Thursday 17th March 2011
“Can somebody lay the table please? Knives n’ forks, salt n’ pepper.”
I said it in exactly the same way as my mum used to say it when we were kids. The only difference being that, when my mum used to say it, there were invariably 4 or 5 people around to jump to it.
We sat up a tiny wooden table in the corner of the kitchen when we were toddler but as we got bigger and the tv programs got better, the sofa began to beckon and so we opted for a set of 4 wooden fold-away tables. One of us would get the ‘Knives n’ forks, salt n’ pepper’ while another began the process of unfolding the tables. All very civilised.
Unfortunately today, it was only me and my son in the flat so it was a foregone conclusion who was going to lay the table.
This is one of his jobs that he has to do to get pocket-money. Sometimes he does it without a second thought. Sometimes he does it if we remind him what he is doing if for. Other times he flat-out refuse to do it and rolls around on his bed in protest at the injustice of having to put place mats, napkins, cutlery and condiments on the table every night.
There are times I let him off, there are times I don’t. Tonight he laid up without a problem.
After he had devoured his last mouthful of green beans I said;
“And Zephy’s verdict?”
He looked tired and ready for bed.
“I don’t want to say anything tonight…”
“Alright darling.” I said stoking his forehead.
“…Are you gonna put that in Daddy?”