So let's just move along from my culinary attempts of the other weekend. I didn't give anyone food-poisoning (as far as I know), which surely counts for something. And let me present instead a gameshow concept I've been working on called 'Real or Not Real?' based on the characters Mads' tells me about and my attempts to work out which ones actually exist.
This is an easy one to start with. Not real, or at least, not in a breathing kind of way. Emily lives in our cutlery drawer. Also clearly not real is her associate, Emily Nice who lives on the kitchen shelf and looks like this.
Also almost definitely not real, although I have a strong mental image of her looking a little bit like this but with a manga-esque modernity to her. Her grandma is called Polly Peugeot.
Not real. Bim Bim has been with us for years now. Bim Bim swaps effortlessly between genders, ages and degrees of naughtiness and bravery, depending on the role he needs to fit.
The Girl Who Says No.
This is where things start to get tricky. She was supposedly a girl at Mads' kinder who would always say 'no' whenever Mads went near her. But then surely she'd be the girl who says 'nein'? One day when I was dropping Mads off she pointed excitedly to a girl and said 'that's the girl who says no!' She has left the kinder for school but she still looms large in Mads' stories of her day - apparently coming for visits or even staring through the kindergarten fence just so she can say 'no' to Mads occasionally.
Last week Mads started telling me about a boy who liked to pinch the other kids at kinder. I asked what he was called and Mads said 'I call him Naughtius.' I hope Nautius is not real, because otherwise his parents have a lot to answer for giving their child a name like that. It was asking for trouble. All the same, I have grown rather fond of Naughtius, especially as his bad behaviour escalates. It's become one of the first things I ask Mads when I pick her up: what did Naughtius do today? Sometimes he's been piffing food around at the teachers, sometimes it's pooing on people's heads. And according to Mads the teachers are powerless to stop him. I picture Naughtius as a miniature Roman emperor, despotic, horrific, feared by all. Unfortunately I fear that Naughtius may be ficticious, or at least exaggerated. Her kinder teacher does not strike me as someone who is likely to put up with such antics.