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Meet The Parents, PFPT Style

English: Two gingerbread men in a basket of co...

“Take it from me love, run, run, run, as fast as you can!”

For 8 months I’ve been seeing the delightful Boything, and for 8 months I have successfully managed to avoid meeting The Parents. This is by no sheer accident or oversight and it is most certainly not due to the lack of nagging from a certain man (that would be Boything, not the bin man. I’m not sure how much interest he has in me meeting his family), but finally, at the risk of them committing him to a mental home for his “imaginary girlfriend”, I relented and a date was placed very firmly, and with no room for negotiation, in my diary.

Those who know me, or have read more than a few words of posts gone-by, will know that I’m not exactly regarded as the withering wallflower type and I’m clearly very well blessed in the social arts and graces (when I’m not discharging a cattle prod into someone’s derriere or stabbing them in the neck with a biro), so why should the mere mention of meeting the beloved mama and papa of my own dear sweetheart turn me as white as a nun’s knickers and squirmier than a squid on a shoplifting charge?

The answer, quite plainly, is that no matter how many times I was reassured that “they’re really lovely and they’re going to like you”, all I heard was “YOU WILL NEVER BE GOOD ENOUGH FOR MY MOTHER AND MY FATHER KEEPS THE BODIES OF ALL MY GIRLFRIENDS-PAST IN THE CELLAR!”. Quite a logical and rational train of thought, I’m sure you’ll agree.

Faced with Sunday afternoon tea chez The Girlfriend Slayers, I realised I had just two very reasonable choices; break up with the man I adore or, more realistically and kinder to all concerned, fake my own death. I opted for the faked death, but apparently Boything isn’t quite as perturbed by a seemingly fatal stiletto injury as I had first hoped, and now I know exactly what a man will do when left alone with an apparently unchallenging woman for half an hour. It isn’t the washing up, I can tell you.

Plan foiled, I was left no option other than to get on with calming my nerves and soaking up the warm words of reassurance that came from my man. Well, actually, his pre-parental visit chat went a little more along these lines: “When you meet them, don’t belch, don’t fart and don’t swear.”

Damn.  That was all my tried and tested ice-breakers out the window and most of my finest character traits too! He may as well have said “just be yourself, so long as that isn’t anything like your actual self”. Without my potty mouth and bodily-gas Royal Family impressions, I’m left with very little to actually contribute to a conversation. Time to break out the twinset and pearls.

Having Googled “twinset and pearls” and found it not to be a sexual act so deviant, it can get you out of meeting his parents, I decided to do something even more perverted and wrong. I baked. For the first time since I was 9 years old, I actually baked. My kitchen felt violated, I felt violated. In fact, I’m pretty sure I may have created a whole new level of violation just from this one baking incident alone.

We thought it might be terribly nice and awfully festive if we went armed with a fresh batch of home baked gingerbread men to dazzle and delight. What actually happened was that upon realising that my kitchen is better equipped to make salad and hangovers, several items were hastily procured. You know, a few key items such as all the ingredients and all the equipment, and yet even in the run up to Christmas, and with me living in one of the most diverse and bountiful cities on the globe, not a gingerbread man cookie cutter could be found.

Being a girl of resourceful means, I didn’t let a trifling thing such as a missing key bit of kit get in the way of gingerbread bribery, I simply turned to what kitchen essentials I already had to hand; a wine glass. Apparently wine glasses, when not being used to administer wine, make excellent biscuit cutters. This did however mean that instead of the full bodies, we just had the gingerbread heads, or sauvignon blanc faces if you will. To be quite frank, with all the mixing and rolling and hovering over a temperamental oven, and surveying the resulting mess, I can see why 50’s housewives turned to mainlining gin!

Anyway, after several taste tests, and thwarted attempts to jump from a moving train, I arrived at the home of the most fearsome beings on the planet. Would they like me? Would they chain me to the wall of the cellar? Would I accidentally let out a trump when offered more tea? More importantly, would the gingerbread give them the trots?!

