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October 20, 2011 / fruitloopmum

When your child grows up……

I think we may have touched on this one before. But, fruitloopmum fans, please indulge me again cos this time I’m not talking about me growing up….since we know that’s not likely…

Nope, THIS time I’d like to take a look at how certain people around you grow up. Do they turn into the kind of people we expect them to? Do the excel or disappoint? AND…what about that old adage that those Jesuits came up with? You know the one…

“Give me a child at seven, and I’ll show you the man” 

So, a trip down memory lane, a little bad behaviour and the ramblings of my 75 year-old mother inspired this post. To be honest, I’d never really wondered what happened to that weird kid I used to play with as a child. He’d slipped from my memory until recently…..

Well, I say play, but from recollection it was mainly football or cricket, and he didn’t seem to be particularly good at anything so we used to just stick him in-goal and kick or throw balls at maybe play  is a bit misguiding…. It’s not that we were bullies or anything. Just a motley group of neighbourhood kids that used to play in the field behind our houses all summer, feast on wild blackberries and make camps. But our childish gut feel told us that this boy was a bit different. Well, him and his other odd friend, the one always carrying a teddy bear…at 8 years of age on a football pitch? FFS!!!

Neither of them were like any other boys that we knew. They were just, well….odd.

So, Fruitloopmum fans. Here’s the scene…Dinner in a restaurant with my mum and Mad Cousin (yes, it does run in the genes) recently. It had been a while. Years actually, on account of me living overseas. Mad Cousin was one of the aforementioned motley neighbourhood kids…actually he was THE kid on the block. My hero. I tagged along behind him for years and we got into all sorts of mischief (you see, amongst other things, MC had a thing for stealing road cones) And I’m sure he used to get grief from his mates about having a little girl shadowing him, but he always looked out for me. Anyways, we’re mid meal and the conversation turns to my mums neighbour:

Mum waving her fork around: …You know who I’m talking about, the woman at number 24…. Her son is the clown!

At this point Mad Cousin and I simultaneously choked on our food. He shot me a look as his face turned blue. I tried to think which house number 24 was….Once I could draw breath I managed to splutter…NOT… Patrick?

Mad Cousin was now writhing about  and his eyes were watering.

Mum continued regardless of the fact that we were causing a scene in the restaurant: Yes! Potty Patrick…the clown

The name gave it away. Mum obviously didn’t mean someone who behaved  like a clown…oh no!

Mad Cousin couldn’t speak…laughter had gripped him so damn tight he was rolling around on his chair. Mum could not see what was so funny. It must be the most natural thing in the world for your child to grow up to be a clown. Or a fruitloop.

Of course, Mad Cousin and I were looking at it from an entirely different perspective.

The weird kid we used to stick in-goal cos we didn’t know what else he was good at, had grown up to be….A friggin CLOWN??

Through tears of laughter I managed to query: You mean a real clown? With big feet and a red nose?

Mum: Oh yes. And very famous too. He’s been on tv and everything!

More roars of laughter and spluttering from both of us as mum sat stoney faced not seeing the funny side of things at all. Finally, Mad Cousin managed to compose himself enough to speak.

MC: What about that other kid he used to hang around with? The one who carried the teddy bear?

Mum: Oh HIM.

She waved her fork seriously at us again:  …..Well, he grew up to be a pervert!

At this point, I wondered if I might have to use the Heimlich Manoeuvre on MC as he looked like he would expire from inhaling his steak.

Finally MC manages in a strangulated voice: What you mean a real pervert? With a dirty mac and everything?

Mum completely nonplussed: Oh yes! We could always see the binoculars flashing in the sunlight from his bedroom window when Mrs Soandso’s daughter sun bathed in the garden. Of course, he did his eyes in in the end, and had to wear special glasses and a  sun hat to work at the bank. Got to be the local manager.

Ok, at this point I had to run to the ladies room through fear of an accident. You couldn’t make this stuff up! Having composed myself, I returned to find my mum looking uncomprehendingly at MC whose shoulders were still heaving. It was time to go home.

Mad Cousin, always into his cars, had promised over dinner to give me a ride in his sports car for old times sake (as a teenager he used to taxi me about at warp speed as soon as he had got his licence) So, we dropped mum safely home. After reminding MC that we were grown-ups now, and to please drive sensibly, we set off at warp factor 10 around the block trying to find the end of the runway. Until MC spotted some road cones.

I knew the drill. He slammed on the breaks, I jumped out and grabbed the cones while he popped the boot. We tore back home to mums having liberated two more road cones for his collection.

We were still laughing at the thought of two grown ups, well over 40, stealing road cones….when mum answered the door, looked down at the road cones and said with a completely deadpan face: And I see you two haven’t changed much either.



You know fruitloopmum fans, I think those Jesuits may have been onto something.





Leave a Comment
  1. DesiValentine / Nov 1 2011 7:27 pm

    So awesome. I had a mad cousin who was all kinds of awesome and mischievous and drove at warp speed. I miss him like crazy. Clearly, I need to find out what is going on with our not-quite-right neighbour kids from back in the day. A clown? A pervert? Hahahahahahaaaah!

  2. fruitloopmum / Nov 2 2011 8:33 am

    Glad my post made you smile. Never under estimate the fun of reconnecting with the inner child…even when you’re ancient like I am! Keep me posted on what your neighbourhood kids became if you find out……I definitely think there’s something in the above theory 🙂

  3. Peter. / Nov 12 2011 3:25 am

    Hey nice post and blog from the person at loaf

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