Friday, 20 July 2012

Summer Holidays - Day 1

You may notice I have changed the titling format of my blog - we now have a countdown of the summer holidays. This is mainly so I can keep check of my own posts and monitor my sanity as it deteriorates throughout the long Summer break.

It reminds me of an occassion when TJ and I were queuing up at the local Tesco Express. As we were standing in line I looked to my right to see the conveniently placed wine chiller cabinet with lots of tempting offers. I quickly took a bottle and popped it in my basket. TJ looked at me and said, quite loudly, "On no, Daddy, not another bottle today." As it was not even lunchtime I was quite offended by this remark and not wanting to appear a complete lush in front of the ever extending queue said, "Don't be silly TJ this is for tonight". He looked at me disparagingly and said, "You said that yesterday." I must have looked a bit flustered as the lady behind me said, "Don't worry, it's the school holidays. We all drink more during the holidays." I was both relieved and perturbed by this remark. Can I not go a full day without resorting to alcohol to get me through? Would I have a full 6 weeks of this and would that make me an alcoholic and do irreperable damage to my liver? Even worse would I have to go on a detox at some point in the future? Just the thought of that makes me want to have a drink. Anyhow, I quickly paid my bill and we came home.

Today, to celebrate the beginning of the holiday season, Papa left the kids a present each on the kitchen table. For KC a Moshi Monster - I have no idea what the attraction is with those but he loves them and was genuinely happy to get it. For TJ... a bow and arrow!!!!!!! Why? Why would Papa do that? Does he hate our pets so much? For the record we have a dog and a cat. The cat is now the ripe old age of ten and simply wants to retire quietly on whoever's bed is available. The dog is still very lively - although she is a little overweight. Before I joined the gym everyone told me to get a dog - 'It's nature's natural exerciser' they said, 'get a dog and you wont need the gym, you'll be walking for miles.' I'm sure that's true in Oxfordshire or some other area of rural England. But in a city where it rains constantly and the nearest parks are full of crackheads, all that happened was that both the dog and I stayed in watching the TV and eating crisps. So now we are both overweight.

I recently went to the doctor for my forty plus health check up. After much weighing and measuring and chatting the lovely plump Mother Christmas type nurse turned to me and said triumphantly, "It's as I expected, you are a near obese alcoholic." I looked stunned, "But I have joined a gym." I said quietly. "Yes, but you need to actually go." said the fat old cow. You may have noticed how my opinion of her changed quite quickly. I think she had obviously been employed to lull people into a false sense of security and tell her the actual amounts that we drank, smoked, didn't exercise etc - rather than our usual method of telling them what they want to hear. Then she springs the awful truth upon you and the clinic probably gets more money from the government as you add to their clinically obese statistic. Or am I just being cynical?

Anyhow, I went into the garden with my youngest and we drew a big Robin Hood style target on an A Frame blackboard and set it up for him to do target practice with his bow and arrow. He loved it.... for ten minutes. Then it was far more fun playing cowboys and hunting the unsuspecting dog. I guess it's always more fun to go for a moving target - especially one that that can't bite back. Did I mention our dog has no front teeth? She had been ill treated as a puppy and had to have her teeth removed when we rescued her - this results in the rather comedic expression she has, as her tongue simply lolls out of her mouth and she looks a bit like a dog with additional needs. I raced out to rescue the poor dumb animal and TJ then turned his blood lust onto his brother  and proceeded to hunt him around the garden. I took the bow and arrow away and came in to make a well earned cup of tea. I had barely been in the house for thirty seconds when I heard a blood curdling scream from KC - TJ had now fashioned a spear out of a stick and was practising javelin throwing using his head as a target.

I completely blame Papa for awakening the hunter in TJ so I have had to resort in the best parenting tactic known to man - I turned on the TV. TJ is completely mesmerised. When Karl Marx referred to religion as being the opiate of the masses he obviously hadn't considered the dawn of television. It doesnt matter what is on that screen, TJ is drawn to it like a moth to a flame and will sit for hours in a soporific state - actually he quite resembles the dog as his tongue hangs out too.

Tonight we have our first family meeting where we all consider our week, what has made us happy, sad, angry etc? It was suggested by our therapist. How middle class do we sound... therapy, family meetings? I may have to pop out and buy the Guardian newspaper and a pair of Birkenstocks to complete the picture. I'll let you know how it goes....

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