Tuesday, November 24, 2009
I remember reading approximately five years ago about this little 10 year old protégé who had just finished his doctorate in Biology. Seemed like a nice enough kid, a bit geeky, but what do you expect? His parents looked proud, well they would wouldn't they, but you could tell where he got his geeky fashion sense. He also had the look of a kid that had not seen daylight for a good while. Surely it's got to be hard studying Biology from a locked room? I would have thought that being able to walk amongst nature would be a prerequisite to those sorts of studies. Then again, they are the parents with the ten year old Doctor of Science, and I am the one with a 15 year old who believed me when I said that when you see the moon during the day, it is just a reflection from the great lakes. So maybe their way is best, if not a tad cruel.
Fast forward to this morning and I see a report on the BBC that says teenagers are naturally predisposed to have late nights, and then sleep late in the morning. It's not their fault, apparently, it's just the way they are built. There is a trial school that is now opening at 10am to see if there is any substance to the claims. I can't help but think that the two things are linked somehow. I have a picture of this, now surly, teenager having to get up early every morning to do his paper round or something. Then one day he has his own personal eureka moment. "Sod this for a laugh, this doctorate has got to be handy for something, I know lets tell the world about my new 'finding', that should put paid to all this early delivery nonsense."
I mean fair play to him, all this paper knowledge has got to have some kind of practical use. It did get me wondering about what kind of skills my lot would have. Was there any indication in the traits that were already showing, anything that they could use in the lead up to greatness?
Mate is only two and not showing too many skills right now. To my eternal shame he loves watching the ballroom dancing on a Saturday night. I have nothing against that, but Strictly Come Dancing, seriously? He is obviously lacking in taste, although he does a mean Fandango. He also likes locking himself between doors, well he does it twice a day, I have to presume he likes it. I'm rather partial to it myself as I can leave him there for a good 15 minutes before he starts to kick up. Not the greatest combination to work with then. A dancing David Blaine is the only thing that springs to mind, and I'm not sure the world is ready for that.
Katy (4) has always shown a strong interest in all things kitchen. Since a very early age she has demanded a stool to sit on whenever I start cooking. At first I thought it was because she just wanted to pinch food as we went along, which she did, but I soon realised she had an even more mischievous reason. I am a 'cook with a wine/beer/G&T' type of chef. I am also quite French in my attitudes to kids and alcohol. I see nothing wrong in letting the kids have a shot glass of shandy, or a watered down wine. Katy had obviously realised this, so would quite happily peel some spuds or carrots, safe in the knowledge there was a drink in it for her.
The upshot is she now knows her lemon grass from her spring onions, her garlic from her ginger and her soy sauce from her Worcestershire sauce (not that either of us can pronounce it). She also has most of her herbs down pat. We have quite a large herb garden, and she loves to taste and smell the difference in them all. The only two she seems to constantly confuse, are Basil and Rosemary. Now as they are polar opposites in both look and taste, I can only conclude that Katy will become the World's foremost Accidental Fusion Chef.
That leaves me with my eldest, Dawn. At 15 her career path should be almost sorted, well you would hope so anyway. It does sometimes feel that whatever her favourite TV show is at any particular moment, determines what occupation she intends to pursue. C.S.I. used to be a staple part of her diet, so therefore a strong interest in forensic science was born. Once she got into 24 she decided she wanted to fight world terrorism, but discounted that when she realised she could not join CTU straight from 6th form. She is currently into True Blood, so I am praying to God she does not have any thoughts of becoming a Vampire. Although as she has a boyfriend at the moment, I am putting double garlic in everything anyway, more subtle than the baseball bat I wanted to use to scare him off.
Unfortunately she has inherited my cynicism, sarcasm, and caustic tongue, so I fear a career in stand up comedy beckons. People will pay to be personally abused whilst other people laugh at them, won't they?
So it looks like my children are going to entertain, feed, and abuse the general public. Not the most lofty or noble professions maybe, especially when compared to a Lawyer or a Brain Surgeon. On the other hand, you would chose to go and see my kids, not have to see them when you are in trouble. I will settle for that, being wanted is loads better than being needed.