I have taken to doing my work at a mall. A big fat American style mall. But, this one has a little more character as it is on the water in a harbour with a great view of Fife. When weather permits I sit at a table beside the water and click away at my keyboard. When lost for words I people-watch. Children and parents are the most interesting subjects to watch.
Young children act a lot like drunks, and a little like monkeys. In a clothing store, I watched a toddler doing the standard drunken monkey act of a child. It was babbling and singing to itself. It barely had control of its limbs. They shook with no definable rhythm in some sugar-induced palsy. The child then approached a mirror and responded to this by licking it and making ‘mmm’ noises the whole time. Even more amazingly was the parent witnessed this and made no response. She noticed the fruit of her loins licking a mirror and she merely returned to her evaluation of the railings of clothes without even a sigh.
A lot of new moms also frequent the mall. I have overheard some very bizarre things1 and have witnessed unfathomable acts. Do you know how you check if a baby needs changing? You shove your nose into its diaper. I have seen it countless times and it still confuses me. I doubt all of these people are the freaks that their ass inhaling behaviour would imply. So, the only other conclusion is that they were once normal but the birth of their child somehow changed them. It is with trembling fear that I contemplate the possibility of fatherhood and that I could one day find myself nostril deep into the rear-end of some smaller version of myself and some hapless woman.
1) Breast feeding can result in chapped nipples.