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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Things you think on their birthdays

The odd thing about your children's birthdays is you often remember them better than they do and for different reasons. For a start you remember the birthday that they only arrived midway through but then you also remember the pressure of the children's parties, the smell of sweat in church halls, the gatherings of parents grazing on cocktail sausages and Chardonnay, the four-year-old's birthday that was overshadowed by the death of a close friend, the time you got a call half an hour before the start time to say the magician had an accident and wouldn't be there and the time you took a minibus-full of sixteen-year-olds to the Smash Hits Poll Winners party.

J. Alfred Prufrock measured out his life in coffee spoons. Parents do something similar with candles.