I am fretting – a little prematurely, I’ll grant you – about having teenaged daughters. It’s only five years away and I’m getting nervous. Teenaged girls seem to be a handful, from what I’ve witnessed at Luna Park, local shopping centres, canteen duty and social gatherings. For a start, they wear way too much make-up and not nearly enough clothes for my liking. Shorts up to here, tops down to there … There you go, I’m officially old and conservative. Last night, a friend told me about a teenager who was stalked by two men in a nearby suburb. One followed her around the shops while the other waited beside her car in the carpark. She panicked and called her dad, who had to rescue her (and escort her to the police station, where they were informed she wasn’t the first). Ewww. Conversely, apparently there’s a 16-year-old boy groping women at our local shops after school. Double ewww. On the upside, I’m using the prospect of teenaged girls as an excuse to renovate the house. I’m always looking for excuses (and money) to renovate the house. Currently, Husband and I have a “parents’ retreat” upstairs, while the Sprogs sleep downstairs. I’m thinking teenagers should be coralled upstairs at night, to keep them out of trouble. If they’re downstairs, they can just open a window and slip out. Sprog 1 insists she won’t, but she’s only eight, what would she know yet? To thwart her future escape attempts, I’ve been sketching plans on scraps of paper for turning the parents’ retreat into three bedrooms and a study upstairs; and the Sprogs’ rooms into a master bedroom with walk-in robe and ensuite downstairs. Space is a bit tight, so the ensuite might have to become a two-way bathroom that can be accessed by guests and visitors. Then I begin to worry that’s not ideal for resale (or Husband) … I must talk to the school mum who’s a real-estate agent about it … Anyway … Another thing that worries me about having teenaged Sprogs is that they will be mouthy. I’m basing that fear on the fact the Sprogs are already mouthy. Sprog 2 has a habit of yelling at people. Husband pulled her up on it over the weekend. “Sprog 2,” he said, “People don’t like it when you yell at them all the time.” Sprog 2 replied, “But you yell at me every day.” Husband, startled, insisted that wasn’t the case. Sprog 2 stood firm. “Yes you do … No, actually, you shout.” Oh. So that’s how you see things? An interesting take on the situation, Sprog 2. A real chicken and egg conundrum. Aaaand, since I don’t have an adequate comeback, I’m just going to let that one through to the keeper. Sprog 1 on the other hand, is working hard at becoming something emo/goth-like, what with her requests for vampire dolls, affection for black and adoration of horror stories. She’s also perfecting this “you’re mean, unreasonable and stupid” glare that’s going to be permanently fixed on me in years to come. Put two feisty teenaged Sprogs together, add a dash of cranky Husband, a sprinkle of intolerant Me, throw a thousand puberty hormones into the mix and … ka-boom!
TONIGHT’S MENU: Lamb koftas with arabian salad.