Sunday, 11 April 2010

Adding a bit of sauce to the election

My 6 year old is a bit of a clever coookie. We can sometimes kid her but she can usually see the glint in my eye when I am trying and she comes out with the line "Daaaadyyyyyy. Is that true?"

One of my favourite wind ups that I got away with was when I told her that the Houses of Parliament was where they make brown sauce. Of course the proof was on the label of the bottle we had in the cupboard so the seed was sown.

Did I stop there? Of course not. That wouldn't have been a challenge. So of course I told her that we had to elect a local person to go to the Houses of Parliament to make the sauce that was sold in our local shops. A step to far? Not a bit of it. I even introduced her to our MP when he visited her school to help celebrate it's 75th Birthday. Luckily she only asked if he liked brown sauce without any questions that might have exposed my ruse.

Of course, like any liar, I need to have a good memory, and this has been brought home with the descent into electioneering that the country has toppled into this week. All of a sudden, posters and placards for our local MP have appeared in gardens around our home.

"Why are they adverting our brown sauce maker daddy? Why don't they just advertise the sauce?" Cue a quick lesson on democracy. "Why do people want to argue about who makes our brown sauce for us? Is it really that important? Why do the brown sauce makers get to choose who the Prime Minister is?" Yes. Unfortunately we have discussed the running of the country as part of the whole Victorians topic that she had to do this term which did lend itself to explaining the difference between our democracy and a Presidential one (made it clearer for me I have to admit).

So now the election is in full swing I have a huge decisions to make. Do I tell my daughter the truth about our MP or let her carry on thinking that the people who make the big decisions in our country have a lucrative sideline in dinner table condiments? Do I explain that some times Daddy is just kidding and she needs to stop being so naive? Or do I just stop making stupid jokes at the expense of politicians?

I think I've ruled one option out already.


  1. My dad once joked with me that he wanted to be a governor at my (then) high school. He sounded particularly sincere about the whole thing, so when the headteacher asked, one assembly time, whether anyone had a parent willing to have a go at a particularly un-fillable vacancy, I raised my hand.

    Later in the headteacher's office, I handed over my dad's daytime contact details at work so the headteacher could call him to discuss the vacancy.

    My dad never wound me up in that way again because it came back to haunt him big style: 4 years on my school's governing body that he really didn't (at first) want to do.

    Not sure brown sauce would get you into such a pickle, but at six maybe it's time to be introducing her to the realities of electioneering: that is, politicians don't make the sauce, they try to "sell" it to us along with all their other ruses.

  2. Hi! I'm really pleased to have found your blog (via @peabee72)!
    Really enjoyed this & yes - you willhave to own up I think otherwise things could get out of hand! ;)