There’s a lady I work with – My Second Mother – who is a lovely woman in her 50s, she never married and never had children. She’s very kind and sweet and absolutely dotes on me but she is very old-fashioned. She is the same age as my real mum and yet it’s unbelievable how different they are to each other. My mum dresses quite fashionably but appropriately for her age. My Second Mother wears those skirts that finish halfway between knee and ankle – the most unflattering, stumpifying length of skirt you can get; floral blouses and sensible court shoes.
To further illustrate how out of touch she is, the other day she came into my office brandishing a Mills & Boon novel.
MSM: Would you read this, Rose?
ME: Not really, no. It’s not really my kind of thing.
MSM: It’s a hospital based romance. Are you sure I can’t tempt you?
ME: No thanks, MSM.
MSM: Ahh, you’re not a romantic then? Never mind.
The thing is I am a romantic. The other thing is I enjoy good writing. Mills & Boon qualify for neither of these things.
Another time, she commented on my top knot.
MSM: Have you seen those lovely, crocheted coverings you can get? They’re ever so pretty, Rose.
Now, I know exactly what she means. I remember seeing similar atrocities perched onto small girls head during my ill-fated acro days back in the early 90s. For those of you who were born after this period, she means one of these:
ME: Oh yes, I know what you mean. Yes, nice aren’t they?
I shouldn’t have said I liked them. I should’ve said ‘they weren’t quite my style’ or something. I just hope she doesn’t manage to find one on a market stall somewhere and make a point of gifting it to me.