I’ll be honest, the scariest thing his mum did was to hug me as soon as I got through the door and from then on, offer me enough tea and cake to have the W.I. in a constant holding pattern for the loo. His dad, well, he may have previous girlfriends bodies locked in the cellar but I escaped with a pleasant exchange about the merits of Monty Python.

Just one member of the family wasn’t quite so welcoming. The dog tried to eat me, proving that dogs are excellent judges of character.

Oh, and if you’re still wondering, I managed to hold in the fart.

About prettyfeetpoptoe

I live in London and have both my own legs so I am fortunate enough to get out and about on occasion. I form many views on the things that I see and do and love nothing better than a session of linguistic gymnastics in order to share these views.

36 responses »

  1. Meeting the parents is always frightening. I met my wife’s parents in a bar after they had already been drinking for a while. So my meeting went quite smoothly.

    • That would have suited me fine, unfortunately, his aren’t big drinkers. This also meant that most of my funniest anecdotes had to be canned as they all start with “I was really pissed this one time…”

  2. Really enjoyed this, well written and funny. Plus I’ve now discovered another use for my wine glasses. Commiserations about being mauled by the dog!

    • I’m working on discovering all the uses for wine glasses and bottle openers, so I can streamline my kitchen to just 2 items. If I hadn’t been able to find a rolling pin, I seriously would have used a wine bottle.

      • missy amber

        Oh but Darling – a wine bottle is an excellent rolling pin substitute. Just don’t use a curvy bubbly bottle or a vintage Matthis Rose from the 80’s, or you’ll get very wibbly biccies.

  3. Ah may zing! First time I met Andy’s parents I had my face painted like a tiger.. fortunately, so did he. Least they weren’t put off… Then there was the time I wore my tiger onesie to their house and they had guests.. Oh well

  4. You should have lit it – always an icebreaker.

  5. My son brought his girlfriend home this weekend; good grief; did she think about all those things before meeting me too? Funny when the shoe is on the other foot…

  6. Fantastic. Well done, you… and brave to attempt baking after that long a delay. (You understand I’m not making any comment on your current age; only that I know it’s been more than a year since you were nine.) So how were the cookies? And did you (gasp) frost them? Or was that a bridge too far?

    • Apparently they were edible, or everyone was incredibly polite (and quiet if they threw up). As for the frosting, it’s all still very neatly packed away in the box, where it can do no harm!

  7. charmedbylove

    My meeting with my ex’s parents didn’t go so well, maybe if i had farted i might have scored a point or two!

  8. Where is Martha Stewart when you need her? Actually, the last time I saw her making festive goodies on t.v., she was downing the wine rather quickly. Perhaps she, like the rest of us wannabe fifties housewives, have mellowed with age…or don’t give a damn anymore. Good for you for giving it a shot…but wine is always better than gingerbread!

  9. Congratulations on a successful escape from being imprisoned in a cellar for life. After all, you could have sung ‘The bright side of Life’ after being tied up and that would have befriended your jailer for sure. I’m glad it wasn’t necessary. 🙂

  10. I’d pay good money to hear the Royal Family fart impressions. If Pops is a Monty Python fan, I say grunt it next time round!

  11. Next time I have to meet ‘the parents’, I am going to take some inspiration from you. I’m thinking hash brownies would make a great ice breaker.

  12. You managed to go 8 months? That’s impressive, I think I only managed about 3 or 4 and then I got all sorts of worked up and hysterical. But of course in the end it all worked out too, but it’s just awful, I hate meeting parents for the first time – it makes things seem so official… which is bad, why? I don’t know, but I’d like to hear more about this gin mainlining.

  13. Haha! Oh meeting the parents, what fun. Personally I almost think its worse when you officially meet ‘the friends’, because let’s be honest, that’s the opinion they care more about! (Although both are easily won over with baked goods of course)

    • I’m still to meet the sister. I’ll be honest, I think the parents were far less nerve wracking than that will be, as lovely as I’m sure she is. Siblings are way scarier then snarling dogs.

  14. Diego Serrano

    Hey PFPT, aka MBM
    Thanks for the laughs this year.
    I hope you have a great holiday season.


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