Tuesday, 21 February 2012


I have nits. All day, it feels as though the four horsemen of the apocalypse have been galloping freestyle across my scalp. I have scratched my head so much I look like the Medusa. When I told my partner about my condition, he looked so disgusted, so well and truly turned-off, I may as well have said, “Hey darling, I just love eating shit.” Or, “Honey, I seem to have acquired an infestation of pubic crabs, but not to worry, they’re as happy as larry playing in the moist, thrushy rock pools of my groin.”

I should explain. My partner is the Nits Nemesis. He hates nits more than anyone else on the planet. I would go as far as to say that his hatred of nits is so off-the-scale that he now has a fully-blown Hedrin habit. Every time he goes shopping, he buys another bottle of the stuff. I say things like, “Look love, it’s not as if you’re stocking up on bottles of water, which, you know, in the event of the Mayan Apocalypse, might be really useful. It’s only Hedrin. And we’ve got six bottles already.” But then, to be fair to him, Hedrin is always bringing out newer, better versions (lotions, mousses, spray gels, overnight gels, one-hour gels), and it’s pretty hard to keep up. Hedrin is worse than that other motherfucking asshole, Adobe Reader, which needs about 40 updates a week just to stand still, each of which requires downloading and installing programmes, and shutting down and rebooting your computer, which eats up at least twenty minutes of your ONE AND ONLY life, every day, and all of this when you only have half and hour of childcare every week, the fucking assholes.  

But anyway, before I go on, let me give you a ‘flavour’ of the kind of conversations we have about nits:

ME: I think I might have got nits.
PARTNER: Go and sort it then, for fucksakes.
ME: Yeah, I will in a minute love, just give me a minute will you?
PARTNER: There’s plenty of Hedrin up there. GO.SORT.IT.NOW.
ME:  Yeah, I will love, IN.A.MINUTE. Can’t you see that I’m just trying to put this kitchen FIRE out!?

I freely admit I procrastinate. For a start, applying Hedrin to your hair makes you look like one of those tragic sea otters caught up in the Exxon Valdez oil spill disaster. (Or Bob Geldof.) Also, if you do happen to drip even the tiniest droplet of Hedrin on your bathroom floor, please don’t EVER try to clean it up, please. If you do try to clean it up, this is what will happen: you will die. You will slip on the tiny Droplet of Oleaginous Doom and skid, in some horrible parody of figure skating, through your bathroom window, to your death.   Instead seek out the assistance of someone who can build a suspended floor.

But the absolute worst thing about head lice is this: even when you’ve applied a whole bottle of Hedrin to your hair, and sectioned it, and scraped a nit comb through it for half a day, and there’s a stink of genocide in the air, and the evil teeth of the nitty gritty comb are dripping with blood and human skin tissue and drowned louse carcasses, and you’ve also managed to get a bit of Hedrin in your eye, and you are standing half-blind, gorgon-like, in front of your bathroom mirror, you just know that there’s still one left. One survivor. In the night, you can feel her, The Alpha Louse Mummy, The Immortal Grey Queen, running triumphantly between the strands of your hair, high on blood and human shame and Hedrin. And you know that she’s heavy with child. God bless her.


  1. Can i just say that despite the half truths you write about me, I am the ten thousandth page viewer. Congratulations sweet chops. You are spreading like bird flu

  2. Don't talk about bird flu babes. You know what you were like about that. xx

  3. It was brave of me to come near your blog in case they hop on to me. I had nits once. My hair for DAYS looked as though I'd done a headstand in a deep far fryer. Now my solution is never to nit check my children. I just don't want to know. It's a remedy that works for most domestic problems - hide under the duvet and they're gone by the time you peek out.

  4. Luckily I know very little about cutting-edge quantum physics so rest assured there is no danger of being confronted by real nits. I barely know how to download a photograph of a nit. I did consider a close-up photograph of the post-apocalyptic nitty gritty comb, as mentioned above, but then I thought that I might actually want to keep some of my friends. I like your under the duvet approach. The health visitor and pharmacist never mentioned it. x

  5. Oh my dear life, that is exactly what it is like having nits, bastard things. I had them once, my hair was so long I felt like rapunzel in the wrong fairy tale. Had to chop the bastarding lot off.

  6. That was sooooo funny. So well written. I am so with you on Adobe and its bloody updates - every time I turn on the pooter Adobe is smiling back at me with ANOTHER update. Hate the thing. So far I have never had nits, and after this post I never want to - but must make note to board up bathroom window in case of a future hedrin incident. We have mice at the moment - can hear them rummaging in our make shift recycling bin at night - found myself screaming I'm the bloody Gruffalo at 3 am the other week in another pointless effort to get them to shut up. My scalp is itching .... gotta go!

  7. It's no good screaming at them like that. You need to go the whole hog and actually dress up as the Gruffalo, then start screaming. It's the only way of getting rid of mice. You could even incorporate it into your love life, as nearly perfect mother does in this blog: http://nearlyperfectmother.blogspot.com/2011/09/play-house.html

    Good luck! x

  8. omg! My daughter has been nit free for 2 months after having brought them home about 12 times in the last twelve months (thats right! last year there was a child in the class that was never treated and my daughter told me the girls hair was constantly crawling with them, she could actually see them crawling - very sad) and so about 3 times I managed to catch them too. Arrrgggh. Feels soooo embarrasing being a grown up with nits. I recently went to the hairdressers for a new style cut and I was so paranoid they would find nits. Such a relief that I too was nit free.

  9. Hello, my name is Alison and we have been nit free for 12 months. Hedrin, just slap it on, place bucket over head and wait. If you comb it, you are combing out the hedrin. Also vosene head lice repellent shampoo. Something that actually works. I'll be back when you are nit free x

  10. Agree Strifesurivor. Going to the hairdressers post-nits is to risk social death. I always feel like I have to make some kind of speech explaining that any residual nit eggs are i) dead or ii) hallucinations.

    Ta older single mum.

    Five go blogging - Like the sound of the Vosene. I will pass this information on to Nits Surveillance once he's home from work xx

  11. Oh my god! I peed myself a little while reading this. You have such a fantastic way with words.

    Blogger fucked u,p so I wasn't getting any of your posts on my dashboard but now it's working again.

    Seriously, you are simply Brilliant. :)

  12. At least you only pee yourself periodically. Mice pee themselves less than me.

    Yip, the google reader wasn't working for a while. I have literally spent days sorting it and now everyone's getting them all at once which makes me look a little psychotic! x

  13. That is hilarious!! You tell it a lot better than me! That is the worst thing about the vile shampoo too I assumed one wash and they would be gone!! No chance. We are officially bit free again but every time the letter comes home from school I get very twitchy!