Monday, 19 May 2008

Supine parental abnegation*

I said there would be parenting, didn't I. It is possible that I may have lied. Perhaps there won't be parenting. There is precious little of it happening presently. I think the CFO would certainly concur that my approach to child raising is fairly, um, relaxed. Take, for instance, table manners. The absence of them.

As is traditional, I blame the parents. Whilst not strictly speaking raised by wolves, I am the child of 1970s academics, and the net result was much the same. More from my fledgling misery memoir on surviving a seventies academic childhood anon. Whilst invaluable in other respects (leaving me with an eye for a pithy placard slogan on any topic, an enduring obsession with beards, and the catchphrase "you're all reified man!") my childhood left me ill-equipped to deal with social conventions, or indeed any social occasion not involving passing out on a beanbag in a haze of secondary pot fumes to the sound of debates on Lacanian theory, campus intrigue and Joni Mitchell. The words 'cutlery' and 'napkin' are for me inextricably bound up with the traumatic single week at nursery aged 4 when I heard (and possibly used) them for the first time. Otherwise, it was more of a 'noble savage' type of experience, but with more M&S ready meals.

Little wonder then that Lashes and Fingers hunch on their chairs in impossibly contorted ways and eat with their fingers. And who am I to tell them different? My own gnarled predatory claws are hovering inches above their plates ready to steal stray fishfingers. They need to work fast. When the CFO isn't around, we don't even bother with a table, or plates, or chairs, or knives and forks, but huddle around a tray on the floor like a brood of baby vultures around a mouse carcass. Often we are simultaneously watching various creatures eat each other on YouTube. It's like the Discovery Channel goes Belgian.

The CFO comes from a French nuclear family of schoolteachers and was brought up on the entrée, plat, dessert school of family mealtimes. His family regularly uses several species of fork, knife and spoon as opposed to battered David Mellor Chinese green. They have esoterica like butter knives, salt in a little dish, dessert forks. Their tablecloths are linen, not Liberty Bauhaus oilcloth. Noone has ever tried to convince him that Lebanese fruit soup is a meal. I am almost certain that noone ever wandered off halfway through the gigot and came back to read them lengthy screeds of beat poetry. I am sure this was part of his appeal. This and our unforgettable first date at a DIY shop.

As a result, however, he despairs of his feral household. He is unimpressed by my assertion that family mealtimes are a Victorian construct. He does not consider my comment that nose-picking may have immunological benefits helpful or supportive. He would very much appreciate it if I could keep my fingers to myself. He frequently returns from a trip abroad to find us constructing elaborate ice cream sculptures or making giant daleks out of cucumber in a kitchen filled with brightly coloured, non-food detritus. I think, just occasionally, he would like a real spouse, not a 70s refusenik with more political convictions than cutlery...

At least, it appears, Lashes and Fingers are getting a basic grounding at school. The phrase 'tu manges comme un cochon' has been uttered too many times by both of them to be a coincidence. Very occasionally, Fingers will ask fastidiously for a serviette. Soon, I hope, I will be an embarassment to them! At least I'll still have the Space Cadette. I can follow the trail of discarded apple cores to whichever commune she's in, and we can share a hunched prehistoric meal of raw cabbage and hula hoops and eat with our mouths open. Thank god for siblings.

* This was another mysterious '70s academic catchphrase, which I have always taken to mean "spinelessly letting your children walk all over you", but I'd be delighted for further enlightenment..


black said...

bridal online shop bridal gowns wholesale wedding dresses high quality bridal gowns wholesale custom wedding dresses wedding apparel wedding dresses top sellers wedding dresses2010 new arrivals 2010 new arrivals wedding dresses beach wedding dresses Luxury Wedding Dresses plus size wedding dresses wedding party dresses bridesmaid dresses junior bridesmaid dresses flower girl dresses mother of bride dresses wedding shoes wedding bags wedding accessories evening dresses prom dresses cocktail dresses quinceanera dresses little black dresses

ghada sayed said...

اهم شركات كشف تسربات المياه بالدمام كذلك معرض اهم شركة مكافحة حشرات بالدمام والخبر والجبيل والخبر والاحساء والقطيف كذكل شركة تنظيف خزانات بجدة وتنظيف بجدة ومكافحة الحشرات بالخبر وكشف تسربات المياه بالجبيل والقطيف والخبر والدمام
شركة تنظيف خزانات بجدة
شركة مكافحة حشرات بالدمام
شركة كشف تسربات المياه بالدمام
اهم شركات نقل العفش والاثاث بالدمام والخبر والجبيل اولقطيف والاحساء والرياض وجدة ومكة المدينة المنورة والخرج والطائف وخميس مشيط وبجدة افضل شركة نقل عفش بجدة نعرضها مجموعة الفا لنقل العفش بمكة والخرج والقصيم والطائف وتبوك وخميس مشيط ونجران وجيزان وبريدة والمدينة المنورة وينبع افضل شركات نقل الاثاث

بالجبيل والطائف وخميس مشيط وبريدة وعنيزو وابها ونجران المدينة وينبع تبوك والقصيم الخرج حفر الباطن والظهران
شركة نقل عفش بالرياض
شركة نقل عفش بالطائف

ghada sayed said...

شركة نقل عفش بالدمام
شركة نقل عفش بجدة
شركة نقل عفش بمكة
شركة نقل عفش بالمدينة المنورة
شركة نقل عفش بينبع
شركة نقل عفش بالخرج

ghada sayed said...

شركة نقل عفش بالقصيم
شركة نقل عفش بخميس مشيط
شركة نقل عفش بتبوك
شركة نقل عفش بابها
شركة نقل عفش ببريدة

ghada sayed said...

شركة نقل عفش بنجران
شركة نقل عفش بحائل
شركة نقل عفش بالظهران
شركة نقل عفش واثاث
شركة نقل عفش

zapya said...

mobdro pc download
mobdro for iphone
mobdro kodi
how to install mobdro on firestick
mobdro for fire tv
psiphon 3 for windows download
psiphon 3 for windows
aodifgjd fgdfjglskdfjgsdfgosjdfgksgl

56 said...

0806jejeL'autre problème possible est la acheter new balance moins cher barrière de l'innovation technologique. Timothy Olyphant est toujours au chapeau de cow-boy ce que Michael Jordan serait aux baskets Nike. Des baskets qui ne se produiront nike air max 1 ultra essentials w chaussures pas à part dans les coutures. La croissance productive de Lunarlite Foam NASA et Nike a passé nike air max 1 ultra moire w chaussures 36 longtemps. Certains dunks Nike sont extrêmement légers aussi! Bercer les rues avec ces baskets. Bien que la conception de ces new balance 999 femme bordeaux chaussures est plus ou moins la même chose, vous pouvez trouver quelques détails qui sont utilisés pour distinguer les chaussures Nike air jordan chaussure fille réelles et faux.

qzy fff said...

converse outlet
kd 11 shoes
curry 4 shoes
air yeezy
adidas eqt support
calvin klein outlet online
yeezy boost 350
yeezy shoes
michael kors handbags

yan maneee said...

jordan 11 retro
jordan retro
valentino shoes
nike vapormax
michael kors outlet
michael kors outlet
cat boots
rolex replica
lebron 16 shoes
hermes belt

Unknown said...

Popular Fashion Blogs in Surat
Fashion Blogger in Surat
Surat Blogger
Indian Fashion Blogger
Fashion Blogger in India