So, sorry if I sound a little muffled, I'm hiding under the duvet, way under the duvet, with absolutely no plans to come out until Jack turns three, which is in about a year so perhaps you should get used to this being my voice from now on, Husband always said I could do with a muffler.
Pre duvet-hiding I went to Sainsbury's to pick up the weekly shop and cry a little in the chocolate aisle, and a lot in the cake aisle, I then stopped crying in the Chardonnay aisle and bought myself a bottle, with a straw. Why oh why don't they sell wine in those handy cardboard cartons with an attached straw and convenient silver bit that hides a hole? If they can do it for juice surely they can do it with wine, it's not just kids that need pacifying during the weekly shop you know. I'm nothing if not resilient though, not to mention innovative, so until someone comes up with wine-to-go I make do with a bottle and a straw. The management don't seem to mind, by the time I get to the till I'm a sucker for an impulse buy so they make more money I suppose.
Anyway, it was a normal day, Jack was sitting prettily in the trolley stuffing biscuits down his face and generally signalling to everybody that I had no control over my child so I had to feed him rubbish to get a chance round the shops. Then again, the wine bottle and straw number may, just may, have detracted from this glaring bout of bad parenting. Who cares about a biscuit stuffing toddler when mummy+straw+bottle= glaringly obvious gap in the market for mini wine cartons, get to it someone, please.
Where was I? (you see, this is where a bottle of wine ruins things, imagine how much more succinct and focused I'd be if I'd only had a carton). Ok, Jack in the trolley, yes, and at this point I should remind you that he's now two and talking well. I don't mention him often, mainly because between Husband and Twizzle I have enough material for an entire psychiatric conference, let alone a weekly blog post, so he tends to fall by the wayside.
Jack, in a nutshell, loves men. He wants to do men's work, dig, lift, carry, scratch, drip on the loo seat, you name it if Jack sees a man doing it, he wants to copy. Not only does he want to copy but he has also decided that Every Man In The Known Universe must be pointed out and confirmed in his gender with a loud shout of Man! which is fun as you can imagine. He approaches every new situation with assumed bionic eyes and assures each male present that he has been seen and noted, I am looked at suspiciously as the mother of this gender reassuring service provider, as if I am using him as some kind of cheap but effective dating service (which I'm not, but if I was I'd take him somewhere far more expensive than Sainsburys).
The only problem with this little hobby, and it was a problem that was about to rear its short back and sides head, is that Jack isn't too hot at discerning a man from a woman with short hair. Imagine then the scene, Jack replete with biscuits, Mummy humming gently sipping her bottle of wine, slight tear stains from the inner fight in the cake and chocolate aisles, and a woman with short hair examining cornflakes in the cereal aisle. Round the corner we come, Jack on red alert for any man type activity taking place, only to spy one, one with cornflakes in his hand, one that's wearing a skirt. Lord above, she was trying her best, she may have had rather short and manly hair (and features if I'm honest), but she was giving it her all by signalling her femininity using that bastion of womanhood, the skirt.
Oh please Jack, I thought, please notice the skirt, please just this once. But no, Man! he yells, pointing sturdily at the woman, Man mummy Man! Mummy at this point ducks her head in shame over the Chardonnay and mutters something about having seen a man in the previous aisle and would she like a sip of wine? No? A makeover perhaps? (come on I was half a bottle down).
Oh the shame, the pain on her face, imagine standing in the supermarket, innocently examining a cornflake packet, only to have your gender woefully misinterpreted and loudly proclaimed by a toddler with a pointy arm. Oh dear.
But then, Jack did a strange thing, something he had never done before and which forever more I'd wish that he'd done just ten seconds previously instead of now. He noticed the skirt. I noticed, he pointed, I gripped the trolley and ran round into the ice cream aisle, just as the loud refrain of why man wear a skirt Mummy? drifted thickly over the cereal. I peered round at the devastation that we had left behind, and quietly rolled a bottle of Chardonnay towards her trolley. With a straw.
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