Sunday, May 22, 2016

Metaphorically Speaking

Tom has a big mouth. From the minute he popped out of my uterus he was LOUD. He’s also very passionate and confident and usually blurts out the first thing that comes into his head. 

This combination - loud and confident reminds me often of my mother. She always said the first thing that popped into her mind too - it was this unpredictability that made her so astoundingly funny at times. People never knew what to expect. 

Sometimes I don’t know what to expect with my son either, like at the playground yesterday when he found a spider on him and yelled ‘FUCK!’ really loudly in front of some little children by the swings with their parents. 

I did the best thing I could under the circumstances - I pretended he was not my child. 

I looked around and did a bit of a Ricky Gervais shrug thing when they looked in my direction with a slight head shake that said ‘Disgraceful! Where are the parents of this delinquent?'

It worked quite well until Tom came over and called me Mum at which point the parents gave me a filthy look, packed up and left as if to say, ‘We don’t want our perfect small children contaminated.'

It reminded me of the time a bigger boy was bullying him in a gated playground a few years ago and Tom finally cracked it and said to the boy he was going to stab him to death with a knife. Unfortunately the kid's mother overheard, grabbed Tom forcefully and started shouting ‘Where is your mother!!!?’ The mother of the bully was also a bully and a violent exchange of words about each other’s children followed.

‘Of course he wasn’t ACTUALLY going to stab him with a knife!’ I remember screaming, to which she screamed back, ‘Well how do you KNOW that?’

She was insinuating that my child was a psychopath and that I was stupid. I screamed back ‘Because he DOESN'T HAVE A KNIFE!!!'

On the drive home, me shaking with adrenaline, Tom still red-faced and sobbing in the backseat, we had a serious talk about using language as a weapon. I knew that Tom had said what he’d said because he’d been frustrated and wanted the bigger kid to leave him alone. 

It was quite simple I explained, anyone could say anything they liked as long as they popped ‘metaphorically’ into the sentence. I gave the first obvious example, ‘I’m going to metaphorically stab you to death with a knife.’ 

Charlotte and I tried out a few - ‘I’m going to metaphorically flush your head down the loo!’, ‘I’m going to metaphorically kick you in the shins!’, ‘I’m going to metaphorically poke you in the eye!’

Tom was finally smiling again, ‘I’m going to metaphorically throw a microwave at you!’ he shouted at the top of his voice.

The kids were thrilled, I’d shown them a linguistic loophole. 

My husband Tim thinks I've gone too far in this story and that people might actually think our son is a psychopath - so I found a photo of him from halloween dressed holding a scythe and applied a really scary Photoshop effect on it... Do you think I've gone too far? Let me know in the comments! 

Life Love and Dirty Dishes

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