So it’s fair to say there’s been a few pretty shite ones of late, which set some of our contributors to remembering their favourite days ever.
I was 14 and I was playing Tomb Raider 2 on a demo PlayStation in my local branch of Game. Three teenage boys gathered behind me and after a couple of minutes one of them went, “Pretty good.”
My daughter’s first birthday party. Sunshine, friends, family, happiness, laughter. Just a ridiculous and uniting amount of love for a tiny little human.
So, with the old having children caveat and all that (obviously every day with them is brilliant) standing in the quad at Benenden School listening to the Kent Youth Choir barbershop group singing My Evaline, eating an iced bun and realising I was actually in a choir still features quite heavily in my imaginings. The dork. (Sometimes it’s the day I skived work and went to Wakefield on my own, literally just to go to Lush and I didn’t tell my family where I was going).
When my mum was declared five years clear of cancer, we threw a massive party and invited the entire sprawling, mad clan. Watching my mum salsa dance to What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger with a glass of wine in her hand, under a banner reading ‘Stuff Cancer’ is gonna be hard to beat, I think. There isn’t one single decent photo from the night and if that isn’t a marker of a great time, I don’t know what is.
My children and I had had a rough few months and were pretty close to being evicted with nowhere to go and no money. I got a phone call early one Friday morning to tell me the council maisonette I wanted but thought I had no chance of getting was mine. It was the first bit of good news I’d had in months. I ran a mile and a half on winged feet* to tell my mum. I knew from the first moment I saw this house that we could be happy here. And we are.
*Turned out I’d broken my right foot just prior to this, and you really shouldn’t run with a broken foot.
It’s probably a bit contrived but my wedding genuinely was the best day of my life. Everybody I knew and loved was in one room so it’s probably the only time in the last decade I can remember not knowing where my phone is, or caring about it.
It was high-definition glamorous as me and my best friends had Hollywood-quality makeup and hair so we looked like a brilliant pop group (five bridesmaids and a Male of Honour – I got overexcited when I got engaged and there was a risk every time I left the house that I might recruit a child at the bus stop).
“Watching my mum salsa dance to What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger with a glass of wine in her hand, under a banner reading ‘Stuff Cancer’ is gonna be hard to beat, I think.”
The string quartet learned Brand New’s Quiet Things to play me down the aisle, a nod to my emo/punk heart in a way packaged for the grown-ups. Our friends formed the craziest combinations of new groups, when we were the only thing they had in common, and my dad somehow avoided lampooning me in his father’s speech.
I jumped the queue at the photobooth every time, bridal privileges, And I got to DJ it myself so I loved every song, which was absolutely glorious – even if I did nearly get booed off for playing R Kelly’s Ignition three times in a row (tough crowd).
I think the day I sang backing vocals for a-ha is quite high up. OK I sang Happy Birthday to an audience member with them (I was introducing them on stage at a pub in Coventry when I was a radio presenter) but it STILL COUNTS.
Best day ever? That has to be achieving my dream of hiking to a peak alongside Mount Everest when I was 30. It took weeks of walking, being chased by yaks, simultaneously puking and shitting outside the highest telephone box in the world and generally stinking of my own piss.
The day I reached the peak and turned to take in Everest melted a fundamental part of my brain. I collapsed and sobbed with delirious joy before being dragged back to base by a worried sherpa. I felt fucked but I’ve never felt happier.
My best day was fleeting. I thought it was the beginning but it was really the beginning of the end.
Can I be an absolute tit-wank and say the day we launched Standard Issue? OK, good, thanks. Way back when we started working on SIM, it was mainly just me in my back bedroom, with 100 brilliant pen-pals, eating trifle with my hands and wondering how the hell it was all going to pan out.
Launch day – 30 September 2014 – made it all real. Giddily, toilet-dashingly real. My mates at the then-day job had made me a special barf bucket. Readers, I used it. Sarah and I squealed at each other on the phone – we’d fucking done it.
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Some of Standard Issue's brilliant women's carefully crafted words for your reading pleasure.