I had an unexpected and very funny experience on Twitter this week. I mentioned to my followers that I was thinking about buying one of those electric heated clothes rails I’ve seen in Lakeland. (Despite this damning evidence to the contrary, I am a very busy, multitasking media executive/wife/mother. Honest.)
In my ten-plus years on Twitter, in which I’ve discussed everything – politics, celebrities, fashion shows, films, TV, my crazy teen, my long-suffering husband and, obviously, the weather – nothing has come close to igniting such passion in my followers. ‘Changed my life for ever,’ said at least ten people. ‘It’s the dream,’ said several others. ‘Even my dog loves it,’ said another. BBC radio DJ Lauren Laverne urged me to get the accompanying cover. Good Morning Britain’s Charlotte Hawkins said she’d been following the conversation and had also decided to buy one.
In an otherwise stressful working week, it cheered me to think that this banal, inanimate object could unite us in so much joy. I ordered it, it’s arrived. I haven’t used it yet (like I said, I’m busy) but I’m excited to. ‘Welcome to the club,’ whispered yet more followers. I must admit, I feel thrillingly part of some secret movement.
And this got me thinking. In the spirit of helping us all to conquer our endless pile of life admin, I wanted to share with you a few more of the totally mundane, unsung heroes in my life; things that add small but truly significant efficiencies to my mad days.
THE BUS CHECKER APP
A game-changer for me since 2015, yet there are millennials in my office who don’t know about it. Download it now on iTunes. Your days of just waiting, wondering if the bus is a minute or two hours away? Over.
THE ROBOT VACUUM CLEANER
I believe this marks me out as honkingly middle-class, but you know what, I feel so lucky that I have a gadget that cleans the floor when I’m not even there. Do anything necessary and within the bounds of the law to acquire one.
DIAGONAL MAKE-UP BRUSHES
Forget trying and failing to draw on straight eyeliner with an unsteady hand. Look for those brushes with tiny stiff bristles and a diagonal slant. Press into eyeshadow or liner, then on to the base of your eyelid where it meets the lash line. You’re welcome.
I don’t have time to holiday, invest in looking younger or juice-cleanse my cellulite away. This 15-minute event makes it look like I’ve done all three. What a time to be alive!
FROZEN, READY-ROLLED PASTRY
Who has time to make their own? I won’t tell Paul Hollywood if you don’t. Pre-rolled pastry + absolutely anything in the fridge = a speedy, tasty dinner in 20 minutes.
YOU MAGAZINE’S FOOD SECTION
I may be biased but this week’s is absolutely storming. Two brilliant chefs have planned your Christmas feast well in advance of the big day. All the traditional trimmings from Prue Leith, all the fabulous new twists on veg with Jamie Oliver – and no fuss whatsoever. Which all means we can do as they do in the Leith household on Christmas Day, and pop the first cork around 10am!
Another fun striped knit? Oh, go on. Jumper, £130, boden.co.uk
At this price I could spell out my whole name. Necklace, £15, orelia.co.uk
Slightly silly, but the sombre navy keeps it chic. Top, £59, cosstores.com