This week we attempted a little toddler training. And by toddler training I mean training Devilboy to behave more like a toddler and less like a degenerate rocker.
Even while still snuggled in the womb it was obvious that, though our son would love the nightlife, he certainly wouldn’t love to boogie. The banshee sound of a Bee Gee’s falsetto was enough to result in a distressed frenzy in utero… so much so that we have suspicions that his early arrival was in no small part due to panic induced by back to back Bee Gee’s at a wedding the night before.
And yet… at the same time we realised that this already loony unborn boy would fall into a contented sleep whenever The Troggs Wild Thing played. Clearly this was a child that was born to rock… the easiest way to settle the newborn Devilboy was for his mummy to softly sing him to slumber reassuring her tiny little wild thing that he really did make her heart sing…. and made everything groovy, quite.
The baby Devilboy embraced every imaginable incarnation of rock’n’roll. Traditional lullabies drove him wild, but Bernard Fanning could calm him immediately. There was a brief foray into Britpop, as he banged the drum to the Stone Roses before a naturally occurring faux-hawk serendipitously coincided with a love of punk classics that saw him dodging Spanish Bombs with The Clash and creating Anarchy with The Sex Pistols. While the Wiggles left him cold Hendrix and the Doors lit his fire. There was a brief Bob Phase when he mellowed out with Mssrs. Marley and Dylan until Raging Against the Machine and couch diving to Them Crooked Vultures became his raison d’etre.
And while he knows and loves singing along to many a children’s nursery rhyme… when it comes to listening it’s a whole different story. Concerned that he might be missing out on some important toddler right-of-passage that would impair his development I have dutifully spent the last few weeks revisiting music for minors to see if I could convince Devilboy that it was where things were at for hip and happening 2 year olds.
Justine Clarke and High-5 were scathingly dismissed within a matter of moments and the previously rejected Wiggles fared little better. A flash of interest in the narcoleptic purple Wiggle encouraged us to jump on board the big red car to see if we couldn’t further spike his curiosity. In spite of our own shuddering distaste for the skivvied ones and their marketing team, we feigned adoration in Academy award winning style as we played a Wiggly CD, read a few Wiggly books and watched some Wiggly DVD’s. We even tried to convince him that they used to be a Wiggly rock’n’roll band figuring that might help. We danced and we cheered and we sang along but our efforts ended only in tears and demands to stop… though in fairness to Anthony, Murray, Jeff and Sam the resulting derision from Devilboy may have been aimed more at our not so dulcet tones than theirs.
One final attempt was met with a huffy “No mummy, turn that yuck off just right now!”
And so, always one to do as I’m told, I did just that. I have accepted defeat and instead of a houseful of kiddie’s tunes have had the Jam’s A Town Called Malice on repeat for several hours at the behest of our small but insistent in-house DJ. And while Mummy certainly prefers his musical choices to songs about mashed potatos and that lazy sod Jeff – it would be great if my obsessive boy rocker would, just once, listen to a whole bloody album.