One of the most pressing things about being mum to TeenBoy is that I don't have a lot to do (except Hoover). My mind flashes back now to the glory days spent tying shoelaces, sticking cardboard boxes together, playing with Lego, collecting leaves from the floor. Now when I take him to the park and point out enormous leaves, or pretty flowers, he looks at me as though I'm deranged. Like last Tuesday when we went to some private gardens near our house:
'Ooo look at those.'
'Yes,' he said. 'They are flowers.'
'Very nice ones though aren't they?'
'Yes,' he said. 'And I'm a teenage boy and you are pointing out daffodils to me.'
So we walked around the flower gardens, not looking at flowers but instead TeenBoy throwing a rugby ball at me, and me screaming 'Don't throw it so hard.'
It wasn't a relaxing stroll I can tell you, it was an onslaught.
Then TeenBoy had a formal dinner at school. I know, I know. My first formal dinner was aged 24 and a half. The formal dinner presented more problems: he's growing so fast that I can't keep up with the clothes shopping. I pulled out his suit jacket, the trousers certainly wouldn't fit, but still... worth a go.
'Wear this jacket.'
'It's too small.'
'Just try it with jeans.'
'If I must... see -- small.'
'Actually, it looks very cool.' He rolled his eyes at me and wandered off, mum-knowingwhat's-cool-nah. 'No one wears their jackets big. Look at Jarvis Cocker. You look just like Jarvis Cocker.'
'And what is he? A sex toy?' (gasp horror that he actually said those words to me).
'Jarvis Cocker is really cool.' Once again TeenBoy was not impressed with my repartee. 'He was in an amazing band called Pulp.'
'And when was that Mum?'
'They were big in... erm... about 1994?'
'So 17 years ago? You are comparing this to something a man wore 17 years ago.'
Hm...tricky one that.