Baby talk

I held my best friend’s baby again. She’s only been in the open air a few weeks but her head must be twice the size of the little head I marveled at so recently. She is still mostly a syphon at the moment, overflowing with mother’s milk as she expands like a mushroom. Milk in until it bubbles over, noxious poo out, grow, repeat. Shouting. Sleep. More milk. Grow. Puking. Sleeping. Shouting. Milk. Growing.

For a moment she was quiet and fascinated, grey eyes questioning my glasses as I cradled her and she communicated in an ancient lost alien language that she probably still remembers from the other place. Who knows what she was trying to tell me. Secrets that are lost to humanity.

Whilst I held her, Minnie and Rhys both displayed a new behaviour. Knowing I had her safely they both started doing arbitrary things compulsively. Arranging things in drawers. Connecting with each other. Moving things around on shelves. Sighing long breaths out. Wiping surfaces. If I hadn’t done the washing up they’d have done it. For a brief moment they remembered that they were self-governing entities with their own desires and needs.

Meanwhile I happily burbled utter nonsense to the package in my arms, and she gurgled scientific formulae and the solution to interstellar travel back to me. “Little baby, you’re so small.” “No you idiot listen to me I’m going to forget this; you have to prepare a knife to cut into the inter-dimensional abyss by freezing it while coated in the following chemicals – are you writing this down?” “Aww she’s trying to talk like us.” “ No you idiot just … oh sod it I’ve shat myself again.”

How is it that, confronted by a helpless being that has no communication skills we so often communicate by singing nonsense? I do it to the cat. I’d probably do it to Trump if I met him. We do it to babies. Maybe we all secretly want to write a popular song and we instinctively test our material on captive audiences that don’t have the nuance to tell us we’re not Beyonce or even Edith Sitwell. But that was my night last night. Singing to a baby. Couldn’t have been better.

Being a mum must be terrifying. It’s a relief to me that one of the only people who expressed concern about this burgeoning motorbike situation is Minnie, and she’s too busy with the baby to worry too much. My mother would be doing her head in if she knew. My dad rolled his bike while I was pillion aged 10 and he was fucking around in the garden. Nothing was damaged but his free rein and the last shreds of her tolerance of motorbikes. She would not be pleased at the prospect of me riding.

I’ll have to be careful in her memory. I’d sooner remain attached to myself. I don’t want any of you having to come round and sing gobbledegook songs to me after I ride head first into a pole.

I bought a kick-ass helmet today though, which is a statement of intent. Now I just need to know how much it’ll cost to fix the bike up. I’ll likely scrap the car on the weekend if I can’t get it running…

Here’s my helmet, for want of any other photo. The cops use it. You can tell by the stupid visor. But it fits beautifully around my glasses.


Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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