Archive | 23:03

Life In A Quiet Town

17 Mar

Armed Police. Riot Police. Police Dog. Police Tape. Police Vehicles. My neighbourhood at four this afternoon.

The Hub happened to look out of our bedroom window and suspected something was going on when he saw half the street was cordoned off, ten Police vehicles taking up the parking spaces and all the neighbours out. I have always wondered what made numpties stand around looking at nothing for hours at a time and now I know: nosiness. I was out there like a shot, numptying away like the rest of them.

I spotted one of the few neighbours I actually know:

Me: What’s going on?

Neighbour I Know: Jed’s barricaded himself into the house.

Me: Who’s Jed?

Neighbour I Know: Dunno.

The Riot Police had on helmets and shields and were preparing to break in when they were told to stand down because Jed (presumably) was coming out.

This one's blurred to protect identities (not that I'd recognise him if I fell over him; maybe he really looks that way)

So it was exciting but not particularly dangerous (less bullets than I’ve experienced on a normal Saturday afternoon’s shopping in post-Apartheid South Africa). Everyone went back to preparing dinner and swearing at their kids (not me; Spud doesn’t get in until five). Some of the local boys chatted to the officers once the tape was down and the suspect on his way to the slammer; one lad asked to try on handcuffs, preparing for his future career, no doubt (not as a Policeman, sadly).

Another quiet day in Stockport; but what is it about Wednesdays that brings out the Police? Last Wednesday our local high school was evacuated because someone planted home-made bombs. That was the rumour, anyway: the evacuation was real; not sure if the bombs existed.

What have I learned today? I have learned that a strip of plastic emblazoned with the words ‘Police Line. Do Not Cross’ has magical properties, because even our local don’t-give-a-stuff-for-authority youths dared not disobey it. Oh, wait a minute: that might have had something to do with the firearms and number of officers.

I have learned that I am human and I can now stop sneering superiorly at news reports on tv in which hundreds of people hang around looking at nothing for hours in the hope of seeing something for a few minutes. I am a numpty.

And I have learned that the Hub keeps a camera secreted about his person at all times, enabling me to share today’s non-event with you mere minutes after my dinner. Or it would have been, if I hadn’t been distracted by a passing Malteser and only just remembered that I had something to tell you. Chocolate: numbs the brain, expands the bum.

Of Boxes & Boxers

17 Mar

Papier-mâché – such fun!  I was helping in school yesterday.  The girls got stuck in but some of the boys found it gross and didn’t like the mulch under their fingernails.  I’m that way about pastry, which is why I never make it. 

Two of the boys didn’t get past the building a mountain out of egg boxes stage, and asked for my help.  I found myself doing a Hub and completely taking over.  My mountain had a waterfall and caves and the fact that it was green and lumpy and the waterfall was made of a Smarties box means that you have no imagination at all.

Let me explain what I mean by ‘doing a Hub’: if you can ever not be bothered to finish a project, any project, just ask the Hub for his help; sit back; relax; watch a movie; bake a pie (using frozen pastry, naturally); raise a family.  He cannot help himself when he sees that you are not putting enough effort in; not dotting the ‘i’s, crossing the ‘t’s, outlining the crayon with a black marker pen; not using a fork to prettify the pie.  It’s how he got so sick in the first place.  Delegate?  Pah!  He spits on your ‘delegate’ (just got all Rowan Atkinson-French in Not The Nine O’Clock News there).  Why should he delegate when he can do it all himself?  He is not a perfectionist – good grief, no!  He denies the accusation strenuously, insisting that he just trys to be a perfectionist.  I bet 90% of all CFS/ME sufferers have the same complaint.

The children had to bring boxes into school to make their models.  I’m guessing that some didn’t bother to ask their parents’ permission: one had obviously retrieved his mother’s Canesten Duo box from the bin;  another was going to be in trouble when his mother discovered he had taken tonight’s ready meal from the freezer.  The worst part was that he left the food inside and took it into school three days before the project started.  There were a lot of complaints about the peculiar smell, especially once the heating was turned up.

Children don’t always embarrass their parents; sometimes it’s the other way around.  Tory Boy has joined  Anyone can ask you any question and you can answer them.  He has had lots of political questions (Q: If after the election we have a hung parliament, how would you like to see the situation resolved? A: Too dull for this blog) and some personal (Me: Are you eating properly?  TB: Stop nagging), but this one made me laugh:

Q: Boxers or briefs (or other)?

A: Boxers. Always. Also, other? What the hell? No, just no.

I liked his answer so much I Liked it on Facebook.  Five minutes later I received an outraged phone call from my son asking me to Unlike it immediately and to refrain from liking his underwear on a public forum.  And in private, come to think of it.  It was just wrong on so many levels he would have to deny I was his parent if we were ever together in public.  That made me laugh even more: as if I’d ever admit that a politician was related to me, let alone be seen with him in public…how embarrassing.

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