Someone suggested to me today that this photo on the BBC website is of me. Which is an outrageous slur. I've got a lot more hair than that. Mostly across my eyebrows, but even so.
Mind you, it's no surprise that I'm tearing my hair out. I was owed a bit of time at work this week, so I decided to have a much needed lie-in this morning and go in late. Which was Amelie's cue to wake me up at six-thirty. This time, however, she wasn't crying about her door being closed. She was crying because she wanted me to take her photo. I knew it was a mistake to show her the one I took yesterday.
So there I was at 6:30am this morning, photographing my daughter in bed with her cuddly walrus, purely to stop her crying. And here's the result:
We've modelled her hair on Kevin Keegan, circa 1974.
That's not the only attractive headgear she's sported in the past twenty-four hours though. When I picked her up from nursery yesterday, the children were outside in the garden, making the most of the sunshine. They were all playing quietly and sensibly on the slide and the climbing frame, with the exception of one rogue individual who was sprinting across the yard with a giant toy-basket on her head. That was Amelie. It was essentially this, but with two more years experience.
Having got her out of one basket, I then handed her another by taking her to Asda for a few essentials. We ended up buying flowers for Lisa, which is about as unessential as you can get. She told me back in 2003, before we'd ever met, that she doesn't like flowers. Which was handy as I had no intention of buying her any. Amelie, on the other hand, loves them, and likes nothing better than bending down at the side of a busy road to retrieve a dandelion from a pile of dog poo next to an old beer can.
So when she saw the array of flowers at Asda, she insisted on buying a bunch for Lisa. Naturally I did my best to steer her towards the £2 selection, whilst simultaneously telling her that Mummy doesn't like them, to which Amelie responded "Is that because she's scared there might be flies and bumblebees?". I made the mistake of saying yes. So she checked them for insects and chucked them in the trolley.
But on the subject of thoughtful children, I'd just like to say hello to the well-educated 13-year-olds of New Mexico. No, really. I had an e-mail last night from an English teacher at the Albuquerque Academy, an independent school in the US, asking if she can print out my Micro Fiction stories and give them to her 7th graders. Apparently there are seventy of them, so that's quite a lot of printing. It's no wonder they charge $35,000 a year. I bet most of that goes on toner.
So for the benefit of any students who have the misfortune to end up here on some kind of homework assignment, I'd just like to say hi, good luck, and no, I don't understand most of the stories either. But be sure to recycle them appropriately, and don't chuck them in the Rio Grande.