Monday, October 27, 2008

Under The Hammer

The Little Ducks love made-up stories and also made-up games

So we have taken the basic ‘I went to the supermarket and bought…….’ game and customised it to our own preferences. The latest version is Cars – so ‘I went to the Auction (pronounced Oction in this part of the world) and bought ….’

Of course, it can’t just be a Make, or even Make and Model. The Little Ducks insist on exact Model types, so my offering of Red M├ęgane is rejected with scorn.

It starts simply enough.

JP – ‘I went to the auction and bought a Lotus Elise’
Tiddler – ‘I went to the auction and bought a Lotus Elise and an Audi TT 3.2ltr Quattro’
Duck – I went to the auction and bought a Lotus Elise, an Audi TT 3.2ltr Quattro and a Fiat 500’ (more scorn, but hey, they’re cute)
JP – ‘I went to the auction and bought a Lotus Elise, an Audi TT 3.2ltr Quattro, a Fiat 500 and a Ferrari Enzo’
Tiddler – ‘I went to the auction and bought a Lotus Elise, an Audi TT 3.2ltr Quattro, a Fiat 500, a Ferrari Enzo and a Toyota Celica’.

Several rounds later Tiddler is stuck on JP’s first Ferrari (by now we have the F430 in the list, the Bugatti Veyron, the Koenigsegg CCX, the Aston Martin Vanquish S and numerous other super cars). Note to self: the little petrolheads watch far too much Top Gear on Dave.

Now, in a game of three people where two are great lovers of lists and have fantastic memories, we do try to help 6-year-old Tiddler along the way.

‘Ferrari ……… Umm ……’, - he pauses, angel face screwed up in concentration, staring hopefully at Dave in search of inspiration.

JP mouthes ‘Enzo’ between cupped hands. But Tiddler cannot lip-read.

‘Ennnzzooo’ – JP prompts, in a luvvy-style stage whisper which could be heard all over Friendly Drive, but not by hard-of-hearing Tiddler.

In desperation, with Tiddler still not getting it, he tries a Whittock-style cough - ’CghEnzo’ (covering his mouth with his hand), then looks innocently at me. I pretend I haven’t heard.

‘Cghpardon’ – coughs back Tiddler, from behind his own hand. I cannot contain myself any longer and collapse into giggles.

‘You’re Out’ pronounce the other two contestants, unanimously. ‘You put Tiddler off!’

Friday, October 24, 2008

God Squad

I lunched in Kro Bar with a former colleague during Freshers Week.

Oxford Road is filled with open-topped buses, balloon-bedecked floats, rollerbladers, sandwich boarders and leafleters urging the new student intake to join their clubs.

As I wait for my wild mushroom and stilton ciabatta to arrive, a rapper in black shades with a mike and an amplifier starts up on the opposite side of the street. Eminem he’s not, but it sounds good and goes down well with the fresh-faced hopefuls wandering up and down looking for freebies, the Maths Building or the nearest cashpoint. His entourage unfurl a banner and fix it to the railings behind him, rolling their fists and bobbing in time to the rhythmic and hypnotic monologue. They proffer leaflets to the passers-by.

‘Live A Real Life with Jesus Christ.’

And not a tambourine in sight!

Faithless were right. In the 21st Century, God is A DJ.