Thursday, 16 October 2008

Thesis proposal

Fingers meets socket: a taxonomy of responses to domestic internet use by the primary carer
(Professor Jaywalker Beard, October 2008)

Synopsis: This paper seeks to identify and categorise the range of immediate (defined as within 180 seconds of log on) responses to maternal and co-habitant internet usage among respondents in the 4 - 39 age group. The sample group is composed of three caucasian males, F, L, and C. Behaviour was observed over a period of 6 months.

Conclusion: Response patterns show striking similarity to previous study sets (Primary carer sits down at piano - Response mapping patterns, Beard et Chinwhisker 2008 Journal of Insular Research ; Adults seek to discuss topics of moderate to high importance Beard, Sideburn et Toupée 2007, Oxford Review of Banal Observations).

Response category 1: "Self-destruct"

Respondent F takes extension cable and places it in his mouth. Removing cable from mouth, he moistens fingers and stretches them towards socket.

Respondent L returns from kitchen with paring knife, kitchen shears and a Kitchenaid chopper attachment between front teeth.

Respondents L and F joust with sharpened metal skewers in their socks on wooden floor.

Response category 2: "Mutually assured destruction"

Respondent L repeatedly refers to Respondent F as "minus poo poo caca bébé". Respondent F retaliates with an elbow to Respondent L's solar plexus. Both Respondents fall to floor in flailing heap.

Respondent L chews pellets of paper and disgards in Respondent C's slippers. Respondent C responds with extensive aural assault (see response category 3). Respondent F dances gleefully drawing retaliatory action from both L and C.

Response category 3: "Aural assault"

Transcript of a sample of Respondent L's speech sequences:

Maman look; maman look you aren't looking, MAMAN look at this maman maman what is your favourite Pokémon, maman, you aren't listening, maman Fingers is leaning on me he stuck his finger in my eye he wiped his nose on my sock my snot tastes good can I have a pony can I have a Nintendo can I have a circular saw he started it maman maman why do ladies not have zizis, where is my bee tiger maman maman what is death maman I am hungry maman but why why why maman maman look maman look at me talk to me maman maman

Transcript of a sample of Respondent F's speech sequences:

EeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeehAIIIIEEEEEEEEAIEEEEEEEEWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA no he did it he started it eeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaiiiiiiiiieeeeeee can I play cbeebies games why not why not why not aaaaaa nononononononono not Fingers I am Rocket the parrot aeeeee maman maman maman maman maman aieeeeeee

Transcript of a sample of Respondent C's speech sequences:

We must transfer this money to my secret underground cave we must deal with these bills we must tidy the hall table why is there playdoh in my shoe if we don't book the train we are doomed have you transferred the money have you phoned the phone people what do you think of peanut futures what do you think about buying venezuelan zlotys what do you think of coating the tortoises in gold leaf why are the children so bad ARE YOU LISTENING TO ME AT ALL?

Response category 4: "Physical assault"

Respondent F climbs on back of internet user and places fingers over eyes. Respondent L tries to squeeze on to internet user's knee and tickles internet user's underarms. Respondents L and F each stick one finger up internet user's nose and laugh uproariously. Respondent L squeezes user's breasts. Respondent F removes internet user's shoes and attempts to tickle feet with exceptionally pointy nails.

Response category 5: "Shock and smear"

Respondents F and L source a range of foodstuffs on the granular, liquid and staining spectrum. They carry around in a range of precarious vessels unsuited to food transport.

Respondent L conceals playdoh sausages on a range of soft furnishings. Respondent F coats curtains in black poster paint. Both L and F fill pencil case with red glitter glue and place internet user's keys and credit card in glue-filled receptacle.

The author:

Professor Beard's full study is available on request from the Journal of Advanced Study of My Boring Life (subscription only).


livesbythewoods said...

I hope the International Commission For Very Tedious Yet Worthy Observations (ICfVTyWO) is aware of this seminal piece of work?

It's a Nobel-winner if I ever saw one.

