New worlds, old stars and red lipstick: some advice on being a woman, for my daughter

Little girl, you sleep. I wanted a girl desperately, and you came like a song in the night. That’s a true thing - but in person you are less melodious. Squawky, hungry, passionately attached to us. You take up all your allotted space and more, and I am quietly proud of you for it. There … Continue reading New worlds, old stars and red lipstick: some advice on being a woman, for my daughter

Real girls fly helicopters: why gender really matters on children’s TV

Kids have horrific taste in TV, but you don't hold it against them. Back in the tender early days of their development, when they watched three carefully vetted programmes occasionally and on rotation, I thought this TV thing would be a doddle. Har. They just didn't have trashy opinions yet, and trashy opinions always come. … Continue reading Real girls fly helicopters: why gender really matters on children’s TV

How I learned to stop worrying and love the f-word

Today is voting day for the European elections in the UK. We'll be heading down to the polling station as soon as we find the cards they send through that we always manage to lose two days before the election. Politics is not perfect. It's not even, often, very good. But thanks to the great-grandmothers … Continue reading How I learned to stop worrying and love the f-word