Thursday, 4 February 2010

On maize peanuts and parent rental

I was going to write something chin-strokingly earnest today I think, but it's all gone. I do know it was going to be about the frontier regions between solitude and loneliness and fervently wanting to be alone. And how an online presence, existence mediates it. But bugger it. You can read this, which is lovely and thoughtful, or this (which brought me out in a cold sweat). They are both interesting. I might even come back to it when I have a functioning brain, if I can find a way of doing so without sounding like a sad, pathetic bastard (ssssh). Right now, I have an incipient migraine, the house looks like a crime scene, targeted by vicious, sadistic burglars with a penchant for shredding paper*. The children are wandering round with maize peanuts stuck to their faces.

Figure 1:

Figure 2:

Incidentally, can I make a brief public service announcement? DO NOT BUY MAIZE CONSTRUCTION PEANUTS. I can go into the details if you wish, but please believe me. A thousand tiny pellets of insanity in each container. Thank you.
(Thought I must say actually even maize peanut facial hair was a mercy, compared with the collected works of Nickelodeon's online games showcased here tonight, which seem to largely feature belching.)

Tonight, yes. I do want someone else around to let me have a twenty minute lie down while the Migraleve takes effect. And maybe make me a cup of tea. Actually, I think what I really want is a mother. A Rent-A-Mother. Better than a lover, a friend, a co-parent. Even better than a cleaning lady. I bet I'm not the only one who would pay for this service and it wouldn't be the worst job in the world ever. All you need to do is a little light clearing up, spoil some children, make tea and toast and stroke my forehead for ten minutes whilst saying "there, there, it will all be alright". I wouldn't feel bad about paying for that. Obviously, if she felt compelled to tut at my ironing pile and go at it with a can of spray starch and a vigorous elbow, I wouldn't stand in her way. And if she happened to feel the urge to fill the freezer with balanced nutritious meals, well, it would be churlish to protest. But mainly I want my forehead stroked and someone else to have a quick tidy up last thing at night. The quick late night tidy up seems to trail on for hours, sucking the last dribble of sanity out of me, as I remove 18 maize peanuts from the dog's mouth, 80000 plastic figurines and a bowl of orange slime from the bathroom, and a fistful of hula hoops from my purse.

I might get her to just quickly finish off this post too, since I don't seem to be able to. And maybe she could think of a jokey title using the word 'parental'. Yeah, that would be handy. Ok, where do I place my ad?

(*The CFO wondered whether I would be hideously messy or OCD tidy in my new house, saying it would definitely be one or the other. Um. I think I can now confirm I am not OCD tidy. But it's not terribly easy to be tidy with no furniture! And, er, my bedroom is still very tidy. Most of the time. )


Lisa-Marie said...

If I could make you a cup of tea, I would. I recommend telling the children you want to play hide and seek, and then hiding in a dark cupboard till the Migraleave kicks in.

Lewis William said...

Is a nanny out of the question?? Though the professional relationship might make the head-stroking a little odd...

Em said...

Suggest you put an apron on the Weepette and gently place one front paw upon your forehead. Perhaps a tempting morsal should be positioned there first. Use maize peanuts for extra cushioning.

You're welcome.

Artichoke Queen said...

Not to throw cold water on your rent-a-Mum idea, but the part where she tutted about your ironing pile, and then made pointed remarks about how mussed the children look and whether you are wearing *that* in public would drive me round the bend. So how do you make sure someone else has her when that bit kicks in?

Kate said...

You CAN rent a mother. Or a partner, brother, sister, aunt, grandmother, etc. You just have to be in Japan. Of course. Australian comedian John Safran went there for his tv series and had an encounter with a mother. It was very sad, but sweet too.

Laurel said...

I love Em's comment. But, since I don't have a cowardly dog (or any dog at all), let me just say--dude. Forget those vulgar biscuits (awesome as they are). If you start that Rent-a-Mother business--and, like the dog borstal owner, expand overseas--I will be your dedicated customer.

Maybe my rent-a-mom would also come with a bit of grammar chastening and she could rewrite my blog comments so as to reduce dependence on parantheses and dashes, too.

Johnners said...

I am fortunate to have an actual mother, but she has never been known to stroke my forehead and offer cups of comfort. She's pretty good at quiet tutting and comments about ironing, though this does not transfer into doing it. Having said all that, I am confident she would be fabulous to someone not her own, who was in need, and I am happy to airmail her post haste if you find you need a northern mam (vintage Geordie) at short notice.

the polish chick said...

hula hoops in your purse? waffle! how big is your purse? could that, perchance, explain le headache (or la migraine)?

i think the rent-a-mother business idea is brilliant! i would be so good at it and wouldn't have to actually have babies or toddlers around! having said that, however, i would only tackle the ironing if i was prodigiously drunk which might or might not be a good idea.

