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Thursday, 1 March 2007

As easy as.......

My brother in law Henry drives me out of my tiny mind. He is my husband's younger brother (by eighteen months), and treats James and me like a pair of senile old timers. Henry is the type of chap who considers himself to be casually dressed when he wears jeans with his Thomas Pink pin stripe shirts. I expect Henry was born wearing cuff-links and braces.

Henry has a terribly important job; he works in that angular MI5 building up beside Vauxhall Bridge, and drives a dreadfully ostentatious Porsche 911 convertible in loud metallic blue. He usually turns up at the house unannounced, and never remembers the children’s birthdays.

Henry arrived last weekend, smelling of beer from the night before and looking like he would benefit from a shave. He implied that he had spent the night locally with a young lady, but we deliberately did not enquire any further – it is (in our experience) always best not to allow too much detail. He referred to Ana (our au-pair) as ‘delicious’, I hope she doesn’t leave now. Henry is a real slime ball.

James and Henry took the children out on their bicycles for a half an hour, and apparently Uncle Henry made lots of negative comments on how little Max;

‘cannot even ride his bicycle without stabilizers yet – even though he is five years old’, according to Freya.

Henry bought Max the expensive Puccy bicycle in The London Recumbent Bicycle Shop in Dulwich Park, five summers ago on a whim. Max was so tiny then, that he could not even support his own head. The yellow and blue bicycle had a 'push' handle attached to the saddle which we removed late last summer.

I will not put pressure on Max to allow us to remove the stabilizers until he says he is ready.

‘Childhood is not a race. He will have plenty of time for cycling without stabilizers as he grows up,’ I have insisted to Henry in the past.

‘Let him be. I have never met a 20 year old who cannot pedal a bicycle.’

This morning the children wanted to cycle to school, and so Ana and I took the bicycles out of the garage. The children were a hundred yards down the road, when Max’s stabilizers appeared to become unstable, and then the poor child fell flat on his nose. The darling boy cried for an age. Apparently Uncle Henry had loosened the stabilizers to encourage Max to ‘find his balance himself’, Ana lamented. She feels terribly responsible – the poor girl.

I am so annoyed. Why does he interfere? Henry has no children of his own, does he not remember how hard it is to be a little child, to have to learn everything from the beginning. Life should be an an adventure, not a competition.

I telephoned James to express my disgust and annoyance, and to my surprise James informed me that Uncle Henry has never learned to pedal a bicycle himself….Plonker!

Osama Bin Laden must be living in fear......


Heidi said...

I just LOVE the word plonker!

dulwichmum said...

Me too. It just fits this man perfectly!

Scruffy Mummy said...

Plonker is a fab word as is tosser! Re: a great new blog I recommended in my blog - the blog I wanted to recommend is actually I got it mixed up with another good blog Noble Savage who is another ex-pat but not my friend

Anonymous said...

Just remember, even if Uncle Henry is indeed a plonker, he has feelings too! (Although he has been called a hell of a lot worse in his lifetime, I'm sure.)

What's wrong with pin stripe shirt and jeans as casual wear - especially if you've de-cufflinked, rolled up the sleeves and even taken the tie off !!

dulwichmum said...

Dear Anonymous,

Is that aftershave I can smell? Your darling nephew looks like he fell from a great height onto a blackberry bush! Shame on you...

You know I love you really!

Anonymous said...

this man should be shot....!!

how dare he spoil the innocence of a young boy learning to balance his bike...what a plonker d**n right he is....he clearly never had the priviledge to enjoy his childhood adventures....what a pity he missed out and now society is left to carry the can of this dysfunctional f***wit........