Yesterday was Mum’s birthday and, as ever, Dad bought the wrong present.
I’m not entirely sure what went wrong as, by the time I arrived singing ‘Happy Birthday’ and proudly brandishing a proper fancy Apple & Cinnamon birthday cake that Work-Friend-Emma had baked for me (she needs to set up a website, she’s flipping brilliant at makey-bakey), my mother and father appeared to have passed the ‘acknowledging-each-other’s-presence’ stage of the proceedings.
My dad kept telling me to ‘ask your mother if she wants me to lay the table’ to which my mother would respond with stuff like ‘tell your father that he’s a total prick and I’m leaving him for sure this time.’
After three-quarters of an hour of cutting both cakes and tangible tensions, I wandered home wondering why The Teenager hadn’t shown up for the ‘party’.
Teenager locked in his bedroom.
He had, he bellowed through the door at me, been playing a game of ‘Police-Dogs’ with Hector.
It involves The Teenager holding his gun (empty toilet-roll tube) above his head and shouting ‘You’ll never take me alive’ whilst legging it around the house, intermittently leaping out of hiding places and tapping the investigating hound on the top of his head before, once again, disappearing up the stairs.
Apparently, after about half an hour of this, the dog decided that it would be much, much easier to actually catch the ‘Crimin-ager’ if he removed one of his limbs. This strategy, he doggishly decided, would render further attempts at escape futile and ultimately assure him of a toilet-roll related victory.
The Teenager, apparently on the verge of saying “My, what big teeth you suddenly have,” sensed correctly that the mood had abruptly changed and, dropping his gun, hurled himself into his bedroom and slammed the door so hard that the handle got wedged into the door-frame.
When I got home I discovered a Dalmatian lying at the top of the stairs, jealously guarding a little pile of chewed-up cardboard and a cantankerous teenager with an extremely full bladder.
It’s a trip.
It really is.