Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Bedtime Story

I once worked with an elegant and statuesque Armenian woman named Mona. She came in giggling to herself one morning. When asked why she explained that she had been saying goodnight to her two sons the previous evening when one of them told her that he was unhappy.

'Why are you unhappy?'

'I'm sad because the boys at school called me a paki.'

Her heart went out to him, and she sat on his bed in the darkness and hugged him. 'You should not mind that they call you that, because they don't know any better. We come from an ancient race that was civilised long before the English learned to eat off plates. We were the first Christian sovereign nation in the world, with our own language and alphabet and culture, and we have survived centuries of invasion and persecution. When they call you that they are acknowledging that you are different, and you should be proud of this difference.'

Her son snuggled down as she tucked him in. 'Thank you Mummy. I feel better now.'

As she got up to leave the room her other son spoke. 'Mummy, I'm unhappy too.'

She crossed to his bed and rested a gentle hand on his head. 'Why are you unhappy?'

'I'm unhappy because the boys at school called me a dickhead.'

'Well that's because you are one,' she said, as she hit him with his pillow.


  1. There are some things which go far beyond the colour of one's skin. Being a dickhead is obviously one of them.

  2. LOL, wonderful. Love that story, I'm still giggling. The Scowly Teen can't understand.

  3. Rol - It's true. And look around the office; they're taking all our jobs.

    Archer - Thanks (on Mona's behalf!)

  4. I gathered you felt like that. (Incidentally, I feel a need - in case any reader gets the wrong end of the stick - to clarify that my jobs remark referred to dickheads, and no other ethnic group).

  5. Bugger, us Kiwi's are always being left out!!

  6. Sagi - I wasn't leaving you Kiwi's out.

  7. If there's one thing that really gets me about dickheads, it's that smelly food they eat. Pot Noodle, mini-kievs, Monster Munch... I swear, you can smell it on them.
    (guiltily hides scotch egg and bag of prawn cocktail crisps under desk)

  8. Lucy - It's not only the food, but the timing of it. There's something indecent about crisps for breakfast, even cheese and onion ones. But, admit it, one of the rare and serendipitous joys of life is getting one of those cheesy wotsits with a great big glob of pure flavouring adhering to it.