Some more please: ... SUCKER!

2011-11-09 07:31

There’s one born every day, so the unflattering saying goes. I was at a party this weekend where there was a huge glass jar of, you guessed it, suckers. At first this seemed wholly irrelevant to me and my toddler – but fate had other plans.

After a wrestle in the sandpit and a paddle in the pool, the toddlers were ready for a bite to eat.

A few minutes later having circumvented the offending sucker jar and dodged the fruit juice, chips and cake – my friend and I had succeeded in placing a ham sandwich in each child’s hand and were free to eat our own sandwiches, with a pleasing sense of smugness.

We didn’t notice the pair drop their sandwiches and begin a friendly game. Soon, however, the friendly had gone out of it and it was a push-me, pull-you affair. We leapt to mother-like attention and separated them with a light scolding.

Which led, as expected, to an Oscar-worthy tantrum on my toddler’s part. Flinging herself to the floor, the tears fell in huge droplets, her face went crimson and she repeated in a sobbing wail “Mama, mama”.

This was my cue to exit the stage back to the buffet until the performer was spent.
Enter someone’s granny.

“Shame,” she says. “Are you alright? Has someone been nasty to you?” With a pitiful nod, a broken “y-e-s (sniff)” and a pair of perfectly timed tears rolling down her face, the toddler recognises that universal being – the sucker.

“Shame, shall we go and get you something to make you feel better?” Another pitiful nod, a yes punctuated with a sob and a hand swiped across the tears.

Four strides to the buffet table clutching the sucker’s hand and in seconds the toddler’s fizz pop in hand looking triumphant as I get a disapproving look from the kindly granny. I smile and thank her, which isn’t really what she’s expecting.

I don’t mind the look, you see, after all she’s done me a great service – she’s done what I can’t, bribed the toddler to stop her tantrum.

In this particular case, the damage done by the sugary sucker is cancelled out by the good done by the sweet old one.

» Follow me on Twitter @GayleMahala. Follow City Press @City_Press

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