It's no surprise to me that my pregnancy has opened the flood gates to a torrent of tips, and it's no less surprising that most of them seem to have been extracted from that old faithful, the book of old wives' tales. So whilst I'm amused to be told that eating broccoli will improve the likelihood of our child being a girl and that wearing copper jewellery will protect my all-round well-being, I'm no more liable to put any faith in these apparently random bits of hand-me-down wisdom than I am to ever consider an attempt to influence the gender of our baby through vegetables or to accessorise with some cheap piece of tat for health reasons. Please, I have standards.
Hereford are currently rooted to the bottom of League Two and in desperate need of mountaineering equipment if they're to stand any immediate chance of climbing to even minor heights. This is of course a topic on which even more people are wont to pronounce, the beautiful game being one of those things on which the world, his wife and their labradoodle have an opinion. And for me, the self-proclaimed football experts are only one step below holier-than-thou ex-smokers on the irritating smugness scale. (I speak as an ex-smoker but one who merely gets on with it and does not preach. This may change when I have a baby's lungs to protect, so if I rant on the theme next year you'll know why.)
What makes the armchair punditry worse is not the fact that everybody, myself included, thinks they know better than their team's manager, but that those who wryly pass the sentence of doom upon Hereford are always supporters of the top teams in the Premier League. Well, I say supporters; I'm acquainted with rather too many people who seem to support the likes of Manchester United with clearly no ties to the team, the town or even the region. Yes, it's easy to follow a team that does well. But you'll only find true passion in the lower leagues, even if does come with the required side order of frequent despair.
My husband, a man wise enough to preserve an aura of peace and tranquility around my volatile hormones, is one of the few who makes no proclamations on the Bulls. Instead he quietly perseveres with his loyalty to Brighton & Hove Albion, and I look upward at their lofty perch atop League One with envy.
And one need only look to the farmland skirting this city to observe this simple truth: seagulls do soar above bulls...