18 August 2009

Officially Middle-Aged

I don’t know the exact moment in time when I became my parents but I think it was around Monday or Tuesday of last week.

I was stood on my neighbour’s doorstep discussing her new self-styled fringe, the left side of which had been a great triumph in hairdressing terms. The right side - less so, looking more like it had been chewed off.

To ease my neighbour’s suffering, I removed the three extra-strong kirby grips on top of my head, allowing the ravaged hair beneath to poke up into the fresh air for the first time in six months.

“I cut it myself too” I whispered, pointing to my “Something About Mary” style tuft whilst glancing over both shoulders to check the immaculately coiffed occupants of No 98 weren’t laughing at us through their net curtains.

“It’s just that hair cuts are so expensive” she said, stroking her severed hair.
“Oh, I know, it’s ridiculous” I replied, strapping down my quiff again.

After that conversation, came the conversation at playgroup about Tesco Clubcard savings. I brought it up. On purpose. I talked about the credit card benefits, the amazing clubcard deals, the best ways to earn points, bags for life and concluded my findings with a Tesco versus Waitrose essentials range cost/benefit analysis. And I wrote the ASDA Lancing Store grand opening on my calendar.

Then, I started darning, without even realising it. One night, I sat happily for hours, with Accountant’s fermenting socks composting in my lap, smiling contentedly as I held up the mended article to the light.

And I inexplicably have loads of money off coupons. I’ve started unconsciously cutting them out and putting them in a drawer. Just like my mother-in-law.

I also read the August Somerfield magazine cover to cover, lifting up the page with ‘Credit Munch of the month’ to show Accountant. “Cod with a Spice Rub, feeds 4 for £4” I chirped.

But the chilling moment when I suddenly realised I belonged in a Doris Day film was when my dad began his weekly ‘roast chicken’ report.

Historically, I have always been blessed with the ability to completely ignore him when he excitedly details the weight and class of the chicken, how he was just there at the right time (3.58:03pm every Sunday), and they were marking them down and he bought 3 for £2.99 instead of £14,72.... BUT last week, not only did I listen but I found myself equally enthralled at the prospect.

So, if you should see me and I start talking to you about fabric conditioner or I’m bulldozing you out the way at the Special Offers cabinet, you have my permission to slap me (gently) with a roast chicken.

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