Saturday, May 16, 2009

Ingrate Expectations

Being a parent gives you all sorts of concerns. From worrying that the sniffle and tiny red spot on their chest is actually some sort of necrotizing cancerous meningitis, to apprehension over what career your child will take up when he/she/it grows up all contribute to a sustained high level of stress hormone that, without a doubt, must take years off your life and makes Gordon Brown's current position seem about as stressful as that of Jennifer Lopez's nipple tweaker.

A job that comes with it's own place to put your hat can't be bad.

We want to do the best by our sprogs, and will take action to protect our little genetic investments because they're the closest thing we get to immortality, other than blogging.

This action may not always be particularly rational. I'm sure our GP is fed up of telling me and the Missus that the tiny bit of eczema on The Boy's eyelid probably won't infiltrate his brain, and that a child needing less sleep than you is not an indication that said child is unwell, it's just natures way of being a complete git, now stop moaning, you overanxious parents, and go order more coffee and ProPlus tablets.

For the long term, the action we take is in trying to ensure our little bundles of joy reach their full potential. Lots of books, interaction, educational toys, singing, music and cheesestrings will, we hope, let them flourish into complete, well-rounded (although not obese) confident people, able to make the world their bivalve and snatch the pearls within.

But without putting too much pressure on them, of course. There's nothing worse than pushy, over-expectant parents, although I do hope he mentions us in his acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize for Complete Bodacious Awesomeness in the Fields of Science, Art, Music and Parkour. We'll put it on the mantlepiece next to the World Cup and Wimbledon Trophy.

When I was a kid I wanted to be David Attenborough, especially if dinosaurs were still alive somewhere, which I hoped for with the reality-avoiding desperation that 7-year-olds hope Santa exists and Scientologists hope they don't look really, really silly.

All hail Xenu (just in case).

Of course, this was an achievable goal, had I just a bit more brains, ability and competence, and was also willing to put the work in, which I wasn't, so I didn't. I did eventually become a biologist, and had an enjoyable decade in the pest control industry before embarking on a second career of ferrying mildly-injured drunk people around in a blue-light taxi.

I take heart that my brother, when asked, told us he wanted to be "a moo-cow".

Ahahahaha! What an idiot! A moo-cow! At least I never said moo-cow! Who's laughing now eh? EH?

Actually, he is. He's now a respected PhD in the biochemical sciences, with all publications in journals that have swirly DNA helices on their white covers, and cut-away diagrams of cell membranes and words like "hydrophilic", "phospholipid bilayer" and "moo".

Wish I'd said moo-cow.

Anyway, with the coffin of childhood dreams buried forever 'neath the clay-like topsoil of harsh reality, I can at least live vicariously through my own son.

So what shall he be?

A scientist? A medical doctor? A musician? A sportsman? A famous artist? A non-corrupt, non-cheating, non-rule bending or at least non-getting-caught politician? Maybe he will combine many talents and become a modern renaissance man, furthering the whole technical, psychological and ethical frontiers of the human race, blowing apart our currently entrenched mindsets and forming new paradigms with which we can operate a fairer, brighter future! He might not even have to Google the word "renaissance" to see if he's spelt it right.

The possibilities are endless!

His mother, however, pointed out the following photo, which reveals he might be a builder:

Actually, as long as he's happy and I get a garage out of it, I'm good with that.


  1. LOL! How cute is that! I miss my children being little.
    And know,that no matter the occupation he chooses,one thing is certain he'll be loved regardless.

  2. or maybe a plumber....

    when i was little i told people i wanted to be left alone when i grew up, and then in high school i told people i wanted to be an undertaker.


  3. Awwww ... that was lovely!

    I think your brother is adorable for saying he wanted to be a "moo-cow"!! Haha, so cute! :P

    As for "The Boy" ...

    1) LOVE his hoodie!!!

    2) Definitely a builder's bum ... you could park a tricycle in that!

