Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Birthday Bobby

So yesterday it was June 9th which means I turned 30. Mum, Dad and I went out to celebrate the Special Day. I decided on the restaurant and even though I know pictures of food are fucking tedious, this is my main course. It tasted much better than it looked in this picture...

There are three types of animal on this plate; wildebeest, springbok and ostrich. And as we chomped our way through the bits of dead animal, we all reminisced about Bobby's last 30 years on planet earth.

Thanks to my mother's strange passion for scrap-booking and my dad's scanner, I am able to share these years with you.

My dad was in the Air Force and loved racing his cars, so you can imagine his massive excitement when my mother realised in 1977 that she was going to have a boy.

It would be someone for my dad to pass on his love of flying jets and racing cars. One-day Daddy's lovely son would be clever and successful, inherit Daddy's business, settle down and marry with kids.

The problem with poor Bobby was that Mummy kept playing bloody ABBA records and let him put the wrong sort of clothes into the dressing up box.

dress
Please note how the hangbag and shoes complete the look.

However, Bobby's father would say "no, Bobby wants to be a motorbike racer, see how happy he looks on it!"

On yer bike
But Bobby's dad's efforts were completely overwhelmed. Here we see Bobby dressed up in a doiley for lunch.

Photobucket
The fan on the table indicates this was some sort of Japanese/geisha theme. And there will be no comments on the grotesque furniture either. And then Bobby had a sister...

sister
And at the dinner table last night Bobby also tried reminisce about how he and his sister used to fight and scream at each other. But my parents don't remember any of that.

They think my sister and I had a completely normal and happy childhood. I have managed to work out most of my shit on my own but my sister has had to have help from psychologists.

So when I'm out for dinner with my parents and we're celebrating my 30th birthday, they say things like "you had a very happy childhood didn't you?" I am past the stage of going "are you joking?!" Or "do you have any idea of the shit you put me and my sister through..."

The problem with my mum and dad is that they were expecting a boy and a girl who would grow up to become "normal", just like them.

They expected their son to take over his dad's business, get married and have kids. They wanted their daughter to be married early too and give them more young children to dote on.

It became clear that this wasn't going to happen but they refused to believe it. Instead they would say things like "as long as we're alive, you two will do as we tell you." That was their mantra, I can still hear them saying it.

Boys did not listen to Madonna or want to perform on stage, instead they went to karate as I was forced to do. Girls were not supposed to like computer games or get caught smoking in their school uniform.

Last night, while at the table, my sister phoned from California and I spoke to her and for a moment we were playing happy families. And we raised our glasses and my mother said "Bobby, we're very proud of you" and instead of what I thought, out of my mouth came the word "thanks."

For pudding my mother said "Bobby, please order the ice-cream so that dad and I can have some of it". But in spite of them I ordered the chocolate mousse, described on the menu as flamboyant.

"Oh", I said to the waitress, "and they will have plain old ice-cream but please could you bring two spoons with it, so they can share it."

At least they got their ice-cream but it was just not how they were expecting it.

19 comments:

Steven said...

Happy (belated) birthday!

You're officially old.

Bobby Cox said...

I assume this means I am older than you now, so I can boss you around and make you be the cop so I can the robber.

Alfred said...

That's great you have happy and unforgettable childhood and warm family. Happy birthaday Bobby.can you tell us your birthday dream?

Timmy said...

Hey Bobby...those are some cute pics! You're still adorable.

Part of my maturing process has been to not always say what is on my mind when talking to my parents. I understand where you're coming from. :-)

ANDRE said...

oh fuck! i am such a dumbass.

faccia libro (look for the italian-english translation somewhere on google) kept on reminding me about ur birthday, but i was like "oh yeah, it's in 2 days, i'll have time...).

and now i forgot about it and i feel so bad.

tanti auguri in ritardo, dude!!!

i am so going to give u a free tee just bc of my bluntness...

xx

Bobby Cox said...

alfred: i luv your comments. they're like little diamonds in a sea of pearls. so what is this birthday dream? how does that work? it sounds exciting...

Timmy: I think that's when you become an adult. When they stop being your parents and start being the pair across the table.

Andrea: don't be a dumbass...!!! but thanks for remembering (sort of) x x x x

Gabriel said...

happy birthday stud.

dickophile said...

families eh? what are you gonna do? hope you had a good bday!

Anonymous said...

Do you think anyone had a normal upbringing? You need to move on, and I know that you are trying very hard to do that. I think you are great, but you need to do yourself a favour and just stop letting this get to you. Parents are all demented straight people, cut them some slack, accept you had a disturbing start and go shopping..... x

Anonymous said...

Hurrrahhh! Happy Birthday.

Carl

Superdrewby said...

My parents still believe that my comng out was 'easy' and the whole essentially being kicked out of home at such a young age never happened....

It's funny how parents just simply blank out all the bad stuff and can only remember the nice stuff

Bobby Cox said...

Gabriel: Luvs ya babes, cheers.

Dick: I had a lovely day, thank you... I am ready to face my 30s now... fuck em.

Anon: So this is a really considered and good comment and I agree with everything. But please can't you pretend to give an anonymous name. Anything so that we can pretend we know who you are.

Carl: I hope your birthday was as good as mine was. Did you get the invite?!
Ahhh... hope everything's going well...

scotrock said...

Well, now we know where your desire for a Ferrari 288 GTO comes from!

And I couldn't help thinking that there was something rather "Hinge & Brackett*" about that doily pic.

*with apologies if that's an obscure and dated reference.

Monty said...

Happy Birthday Bobby! Trust me...your 30's are soooo much better than your 20's! Enjoy your African sojourn! Loved the little bit of Bobby History in your post!

PS Welcome back to the Southern Hemisphere! :-)

Lex said...

I don't really have anything interesting to add, but I just wanted to say Happy actual birthday.

Bobby Cox said...

Drew: I think it's that parents believe that everything they do is "the right thing" and they completely convince themselves that it is.
So when something isn't, instead of acknowledging that, they just pretend that it never happened.
i think it's a sign of age which leads you to start realising this...

Scot: are Hinge and Bracket like Mutt and Jeff?

Monty: Yes, and the southern hemisphere is totally awful and cold! and it's raining and windy.
but everything in the northern hemisphere is sunny and beautiful. Damn!

Lex: This is an actual thanks... x x

Wayne said...

Ah, happy (belated) birthday Bobby. I used to fret about being 30 but for me life is so much better at 30 than it was at 20! x

Chris said...

Firstly, happy birthday, it was mine on the 10th, go geminis!
I just wanted to say that I love reading your blog, but sometimes you come across as quite spoiled and still generally bitter. From what I can tell you came from a childhood of priviledge and love, you had parents who cared for you even though they were demanding, who's parents aren't?!

All I would say is that sometimes it seems very much like you're stuck in a loop, enjoy life and stop dwelling on what doesn't sound in all honesty on that bad of a childhood - more stories from the gym n such! ;o) Enjoy kep tun!

Muzbot said...

Happy three oh. (Sorry for the delayed sentiments)

Hope this coming year is all that you hope for, and then just a little bit more. :)