It’s January 5th 2050, somewhere on planet earth. Freya, Flossy and Felicity have tele-transported themselves back to earth from Mars (section 16 if your wondering) for the weekend.
We are proud of our kids. We did alright raising them. Mostly. But there was one thing we failed at. One thing we just couldn’t figure out. Something that happened every day. Something that, when it happened, our kids forgot every ounce of politeness, good manners and patience we had ever nurtured in them. That time was…DINNER TIME!!!
“Visitors identified in pouch. Repeat. Visitors identified in pouch.”
“Thank you futuristic home security system thing. That’ll be the girls.”
So, we have slaved away for hours on a delicious dinner. With the help, of course, of our chef robot, Nigella.
Me: dinners ready girls. Can you wash your hands, please?
Flossy: No! I’m busy.
Me: Erm, Flossy! (Accompanied by teapot pose)
Flossy: (in a much softer and sweeter voice) Sorry, Daddy. I mean no thank you Daddy. My hands are clean.
Me: Freya, thank you for washing your…oh, Freya! don’t scratch your bottom straight after you’ve washed your hands! Back you go.
Freya: Sorry. It’s just that my bottom was itching and so…
Felicity: yes, Dadda.
Me: are you pooing? You’ve gone very red.
Felicity: no, Daddy. Not pooing, Daddy. Finished Daddy.
Me: Atmospheric pressure I suppose is it? Why is it always before dinner? Flossy please go and wash your hands.
Flossy: huh. Alright.
Finally everyone is seated. Nigella serves the soup for starters.
Flossy: Yuck. I hate soup.
Me: Flossy, please be polite. Nigella’s worked very hard on that.
Flossy: But it’s got green bits in it. Can I just eat the bread and butter?
Freya: I love it. Soups my favourite. Thank you! Can I watch a movie if I eat it all up?
Felicity loves it and dives straight in.
Me: stop stop stop. Not from the middle, Fliss. It’s really hot in the middle. Start on the outside and blow it.
Flossy: Daddy, can you feed me please? I’m soooo tired.
Me: too tired to pick up a spoon. Felicity, please stop standing up at the table.
Me: No, not down. Eat. And sit on your bottom.
Felicity: DOWN! PLAY!
Me: Please sit on your bottom. Or you’ll fall. You liked it a second ago, whats going on?
Felicity: Yuck. No like.
Freya: I’ve finished Daddy. Look. I win. See how I finished before you, Flossy.
Flossy: I don’t care. I hate soup.
Me: Freya stop it and Flossy be nice.
Flossy: Sorry. Can you feed me?
Me: No. You’re 34 for goodness sake. You’ll be 35 soon.
Flossy: No fair.
Me: Felicity, please stop dropping your spoon. Here you go. Now, please don’t do that again…(drops spoon again) Felicity Fearne! That’s not good. And it’s not funny. Sit down. I’ll get it. No! I can get it. (I bend down to get it) Don’t kick me in the head, for goodness sake. Ouch!
Freya: can I leave the table yet.
Flossy: feed me!
A couple of moments later Freya knocks her glass of water over with her rogue left elbow as she twists to watch a fly glide pass. Flossy starts testing if she can spin 360 degrees on her chair. Whilst Felicity is drinking her water by plunging her hand in then sucking her fingers. It doesn’t take her long to realise that this is inefficient and so proceeds to pour the contents of the glass onto the table and then slurps it off there. So much easier.
I suspect that Kate and I end up eating the main course alone. Probably crying a little bit.
Dinner times! It’s important to eat dinner together. As a family. That’s what we are told. It’s a good bonding opportunity, talk about the day blah blah. Written I suspect by someone without children.