Posts Tagged With: wobble a jelly

Skip with a Skipping Rope

Here’s another task I haven’t done since school – probably primary school. It is the favoured training regime of a boxer – not a training session PR stunt of a boxer about to fight for a title belt goes without the hero skipping on a gym rope. So how hard can it be? I remember at school it was easy.

I went for the two-feet-in-the-air-at-the-same-time technique (as opposed to the less-than-flattering-skipping-whilst-running technique). And boy was it hard! I couldn’t last more than three minutes. My less than flat stomach wobbled about, and after the embarrassment my abs were screaming. I was short of breath and my lungs were tight. My 4 3/4 year old laughed to see such fun. I didn’t remember it being this hard at school!

According to this website on the health benefits of skipping, the effort it takes to jump rope for 10 minutes is the equivalent of running a mile in eight minutes!

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A not-very-flattering photo of me skipping

A new found respect for people who can skip. But especially for those who can do these….

Cool skipping  -video of some young types doing some freestyle skipping tricks.

A dog skipping. Yes, a dog!

And if you don’t have a skipping rope… use a nearby person instead.

Why not join a club. Have a look at the British Rope Skipping Association, under Affliated Clubs.

 

Go on, try it yourself! Post your photos and comments to the Wobble a Jelly Facebook page.

Remember, you can tweet me suggestions @jelly_wobbler

 

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Let someone else choose your meal at a restaurant

In my why section, I explain that the inspiration for this blog started as a result of choosing something different off of a menu. It forced me to try something I’d never normally try.

I still felt I was veering towards food I would like, so at a meal with some work colleagues, I decided to try something really different.

We played a game where you choose the meal for the person to your left. And so on round the table.

We briefed the waiter so that he would not repeat the order back so that we only knew what we were having when it arrived at the table. It was really quite exciting – not knowing what someone would order for you, and equally what the other person would think of the meal you’ve just chosen for them. It’s quite a conversation-starter.

I have played The Game know a couple of times – Paella (thanks Marcus!) and Pork Chop (thanks Craig!). Two things I probably would never have ordered, and was a nice change to the norm. I would say the food tasted nicer knowing the excitement and conversation it generated before the even came out.

Just be careful, it could go wrong. I ordered Bone Marrow for my colleague and didn’t go down well. And you may get something completely unusual….. Fried chicken and waffle anyone?!

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Go on, play The Game yourself! Post your photos and comments to the Wobble a Jelly Facebook page.

Remember, you can tweet me suggestions @jelly_wobbler

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Re-read a book you read as a child

For this task my first stop was raiding the bookshelves of my parent’s house. My eyes were drawn to Roald Dahl’s Matilda. The worn, bluey yellow spine brought back memories of re-reading the story multiple times, as I did with most Dahl stories. The yellowing pages were up-turned at every corner, proof-positive of a well-thumbed book.

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I wanted to find a book I remembered I liked, to see how the story differed from an adult’s perspective. There are two conundrums with this. Firstly, would it spoil the happy and fond memories of so long ago, now that my adult’s eye would analyse every sentence and happening. Or secondly, would it improve the story and the writing, being able to appreciate the story-telling, imagination and literature from a world-weary view.

So I read Matilda on a long-haul flight in under 3 hours, drinking in every word, illustration and colourful character. In a change to the norm of reading novels, it was a child-like, guilty-pleasure to read a story with pictures. The book was published in 1988 and I am fairly certain I read it first within minutes of it being published – over 23 years ago. And it certainly did not disappoint. The characters are so cleverly described, the names of whom are funny in their own right. The plot captivating, the motivations of the cast thought out. Even for this 33 year old, the getting-one-over-the-adults (especially a mean teacher) appeals so much to younger teenagers. It’s no wonder I loved it as a kid. And it really isn’t patronising, which is what I expected before I flicked open the first page. Words like ‘asinine’, ‘ethereal’ and ‘seraphic’, and phrases such as ‘lovely pale oval madonna face’, ‘the prostrate giant’, and ‘huge overstuffed grub, replete, comatose’ pepper the prose like a mad uncle – familiar but strange. There were a few gripes, particularly with speech, but it did not cloud the experience one bit.

Most of all, reading those yellowing pages on my business-class flat bed, seeing the faded corners of the pages that had been folded over by my 10-year-old self 23 years ago took me back to a memory of an excited boy, lying on his cabin bed, feet swaying in the air behind him, savouring every word, paragraph and chapter again and again. That was the best memory of re-reading Matilda.

If you want to read some silly analysis into the story, click here:

After reading the book, I feel obliged to go and see Matilda the Musical

Go on, try it yourself! Post your photos and comments to the Wobble a Jelly Facebook page.

Remember, you can tweet me suggestions @jelly_wobbler

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Pick up an earthworm

I am ok with spiders, daddy long legs and centipedes.

Fish, lobsters, crabs revolt me.

Worms, slugs and snails are somewhere inbetween. In my garden compost, whenever I dispatch my latest peelings, cut grass and egg shells, a multitude of worms drop down from the black lid. My first instinct is a squirm and my stomach turns a little. When my eldest boy became inquisitive I kept telling him there’s nothing to worry about, they aren’t scary and to “look how small they are”. Time to take my own advice and get over my mini-fear of them.

The worm I chose was fairly flat and plump. It was cool to the touch and a little bit slimy. I could see the cast inside and one end (possibly the head) began rising, as if sniffing the air. The middle contracted and the sensation on my skin was like when my eldest would spit out a piece of food he didn’t like.

Like the first time I touched the skin of a snake, it was all rather disappointing and really nothing to worry about!

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Here are 5 interesting facts I have since found out about the common worm:

  1. Charles Darwin spent 40 years studying earthworms. It only took him 3 years to write the Origin of the Species.
  2. They have 5 hearts, to help pump their white blood around their body.
  3. They never over-populate. They breed only when there is enough food to go around. Something us humans should take note of.
  4. They are asexual, which means they have both male and female reproductive organs. 
  5. As they travel through soil, the tunnels they create allows air and water to flow to lower parts of the ground.

Go on, try it yourself! Post your photos and comments to the Wobble a Jelly Facebook page.

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