Posts Tagged dad blogs
So last week I did indeed go to the GP and set in place the steps to get a vasectomy on the NHS
*hides every machete in England*
It was a normal-ish chat, except for the part where she again asked me if I was sure ‘just in case the worst should happen’, but she soon began the referral process. This involved one thing I was a little surprised about. Before anyone was giving me the snip my wife had to ring the GP and confirm she agrees with the decision. Yes, I need my wife’s permission to have my joystick amended.
Now let’s stop and think what would happen if this was the other way round. For comic effect let’s do so in a much more unenlightened era.
*puts on a large brain altering hat that gives the wearer the ability to think only in stereotypes*
*changes location and date to 1970s London*
Scene 1: A front room in a terraced house in black and white. Terry is having a Watneys Red Barrel. Enter Sheila from stage left.
S: Darling, you know we’ve talked about not having any more kids…
T: Fackin’ ‘ell shaat up. I’m tryna watch 3-2-1
S: Well I really think you ought to consider having a vasectomy
T: Fack off. Get my nob snipped? No fackin chance. Why don’t you get yer tubes done? (studies Dusty Bin)
S: Well, er, ok, if I must…..
Scene 2: At the GPs
Local GP: Sheila, before I refer you there’s just one thing, you’ll need to get Terry to call me and say he agrees to the process.
(Sheila rolls eyes and trembles a bit).
Scene 3: Back at the black and white terrace, 3 days later.
S: Er, Terry? Darling? Have you rung the doctor’s to talk about my surgery yet?
T: Have I fackin’ what? Later! I’m watching The Professionals. (whistles The Professionals theme tune)
Sheila storms out and commences writing a long letter to The Guardian.
Scene 4: The Offices of The Guardian on Fleet Street. Enter Women’s Affairs Editor and Editor. Editor is clutching a glass of scotch and smoking Rothmans.
WAE: This letter! Have you seen it? Men have to agree before a woman can be sterilized! Men! Agreeing! Other stuff requiring an exclamation mark! It’s like we never burned our bras!
Ed: (wearily) OK give me 500 words by tonight (takes huge drag on Rothmans and wonders how it was he got here)
Scene 5: A sped up montage is shown of the article causing outrage throughout liberal Britain. Campaigns are started. GP’s surgery’s are stormed. Questions are asked in parliament. Muesli is spilled on sandals. A bra is burned in arty slo-motion which somewhat contradicts the sped up nature of the montage.
Scene 6: Back at the black and white terrace 5 weeks later.
S: Terry? Love? Have you phoned the doctor?
T: Fack off! I’m watching The Sweeney. (Terry opens another can of Watneys Red Barrel).
Fade to grey.
*takes off stereotype hat*
*sings* “Words, don’t come easy, to me…”
Actually that’s the problem. They do. But reading my blog back I’ve realised I use a few of them a bit more than I should. There’s ‘slightly’ obviously. Then there’s ‘gibbers’ but gibbers is my second favourite work after ‘foofaraw’ and only Louis de Bernieres can use that and get away with it. Then there’s a very naughty one beginning with ‘F’. I use that loads. Too much.
To explain. I hate swearing at or near children. It rubs me up totally the wrong way. I have, however, sworn at ours a few times when they’ve been really, really naughty and I’ve been really, really frustrated. I’ve regretted it instantly and continued to regret it for weeks but, as I wrote to another blogger, it was in lieu of a smack and verbal violence is just about preferable to physical violence. We also have little habits we need to cut out. Mine is ‘oh bugger’ while the wife refers to the toys on the floor as ‘piles of crap’. However, most of the time I make like Mary Poppins. Baby just had a poo that’s leaked out of her nappy? “Oh SUGAR”. Boy left crayons all over the kitchen floor? “Oh FIDDLESTICKS”.
My previous outlet for all my pent up swearyness was football as previously mentioned. I sit in a fairly rowdy bit and there’s a good deal of swearing all round. There are no young children around us and anyone taking a young child in to that arena really should know what to expect. There is a family stand where swearing is not tolerated. Should Boy ever want to start coming with me when he’s old enough I will have to move there and then I will be Football Poppins. “How did you not see that Linesman you MELON FARMER?”
But then I started blogging. When things annoyed me or occurred to me in everyday life I would start writing a post in my head. Silently. You can swear in your head. You can swear a very great deal indeed. And out it all pours on to my laptop sometime later. Now a good swear here and there for comic effect or to emphasise a point I maintain is fine but I’ve wondered if, at times, I’m gratuitous. I’ve decided to set myself a challenge to find out. My next 3 posts, after this one, should contain absolutely no swearing at all. And as it’s Saturday Caption Day tomorrow that’s really 2 posts. Should be a piece of piss. Ooops.
*puts up another rant alert poster*
The buggy and wheelchair spaces on buses are for buggies and wheelchairs.
