"I made you an I Love You Octopus Daddy."
This morning has been emotional. Actually to emphasize my pathetic first-world problems - I haven't really had any respite from wall-to-wall kids since before my wife went to New Orleans for a week on the 21st. So I'm getting tetchy. Very tetchy. Yesterday afternoon can be pretty much summed up by me starring angrily at my kids while they deliberately ignored me telling them not to batter each other with blunt objects. It didn't start out that way. When I picked my daughter up from school we zoomed over to buy some ground beef (that's mince to you British people) to make meatballs with. During which time my kids were lovely. My son drove his racecar cart like he thought he was Jean Alesi - throwing the wheel around and slamming from side to side. My daughter declared this -:
Daughter: Daddy - people should call them cow balls instead of meatballs. People would like them more if they were cow balls.
Me: I'm not sure that would be as successful as you'd think. Maybe Beef Blobs?
Daughter: No - that sounds weird. I like cow balls a lot more.
This morning I've settled on Moo Mumps. Someone would probably sue for not getting the mumps that they assumed they would get from them though - so maybe scrub that idea. Anyhoo - me being me I couldn't stomach the idea of paying that much money for that little amount of mass-produced beef and bailed on the idea. Which set the kids off on a grumpy tirade about how they never get anything they want. I should point out that they continued this at home whilst finishing off a milkshake we'd bought the day before. I certainly pointed it out to them. My daughter then cried like I'd just run over a puppy because I hadn't bought meatballs. I firmly came down on that and said it was not happening. It seemed to work for about ten minutes. I was wrong. Because after that there was an awful lot of that annoying bollocks where someone does something they know is wrong - gets hurt (but not really) - comes crying to me about the massive injustice of it all (whilst wildly exaggerating about how the other child jumped them whilst they were doing a bible-study, without any warning and beat them with metal pipe) - I give limited sympathy and eventually give up on actually perpetuating the whole thing - chide the other child for now getting angry because the other one got Daddy to believe they had been attacked - and then watch as both kids go back to violently smashing their way around the house trying to bludgeon each other with a train/drum stick/electronic kitchen thermometer. At least - I thought - my wife would be home soon. Then she called 45 minutes after she could get home to let me know she'd be home at least an hour later. At which point I sat my kids down for dinner - which they recoiled in anger at because it was a salad, and I had requested that they didn't just rub their fists in the Ranch dressing and lick it. Which they then did - and I angrily grunted about. Then I made them take a bath so I could throw bubbles at them with vehement force without any danger that anyone would be hurt. Thankfully by the time the wife got home they'd calmed down - as had I - and they went to bed mostly without fuss.
I personally think I should have been congratulated for not snapping and murdering everyone. Annoyingly they don't give awards for things like that. But they should - if millionaire actors can get an award and have people fawning all over them for pretending to be someone much smarter and more interesting, then surely I should have a plinth erected somewhere with a tribute to my will power. Instead all I get when I tell other parents at school that I've decided to spare my family are suspicious looks. It's just another example of hypocrisy.
Thankfully this morning we've all continued the trend. After getting back from a lovely morning run (nothing quite like a run on garbage day) at 5.45 my children were awake and ready to begin a day of complaining that their magnificent lives aren't different. My daughter quickly came downstairs and moaned that it was cold. I offered the solutions of blankets or getting dressed but then that would deprive her of the chance to lie on the ground and complain some more. She did it quietly though. My son didn't go the same route. Instead he howled like the first Fantomas album (you really need to click that link) that his mother start her day. She calmly put him on the toilet - which enraged him even more. Then she tried to get him dressed- which he violently squealed about as if it violated all kinds of UN resolutions. Twenty minutes later he was angrily shuffling around the kitchen growling at his mother and sister who were eating cereal. Not him though - the very idea that he could eat made him lash out. Eventually he let me pick him up - but woe betide me going near my coffee cup. He literally tried to kick it out of my hand simply because that meant I wasn't entirely focused on his demonstration of annoyance. I took this opportunity to lash out at the next person to annoy me as well - which was my wife asking if I wanted to meet her for lunch at a farmers market. I managed to turn that into a lecture to her on how she doesn't answer questions about whether she wants left over curry taken out of the fridge. "That fucking well showed her" I seemed to think at the time.
After the wife left I am happy to say they children's torch-paper emotions have dampened somewhat. Mine too. Although it does seem to have been a mistake to chug four cups of coffee and nosh two apples. That's my entire morning's quota of Arsehole Fuel gone in 90 minutes. Thankfully I've moved on to nibbling handfuls of chocolate covered coffee beans. That will calm me down surely. My daughter even made a nice picture of an octopus for me that she called a Love Octopus (possibly a Led Zeppelin/Vanilla Fudge reference there) for me. Granted two minutes later she decided it was for someone else, but whatever. Since then both my kids have channeled their loud, screeching hyena-barks into pretending to be terrified of everything. They had both requested Breakfast Two (tentatively titled, "More Carbohydrates NOW) of toast for one and a bagel with cream cheese for the other. By the time those came out of the toaster they were running around the house screaming like the second Fantomas album (marvelous stuff) because, a) my son was going to be getting scream cheese, and b) my daughter said that someone had put toes in toes-ster.
Balls - fifth cup of coffee coming up.