Now I know I keep harping on about baby groups, but honestly, they are a minefield people. Veritable minefields. Worse than an office environment really. Why is this? Let me expand: Baby Babs goes to two different baby groups, henceforth known as (a) The Baby Group with the Oddbods and (b) the Toddler Group of Peril. I've already talked about the Toddler Group of Peril and the many accidents that are awaiting unprepared children. The Baby Group with the Oddbods was the first group we started going to, for 50p and a cup of tea you can't go wrong really. Not many mums go, most of the mums I know go to fancy groups with waiting lists of 20 and planned activities for the whole time they are there like artwork and music and crazy things. The babies are only 1, can't they just have fun? These groups also cost about £3.50 a session. Baby Babs can colour in at home and play drums on the tupperware. He doesn't need "planned activities" thrust upon him. He probably wouldn't want to draw with his feet when they told him he had to anyway!
But I digress. The Baby Group with the Oddbods usually has 6 or 7 mums and their kids, but the one week I didn't go as I was sick the Oddbods turned up. We know them from the local school - man and wife, matching shellsuits, on the social but have a car, sky tv, smoke heavily. You know the type. They turned up one week with their son. He proceeded to bash the skull out of my friends little girl with a skittle. Did the Oddbods say anything? Or even remove the weapon? No. They just sat there. My friend had to say to the little boy that they "didn't do things like that" and in the end the lady running the group had to intervene. But I have thought long and hard about this. If it happened to Baby Babs, what would I do? First of all I'd want to slap the kid hard, and then the parents. But I probably wouldn't say anything to them either. The politics of baby groups is very complicated. It's all polite conversation and "ooh how old is your little cherub?" but nothing of substance. Where we really should be saying "excuse me, could you tell your son (little b*stard) to stop hitting my child?". But then there would be an argument, and bad feelings, and then I'd end up banned from the group for being argumentative! Because there isn't any vetting policy on who can turn up, and there are no rules for behaviour established, the kids (and parents) can do whatever they like. Luckily the Oddbods didn't turn up this week. But the worst thing is that I know they label us "normal" mums as rude and untalkative and I can just see the day when they complain to a teacher or someone official about their treatment and it all goes up the swanny and they are on the front of the local paper saying they have been treated unjustly. Oh it's all fun and games having kids.