Boys who come to Stay

Today is officially my favourite day of the year. Today is better than my birthday because I’m not required to feign enthusiasm about anything and it’s much better than Christmas because Strider isn’t here. Today is the day the clocks go back which means I get an extra hour to waste as I see fit.
This year I have chosen to spend my extra hour cleaning in a frenzied fashion. Do I know how to have a good time or what?

There is actually a reason for this. I have visitors coming to stay. I am terrified of my visitors. Two of them are teenage boys.
Logic says I shouldn’t be. Logic says that teenage boys, like woodlice, are far more scared of me than I am of them but I am not at home to Mr Logic and remain convinced that the woodlice are just waiting for an opportunity to strike. When we are all under the repellent wriggly legged rule of woodlouse overlords you’ll be sorry you didn’t listen to me on this matter.

The local teenage boys seem to have a fondness for standing on street corners in gangs, looking at old ladies in a menacing fashion and wearing worried expressions in the presence of nuns. They also seem to like having very bouffant hair. My visiting teenage Boys, if the pictures their father sent to my father are to be believed, like standing in a healthy outdoor setting gurning at somebody holding a digital camera.
The eldest is 14 and wishes to join the Air Force. Clearly a natty uniform and the ability to kill people from great heights are important to this boy. It’s probably best not to remind him that the last time we met he had a tantrum because his mother wouldn’t let him wear nail varnish. The younger is 12 and has red hair. That’s all I know.

I suppose my greatest fear is that the moment they arrive, I will suddenly transform into one of those sad Grown-Ups who wants to be Cool. Actually, I think my greatest fear is that the moment they arrive I will suddenly transform into a Grown-Up. I’ve never been a Grown-Up before. I’ve never been a Responsible Adult before. I’m usually the kind of person who has to bribe small children into not letting their mother know I’ve carelessly been allowing her first-born child to eat leaf mulch all afternoon.
Mammy seems to think I will pick up where I left off a decade ago and look after them both while the parents have a conversation in the other room (and so fail to have the time to get my A-Level Art coursework done and subsequently get shamed by the teacher when she shows my work to the entire class as a demonstration of how not to do it.) Mammy even suggested the Boys and I could play Resident Evil 4 but I’m afraid they’ll sneer at me for having a Wii. I’ve hidden my DS because it’s pink. They aren’t going to understand that it was an ironic gift; they’re just going to think I’m a girl.

I’ve been trying to remember what I was like when I was 14. Waistcoats seemed to feature heavily as I recall. And Stephen King novels. And The X-files. And babysitting children with stupid names.

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