There are certain occasions when your parents feel the need for a Talk, with a capital T, to tell you things you probably already know.
Now, my parents are usually of the “chillaxed” variety, but can have unpredictable spurts of overprotectiveness, which can be a right pain. My hackles were constantly raised during the sprint up the final straight to university – I was expecting to be asked to sit down at any point so that they could Talk to me; any conversation that needs to be announced before it takes place is not a normal one, in my opinion.
And it did happen, just as I was leaving the house one day (another thing about Talks is that they have to happen without delay or the world will implode, so there was no question of my parents waiting till I had returned home). My parents revealed how little faith they had in my ability to function as an independent adult with their invaluable pearls of wisdom:
- Don’t be stupid – use your common sense AT ALL TIMES (this basically sums up all the following points).
- Lock the door of your room when you go out and don’t lose the keys.
- Wear socks/a jumper when it’s cold.
- Eat foodstuffs that grow on trees or are green at east once a week.
- Sleep at night and be awake during the day – a nocturnal lifestyle isn’t natural.
- Salt does not taste the same as sugar, so do be careful what you add to what (my Mum had suffered a traumatic experience involving a salty cup of coffee lovingly repared by yours truly).
- There is no laundry fairy (SOB!) – the burgeoning heap of clothes will not transform into a neatly ironed pile on its own.
- The iron will be hot even after you’ve finished ironing, so don’t touch it.
- Take pity on your flatmates – don’t sing in the hower.
- Metal is not microwaveable.
- You can only spend money that you have.
- If a stranger offers you a lift home at night – coming to think of it, at any time – say no.
- If you switch off the alarm clock because you’re too lazy to get up in the morning, nobody will drag your duvet off to wake you up.
- If it’s raining, you will get wet if there is no barrier between you and the sky, e.g. an umbrella.
- Try not to embarrass yourself…actually, when you embarrass yourself, just pretend it didn’t happen (my eavesdropping sister’s humble contribution).
Okay, that’s enough! Please have a little faith in me – I can look after myself!” Satisfied with the impact of my statement, I was just about to open the door to leave the house when my Mum appeared behind me with my purse, my keys, my travel card and an umbrella (it was pouring outside). Own goal. 1 – 0 to my parents.