Wednesday, 17 August 2011

who's there, spit?

if you are over one-year-old and your parents spend money on you from time to time, you will probably have received a copy of eric hall's "who's there, spot?". for those of you not familiar with the yellow puppy who runs around wondering who is knocking on the door, who is in the tree, who is in the bath, well, the following is some of the text: someone is at the door, spot. i'll go, mom! knock, knock! who can it be? hello, spot! hello, helen! tweet, tweet! who is in the tree? we're hungry! 

however, it is the little flaps that you can look under on each page, to see who is there, that is the main attraction. i not only like the book but i also know it of by heart. after all, i do read it four times a day. but i like it because it reminds me of a time when you would go outside to meet people. you know? when we, and little puppies, would physically move our hairy asses to interact with others. do you remember? but some people might prefer the times we live in. you know, a time when a city the size of london can be held under the thumb of a few teenagers thanks to their organization via social networks and mobile phones. it is for these people that i propose that mr. hall introduce "spit", spot's twin brother. a more in-tune puppy with the times that we are living in. you can tell the difference because spit has three marks on his back, while spot has, well, one.

below is the completed draft for "who's there, spit?" enjoy!

Monday, 8 August 2011

london's burning but the kids are alright

i am sitting here, like most londoners, watching the third day of riots unfold on the television. i live in N4 and in the last three days they have rioted in tottenham, hackney, enfield. basically all my neighbouring zones. all the shops here are boarded up, precautionary action, which meant i had to get turkish take-away. but what i want to share with you is not my opinion on the on-goings here in the english capital. i want to share with you my daughter's nursery weekly planner, it is sent to my wife but i requested that she forward to me this week's. she goes three days a week to a very pleasant - what i like to call - playgroup. i just don't like the word nursery. it is a house with girls and they look after lots of toddlers. a playgroup. in any case here is the weekly planner (sic):

Dear parents,

Please find attached this weeks planner, sorry its late.

You will notice all trips will be to Wray crescent, with all the riots and looting I feel it's best to keep the children very local to ensure there safety, if at any point I feel this is not a safe place to take the children I will cancel all trips until further notice, we will  be cutting out afternoon strolls until order has been sort on this situation following a full risk assessment I feel the risks are far greater when children are on foot and we have all the local teenagers on school holidays.

This evening a few of our staff have reported some difficulty getting home due to trouble in both Holloway and hackney, I am confident at that moment that this will not affect us  but cant rule this out, however I will keep up to speed with the news and any  threats in our local area. and ask that you do too.

Warm Regards     

Sunday, 7 August 2011

new shoes, old me

it was time she got her first shoes. they keep your feet clean. and she has been walking now for a month or so. i never understood three-month-olds with shoes. i always knew she would get her first shoes when she started walking. when, if not? anyway, it was time for these shoes. we live in london. not only can you find every possible shoe for adults but also its miniature. and when all kids under ten months are already wearing converse, as are their forty-year-old parents, buying shoes may become a statement. personally i am glad that i don't have an adult-sized version of my first shoes which i still have. they are hanging over a mirror. they are hanging there because not only are they my first shoes but they look like a pair of first shoes from the 1920s. 

we went to jimmy's shoes. i recommend it. it has a very good selection. they have everything. the front of the shop was lined with all the miniatures of big people shoes. nike, adidas, converse and what not. you know the made-by-children-for-children products? it was while i looked at all these horrible sewn bits of plastic and rubber that i turned to the girl and said "have you got any start-rites?" and as the words slipped out i realised that i had become a father, but not any father. i had become my father. a lover of all things wooden, leather and metal. a hater of anything synthetic. but now i understand. i am not going to have my child's fast-growing foot in a pair of flat, heavy trainers because they look good. because they are fashionable. because they are cool. i am now officially not cool, and therefore i will take my children down with me.