Amateur Parent Turns Pro


One afternoon I was shopping in the local Albert Hein, with my 5 year old son. He was hell-bent on getting a trolley, as for him this would mean the chance to get in it and lounge. However, I had no change for a trolley so I insisted that we grab a basket and walk. This unexpected change in my son’s plans created a Shakespearian-type outburst that could easily have made it to the Oscars shortlist had Spielberg been about. I watched my son in his leading role, whining and moaning like a geriatric, in front of the tinned tomatoes and shopping spectators, “My legs hurt, and I have pain, waaaaaaaah!” The scene reached a climax when he decided to outdo himself and fall to the ground in excruciating spasms of pain. All this time, I managed to stay calm, listening to a voice in my head saying, “Just ignore him; just ignore him.” I was trying out a new tactic in the art of parent-child combat. I continued walking towards the macaroni, trying not to glance at my 5 year old’s performance, repeating the mantra and praying for deliverance. After what seemed like an eternity, James stood up and walked towards me, his leg pain wondrously cured and said, “Can I find the next thing you need?” Having just witnessed a miracle, I felt I had conquered Mt. Fuji and could only smile at this parental triumph.