Friday, 5 August 2011

The Moon's A (Square) Balloon

Red is looking for a job so that she can raise money to go back to London. Obviously she is living at home rent-free. Mr Charming came home from uni at the end of May with some of his loan left over and has, according to a very disgruntled Big Man, 'slept in for two months'. But now the loan is gone so Mr Charming too needs a job. I find this particularly irksome because at the end of June I noticed that a local leisure centre was looking for lifeguards. The ad said that it wasn't a problem if applicants didn't have the NPLQ (National Pool Lifeguard Qualification) because they would be running a special course on July 15 which would result in qualified lifeguard status. Excellent!!! Mr Charming IS indeed a qualified lifeguard and even though his has lapsed (it needs to be retaken every two years I think), no problemo....he could requalify through the job.

Except he refused to go.
Had money left, didn't need a job, blah blah blah. He even got pretty shirty when I tried to press him on it so I decided he could do what he liked, knowing that he would soon be very sorry.

Last week came the day when the loan was spent and Mr Charming was indeed very sorry. Red had already told me that she didn't care what she did to earn money 'so I can pay you back Mum'. Hmmmmm. Each morning from work I texted to Red and Mr Charming, telling them to get up and look for work by checking the Jobcentre website and each day when I got home they both told me there were no suitable jobs. On Friday I looked myself and straight away found them both openings for the following night at a big pub in town, the Square Balloon. Red has worked as a barmaid before, at the local Irish Club which is run by Mr Charming's best friend's dad (we're big on connections and nepotism in this family). And Mr Charming could collect glasses.

On the Saturday night Red and Mr Charming worked from 8pm to 2am for nothing. No money. Zilch. It's called a trial shift apparently and they both hated it. Mr Charming said that he would rather kill himself than work there again and Red agreed it was pretty awful but that she'd go back if nothing else came up. And at least she made £3.70 in tips.

Yesterday Mr Charming got a cheque for £306 that was his refunded deposit from halls so he has decided that he doesn't need a job now after all, though how long he thinks that will last him I don't know, given that he won't get any more loan until September at the earliest. So this evening when the man from the Square Balloon rang up to offer him work for tomorrow night he turned it down. And it sounds like he's turned it down on Red's behalf too. The manager asked whether she would be available and Mr Charming was very non-commital....the manager didn't call Red so it looks like that's a dead-end.
But tomorrow Red is going to an agency in town about a temporary job as a hospital porter at the General (odd choice I know....maybe she really WILL do anything?) and I said that she should call into the pub whilst she's out though I'd class her response to my suggestion as ambivalent.

I've had to conclude that I have two unmotivated, unwilling and idle people on my hands. How come I can find jobs for them just like that (clicks fingers) but there's never anything suitable when they look? I totally adore all my kids but sometimes they make it very hard. On the minus side they lie in bed, won't do any chores without a lot of nagging, and stopped thinking I was the Oracle of All Knowledge long ago. On the plus side they are pretty frugal, and can live quite happily on packets of Monster Munch and tins of Kopparberg.
The next few months should be interesting.

PS Big Man was talking to his sister Sophie this evening on the phone and I heard him complaining about me using our Rainy Day Fund to pay Red's rent. And, thank you Sophie, she told him that 'your kids ALWAYS come first'. Let's hope he thinks about that a bit..... 


  1. I've had four sprogs go through university so I know how difficult it can be to transition from regarding them as a full parenting responsibility to seeing them as adults able to make their own free choices and deal with the consequences of those free choices.

    No matter what the age of one's offspring it's important to you AND to them that their day to day 'happiness' isn't confused with their long term best interests.
    Your two are now legally adult and fully responsible for their own decisions and there comes a time when both you and they have to acknowledge that fact by their accepting the consequences of those decisions.

    Bite the bullet soon, or you may find yourself in much the same position with them in 10 years time.

    Happy soul, aren't I? :O)))


  2. I hope the job issue gets sorted for your daughter (at least) very soon.
    Thanks for the reminder about St James park, I expect to combine that with a lovely trawl of the charity shops first!
    Lisa x

  3. Hmm, a vicious circle of your adult children returning home and reverting to irresponsible kiddie behaviour. There are people who manage to obtain a degree whilst working and caring for a family, yet so many students feel they deserve time to sit around twiddling their thumbs during the holidays, unless the perfect job lands at their feet. You do not work because it's a brilliant job you can't wait to do every day, so why are they expecting a dream role to present itself?
    I have little sympathy for them unfortunately, and as you are not in a position to keep them at the moment I think they're showing a real lack of respect. Life aint one big party, and learning to stand on your own 2 feet starts the minute you leave home, whether or not you return at a later date.
    If they're not too bothered about paid employment - great. Get them a big list of chores drawn up so that all you have to do is go to work. Then, you can return to a spotless house, meal on the table, washing done and everyone contributing.
    I may have stayed with my folks rent free for a while, but I worked full-time, decorated, cleaned, cooked and showed gratitude and respect to my parents. I was no angel, but I think this behaviour you've described is unacceptable.
    Really sorry if you think I've gone too far, but it seems to me you are allowing everyone to mistake your kindness for weakness.


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