Saturday 8 August 2009

Youth Today!

Yesterday evening at about 9.15 my teenage son rang from the phone cabin in the local village to ask if he could drop in and bake a cake.

He didn’t pay for the phone call of course; he used neither the credit on his mobile or his own money but chose to reverse the charges.

If you do this in France the person called (me) is given the option to respond to a pre-recorded message by saying either “Oui” you accept the charges or “Non” you want your son to grow up and accept some responsibility.

There is something about a French person saying “Oui” and an Englishman TRYING to, fearing that for once his son may really be bleeding to death after a gang attack or something, that differs in such a subtle way i am unable to detect it.

I have tried approximately 317 variations of pronunciation of the word without success and still don’t know why I suddenly get connected.

My several thousand “NONs” remain unacknowledged by the service.

My son, who has survived 18 years untroubled by the mysteries of cooking, washing up or doing his laundry is attending the local festival, which started eight days ago and reaches a welcome climax tonight.

I live in hope that the end of the event will precipitate some progress in the unresolved case of the long term uninvited male teenager currently living in the house and eating all my chocolate biscuits.

My wife, his mother, answered the call (I hid when I heard the ringing) and with an insight that borders on the miraculous, replied;

“Er, is this for a dope cake?”

The conversation continued.

“Oh, forget it.”

Hmm, I’m impressed.

Quicker than all those “NONs”.

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