Food, like sex and playing the ukulele, is one of the basic instincts in life. It's controlled by our limbic system, the reptilian bedrock of our subconscious, so it's hard to ignore. It's also hard to get wrong. You get hungry, you have food available, you put it in your gob, and you swallow it so you can make more of you to be hungry later on. The problem most of us have is knowing when to stop, probably because we evolved from opportunistic hunter-gathering types who didn't know where their next meal was coming from so had to take the time to stuff themselves silly when such opportunites arose. Unfortunately, rather than happening every few months when someone hit the sweet spot on a mastodon, those opportunities are now an everyday occurence for us, hence the portly nature of a large portion (aha) of our society.
So, why is it that my offspring, who shall be known here on in as The Sproglet, can't seem to keep the damn stuff in his mouth?
I mean, take a look at the aftermath of a typical lunchtime repast:
This is actually quite clean. Most of it usually ends up on the floor, with a fair quantity in his hair. There's often enough to make a new meatball out of what you can collect from his eyebrows. Not having much in the way of other children, I'm presuming the following sequence of events is normal - food goes in; food comes out; food goes in again; food comes out amidst giggle; food goes in again; food comes out amidst bemused look; food goes in again; food comes out amidst a soul-wrenching cry of the absolutely distraught; food goes in again; food gets swallowed; rest of food gets lobbed around the kitchen.
Obviously, the Sproglet thinks that mealtimes are the perfect venue for a spot of drama, and he runs the full gamut of human emotions, hamming it up like Gielgud reading the Yellow Pages.Starting off with laughter, then moving to horror as he reliases he's going to be STRAPPED IN to a high chair, then amusement as he watches you cool his dinner, then as above as you feed him, followed by momentous squirming and wriggling where he manages to rival Houdini in escaping from the chair of horrors. The only thing that compares with the traumatic nature of feeding him is when we brush his teeth. He screams and writhes so hard you'd think we were cutting his toes off with sacateurs.
We're not though. Haven't done that for ages. He's just doing it for the attention.
Well, two can play at that game. I can totally ham it up:
An than' yew. I'm here all week. Don't forget to try the scallops!