    3) What a lucky little guy to have such a cool dad

    Have a great weekend, Jules

  4. Thinkinfyou - He really will. he's quite loveabubble already.

    Miss A - lol. I like that a lot!

    Girl I - My brother is not adorable. He's a . . . a . . . POO head. Yeah.

    Thank you for the lovely comments!

  5. Doris Day sung a famous song about this, which was later copied by football fans. Funny that you wanted to be David Attenborough. Davy once told me he wanted to be a gorilla.

  6. When I was a kid I thought I was David Attenborough.

    Actually, I'm kidding.

    It is hard being a parent - especially when you have your first (I only have one child so far), like you say, the tiniest spot or blemish can be the cause of so much anxiety. After millions of trips to the doctor in just 7 months of Bubba's life I'm still not used to it!

  7. My son hoped to be a doctor or a monster truck driver.

    I really enjoy how you write. :-D


  8. Fantastic photo!
    Eldest teenager wants to study medicine! I need to do WAY more gigs!

  9. I just had to Google David Attenborough. You win!

  10. Adorable. Miss Alaineus beat me to it, but I was going to say "plumber" also. My son is 17 and planning on becoming a doctor, or as I call it, "My Retirement Plan".

    Glad I found you (through That Blue Yak, the universal hub).


  11. Dr Zibbs - Bless you!

    GB - He very nearly was, at one point, in that documentary.

    Mo - You're so right. Apparently, you get less bothered the more you have. The first you're too anxious about and mollycoddle, the second gets dragged up and the third is practically feral.

    Pearl - he should definitely combine those two careers. "Let me through, I'm a Monster Truck Driver." Imagine the "Oohs and ahhs!

    Mapstew - The down side of having intelligent offspring!

    Kristine - If you get chance, watch some of his BBC series like Planet Earth and the Blue Planet for the most amazing photography.

    Chris - Welcome! Always remind your son how much his studies cost you, maybe four or five times a day. Then you can be sure he'll look after you in your dotage.

  12. Obviously, I don't know much about children, but just wanted to tell you what a great writer you are. Very funny. Oh, and it sounds like you're a pretty good father, too...

  13. There has been some suggestion that parents today fret more than their ancestors over the things which can go wrong involving their kids. Do you think that is true? Is the fact that we have more access to information, and more media vehicles through which to learn of problems all around the world, a factor?

  14. Just wanted to say thanks for stopping by my site. Loved yours and you really do not want a monkey they are nasty lol

  15. Ava - You're very kind. The Boy might disagree though, as I let him discover the joys of stinging nettles the other day. Accidentally, though, not as a punishment or anything.

    Inspector Clouseau - I don't think kids are in any more danger today than they ever were. The strange media obsession with peadophiles, playground death traps and unsafe school field trips probably doesn't help.

    Myra - thanks for visiting. Nice blog. And you're right. Who needs a monkey when you've got a two year old boy.

  16. Oh no--little kid butt crack! LOL. Looks like plumbing is in his future...

  17. Wait, I'm sorry, did you say Jennifer Lopez has a nipple tweaker?

    I guess my resume isn't doing me any favors if I didn't even get an interview.

  18. Frogs in my formula - Does seem to be part of the uniform, doesn't it?

    Skyler'sDad - If you missed Ms Lopetheth's position, I think I read that Dan Akroyd is after someone to fill the same role. Get that resume in the post!

  19. Hi there, just found your blog and had to comment!
    This post is so cute. Lovely er buttocks shot.
    Amazing how big our dreams are for our babes! Hope to be back to read more about yours!

  20. nice blog Mr The Jules, you write very pretty.

    although - of all the horrible things on the internet that i can never un-see, your broken ukulele was perhaps the most sickeningly gross and disturbing image evar.

  21. ModernMom - Thank you. ou'll always be welcome round these parts.

    Norm - Cheers mate. It was horrendously tragic. We are obviously on the same wavelength. :-(

  22. Jules - you made my day brighter and gigglier


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