Yes (holy shit!), Boogie recently turned 6. I am amazed by this fact but not, as you may assume, because I think she must be younger than that but because the girl is so far – attitudinally – along the road to teenager-dom, that I’m constantly sending her to the off-licence to buy sherry and Haribos. That girl has eye-rolling down to a fine art and I never thought it was possible to have different facial expressions to express every one of 17 different types of disdain, but apparently it is. Man, the shapes that face can pull!
One of it’s most annoying shapes is the unadulterated glee at getting one over on her mother shape.
Naturally, we don’t buy Boogie any Disney Princess or Barbie shit; there’s a whole heap of other stuff we don’t buy, but those are the two she’s really noticed so far. And by noticed I mean flung herself around ululating at the sheer injustice of a god her atheist mother doesn’t even fucking believe in.
And, equally naturally, announcing – and by ‘announcing’ I mean simply saying when it comes up in conversation – that no, you don’t approve of that particular brand of crap – is received by various family members in much the same way as a bunch of bathroom-dwelling flies would welcome the announcement that you no longer intend to defecate.
No doubt the flies would also react to the announcement by bussing in shit from other bathrooms. Lots of shit.
Or is that just the relatives?
I’ve got used to it now. I don’t even blink when Ariel appears out of the wrapping paper. I smile, demurely, with just a hint of tiredness and any one or two of 17 expressions of disdain which I have in my arsenal (wait a minute! 17? ye gods, that’s where she gets it from!)
But what I really love about the whole thing is, as Boogie’s understanding of why she doesn’t get this shit off me increases, so does her sheer joy in receiving it. Not because she wants it – it all gets kicked to the bottom of the toy box after 5 minutes – but because she gets to raise it, triumphantly, in the air, before thrusting it in my face and laughing herself silly.
In some way which I suspect even she can’t define, she gets a massive kick out of receiving something I don’t like.
Rebellion without a cause? Meet my 6-year-old teenager.