Sunday, 20 June 2010

The Significance of Fathers, Underwear, Circles and Spirals. Not Necessarily In That Order.

I bet you can tell a married woman from a single one, just by the state of her underwear. Mine is tragic.  Rather worryingly, this thought occurs to me while I am trying to draft a reply to Johnny's last email - the one in which he mentioned massage.

I'm hoping that he was so distracted by the oil spill that he forgot he was writing to me, and thought he was emailing his wife instead. Now I can't decide whether to mention his suggestion, or to ignore it and, after a few clumsy attempts at a reply, I abandon the idea and phone Dad instead. It is Father's Day, after all - even though Connie seems oblivious to the fact that this does actually apply to Max.

I am in Dad's good books due to being the only one of his many children who has remembered to send a card - or to phone - until the subject of Facebook comes up.  Then he insists that all his young Thai women "friends" are just neighbours.

He gets quite cross when I question the likelihood of this, on the basis that: a) he lives in a really small village, and b) it's in Dorset. Then he says he's not interested in women since Stepmother Mark III left him, so I ring off as quickly as I can and phone Dinah.

"Can you set Dad up with one of your friends' mums?" I ask.

"Why? What's he up to?" says Dinah. (We have a sisterly shorthand which avoids the need for a lot of explanation, which is lucky as she talks so much that I often can't get a word in edgeways.)

"He says he's not interested in women again," I say. "And that the Thai girls are all his neighbours."

"Christ!" says Dinah. "I'll get onto it straightaway. In the meantime, why don't you write something off-putting on his Facebook wall?"

"Like what?"

"Like asking him if his willy's still bendy, for a start," says Dinah.

There is a triumphant tone to her last comment. I wonder if this is how most daughters discuss their fathers?

After all that, together with yesterday's revelations about Chris Huhne - where do the LibDems get all this sexual energy? - I start wondering if Max fantasises about starting all over again with someone new, probably half my age, and also probably from another continent.

Then I decide that I don't want to know if he does, but I'm unsettled for the rest of the afternoon anyway. I keep finding myself staring at him, until he notices and says,

"What's up? Have I got a bogey hanging from my nose or something?"

It's odd how you don't really notice the person you've been married to for aeons, until you start to consider how attractive they might appear to another person. Which brings me right back to the question of my underwear. I seem doomed to spend my life going round and round in circles.

Mind you, this would be preferable to my life spiralling down the plughole, which is how it sometimes feels when I contemplate all the unused gold stars in the kitchen drawer. Now I'm stuck here with Connie for the evening, as Josh is taking Max out "for a Father's Day drink" - at a lap dancing club, for God's sake.

Honestly, is there no end to the pressure? Now I shall probably have to learn to pole dance. Bloody hell.

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