Didsburydad's Blog

From the not so mean streets of M20, blog about being a dad, Didsbury and dealing with parental confusion

Archive for the tag “McDonalds”

This Much I Don’t Understand

This much I don’t understand.I’m willing to admit I’m no longer in my 30s. In fact as I really left my 30s the idea of us looking back fondly at a Con-Lib coalition government because it wasn’t as craven or desperate as the current government, ludicrous. The only Clegg I knew was in Last of the Summer Wine. 
The notion of a British number 1 tennis player and Leicester City’s league win being eclipsed by the vulgarity, racism and lynch mob mentality of our exit from the Europe and even that not being the biggest story of the year… mind boggling*. It’s hardly surprising then, that even the transformation of Greggs on Wilmslow Road  from stand-up sandwich shop to sit down McDonalds decor, sorry McArtisan decor raised barely a murmur. From Bowie to Murray to Aleppo it’s all been jaw on the floor material this year.unemployed with small children, spare a thought for him.

* I don’t really know what boggling means. 

Mind you. As I really left my 30s the notion that Didsbury Son would be taller than me and use Lynx was also unbelievable. So, as we enter the final chapter of a year when “Liar, liar, pants are on fire.” Has been appropriated as the shout of the mob eulogising their leaders, this much I no longer understand.50s to 5s in one easy vote

1. Brexit means Brexit. At the end of the day (which also means.. ummm, nothing.) Brexit is a portmanteau. It sounds a bit like Brisket and for all it actually means we may as well add gate on the end to make it sound interesting. I only found out what portmanteau meant by googling it. Ying Tong yiddle i Po means Ying Tong Yiddle I Po, Brexit means Brexit. I’m none the wiser. I peaked at no means no. 

2. People who read The Daily Mail and think it’s warping influence is less corrosive than nasty porn to a teenager. In fact people who read The Daily Mail by choice. 

3. What’s happened in Coronation Street. Whilst visiting my own Didsbury Dad it was on with such volume that the neighbours had their own sound off so they could hear clearly. I last tuned in about a month ago but the whole programme seems to be based on each character simultaneously living four lives. I then found out Phil Mitchell is still in Eastenders. Hasn’t he died several times? Are the soaps now reincarnating characters until they attain Nirvana? 

4. How Saints & Scholars survives, although I’m glad it does. 

5. Twenty somethings with full beards and checked shirts. I still don’t get it. Irony imitating life. I know recent transatlantic political moves have made many people look towards Canada but is this an attempt recreate Alberta between Chorlton and West Didsbury?

6. Why 808 State and MC Buzz B aren’t still massive. 

7. Bros making a comeback and selling out in seconds. Bros are back 

Right, that’s the bah humbug out of the way – ready for some Christmas cheer next. 

It’s A Wonderful Life

Like a circle in a spiral, like a wheel within a wheel, like a huge, gigantic Turkey serving yet another meal. Like the waft that hangs around you after a McDonalds meal, like the things that you will find in the windmills of your mind (with thanks to Noel Harrison). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WEhS9Y9HYjU

There is an episode of The Simpsons where Homer gets hallucinatory food poisoning from the world record beating hoagie he has brought home from the company picnic. As he lies in bed in agony he holds the mouldy and festering sandwich close to his face and whispers lovingly, ” but how can I be angry with you?” I feel the same about our new pet this year. It gave us so much joy on Christmas Day and now, on the third day of Christmas its asymmetrical remnants taunt me to crank up the Delia one more time for a fricassee, omelette or some other spurious Turkey-based fiasco. How can I refuse? Jerk Turkey or bust.

This year’s Christmas Day was an unqualified success. Most of the visits had been done and our only visitors were welcome and unphased by the sheer exuberance and detritus that twin boddlers, a teenager and a bottle of Lanson can leave. This is the last year we can get away with doing what we want until the twins are into double figures. The family side is easy. My lot are Jewish, popped in to try the turkey and sloped off quickly back to the warmth of not being bothered. Most other relatives, already child-rich and time-poor got it out of the way early and Didsbury Son, flicking an imaginary Perry as though he is Phil Oakey 1983 is happy to feign disinterest and lie-in.

There had been a little negotiation. The Mighty-Headed boy is nothing if not cautious. His sister embraced the season and expected FC to bring her a reindeer. For the slightly worried 2 year old, the idea of a stranger coming down the chimney is scary, verging on the too scary. Luckily Didsbury Wife knows Father Christmas and he agreed to drop the presents a few doors down so we could pick them up from there. With the deal struck we moved on.

I must admit to being a bit wary at Christmas. I never understood all the stress and expectation – especially from the faithless. My lot seemed easy. No personal relationship with anyone to be Jewish. Just be part of the tribe and remember the tenets of all our festivals lie in… They tried to kill us, we survived, let’s eat.

I like the idea of goodwill to all regardless of who they support. The celebration of birth, re-birth, the seasons, the sun – all good. There is something for everyone. I’m not sure Turkey still qualifies as a low-fat super food once it’s had a pound of butter and a pound of streaky slathered over it, but I like Christmas Day. This year I loved it.

