Sunday, April 15, 2012

Bananaman and The Long Low Whine

I made a colossal error yesterday.

There are some things in life that are such hard and fast rules that you know you shouldn't ever break them. So far in my life I've assembled a short but concise solid list. I have it pretty much memorized.

1. Never let other people know how smart you actually are. If people found out they'd make you do stuff you don't want to do.
2. Never poo in work. Have some decency - you aren't French you know.
3. Always carry a signed copy of your resignation letter with you at all times. Just in case. This is even more effective if you aren't actually working and can just thrust the letter into the face of whoever you want to make the same point to.
4. The only time it's okay to hide Jews in your basement is during a war. Any other time is frowned upon.
5. People say that size doesn't matter. But as my Gran used to say, "you can't butter bread with a toothpick."

6. If your due date to give birth to a baby is the very next day DO NOT decide that this is the night to eat a fish-and-spinach curry. At all.

I have now added a new item to this list. Do not show your children old British cartoons unless you are prepared to endure an endless battering from your kids pretending they actually live in that cartoon. For example, my wife went up to take a nap around 4pm. Frankly I didn't feel like doing real parenting. So I plonked both my kids on my lap and told them we'd watch something exciting on Youtube. I had no idea what it would be. So imagine my surprise when 90 seconds later we were watching Superted. I had genuinely forgotten how camp, Welsh and trippy that was. Especially this episode at a toy store in which Superted is heroic, Spotty Man is wimpish, Texas Pete is Rick Perry with brains and Skeleton is Julian Clary camp. Honestly - the skeleton character seems like a prequel for Alan Carr, but somehow gayer.

I quickly moved on from there to Bananaman. We watched this episode first.



Then we endured this one. The only comments my daughter made were that she liked how he had banana-hair, and that she'd never seen a blue banana before. Which I trusted wasn't a reference to anything she could see lurking beneath Bananaman's disturbingly tight blue costume. For me I was surprised at how parochial it was, and how bad the sound quality seemed to be. I just figured it was ten minutes of time that we killed and decided we should get off the laptop and figure out something to actually do.

But no - I was completely wrong. That cartoon seemed to have set of some sort of disturbing brain damage in my daughter. My son is two - so he's permanently concentrating on whining for as long and annoyingly as possible. But my daughter - she clearly suffered an immediate mental injury. I say this because still ninety minutes later she was absolutely certain that she was Bananaman. Absolutely everything she said, did and thought about revolved around the notion that she is definitely Bananaman and always had been. And - now that she thought about it - it explained why she'd always thought she was different to everyone else. Right after I turned the laptop off she wanted to play Bananaman - with her as Bananaman obviously. Her brother and I were to be her sidekick. Or, "sidecake" as she accidentally says most of the time. She asserted that we should have the word banana in our name. So Blue Banana Boy (my son had a blue shirt on), Super Banana Woof (the dog, naturally) and Dr. Greenbean (me in a green shirt, but really a banana disguised as a green bean). This went on for 45 minutes in which she narrated an elaborate storyline in which Bananaman saved the world from criminals. Which actually were just a small red ball, Wolfy the wolf and ten evil worms - aka Dr. Tickles - more commonly known as my fingers. Winning even fewer awards for parenting I spent quite a bit of this time, "disguised as a blue rock." Which in reality means lying on the floor under a blanket doing pretty much nothing while my kids buzzed around me.

I thought that would be the end of it but she kept bludgeoning us with Bananaman nonsense for the rest of the evening. She claimed was wearing banana clothes because her shirt was yellow. She said the carpet was now to be known as Banana Island. She repeated the word Bananaman over and over - enunciating each syllable loudly to see what was so bloody magical about those words. I could tell you what we really had for dinner - but my daughter would sternly deride that as patent lies because she knows it was really banana soup. At the dinner table she gushed about how she loved the word, "banana", especially in her name Bananaman, because it was a superhero name that had the word banana in it. She was genuinely unable to not shut up about Bananaman. My wife enjoys moments like this because it's easy to wind my daughter up by playing the game wrong or taking the allusion too far so that my daughter has to play along otherwise the false-reality will come crashing down. An eample being completely agreeing that dinner was banana soup - so she best eat all of it or she'll lose all her banana powers and be destroyed. She ate it all (actually she seemed to genuinely really like it). My wifem ade a few more probing banana's-are-lame comments to prod and poke at her daughter. All of which led to this horrifying conversation over dinner .

Wife: Okay Banana Girl! Let's go!!
Daughter: No Mommy - I'm pretending to be Bananaman.
Wife: Really? Where's your penis?
Daughter (whispering very badly): Banaman doesn't have one Mommy.
Wife: What does he have?
Daughter: A banana. Don't worry. It's plastic.

Well there we are then.

This morning she kept this up with vigor. Her first word to me was, of course, "banana." Then upstairs she just kept repeating, "I'm Bananaman!" like she's mental. Thankfully she buggered off to get dressed and gave us some respite. Sadly she then came back upset because her only long-sleeved yellow shirt is dirty. Or as she put it, "someone took my Banamana costume and made it dirty." In the end I had to open up a Summer clothes box to fish out a yellow shirt that is much more a mustard color. It's also covered in flowers. She was not convinced at all. That is until I made up some silly crap about how it's the perfect disguise to hide from criminals who will jst think she's a flower bush and never know she's really Bananaman ready to pounce. In a complete twist of accidental coincidence I happened to be looking at pictures of juice cartoons made to look like the fruit themselves  right when my daughter passed me by.

She almost exploded in orgasmic delight at the sight of it. She's a lost cause now for at least the next three or four days until she becomes disturbingly attached to something else.We are venturing out to be amongst other people today so I'm hoping she tones it down.

Although I'm certain that at church later when she no doubt stabs one of the old ladies with a concealed banana.

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