I have a deep loathing of Radio 4 that’s reserved, specifically, for the mornings. To the extent that I’d even prefer to have CBeebies on instead. EVEN ‘Show me, Show me’! (I know, right!) However, Mrs. Moo quite often insists on Radio 4 being on as she says it is –

“our current affairs fix. We don’t want to become those parents that ONLY talk about their children now do we?”

Now, I have many issues with this –

1. The last thing I want to do in the morning is listen to some Dimblebum or what ever his name is, cantankerously shout down some politician whilst coming over all, ‘I’M A SERIOUS JOURNALIST YOU KNOW!’ No you’re not. You’re a miserable, disinterested old man who only knows how to “discuss” whilst being aggressive and slightly bullying

2. We only really pay attention when they are talking about something child related, i.e. schools or some ludicrous fucking change to the car seat laws. (What is the cocking law on this by the way? If I have to spend the next 10 years strapping children into those things, I think I’ll go bonkers)

3. I still have that man-crush on Andy from ‘Andy’s Prehistoric Adventures’ so I kinda want CBeebies on. It’s his shotgun nostrils you see. That and his amazing barnet

4. Radio 2, despite Chris Evans’s best efforts, sometimes forgets itself and plays decent music so it’s always worth tuning in on the off chance you hear a good tune

One thing I absolutely love on Radio 4 though is the religious ‘Thought for the Day’ segment. My adoration for this briefest of interludes doesn’t stem from any personal religious beliefs I have, or even because they have a thought provoking point to make that helps me along with my daily trials and tribulations (even though, they quite often do!). Non, mon petit choufleur (as my Corsican brethren would say). It is because they can take any anecdote and quite magnificently, at any given point, without even the most tenuous links, make a genuine reference to Jesus. As if there was a whole page missing from their speech but they thought, ‘Sod it. No one will notice’. It is delightfully hilarious and never fails to make me smile.

“I was walking down by the river the other day when I noticed a large group of drake mallards fighting over the attention and possible courtship of a hen mallard. Unfortunately, so aggressive was their behavior around her that she was pushed under the water and she drowned. This reminds me of the time Jesus helped a leper…”

Everything else on Radio 4 is really quite miserable though. It is either delivered with nonchalant cynicism (the very worst kind. One should never be nonchalant about their cynicism), or with a dismissive, belligerent air that suggests we are all fucked anyway. To be honest with you, there seems little point in continuing along a path that is certain to end in the absolutely depressing, cataclysmic way that they keep promising; so why listen?

All this talk of impending doom brings to mind the caterpillars I found in Corsica recently… (I too can make ludicrous jumps in my metaphors Radio 4 religious people. I too). Every evening there were streams of them, curling their backs and shuffling themselves along the pool side at a seriously impressive rate of knots, where they fell in and writhed on the surface until they became bloated like sausage shaped balloons, and then they sank down, down, to the bottom to lie like dark, tiny poos. That was, until they were unceremoniously scooped up with a net and dumped on the grass on the outer edges of the poolside by me. Why did they continue to do it though? Why were they so steadfast in their belief that this horrible end was, for some god-only-knows reason, a good idea? Why oh why did one, even after I had saved it from its watery torture, wriggle around on its haunches and make its way back to the water? What a dick! I mean, if there was ever a time when the insult “don’t be a twat!” could be labelled at a tiny, sentient but basic creature then that was it!

Watching them on their desperate, Frodo-like quest that was only ever going to end in pain, tears, and huge amounts of water retention (which must be an absolute diaster for the more body conscious caterpillars), reminded me of Moo and her descent in toddler tantrumville. (Holy  segmented arthropod Batman, that’s my second successive spurious, nonsensical metaphorical link in as many paragraphs! I’m getting good at this…)

So insistent is she of winding herself up into a frenzy at the most innocuous things, that I often wonder if I need to scoop her up in a net and dump her on the grass before she falls into the murky depths of continued doom and despair… No, wait. I think that’s probably a metaphor too far… Anyway, she’s got to this point where I can see she’s “playing” with the idea of having a tantrum. Today she asked for an ice cream. I said, “OK. Yes, let’s have some ice cream then”, at which point she threw herself on the floor and screamed “NOOOOOooooo” as if I was some cold-hearted, evil Bond villain that just melted all her toys in the microwave whilst laughing my maniacal laugh. But instead, there I was, standing stock still, with a spoon in one hand, an ice cream in the other, a bewildered look on my face and a ludicrous ball of angry nonsense writhing around on the floor in front of me like one of those aforementioned suicidal caterpillars.

I do understand her need for testing and pushing; her frustration with communication, her inability to control the chemical endochrine reactions happening inside her. I know this can lead to the “difficlut phase”. I am, of course, sympathetic to it and patient. But my God, don’t you just wanna get inside their tiny heads and say, “dude, seriously, chill. All will be fine. You are in no danger. We love you, completely. Take your time and breathe deep.” Saying that though, if she starts to go towards the tantrum-shit-house I actually want her to completely explode in her most energised rage possible. I truly believe she needs to feel the depths of those emotions. As humans we spend far too much time quashing down almost all our feelings whether they are happy or sad and it can only lead to disaster. As the brilliant comedian Louis C.K. so aptly put it:

“Sadness is poetic. You’re lucky to live sad moments… Because when you let yourself feel sad, your body has antibodies, it has happiness that comes rushing in to meet the sadness. So I was grateful to feel sad, and then I met it with true, profound happiness. It was such a trip.”.

We have to experience the depth of emotions in order to let ourselves grow and learn. And Moo’s only just beginning to feel the plethora of bonkers emotions and mixed emotions that humans are capable of! So I kinda don’t wanna quash the tantrum as much as I don’t wanna quash her joy!

To be fair though, it was only a fucking ice cream, and she asked for it…

This all reminds of when Jesus was in Galilee…


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