact, there was even a mention of a dozen red roses. Although I didn’t give them a definite answer, I didn’t say no either. Just before they got off the train at Romford (they decided to kill some time at The Brewery since I’d said I was jetlagged and planned to just crash at home for the night), I was given the phone number of their head honcho.

I tell you, if an artist had to paint my life, it would definitely be Salvador Da were he still alive. Nevertheless, I have to admit, those lads from the train made me laugh, and they were very sweet and gentlemanly too. I could do worse. (And honey, I have!)

So what do you think? Should I take them up on their offer?

January 25, 2009 at 12:08 am 16 comments

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What I Get Up To

I write, I blog, I Mitzi TV, I network, I breathe, I get my name in the press... I'm a true Renaissance lass! My books include IN SLEEPING BEAUTY'S BED: EROTIC FAIRY TALES; GETTING EVEN: REVENGE STORIES (crime); THE NEW BLACK LACE BOOK OF WOMEN'S SEXUAL FANTASIES (non-fiction/survey); DYING FOR IT: TALES OF SEX AND DEATH (multi-genre); THE WORLD’S BEST SEX WRITING 2005 (non-fiction/criticism); WICKED: SEXY TALES OF LEGENDARY LOVERS; the EROTIC TRAVEL TALES anthology series; the M. S. Valentine erotic novels; and a slew of titles available on Amazon Kindle. Find me on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Flickr, LinkedIn, Plaxo, Tumblr, Plurk, Social Median, and wherever else I might decide to turn up!

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Authors Mitzi Szereto & Royce Buckingham taking a break from books

Sunset at Semiahmoo

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