Memoirs Of An Embarrassing Mother – Part One

Illustration courtesy of Ruth Pickering

Prior to our summer holiday one year, my nephews were talking excitedly about a new ride at a water park. They both told me it was such fun that I needed to go on it when we visited the park a few weeks later.

As soon as we got to the water park we spied the new ride. It looked fairly high, you sat in a rubber ring and got pushed down the slide a bit like a boomerang. You kept going up and down until you eventually came to a halt. My boys raced to the top yelling, “Come on Mum.” I hadn’t quite realised how high or how steep or how fast you went until I got to the top. My youngest nephew had done this ride! I couldn’t go back home and tell them I had wimped out.

My major panic was falling out of the ring, so my logic told me to wedge myself firmly into the ring, then there was absolutely no possibility I could fall out. What I hadn’t taken into account was that my bottom would be touching the slide as I went down. Once wedged inside the ring, there was nothing I could do and as I was tipped over the edge I realised my huge mistake.

I wasn’t going to fall out but my bottom was literally burning as I went back and forth on the slide. Hugely relieved, firstly that I had conquered the ride and secondly that I hadn’t fallen out. I hated to admit it but I was actually in a large amount of pain. Deciding, with all the people at the bottom watching I couldn’t admit to the pain, I delicately unwedged myself from my rubber ring, trying  to hold back the tears. With a fixed grin hiding the pain I walked or hobbled back to my boys who were waiting for me at the bottom.

It was at that point I realised not only had a burnt a hole in my bikini bottoms but actually burnt my bottom. I had to walk back to my sun bed with one child in front and the other behind hiding the tattered bikini bottoms. That was the end of my water park rides that day. Back at home I told my nephews that I done the ride and how proud they should be of me. They both grinned and laughed and chose that moment to tell me, it had been way too high and fast for them and they were only joking, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry but I do know I still have the scars to prove I did conquer the ride!



Facebook and its many faces

Illustration courtesy of Ruth Pickering

The way we use Facebook is ever-changing throughout the years as more and more social media platforms are launched. Who needs to read a status when you can see a caption on Instagram with a filtered-beyond-all-recognition picture instead? But no matter how long you leave it until you decide to log back into Facebook, some things will just always be the same upon your return. How many of the following examples do you recognise from your friends lists?

The Attention Seeker

Amy has “checked in” at the Hospital. The accompanying status reads “Oh my god – can’t believe what happened! So shaken up and scared” – she chucks in various emoji’s to let us know the true extent of her plight. Someone she hasn’t seen since Year 11 comments “you okay hun? Xx” – Amy replies “Yeah I’m fine, don’t worry about it!”. What do you mean you’re fine? Obviously, you’re not…And the people that don’t know you very well are all reading this, please let us know what kind of drama happened; I’m on my lunch break and could do with some light reading. Don’t be so selfish, Amy. WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU’LL INBOX THEM LATER?

The Narcissist 

Jamie has just finished a work out. Naturally, he wants everyone to know this. Otherwise, just what’s the point in going to the gym if that person you met in Zante and still have on Facebook to this day doesn’t know about it? Up goes a picture of him in gym gear. “9th workout in 9 days done! Not showing any sign of slowing down either #gainz” – That’s nice Jamie dear. Remember, muscles can’t buy you friends.

The Rayban Tagger

Getting tagged in a photo of a load of Raybans for sale. Nah, you’re alright mate, haven’t seen you since we were 12, most people start with “Hello!”.

The OTT Sickening Relationship

You know – those couples who’ve only been together a few months who call each other sickening names like “pudding” or “pumpkin” in constantly uploaded pictures and heartfelt posts dedicated to them every time they do the washing up. They can’t leave the house without a Pic Stitch collage going up confessing how hard the last 7 minutes have been. We get it, you’re in love, now stop with the poetry and get in an argument with them so we can all read about it. (DISCLAIMER: THE WRITER OF THIS ARTICLE IS PAINFULLY SINGLE AND BITTER)

The Middle-Aged Mother

You’ve got your friends Mum on Facebook. You know this because almost every other day, her and the rest of Mumsnet will flock to comment on a meme she shared about needing a big glass of wine.

I could do with a big one too…….. A glass I mean! Hehe ;-)”

“Oh Sue! You are SO funny! Hugs to you and the boys!” 

The Part-time Politician / Full-time Farmviller

Mark loves Farmville. You know he does because he’s very proud of his crops and his sheep and all that farmy jazz. He invites you to play it every week but you deny his requests because you like to think you have some kind of life. But…what’s this? An election is coming? Mark puts down the cyber fertiliser to post his political propaganda and his calls to end terrorism. “It needs to STOP!” – and just like that, we have world peace. Well done Mark.

The Vague

You’re scrolling through your feed trying to avoid the countless Herbalife Harry’s and “my kid did a thing look how cute my kid doing the thing is” posts, until you come across a gem like “Great, I really need this don’t I. Thanks a lot” – Who is this person thanking? What do they really need? Come on, don’t leave it there! TAG THE MONSTER! How will we ever know what’s wrong? What will – oh wait, hang on, I’ve stopped caring and I’ve scrolled past. Kevin’s having another kid, isn’t that nice.

The Humble Bragger

A picture of hot dogs or legs on a beach somewhere. The sun beautifully beaming away in the background “How’s your view?” Michelle asks. Well, ‘Chelle, seeing as you’re asking, it’s pretty crap actually – I’m currently looking at a picture of someone who’s never paid for their own holiday, thanks for asking.

The Minion Quote Poster

“I love my children more than anything” – that’s lovely but why is that quote on a picture with a cartoon minion next to it? What’s the relevance? What exactly does the yellow creature add to the equation here? They’re everywhere with so many famous quotes attached to them – it really takes away from everything brilliant Winston Churchill ever said if people start thinking Dave the minion said it.

That Person Who Really Loves Cars

James never uses Facebook, he never likes anything, he never comments on anything, yet the one thing you can rely on is the sporadic changing of his profile picture to a fancy sports car. Nice one James, but we can tell it’s not yours because I saw you last week driving a Fiat Punto. And we can see Ronaldo in the driver’s seat.

Paul Gold

Twitter: @PaulGold92