Things my mother said
A long, long, time ago, I was in the book shop in Lane Cove (is it still there?) looking for a Christmas present for one of my brothers.
The man next to me asked me what I was looking for. When I told him he said: Does he like sci-fi? I told him: yes. Then he will definitely love this book.
I didn’t (and still don’t) know much about sci-fi, so I took his word for it.
My brother absolutely loved it, as did millions of other people. It was the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
Now there is a scene early on in Hitchhiker’s where there are two guys in an elevator. The earth is on the point of total destruction, and one says to the other: It’s times like this that I wish I’d listened to what my mother told me; and the other answers: what did she tell you? And our hero answers back: I don’t know, I didn’t listen.
Anyway, here are some of the things my mother said:
Woe betide you if I have to….. (go somewhere) and you haven’t….. (done something)
It’s not a question of ability. Meaning you had to say May I…? instead of: Can I …? (The answer was often: you can, but you may not)
Now you won’t get the surprise because you haven’t done… (something). And you never got to find out what the surprise was. It took me many years to realize that there probably never was a surprise.
It’s not as bad as it looks (describing the total chaos in the house)