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Friday, October 26, 2007

Be careful what you wish for

He always protests at first, that’s just what he does. When in doubt stall at the first hurdle. He fends me off with an arrow head in a neat pincher grip as I swoop in on my prey. As soon as we make bodily contact he starts wailing as I lift him off his feet, flailing, “I am be kill you wiv my fing!” he announces. “What thing?” I ask casually, knowing that he refers to the half inch plastic squidgey arrow head. I carry him fireman style over one shoulder floppy and co-operative despite the noise. Once he is in the bath he will be as happy as a clam, it's just the same old transition resistance. Mr. Clean, or squeaky to his friends has an in-built resistance to everything. “Dis fing dat I am having in my hand.” He stabs me gently in the back to demonstrate it’s magical powers of persuasion.
“Ah, and what is it called? Do you know what it is?” He sounds more adenoidal with every advancing step up the stair case to the bath, but that’s probably because it’s hard to breathe when you’re bobbing along upside down and trying to hold a conversation at the same time. “Yes!” he hisses breathily whilst slurping back the accumulated drool, because lip closure is another ongoing campaign.
“Well, what is it then?”
“It is not dah arrowhead.”
“Oh. Really? What is it then?”
“It is dah magic fing dat makes dah bath water beed disappear.” I step into the bathroom and deposit him upright on his feet in the room of devastation. Piles of soggy towels and clothes are everywhere, along with a few trails of bubbles and a more than waterlogged spouse. “Oh!” he says, standing up from his kneeling position on the bathmat. A cloth dangles from his hand as he wipes the grime of the tide, “I thought I’d already done him! Did I miss him somehow?”
His son steps gingerly towards the bath as the last drops of water gurgle down the hole. “Agh! It is be worked!” he stares at the arrowhead and then back to the empty bath. “Oh no, now I be dah dirty little mucky puppy. I need be dah clean and shiny one. Stoopid arrow.” He hurls it aside in disgust.

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