05 September 2009


One of the great things about family is that you can write about them in the local paper and they still have to love you!

So, Daddykins, despite your inheritance withdrawal threats, I’d like to discuss last Wednesday.

Here’s what happened.

Approximately five years ago, my mother and I had a conversation a bit like this:

Mum: “Your father’s got high cholesterol”
Me: “How high?”
Mum: “High” (accompanied by a suitably grave look and a muttered disclaimer that she warned him not to eat so many custard tarts)

When dad returned from the golf course, he found me waiting, eager to discuss the lifestyle changes I had planned for him.

“Right” I began, “they’ll be no more bacon butties or pudding of any kind. No cheese and no butter on your toast anymore”. I paused to think, “In fact, no more toast! You can eat muesli”. Dad remained silent, still clutching his golf bag.

“No sausages, no crispy duck, no fatty cuts of meat. You can kiss goodbye to whole-milk dairy products too”. I looked up to assess absorption levels. “Mum, write this down!” I snapped as I caught her glancing at dad with sympathy in her eyes. “And no muffins, no cookies and no pastry!”

Dad stared bleakly back at mum which I took as his acceptance to my terms. “I’ll be back in a week to review your progress” I stated, marching out in a self-righteous huff, having badgered him for years about his relationship with saturated fats.

To be fair, initially, he was good and I was pleased. But then he fell off the wagon and just kept on rolling. Pleas, sleepless nights and Heart Foundation pamphlets did nothing.

Which brings us back to last Wednesday when I was invited round to dinner. Upon arrival, I handed him a ‘please stop eating’ letter I’d written, confident that all the love and fluff enclosed within its five pages would surely pull at those clogged heartstrings. He read it, in silence.

Seated for dinner, the anticipation of dad’s new child size portion brought peace to my soul.

Until I saw five roast potatoes making their descent towards the table, set off beautifully by two large portions of crackling.

He avoided eye contact as he quietly positioned himself before them.

I waited until his fork was but a breath away before whipping the hardened lumps of pure pork fat off of his plate, confiscating them indefinitely. I glared at mum, who should have known better. Then I glared at dad.

Now I have no choice but to ask for the public’s help.

So, if you see a white haired Ken Barlow look-a-like around town, who looks like he could be about to tuck into anything other than a rice cake, please inform the Worthing Herald immediately.

Together we will stop him!

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