Category Archives: Uncategorized

On hard work.

[We are at the pool. P is alone in the change cubicle, and I am waiting for her on a bench. Her classmates were all absent and she had her instructor to herself, enabling her to swim well outside the usual scope of the class.]

Mum. I imagine I will do better on my report card than the others in my class simply because I worked this entire day while they weren’t here.

Well, the other kids have worked hard all session, too – the report card will be based on the entire 10 weeks.

Yessss, but wouldn’t you agree that my work today will be a contributing factor to my report?

Yes, yes it will, kiddo. [I try hard to not cry/laugh – it is not working.]

On math.

[We’ve been examining the law of large numbers in school. We take a detour into the concept of infinity, and I am expounding a little on the misuse of the word.]

See, the problem with numbers is…

MUM. There pretty much IS NO PROBLEM with numbers.

But what i’m saying is that any number you can think of…

Well, like I said, there IS no problem with numbers – it’s people that have the problem.

On vocabulary.

I think “gormless” might be my favourite word… so far.


On problems.

Mum. You cannot go around your problems. Or hide. You have to go through them.

On making a lot of noise.

[I am upstairs by myself, secretly sawing into a cardboard box to make a Guilderoy Lockhart-themed Valentine’s Day mailbox. It is not quiet work.]

What are you doing up there, Mum? Has something gone awry?

On tough days.

[I have had a very difficult day.]

Mum! [Adopts strange pose. Waggles behind and limbs.]

Does laughing at my very strange posture help you at all?

Yes. Yes, it does. Thank you.

On talents.

Mum. Here’s the thing about The Incredibles. It’s obvious that Violet, Elastigirl, and the crazy baby were all born with their talents. Their talents are things you cannot get good at via practice – take Invisibility. No matter how much I work at it, I can never really become Invisible.

However, Mr. Incredible could potentially have worked out until he got as strong as he is. And Dash – well, maybe he could have trained to become such a fast runner, but he’s very young and his parents seem to have banned him from training.

So! I think The Incredibles is about how people are just born the way they are and they have to keep on being themselves to be happy, BUT you can also really work on getting better at things and become Incredible that way, too.

On the known unknown.

Mum. Look at this!

[Indicates a small red spot on her finger.]

I think if you were to taste that, you’d find it’s a bit of strawberry.

Seriously, Mother, don’t you know that licking unknown substances is extremely unwise?

On choices.

Whatcha doing, Bean?

I am trying to decide between the relative maturity of these hair clips. Which ones do you think a teenager would be likely to choose?

On plans.

One day, obviously when I am much older, I am going to make my own Vegi-bot. I might draw a schematic of it right now, actually.

On secrets.

You do know that William Blake* is hiding some powers, right?


…As am I.


*The stuffed tiger, not the author.

On talking in one’s sleep.

[It’s bedtime – the kid passed out almost immediately, barely hearing a page of her book. I turn off the light and prepare to extricate myself from the covers, but suddenly she’s bolt upright again, albeit with her eyes closed…]



Can you come and read to me again tomorrow night to compensate for this dismal bedtime?


On self-awareness.

[Pascale is playing Little Alchemy]

MUM! I made a NERD! It looks just like me!

On activities.

OK! You have one hour before we have to go. What will you do with your time?


[*Weird Bird is getting a fancier collar, apparently.]

On the humane treatment of stuffies.

Mum! Do you know what I’m doing right now?


I am making turkey food for Weird Bird* when he arrives. I already made him a bed – he’ll need some creature comforts after his long incarceration in the delivery truck.

*Weird Bird is a plush turkey we ordered to help P manage her feelings around what happens to real turkeys at the holidays.

On the punitentiary.

Mum! Look, I made a fort.


I plan to use it while I watch Return of the Jedi. One might say it is “fort-uitous.”

On cleaning up.

Look, Mum! [Indicates freshly arranged clothing drawers.]

I woke up this morning, very early. Then i LEAPT out of bed and got to work on this. I really needed to sort out my priorities.


And my clothes.

On magic.

Hey MUM! are you ready for some magic?

Um, yes!

[The Star Wars Main Titles theme blasts out of her room]

See? It’s MAGICAL. [Heaves an ecstatic sigh and slams door.]

On condensation.

[Takes a huge gulp of hot water with lemon. Glasses fog up.]

Uh, it all just got very… vague in here.

On shirtless dudes.

I am OK with men with no shirts in movies as long as they are not in romantic situations. Like, if they are just wet from jumping in a lake or something and need to change, I am OK with that.

But if they are in romantic situations where they are trying to make themselves seem more attractive, I am not OK with that.

[Looks meaningfully at me]

At all.