Five: Holland and Barrett



The venue: Holland and Barrett, Peckham.

The price: £33 – I took advantage of the company’s Penny Sale promotion, because I’m fucked if I’m paying £24.99 for 21 teabags. Much better to pay £25 for 42. Yeah, that seems reasonable.

The Sunday dinner: Bootea Detox Tea and Aloe Vera Colon Cleansers. Jesus.

I, along with many of you, am suffering from depression and lethargy following the recent end of year celebrations. Hence this delayed offering. I’ve returned safely from holiday, despite the stabbing and fatal shooting at our resort, and, despite my best attempts, have not started proceedings on a positive note. I’ve burst into tears on at least six occasions so far – none of which were the type of attractive crying I prefer. The crying I do on trains is the best, where I look out of the window and pretend to be in a music video. I let the tears roll silently down my cheeks and put on my best ‘displaying many complex, heartfelt emotions’ face (which the imaginary director simply loves).

This latest batch have, unfortunately, been laden with snot and spittle. Nobody wants to see that on MTV. Maybe a fetish site. Hmm. Worth some research. I’m unable to pinpoint with accuracy why I am so bereft. Still, living off fucking teabags is sure to brighten my spirits…

Little bags of love

My first Sunday dinner problem, of which there are many, is the product’s name. Not the colon cleansers – they’re fairly self explanatory. Bit creatively dull and lazy, mind. ‘Bowel Blasters’ or ‘Sphincter Sparkle’ are a couple of brand names I’d have offered up at the marketing meeting, which I wouldn’t have been at, because the company wouldn’t employ someone who would make such childish, unfunny suggestions. But hey, I’m padding here, because this dining review is about a cup of tea and some tablets. Give me a break, ffs.

So, Bootea. I can see what they’re trying to do with the name, but no. Unless they get Beyonce on board. Which is another suggestion I’d have made at that meeting I wasn’t invited to. The packaging includes the line: ‘LITTLE BAGS OF LOVE FROM BOOTEA.COM’. Seriously, that’s not what love is. They’re not even bags of like. They’re tolerated at best. Ten points removed. But enough about the name; how does it taste? In short, like green tea with fennel undertones. Now, I don’t mind a green tea. Drinking it makes me feel all holy and smug. I like to imagine I am sipping on an elixir of youth that repairs all manner of alcohol-related damage and will probably render me immortal. But, let’s face it, it’s about as far removed from beef and Yorkshire pudding as you can get. Oh, and I despise fennel. Twelve points off.

Send flowers (section heading plus instruction)

It’s my own fault I’m having to take such drastic measures. I entered an eating and drinking contest during my holiday, and in the preceding months, which I won by a mile. I realised I’d definitely scooped the top prize when I found myself spreading butter on a piece of cake at the breakfast buffet last week.

“How fucking low are you prepared to go?’ snarled one of the many voices in my head.

“Mmm. This is gorgeous. I love butter,” said another, who happens to be one of my favourites.

The others were mostly suggesting new reasons for me to be anxious and describing potential risks I’d encounter that day that would probably lead to my untimely death. On reflection, it’s actually quite sad, poignant, pathetic and poetic that it is, in fact, my own mind that is actually one of the most dangerous places on Earth. Take a few seconds to think about that and feel slightly sorry for me, if you like. Think about how you’d like to give me a hug and make everything better and tell me I have pretty eyes. You can even send flowers if you want. No chocolate, mind.

Anyway, the tea is nothing to write home about. Or a blog post about, let’s be honest. The colon cleansers are reasonably palatable, presented in the style of a slightly larger Nurofen with a pale khaki matt finish. The slight dappling gives these tablets their distinctive edge, bringing life to the plate. I AM TRYING HERE. I AM TRYING.

The meal was less than satisfactory, of course, but a necessary evil. The remaining points, of which there were few, were unfortunately lost when I had to get up at 3am for an emergency poo. I was having a nice dream about having some butter on top of a piece of butter.

Mr Jus and and his amazing presents

I haven’t mentioned Mr Jus so far, but not because he was the victim of the fatal shooting, I hasten to add, despite him pissing me off on holiday several times. It’s because I’ve decided to give him a dedicated section this week.

Now then. Some of you may remember that last year, he weirdly bought me a 3D model of himself for Christmas. Narcissism gone mad, frankly. The tiny little ceramic man also carries a MERRY CHRISTMAS sign, so it’s not like I can even have it out all year round.

This year, clearly not to save me from tears, he bought me the edible anuses below. Fuck knows why. He doesn’t even know. It’s not like I go around talking about how much I love arseholes. In fact, he’s the only arsehole I love.

Obviously, I won’t be eating them, but I will use them to chart the progress of my colon cleansing adventures. I hope to match the one on the far left by the beginning of February.

Final score: 0/33





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