Sunday Morning and I'm scanning the Newspaper. I've never managed to lose the habit picked up when the kids were younger, of not actually reading the newspaper. Despite at one time having 3 kids under 5 years (apparently, a sure bet to send you to the funny farm, which may explain a lot) we still used to at least buy a newspaper on a Sunday. It is after all, one of the little pleasures at the end of a long week you can still afford when you are a parent. Isn't it? At one point we even had it delivered, under the massive illusion that we could lay in bed and read it. That was until we were presented with a bill from the Newsagents that would have paid for an Au Pair for a fortnight. Despite being abused of the misaprehension, we continued to buy the paper, flick through between feeds, changing, refereeing spats and playing with lego. I now seem unable to apply myself to it, feeling somehow, that something else should be taking up my time.
But what's this? An article on celebrities dressing their children in the same manner as themselves. Oh joy. Manna from heaven for an unreconstructed cynic as myself. I pour myself into it (it is only two pages of the supplement magazine and one of those is pictures of said celebrities and their offspring). I scoff , I scorn, I chuckle. The misguided fools, the dimwits, can't they see? They are stealing their childrens childhoods away with this folly. There are the Beckhams (quelle surprise), the Holmes/Cruises, the Madonna's and rather disappointingly Jarvis Cocker. I comfort myself with the last that Mr Cocker is probably doing it in an 'ironic' way. Cocking a snoot at the madness of his famous peers.
I toss the magazine aside, feeling both pleased to have read a whole article and comforted by the fact that I, with my feet firmly planted earthwards, would never fall into such vainglorious behaviour. Its then that I notice my feet.
Well, not so much my feet, as what is on them. I'm wearing a pair of Converse, Chuck Taylor All-Stars. Signature black top with white sole, laces and badge. Pretty cool. Well I think they are....aren't they? Now I've had Converse before, back in the day. Back in the day for me, is the late 70's and early 80's. The time of Punk and New Wave and Thatcher's Britain (spit).The Geek and Miss Feisty wear Converse. The very same Converse that I now have on. And therein lies the rub (pun entirely intended). When I was their age (Geek is 16 Feisty 15) I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have wanted to be seen in the same anything as my parents. I remember at one point, badgering my Mother for a pair of Oxblood, 16 hole Doc Marten boots. All the other tyro football thugs (more of that another time) wore them and it seemed reasonable to me that I should have them also. She was duly despatched to purchase said boots, a detailed description having been repeated ad nauseum to her. What she returned with was the following. A pair of, what I can only describe as 'shit brown' boots , air wear soles admittedly, sporting not the legend, Dr Marten's, but something called, I kid you not, Major Domo. I'm not sure who Major Domo was, but I would have refused to follow into the mess hall, let alone battlefield. What I had in effect, was a pair of calf high, soft leather slippers with an air wear sole. Oh the hilarity that ensued everytime I wore them to a football match at my beloved West Ham. The point being, although the boots were so very wrong, it seemed only right, that my Mother could not 'get', what I wanted. It was the role of parents to misunderstand totally, their offspring. We didn't want them in our world and they didn't belong there.
It's not the first time the 'Converse' thing has occured to me. Geek and I both share a preference for close fitting, long sleeved T's. His admittedly hang a little better than mine. And Feisty and I both shop at the same vintage/retro clothes shops, much to her barely disguised irritation. Although she is not so irritated that she doesn't borrow my shirts. I comfort myself with the fact that I haven't started wearing 'skinny fit' drainpipe jeans.
So my smugness about celebrities is somewhat pyrrhic. They are not alone in encroaching on the world of their children.
It's always been said, that all three of the children have 'my feet'. It would seem, conversely, that I have their footwear.....