Laura Jane said...

Fuckin hilarious!

You really ARE good at writing Eurotedium!

I dare you to submit this to a behavioural science journal as a letter to the editor!

Waffle said...

Will you be my peer reviewers LBTW and LJ?
I wasn't sure whether anyone would get this, so thank god for you two stopping me feeling like a freak.

fourstar said...

It was the pencil case full of glue and keys that got me in the end. I just had a tragic vision of our house in about 5 years...

nappy valley girl said...

Words fail me, and I'm supposed to be working, but I love both this and your previous post. Thank you for reminding me of M and Mme Dupont of Tricolore!

katyboo1 said...

You are excellent.

Thank you for making my day more shiny.

Yes. I also forgot to thank you for Tricolore. I have always had a secret yearning to go to La Rochelle, even though I know it will be shit and there will be no family of dragons.

I still want your photos.

Potty Mummy said...

Surely that should be titled 'My Glamorous Life'?

Anonymous said...

This struck a chord! I never had to endure 1 or 2, as I have girls and they don't tend to have the same destructive tendencies. Ditto 5 - they hated being dirty! But 3 and 4 - oh yes, yes, yes.

I hope this doesn't depress you too much but it still goes on - they are now 16 and 14 and I still regularly face the wall of sound, and the wrestling matches. As they are now the same size as me it has become rather difficult (dangerous) to interfere in these so I now go away and wait for the loser to find me, glare and say (through gritted teeth) 'you are such a ROTTEN mother!'

Marie said...

Is Prof Beard's full beard also available on request?

Waffle said...

Fourstar - Yes. This will be your life soon. Though perhaps they will not squeeze your breasts?

NVG and Katyboo - Do you think La Rochelle is awash with Tricolore tourists, searching for Claude le Clochard? Also, thank you, you are both lovely.

PM - If by glamorous you mean squalid and chaotic, then yes, absolutely.

CA - Yes, it does depress me slightly. But hopefully one day Belgacom will restore my wireless and I won't have to crouch next to the tv attracting their unwanted attentions.

Marie - Prof Beard's facial hair is available for weddings, bar mitzvahs, retirements, christenings... Academics are notoriously badly paid and must diversify.

La Belette Rouge said...

The results of this study makes me feel better about my status as unqualified to participate in this study as a non-primary carer.

Okay, now, go print this piece and put it into an envelope and mail it to McSweeny's Quarterly Concern.

bonnie-ann black said...

"I dare you to submit this to a behavioural science journal as a letter to the editor!"

yes! yes! The Journal of Irreproducible Results ( is longing for your paper.

Persephone said...

Completely Alienne isn't completely correct. I am the sister of a former four-year-old girl who decided to probe the plug socket with a metal nail file. Blinding flash, sudden darkness, language I've never heard from my lady mother before or since... Former four-year-old has survived and as punishment, has son of her own. (Also a daughter, but she too is a Leo, so same dif.)

My favourite bit of this report is "Aural assault" (particularly C's). The Resident Fan Boy is a Virgo so his litany involves his health, hockey, Doctor Who, why the weather isn't the same as the Environment Canada report he checked obsessively this morning, and at this time of year, endless quoting of Keats.

justme said...

All too real......
At least whwen you are at work you can play in the internets without so many distractions!

Iota said...

Awesome picture!

Potty Mummy said...

JW, I absolutely use the word glamorous in that context - because then I am glamour-queen extraordinaire...

Deborah said...

Dude. My real-life thesis was on acorns. Ancient ones. I had to eat them to get my data. You got nothing on me.

Waffle said...

Belette - so the He-Weasel doesn't demonstrate this mind melting trait?

Don't tempt me Bonnie Ann...

Persephone - Keats is a little classier, no?

Pretty Jane - You can't just drop this casual reference to your ancient acorn eating thesis and then leave it there - now I NEED TO KNOW MORE. Post please.

Jessica said...

Oh my middle hurts, I can't stop laughing. Awesomely awesome.

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