Yesterday The Boy and The Husband were both contentedly watching When Buildings Collapse Noisily. I was reading a book about Pensions. Yes, it’s just crazy non stop action in my house. I glanced across at the boys. Thud thud thud music underscoring each scene, like in psycho movies when you hear the thud thud of a heartbeat to increase the tension. “Any second it’s going down!” shouts someone. BOOM! The building unsurprisingly vapourises. The Girl toddles in with her knickers on her head. “Wow” she says.
You’d never guess that two hours earlier we were having a screaming row with the Boy about his failure to do homework. He’s had nine detentions this term all for not doing homework. It’s never his fault of course. The homework is boring. “It’s meant to be,” I say sternly. (Is it?) He’s doing Macbeth (terrific, short and full of violence) and his homework was to read Act 4 sc 2 which is where Lady Macduff and her son are murdered. I suggested he watch it on YouTube. “Watch it?” yelled The Boy in tones of outrage. “It’s meant to be performed” I said, trying and failing not to sound a) superior and b) patronising. I’m struggling not to say it . . .arrrghghhh . . .here it comes . .FUCKIT. It’s So Much Easier For Kids These Days. All I had was a copy of the sodding Shakespeare play. The only chance we had to watch it was some clunking O level version performed on a budget of £1.99. Now you can click on YouTube, type in Macbeth act 4 sc 2 and lo! Trevor Nunn’s fantabulous production is there for the watching. Or Polanski’s! We sat and watched a few clips of Polanski’s Macbeth and I tried to explain that Polanksi had made this film shortly after the murder of his pregnant wife, Sharon Tate. The Boy looked bored. “It wasn’t a film!” I suddenly snapped. “His wife was murdered by a ghastly bunch of vile drugged up hippies.”
Suddenly The Boy and I were having a huge row about nothing and everything. I can’t understand why when I try so hard to be aware of his feelings, to listen to him, to respect his views, that he seems to treat mine with utter contempt. Probably because he’s a teenager. Anyway I started acting like one too – I threw his stupid book across the room and slammed the door.
Anyway after we found out about the detentions, Husband stomped up and down telling the Boy he wasn’t applying himself to anything. “What am I . . Glue?” said The Boy sarcastically. Sometimes I wish he wasn’t so good at answering back. The Boy was banned from going out all week and we’re taking the x-box away for a month.
Later on peace was restored as everyone watched footage of buildings falling down. Then as I was brushing my teeth before bed and gloomily realising that yet another line has appeared on my forehead (Thanks Boy!) I realised I had a spot as well. It’s not fair! How can I have lines and a spot? And it’s one of those ones that won’t just go away – it’ll swell up and mock me. “That’s why I have a beard” said Husband smugly. I wish they made a programme entitled: Husbands Standing Underneath Buildings that Collapse Noisily.