Kids are great.
- There’s nothing like a child to make you feel good about yourself. You can invent the most outlandish story about yourself and…they’ll believe anything you say.
The memsahib for instance was 35 before she realised the story her father had told her about how he reached into the open mouth of a tiger was a lie. He told her he had pushed his arm right down to the tail, tugged hard and turned the poor beast inside out.
Tell ’em what you like. Big yourself up.
She was taken in totally by his tales of the hunt for the lost pyramid of Shem-di-rah. She believed that he had discovered the Holy Grail. And trusted in the ‘fact’ that he had climbed Everest in vest and underpants. But hey, everyone had a lot of fun. So much so, that her family never had need of a television, so much were they regaled by her father’s tales of derring-do.
Of course, it goes without saying that she was devastated when she found out the truth. However, the old man got years of pleasure out of his invented hero status. And in the end, it did him the world of good.
Consequences. But it’s worth it.
I often think that later on in life he believed the stories he told, himself. He was so really into his imagined role as a hunter of wildlife and relics. The poor man would often be seen around the house in shorts, appropriate hat and carrying an old decommissioned shotgun, even at the height of winter (don’t forget the bullwhip). And in the end (at her father’s death) when the truth was out, it only took the wife a couple of years in therapy to get over what she thought was a deep betrayal of her childhood on her father’s part. But hey, no real harm done…I won’t change my mind thinking kids are great no matter the cost.
Actually, so full of admiration of the father-in-law’s wonderful flights of fancy was I that I couldn’t stop myself. I vowed should the occasion arise in my own life, I would try my best to follow in his lying footsteps.
And so, it has been. I’m proud to say, that my kids believe that I worked for NASA on the early space projects. Was a highly decorated fighter pilot in both World Wars. And in my spare time discovered, penicillin. And that was why I had been knighted by my personal friend, Queen Elizabeth II.
No harm done.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. But you are wrong. If you could see the joy on their little faces I’m sure you would agree that it was all worth it and kid’s really are great.
Unfortunately, lies, as everyone knows (Mr Trump) have a habit of catching up with you. I am well aware that my kids will discover the truth about their father sooner rather than later. The best I can hope is that when that time comes, I shall be too old and doddery to be a victim of their wrath.
That said, perhaps all I can really hope for is that whatever questions they might have, they will realise that I will be not be able to answer them. The last thing I want to do as one of this country’s leading Agents, is break the official secrets act.
MI5 can turn very nasty.