Thursday, September 17, 2009
the end of the world is nigh
dear readers, since our return from our hols, things have been a little on the tough side with my boy. regular readers will know that he has not been in school since january. for the whole of this year herself has been attempting to sort out some sort of education for him, against a backdrop of threats from the local irritation authority to take the peeps to court.
after several false starts, the peeps settled on the nice college with the animals as a good place for my boy to go. my boy was on the face of it very happy with this. herself and my boy went for taster days, which, although my boy was less happy with, seemed to go pretty well. my boy was offered a place to start in september. herself then embarked on a lengthy battle with the local irritation authority about them paying the fees. this has yet to be resolved so her maamship has very kindly lent the money to the peeps in the interim.
fast forward to the present. as the date for starting at the nice college with the animals drew near, my boy started to get the collie-wobbles. this is largely because he does not like new things. people of the beefburger persuasion do not like change. there was a lot of weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth. herself felt this keenly and spent many hours comforting my boy, whilst telling him that it would be fine once he got there and got used to it.
as my boy's main objective was to avoid going to the nice college with the animals in order to devote himself to a career sitting in a darkened room playing computer games, he decided to try a new approach. this involved saying his life was no longer worth living if he had to go to college. herself felt this even more keenly. she grew up with a father who had a similar approach to life and went to considerable lengths to put it into practice, at great emotional cost to his family.
after 3 or 4 days of my boy saying he was going to kill himself herself snapped and burst into tears.
"when i was your age i was in an ambulance with my father being rushed to hospital having his stomach pumped out! it is totally immoral for you to be using emotional blackmail like this to avoid going to college!"
with that she went into the garden for a good cry. my boy came out and apologised. for a few days things quietened down.
as the day approached when my boy would start college, he tried a new tack.
"i'm not going to that hell-hole. you can't make me. you are practicing satanic experiments on me!"
"we can make you and we will make you," said herself, "your father and i will end up in court if you don't get back into education. i will get the Hoard of Menopausal Women to come round and we will get you dressed and put you in the car and take you there every day until you get used to it and stop fussing."
my boy went off to think this over. a little later he came back.
"you can't make me go if i am not here. i will run away."
this plan had the peeps open-mouthed.
"running away might be a little tricky, given the agoraphobia," himself pointed out, "where would you run away to?"
"the stables." said my boy, "i like the stables. the atmosphere there is nice."
"that's good," said herself, tongue in cheek, "i'll be able to see you when i go riding." (my boy has recently been to the stables with herself and girl in a trench. they had spent a morning painting stable doors while my boy harangued herself with how poor a parent she was and how she had never made a good decision about his upbringing in his whole 14 years. girl in a trench took the opportunity of him wandering off to kick a stone around in a depressed manner to compliment herself on her patience in the face of such a relentless onslaught of woe. "it takes practice," said herself glumly.)
yesterday mr snake charmer and the young snake charmer came round after school. the young snake charmer had made up a song about mushrooms which she sang to everyone. in between the mushroom song my boy entertained the assembled folks with increasingly extreme plans for avoiding college. mr snake charmer has a robust approach to my boy. having taught him smiths for most of a year he knows most tricks in my boy's book. the running away plan came up again.
"how will you know where to start?" asked mr snake charmer, "have you got 'running away simulator' on your computer?" (my boy has been collecting the weirdest simulation games he can find, including 'fork lift truck simulator', 'crane simulator' and 'farming simulator'. he also has 'subway train simulator' which has the added complication of being in german.)
then my boy moved onto a more extreme plan.
"i will nail myself to a cross," he announced, "then you won't be able to get me in the car."
this was greeted with a stunned silence, followed by a cacophony of responses, ranging from guffaws from mr snake charmer to herself's more thoughtful contribution.
"there is a rather obvious flaw with that plan," she said.
"what?" said my boy, taken aback at her lack of distress.
"unless you have a very long handle on the hammer you will not be able to hammer in the last nail." herself often retreats into practicality in the face of horror.
this prompted mr snake charmer to do an impression of my boy trying to persuade a passer-by to help him out with his last nail which had even my boy beginning to see the absurdity of his latest idea. he went off in a huff with the young snake charmer to play bus simulator, leaving the adults to plan for friday, when he has to attend for the enrolment and induction day.
as well as the Hoard of Menopausal Women, mr snake charmer is going to call round to supply additional muscle if required, together with caustic wit, which he has in spadefuls. i think my boy is beginning to realise that he is going to have to buckle down and get on with it...