On Thursday, I was going about my eating/sleeping/entertain me now cycle, when, as usual, my dummy fell from my often uncontrollable mouth (please excuse the recent excessive dribbling: I have many, many plates to keep spinning, and keeping tabs on the odd bit of slather is not currently top of the list.)
Anyway, my clumsy oral grip is incredibly irritating. Knowing I would wait the usual age for my oblivious mother to note my ungainly management of said doe-dy, I decided to do something about it myself. Putting my new found finger grip into practise, I reached down, collected the pink handle and dragged it slowly up my body. Excellent. Riding the wave of my success, I decided to go in again for the subsequent mouth insertion manoeuvre. Grabbing the dummy with the assuredness of a six month old, I went for gold and popped it back into my grid. Job done. Or so I thought.
From nowhere my hysterical mother squealed jubilantly, jumped to her feet, rustled in her bag, then shoved a video camera in my face. Bemused, I lay still, looking back at her. The red camera light beckoned. Thankfully, I was ready for my close up: tastefully attired with my three hairs immaculately groomed. I stared into the lens. Mum stared back. Then the shrillness commenced. I managed to make out excitement, presumably about my holding of the dummy.
The red light continued to wink at me. Time, once again, to dance for the puppet master. With a heavy sigh, I dutifully allowed the dummy to topple from my lips, and staged a second grappling struggle to return the teat to my chops.
So bloody patronising. Dad gets none of this hassle. He is forever picking stuff up, the guy can even walk, jeez, he can walk AND pick stuff up AT THE SAME TIME and I’ve never once seen a camera thrust in his mush.
Hence I realised that, if I’ve got to put up with this rubbish, I might as well work up some serious brownie points. So the following day, Dad thought up a great gag while I was in the bath. Got the sponge dripping, then squeezed it out on my tummy. Priceless!! No? Guess you had to be there...anyway, rather than the usual gummy smiles, I decided to take it a step further. I absolutely cracked up laughing, and sure enough, Mum’s back with the camera. So I gave her a show. Chuckling, smiling, belly laughing, chortling. The works. Went for a real Stanislafskian approach. Even managed to bring a tear of joy to the eye. Classic Betty. Maintained eye contact with the lens while simultaneously working the crowd. And managed to preserve my modesty with a discarded rubber duck. The award for most realistic, heart-warming, baby giggling in a bath goes to Elisabeth Rose Briars.
And guess what...got an extra feed out of it! Wohoo!!
See, wise beyond my years.