Tag Archives: stropping

Teenagers. ‘Nuff Said.

manhatttanThe Teenager is off to New York in 9 days for a school trip, so he needs warm clothes.

Sounds easy, but this is the same Teenager who refuses to wear jumpers (too naff), hats (yeah, right) or gloves (I’m not, like, a kid).

So our weekend shopping trip to town was meticulously planned and of course fell spectacularly apart.

‘It’s cold in New York, you need warm clothes.’

‘Is it colder than Glasgow?’


‘S’ok. T-shirts will be fine.’

‘Get dressed, we’re leaving in five minutes.’

Thump, thump, strop around upstairs, sound of clothes being flung around the room.

‘Right, I’m, like, ready.’

I look round. ‘Get back upstairs this instant and take those shorts off. It’s minus 2 outside.’

Grunts, strops, thumping back upstairs. Comes slouching back down in trousers (and a t-shirt) and magnanimously agrees to get in the car.

Town. Seventy shops later, my nerves are frayed and I’m on the verge of yelling in public. Shop seventy-one and I yelled. ‘There’s nothing wrong with the zip. The only thing that’s wrong is that you’re stropping and trying to do it up with one hand.’ A small crowd gathered, pretending to look at the Bermuda shorts nearby, earwigging.

‘Ok. Okkkkaaaaaay, I’ll take it.’

So we got the jacket. Eventually. Only two jumpers to go. Hours later, I took them up to the desk, where a chirpy young man bagged them up.

‘And how are you enjoying this lovely day, madam?’

‘Oh, wonderful, thank you. I adore shopping with my sullen, sulky son. In fact, I wish I did it more often.’

He looked scared and glanced surreptitiously under the counter where there was no doubt a panic button.

On the way back to the car, I had to stop to get some stuff in for dinner and made the mistake of asking The Teenager what he fancied.



‘Small one?’


Fine. I’m going to wait in the car. Keys?’

I waved him off and took  my time schlepping around the Tesco Metro, admiring the plastic tubs of ready-peeled kiwi fruit and chopped coconut. My phone went.

‘Can’t open the boot.’

‘Just press the button on the key fob.’

‘Can’t. It’s disappeared.’

‘What, the car or the key?’

‘The button to open the boot.’

I ended the call.

He’s having salmon for dinner. With broccoli.

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