They’re not for your shopping trolley on wheels really. I know plastic bags are evil but everywhere does reusable non-plastic ones these days. A shopping trolley is either ostentatious or Old School. Either way don’t store it in the buggy bit. That’s for buggies.
They’re not for your suitcase either. Who the fuck takes a suitcase big enough for a 2 week holiday in Florida on a local bus trip anyway? I used to do a weekly commute with a case smaller than that. If you are going on a 2 week holiday to Florida, presumably it cost you a bit and you can afford to get a fucking taxi to the station. You’re not even getting off at the station are you? Anyhow, if you really, really need the case there’s a luggage rack for it. Over there. Away from the buggies. *points*
They’re definitely not for you slouching teenagers. When I was a teenager and I went on a bus I slouched properly by GOING UPSTAIRS and slouching on the BACK SEAT. That’s what’s wrong with this feckless, flaccid, flatulent X-Box and PS3 generation. Can’t even be arsed to go up to the top bit of a double decker and slouch properly. The skinny trousered, floppy haired James Blunts.
It could be for you Old Lady struggling to get on but here, why don’t you have my seat. Don’t give me that filthy look, I’m getting up for you. “Have my seat”. I said “HAVE MY SEAT DEAR”. Oh. You’re getting off again. I forgot your free bus pass positively encourages you to ride the bus for one whole stop. Bye Bye. I said BYE BYE.
The buggy and wheelchair spaces on buses are for buggies and wheelchairs..
Sunday was a good day. Baby had her last ever Little Dippers (of which more later) and we went round some nice independent shops and some horrible chain stores, then I met Mrs S and Boy for lunch in a local Japanese. There we discovered that Boy can eat his own weight in salmon and Baby likes prawn tempura like she likes wanton destruction. We came home and there was stew in the oven for later, rugby on the telly and plenty of time for me to have an enormous tickle fight with the kids. Sounds idyllic right? Well that’s what I thought too. Mrs S went for an early night and I celebrated my Dad pride with a glass of wine. And then another. And another.
Monday morning and the alarm goes for work at 5.30am. I use my phone and can normally wake up just using the vibrate but on THIS Monday I forget to silence it and it did the full Marimba, waking up Baby who shrieked louder than the phone. Mrs S fixed me with a look that could burn the Pacific Ocean and settled Baby while I grabbed work clothes. In the dark. Here’s what I grabbed. Blue trousers. Pink shirt. Green jumper. I was going to work dressed as Harlequins RFC without the mud.
Time for a shower and shave. This all went well till I dropped the shower head reaching for the gel, making another loud bang and waking Baby back up. Then I found I had no razor blades left and I had not shaved at the weekend. While my body was rocking ‘confused rugby substitute’ my face was rocking ‘hirsute tramp’. And Baby was still screaming.
What would bring some much needed gravitas to this situation were my work shoes, the black important looking ones. Which were downstairs by the front door. Or at least I thought they were but now they were nowhere to be found. At least Baby’s howling was drowning out my screams of ‘where the FUCK are my black work shoes, the ones that bring much needed gravitas to difficult situations’. I looked everywhere. Under the TV cabinet. Behind the sofa. Round the back of the fridge. In the cupboard under the stairs. By the door again. The important shoes had magic-ed themselves off somewhere like Paul Fucking Daniels.
At this point Mrs S and Baby got up.
Baby looked like a Cheshire Cat at a Whiskas eating competition. Mrs S looked like she’d spent all night in a bad Dubstep club. It was not a happy reunion.
Still at least I could go in to the bedroom and look for my black shoes. These were (and still are) missing. But I did find my old brown ones, thus completing the look of ‘colour blind vagrant’ rather nicely. With 2 minutes till I had to leave for my train there was no time to change. I left, walked down the street and suddenly felt, heard and smelled the unmistakable squelch of solid shoe on squishy dogshit.
I had gone from Daddy Cool to John Terry. From Lord Coe to Eddie the Eagle. From pigeon to statue. From King of all I surveyed to a fucking shambles.
Having been a parent for over 5 years now and having 2 of the little feckers darlings there have been many occasions where their behaviour or appearance in public has left just a tad to be desired. Like when Boy dressed himself for the first time. When he hid in a packed Sainbury’s. When Baby took an enormous teething dump on the bus and we still had 30 minutes till my stop. When Boy freaked out in the middle of a packed Haven show because a soft toy was scaring him witless. The first time I dressed Baby. And other stuff. As a result I thought I had become far less judgemental as a person, particularly towards other parents. Today proved I haven’t completely eradicated it.