Mim said...

Abolish ironing and ironing piles. Wash and wear only. I have no ironing board and the iron is out of sight. Can't remember where I hid it.

Margaret said...

I'm pretty good with the fussing according to my husband. Tea and blankies and here's the remote and everything will be better in the morning and do you want me to run out and get some cookies? I don't have kids so I'd enjoy taking yours to the playground and running them around until they collapse, which will give me time to do that ironing. Is it OK if I straighten your kitchen cabinets? It's kind of a thing with me.

Jessica said...

I was discussing this exact idea last week with boyfriend! It evolved from the idea of a "sick-nanny" for adults, someone who takes care of all the crap you have no energy to deal with when you're sick, who makes you cups of tea and lovely nutritious meals to help you get better, who will do your ironing, and who will even tuck you in for a nap.

Then after I began feeling better, I still thought it would be kick-ass to have a "life-nanny". Someone to handle all the crap I didn't feel like dealing with. Something a little like a cross between a mom, a butler, a personal assistant, and a chauffeur. I too, believe that people would pay for this. I would.

Anonymous said...

I want a rent-a mum too.

Waffle said...

I'm reminded that Mrs Trefusis and I have a long-standing plan to rent out our children. It could also be part of the whole package of family member rental.

Em, that was a lovely idea. He is quite consoling in his own, non-tidying, non-ironing, non-child wrangling way, but his claws are sharp.

Mya said...

I hope your migraine has dispersed and that any troublesome auras have dissolved. Would a viewing of Mary Poppins help, or simply add to the nausea? I'm not sure she does ironing, but she might clean the bog for you with a borrowed chimney-sweeper's tool, Mrs.
We had some of those maize building thingies - but the last time we felt like playing with them (which admittedly, wasn't very often because they were, frankly, a bit rubbish)the resident rodents had eaten them all up - there was just a fine, rainbow of dust on the bottom of the box. Quite pretty really.

Mya x

MargotLeadbetter said...

I am keen on having a wife myself. She could clean and tidy, wash and iron, look after the kids, buy the groceries, and I could have also a sensible chat with her about stuff sometimes. With a bit of luck, we might even like the same telly programmes. (I secretly think lesbian relationships would bring all these benefits, though I know that this is not always true).

frau antje said...

If you want to stick things to your face, you need a mother. Hate to say it, but you may need a wife. If you get one who can in any way fulfill any of these needs, for fuck's sake do not piss her off.

Anonymous said...

All mums who work for "Rent a Mum" will be rigorously vetted to ensure that they are non-judgemental. That way they don't tut or hector about the condition of the house, they just ask, "Where are the rubber gloves, Darling? I'm scrubbing the tub while you have a sit-down and here's a biscuit for your tea."

Anon C/Kalgon

gretchen said...

i agree, i think you do need a wife, mothers are rather judgemental. my own mother is hopeless at all those things you require. more of a tyrant, really. maybe a grandmother. a sprightly positive grandmother with a lot of energy. i have always imagined there should be an emergency kitchen clean up crew, 6 to 8 young men and women in white uniforms who come in a large van 10 minutes after your call to do the clearing up. no relation. pure business. i would surely pay a princely sum for that.

pinolona said...

Where do you get Migraleve in Belgium?????

Anonymous said...

Methinks 'dribble of sanity' is an oxymoron. Therein lies your problem. Stop dribbling and all will be well.


Anonymous said...

The bit about missing your mother? It just made me cry, as for the last few days I have been very fiercely missing my own. Ok, so a sniveling comment is probably not what you aimed for, but there you go.

WrathofDawn said...

If you want this choice position, have a cheery disposition...

I'd time share a Rent-a-Mother.

She'd have a brutal commute if I time shared her with you, though. But the frequent flyer miles would be killer.

I, too, fight the good fight between solitude and loneliness. I rather like living alone most of the time, but every now and again a wee thought of "What's WRONG with you that you have no other humans in your hourse?" creeps in until I bash it over the head with a gin bottle and stuff its pathetic little body in the airing cupboard.

katyboo1 said...

maize peanuts are a living nightmare. You are right. Perhaps we can construct a petition created out of them and ram it through the letter box of the bloody idiot who thought they might be a good idea.

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