Thanks to Peppa, Frozen and the inventor of jigsaws there were only winners. The sheer joy and unrestrained whooping that was the soundtrack to our morning rubbed off on Didsbury Son. He emerged from his hood and joined the party.

We played games, ate and drank, went to the park and counted our blessings at the jackpots we had won to be this lucky. The miracle of Christmas, not one crossed word, not one inappropriate present – It may never happen again. When it does it is wonderful in the fullest sense.

School Plays – A father’s story

Didsbury Son is in the school play. This means a week of tears and tantrums as he won’t let me give him direction or amend his script. Shakespeare – it was written for ad-lib, toilet gag and interpretation. I’ve been to the naughty step, but Didsbury Son’s thespian career throws me a dilemma.

The newest Didsbury Daughter prepares for a career on stage by staying asleep at a photo shoot.

The newest Didsbury Daughter prepares for a career on stage by staying asleep at a photo shoot.

For me, there are few things better than watching Didsbury Son on stage. His final junior school play was a romp. Aided by the fact that they had given up teaching in January and had to fill in from  9 and 3 until July (between ubiquitous theme days – see June blogs), it was lush and  Didsbury Son was brilliant. In Yiddish terms I schlepped nacchus and qvelled. In English, I was proud.
However, much more important than him being brilliant, he was on stage for 90% of the 80 minutes. This soothed my short attention span and meant I didn’t have to spend too long watching other Didsbury sons and daughters.
At a previous primary school the concerts were so bad I used to fantasise that the gushing Headmaster would bring out the music teacher and indict her for crimes against sound.
I am not precious about this. I don’t expect anyone else to be entranced by my little prince and I find it difficult to feign interest most of the time unless they are
A) really bad and I can tell jokes to Didsbury Son afterwards.
B) I’m a blood relative.
C) see A.
The lighting at the play wasn't really condusive to good photography

The lighting at the play wasn’t really condusive to good photography

So to Shakespeare for the under 15s
“All the world’s a stage but that doesn’t mean you should be on it”
“If music be the food of love this is as nourishing as One Direction playing in  McDonalds.”
“Soft you now, the fair Ophelia. Nymph, get the car started this is awful.”
So finding out that Didsbury Son is on stage 2 hours and 25 minutes in to this bardfest is a source of torture and its all my own failing. They are actually quite good and the costumes are worthy of more attention. However, after a day that began at 4am changing an explosion in a Moses Basket that could have seen it sink the original Moses. After a journeythat included enough time on the motorway to count lamposts, I can’t be alone in not wanting to sit on a school chair with acoustics designed under water waiting way past my new bedtime to see Didsbury Son  finally shine like a beacon whilst the audience is fretting about missing Masterchef.
What did we do in these situations before smartphones?
When school plays get too boring I retreat to a happy place.

When school plays get too boring I retreat to a happy place.

Early. Daze

All life lives here. Modern parenting for twins 2012. Didsbury Son is on the school bus, unsure whether big brother beats sole trader and slightly disappointed that at 10 days old the twins won’t yet respond to tickles, raspberries and head shakes. He had expected them to come out playing and it’s probably my fault he was unprepared. Their lolling head, fill and empty, cry and sleep lifestyle is less engaging than Minecraft, Futurama… Even homework.

Didsbury Wife is grabbing a rare hour to herself which leaves me to modern man multi-task. Twin 1 is in my left arm. This micro Mao with an aversion to being horizontal is snuffling in his sleep whilst Twin 2, my gorgeous little alien feeder is Chicco Mio bouncy chair bound and I’m rocking her with the right foot whilst switching between Homeland on the iPad and making a quiche one handed. This morning I am an advert for Unicorn Grocery brought to life (Terry nappies, mother feeding,v Alpro warming in the centrally heated kitchen). Just need an Aga and a green jumper.

I am craving a bottle of cider (it’s the pregnancy sympathy thing, I have only ever used cider for cooking before), a McDonalds (other nutrient free, high salt takeaways are available) and my arm. The Benevolent Despotism of new babies is a wonder. You do what you are told and the rewards seem incongruous with expectations from a fortnight ago. Our Didsbury world has shrunk to the texture of a nappy, the quiet of a sleep and the faint smell of sweet milk permeating the house.

But these things I have already learned:
1. People will still ask if they are identical even after they have established that the colour scheme of the clothes matches the gender stereotype.

2. Caffe Nero is very pram friendly. C’mon Croatian Deli and Art of Tea sort it out.

3. Visitors seem to imagine that Didsbury Son and I want to interrupt Futurama to hear their labour /birth/ weaning stories. We don’t.

4. We are very proud of Didsbury Wife. Her yield would have David and Ruth Archer down The Bull to celebrate.

5. There has been a glut of twins in Didsbury this year. Linen and Giddy GoatToys must be getting ready to buy yachts and DidsburyPark is considering building a special lane for buggies and…

5. I had the most wonderful dream last night. Didsbury Son and I were sitting on an old couch In a cool shed. Football droned on in the background, a pot of coffee steamed next to a pastrami on rye and Didsbury Son was lost in world of Minecraft; neither of us said a word.

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