Come along for the ride!!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

WHAT the … ????

Throughout the week I have been trying to keep my TV watching down to a minimum (well come on, it’s boring), but on a Thursday evening at 10pm, you can guarantee I will be slumped on the sofa getting my weekly dose of My Name Is Earl, which is by far the funniest thing on television at the moment.

It finishes, I get up to make my lunch for the next day and hang the washing (hey, it’s all go, go, go in our house, let me tell you!!). From the TV, I can hear an adult shouting and a child crying, saying “I don’t want to, I don’t want to”, so of course I come back in to see what the fuss is all about.

I can honestly say I could hardly believe what I was seeing (read here).

10 year old Thai (his name) and (one would imagine the similarly aged) Connor wearing full contact padding, locked inside a cage in a kick boxing competition.

It wasn’t so much the surprise at seeing such skinny youngsters punching and kicking each other; it was more the fact that the parents were standing pressed up against the metal cage screaming at their offspring to “punch ‘im, go on, knock ‘im out” and the like.

As is, there can be only one winner and this was also upsetting to watch. Not only was the loser upset at losing, but his face as his parents complained to the camera was uncomfortable to watch.

“Well, that other lad was f*&£ing cheating, he punched him in the face which is against the rules. That f*&$ing referee should be barred from the sport”.

All this wonderfully colourful vocabulary in front of their very upset 10 year old.

I’m not against contact sports. I’m not against teaching children self-defence or martial arts. But it was when the programme focussed on 5-year-old twins Miah and her brother Kian that my jaw dropped.

Miah clearly didn’t want to get into the ring, crying and visibly shaking, but “Dad Darren” was having none of it.

“What’s the matter with you now? Come on, get in the ring! Stop crying, come on”.

Apparently Miah loves “disco-dancing and dressing up as a princess”. Not all that surprising really – most 5-year-old girls love exactly the same things. Likewise her brother, for whom Dad’s hope for his son is “to win a stadium title” followed by, “I dunno what his dream is. Probably to play with his soldiers!”

Dear, dear me.

I got in trouble as a boy, be it at school or at home. If I’d had a choice, I would much rather have been told, “right, that’s it – you’re in trouble now. Go to your room” than hear the dreaded words, “I’m very disappointed in you”.


From your parents in particular???


But disappointment is exactly what Majhid (Dad to Sohan) had written all over his face just before his son lost his fight.

"Sohan is living the life I should have had", he says. "I have always wanted to be the best. I've always wanted to be a champ, wanted people to look at me and say there's the champ. But it's as good them saying it to my son as saying it to me."

What a clown!

Oh, by the way, following my gripe the other day about no-one bothering with St. George’s Day, I cooked the most English of meals; a roast dinner.

Check out those roast potatoes!

All washed down with a nice glass of red – marvellous!!


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