Today I had the Dentist part 2 (my two fillings) at the amusingly annoying time of 2.30 (yes really) so was once again at home this morning. So I volunteered for the school run. And, man, was it cold. Colder than a well iced G & T up Mont Blanc. Colder than Genghis Khan’s heart. We left and a polar bear padded by. Torvill and Dean were practicing their new routine on number 33’s fish pond. Brass Monkeys looked terrified. You get the picture. Having safely deposited Boy in to Red Class I headed home. To get home I have to pass another school which Boy does not attend owing to it being Catholic and us not being. And heading for that school was a mum with her boy and he was wearing school shorts (the kind that look like school trousers but end above the knee). And Gus Poyet have mercy on my soul I judged her. Specifically I thought ‘what the FUCK is she thinking. That kid’s going to get hypothermia’.
Having thought a bit more since then though there are some explanations. I have boiled them down to this.
1) As they were running late (I was heading home) he may have spilled breakfast on his only clean long trousers. If that were me though I’d have stuck Boy in jeans and apologised profusely to his teachers. Therefore this scenario disturbs me because it suggests the Catholic school prefers uniform to common sense.
2) The shorts were the only school uniform available to her, reinforcing the conclusion to 1 above but throwing child poverty in to the mix. Not at all a pleasant thought.
3) He wanted to wear the shorts and having spent ages trying to talk him down she gave in. Kids do some pretty mad things after all. If this is the case I hope she packed a pair of long trousers to change in to and the number of a good child psychologist.
4) He has some weird kind of below the knee skin condition
5) He’s training to be an ascetic. This week shorts in the cold. Next week up a pillar like Simeon Stylites.
6) They’ve just moved down here from Newcastle.
Seriously, am I wrong to judge here (I suspect I am)? And can anyone come up with a better or at least less depressing reason than the six above?
I must admit that I have some values that can be regarded as variously fuddy-duddy or Middle Class. I accepted the fuddy-duddy when I realised I owned several cardigans (see yesterday’s post), while I accepted we’d finally “achieved” middle class the day my wife texted me while I was on the train home to complain that we were out of Creme Fraiche However my strongest held belief of all of these is that, whenever possible, meals should be taken together as a family and at the table.
During the week this is not possible as I am still coming home from work. Mrs Slightlysuburban feeds the children or rather she put food in front of them which Boy eats and Baby treats as a cross between nourishment and a missile. We eat when they’re in bed. On odd Saturdays the football also gets in the way of meals. Luckily there is Sunday.
On Sunday afternoon I cook and on Sunday afternoon I make The Family Meal That We Shall Eat Together. 99% of the time this is a roast and 100% of the time everything is from scratch. This goes against every common sense instinct I have, not because I don’t know what I’m doing but because the children join in.
Boy can be some help especially if there are Yorkshire Puddings to be made for, with a bit of help, he’s an excellent batter maker. Baby, however, hinders. She will open the pan drawer you just closed and close the vegetable draw you just opened. She has a habit of coming in and demanding to be picked up which is difficult when one of my hands is holding a sharp knife and the other has just been inside a chicken (odd as we’re having beef). But to NOT pick her up invites a 220 decibel shriek so I wash my hands and pick her up and she looks at the knife as if to say “I can’t WAIT till you show me how to use that”.
Another trait is to run round the kitchen in ever increasing circles each time coming slightly nearer to the oven than the last. So you put everything down and she stops and makes a beeline for the knife you put down in order to move her. She is also just the right height to adjust the oven temperature and fiddle with the timer buttons, greatly increasing the risk of burned potatoes and chicken sashimi. There is only one thing left to do and that is to strap her in to her high chair. It’s true that no-one puts Baby in the corner but in our house, eventually someone will put Baby in the high chair.
Once prepped and cooked we sit down to eat and a whole other ritual ensues. Boy will only eat his carrots if I have cut them up but insists on trying to cut up his own meat with a blunt 2-year-old’s Mickey Mouse knife. If I make the schoolboy error of putting Baby’s plate on the table when the food is too hot she will want it NOW but if I leave it till it’s cooled she will just play with it. Whatever you think she will start on, food group wise she will pick the opposite. For a while we thought she was vegetarian, which is hardly in character, but the other week I made shoulder of lamb and she attacked it like a prop forward who’d been nil by mouth for a week.
And as you all know far more ends up on the floor than in tiny bellies. The floor,has been cleaned up more times than Olly Murs’ voice and yet still it has a vague hue of carrot, gravy and yoghurt. Along with the high chair it forms slightlysuburbandad’s first law of directly inverse proportion. The longer they take to clean in minutes is exactly the number of minutes you can knock off Baby’s sleep before she wakes up demanding milk. Or rare steak.
So next time Masterchef is on and Gregg says ‘cooking doesn’t get tougher than this’ I’m going to have to disagree. Forget making nitro ice cream in a 3 star kitchen or feeding Jay Rayner. If you want to give ‘em a really tough test they should do the invention test while holding a grouchy, oven-changing toddler and answering the question ‘why are carrots carrot-shaped?’..