A lot of people tell me that NCIS is not like other crime shows, that it’s “all about the characters”. And I’m like “Aw c’mon. How many gruesome crimes can possibly committed on boats?”. My mother, one of the show’s advocates, tells me that not all the crimes happen on boats and that naval personnel do bad stuff on land, too. And then I’m all “Whatever!” and think to myself that, if that show is anything to go by, they definitely should introduce more rigorous psychological screening for anyone wanting to join the navy.
I have similar issues with the small town of Midsomer where life-expectancy is far lower than the national average and the aisles of the local Waitrose are chock-full of people laden down with ulterior motives and deep-seated grudges. It’s a wonder new people keep moving into the area to replace the dead ones.
Still, for someone who clearly doesn’t have much time for the crime genre, I have to say that I quite fancy myself as a bit of a crime scene investigator these-a-days. I’ll hear a loud crash in a distant room, followed by the usual satellite-delay cry of one child or another, and I’ll run slow-mo into the crime scene, flashing my badge and shouting “Don’t anyone move! Don’t anybody touch a single god damn thing!”.
Then I’ll quickly survey the scene and ask “What the hell has happened here?”, a question that is usually followed by a flurry of finger-pointing and accusations – unless something is broken, in which case everyone is unusually quiet because they know that, even if they didn’t actually do it, The Shit Is Going To Go Down. And it’s never an easy situation to call because sometimes the child who is crying the loudest was, according to all witnesses, Legitimately Asking For It. But let’s just say when you’ve been in the game as long as I have, you learn to follow your CSI instincts on these things. And I did say “in the game” and not “on the game”, in case you were wondering.
Mr Justice, aged 6, has recently become “a person of interest” in most matters because he is so often setting up his siblings to take the wrap – with mixed results. Recently I discovered someone had done some lovely scribbles on the desk in permanent pen, including Tiddles McGee (aged 2)’s name written in large neat letters. A lesser investigator might have fallen for the trick and declared the case “open and shut”. But not I. Oh, no. Not I.
Before he turned 4, Mr Justice would compulsively tell me the unadulterated truth, even if he knew it would earn him some hard time on the “Thinking Spot”. I used to think I had raised a remarkably honest young man. However, I’ve since read that it’s only because they assume that anything they know or think, you must know or think it also. That although you look like separate people, you’re actually the same. Like the Olsen Twins.
I tell you now, if that were true and I had known everything Mr Justice knew a few years ago, I would have definitely gone on The Einstein Factor with “Autobots v. Deceptacons” as my area of expertise and have won a lot of money.
When I told KT about this she said, “Er, I don’t think ABC Quiz shows are for people looking to actually win money. I think you probably get an ABC show bag at best.”
“You mean with things like a ‘Landline’-branded retractable pencil and a ‘Parliamentary Question Time’ mouse mat?” I remarked, somewhat disappointed. “I mean, who actually uses mouse mats? Who? WHO?”
KT said she didn’t know and chose that moment to move away from me. Listen, it’s not my fault I have an enquiring mind and my Quest for Straight Answers puts people off. At least, I console myself, it stands me in good stead for all my crime scene investigative work. Thus far, there has been no crime unsolved – except why a yet-to-be-toilet-trained toddler Justice suddenly found himself with his pants down peeing in an ash tray. But that’s a story for another day.