The Man


Don’t pretend you don’t know who I’m talking about.
Every single parent with a toddler or pre-schooler knows about The Man. Or The Lady.
They follow you everywhere. Every restaurant you visit, every public place you attempt, every supermarket you dare to take your children.
And on our recent holiday to America, The Man was a constant companion.
“If you keep climbing up that trellis Mia, The Man will come and ask you to leave.”
“If you don’t get off the table Mia, The Man will throw you out of the restaurant.”
“The Man will be over if you continue to throw your cutlery on the floor, Mia.”

Honestly, it felt like we took an extra travelling companion with us for the whole three weeks we were there.
I have no idea why it was usually The Man. Maybe because most of The Ladies there were either teenagers or so darn nice. Or maybe because I was actually scared of a couple of them myself if truth be told.
But it must be said, the threat of The Man usually worked.
Except at one venue.

We are at Disneyland and it’s unbearably hot and Mia and I are in a queue for the Flying Dumbos (stop laughing).
We have a spray cooler (basically a plant sprayer with a mini fan attached that they stamped a Disney logo on and thought it acceptable to charge nearly £10 for).
But I digress. We have this spray cooler filled with ice water and Mia is spraying it at mummy and then herself and then mummy and then the lady in the queue behind us.
I look behind me horrified and she’s giving me an ‘it’s ok’ face but her grimace is saying otherwise.
Perfect Mum has got two 8ish year old boys and they are behaving impeccably and when she gives me that look all I can think is ‘what the hell are two boys of that age queueing to get on a dumb Dumbo ride for anyway?’

I smile weakly and turn back to Mia who is now climbing the barrier and aiming her spray gun at the little girl the other side of it who looks like she would wilt if a drop of water touched her.
I grab the gun and say:
“Mia, The Man will come over here and tell you to leave the queue and you will not be allowed on the ride if you keep doing that.”

The Man actually looks about 18 if he’s a day and looks permanently on edge. But she hasn’t noticed so I’m confident my threat will work.
She laughs that confident little chuckle that says she knows she’s caught me out and says:
“Mummy, everyone knows that Mickey Mouse is in charge here and he’s too busy getting ready for the parade to bother about what I’m doing over here.”

I feel Perfect Mum’s wry smile bore into the back of my head and thank everything that is holy that it’s our turn next.

This entry was posted in Dan & Mia, Disney, Family Life and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to The Man

  1. Tracy says:

    Oooh, I dislike perfect Mom on your behalf. My kids aren't swayed by the man, I wish they were.

    Mia is extremely smart and I would have been very happy to get free water squirted on me.

    I think your next post should be about "Sing-Songy everything Mom – shall we all band together to kick her off the island?"

  2. Lovely. Clever old Mia.

    I use The Man, The Lady and The People quite a lot. They don't often work, though, even when there are real Men, Ladies and People telling the Littleboys off.

    My children are clearly out of control….

  3. @thatgirlblogs says:

    oh she can come to disney with me anytime. what a cutester.

  4. Mwa says:

    That's why I always threaten with action by ME – my kids are much more scared of my anger than any man's. 😉

  5. English Mum says:

    Gorgeous picture! Yup, my children are just like that. They were round a friend's at the weekend, had an argument and rang me (on the friend's phone!! Can you imagine my embarassment) to 'tell' on each other. I can just imagine what they were thinking as my children battled it out in their house… sheesh… thanks fellas.

  6. TheMadHouse says:

    I am the man – yup. I have a final warning system and they should quake in their boots at it, works sometimes, but more often than not they laught inmy face, well at least at home. When we are out they can be pretty well behaved, but when it goes wrong it is FUBAR indeed. I am very envious of Disney!!

  7. That's one clever girl you've got there….

    (as an aside I used to be engaged to a 'man' who spent his working day as Goofy at Disney. Not sure what that says about me.)

  8. Laura says:

    The man ALWAYS works for us. I imagine in a few years I'll have to upgrade to something far more threatening.

  9. Tara says:

    Having just seen your home movie featuring you and your hubby, I have to agree. You are quite scary . . .

  10. Tara says:

    Hmm, am now wondering if The Man hasn't become the modern day version of 'wait til your father gets home'!

  11. Tara says:

    That is one hell of a claim to fame.

  12. ThatGirl39 says:

    Yes… we have "that man". He's quite fierce but Im not sure how much longer SC will obey him for. Not much since starting school methinks! Mia is so clever…. how do you stop yourself from smiling when she comes up with something like that?? x

  13. I must confess to having used 'The Man' quite a lot. I've also used 'The Doggies' as a reason why we have to Leave The Sticks On The Common And Not Bring Them Home

  14. Tara says:

    I just realised I should clarify that the home movie was on your blog – I read my comment back and it sounded WRONG!

  15. The Man has unfortunately lost a great deal of his efficacy by this point in time, possibly reflecting my own failures as a role model. The Lady still seems to work, though.

  16. Noble Savage says:

    This is the funniest post I've read today. Thanks for making me smile right before I head to bed with a hot water bottle for my aching, weary bones. Yes, I'm old. Don't mock. 😉

  17. mimi says:

    I'm wiht Tracy- I'd be happy to have free water sprayed on me, and save having to buy that ghastly £10 thing. We stupidly brought them why would we need water sprayed here, when it happens from the sky practically every day?

  18. patricia says:

    my youngest was so hyper active and out of control we stopped going places and just payed for tennis camps for her to keep moving – I am serious. We never went out to eat or went to the movies or did anything so we could keep her in plays and camps and sports…
    It kept our mental health.
    Then in high school we had enough money for the police and private detectives – those are the kids that folks fear in line – not a bored and clever cutie pie…really 🙂

  19. confusedhomemaker says:

    I don't think there is a perfect mum, just a lucky one whose kids weren't melting at that point. No one escapes it, kids are kids.

  20. Double Trouble says:

    "The Man will tell us to leave" hahaha. I totally use this phrase more often than I should….

  21. MTJAM says:

    Why does 'The Man' never want to "come over here, present Mummy with a red rose, give her a foot massage and a lustful wink"?

  22. Jo Beaufoix says:

    Oh but she's a clever one. Heh heh. 😀

  23. Plan B says:

    A whole new technique! I've never used "the man" but I'm very much looking forward to meeting him. Threat of today was separation from the new love of her life, who was coming round to play. I got out my phone to "ring Freddie's mummy" on numerous occasions this morning. Worked a treat.

  24. Jennie says:

    I just read your blog… I was laughing and really feeling funny… because I do feel the same. I also use this technique to my 3 year old daughter… I know one of this days, I will also use "the man" with my little boy. I knew I'm not the only with this extra companion… thanks for sharing this great story.

  25. Pingback: When she comes back she wants to be a killer whale. Or a dolphin - Sticky FingersSticky Fingers

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