In our household, Sundays are truly blessed days: we have the magic of audio-visual entertainment to thank for that. It is the one morning of the week my kids are allowed to turn the television on and sit, utterly transfixed (and blissfully quiet), for two whole hours.
Last Sunday, however, our aerial was playing up and I couldn’t pick up a single station. After several tense minutes of negotiation, I managed to broker a deal with the kids whereby they got to watch a DVD of their choice instead and I still got my two hours of bliss.
Unfortunately, their unanimous choice was “The Phantom Menace” and before I knew it, my blissful Sunday morning had been cruelly defiled by a band of children running around with plastic light sabers talking like Jar Jar Binks.
As the good Gungan folk of Naboo say: “Meesa Fucked”.
In despair, I reached out to my friends on twitter and, in explaining the situation, managed to misspell ‘aerial’ so that I appeared to be claiming the little mermaid ‘Ariel’ was broken, which sparked a lively discussion about how Ariel got herself broken and who might have broken her and then quickly degenerated into what sailors must see in mermaids since they don’t actually have lovely-lady-bits. I think someone might have even used the word “bazookas” and that the someone was me. The shame.
So I shut down my computer and decided to spend some time in my Happy Place, which used to be listening to Nick Cave’s “Mercy Chair” and recalling the time my husband and I had holidayed in the same boutique hotel as Mr Cave and had endeared ourselves to him forever more by not running over his (then) five year old twin boys in the car park. True story. In my Happy Place, however, I liked to imagine Nick had been so grateful and, indeed, entranced by me that he’d gone on to write an entire album All About Me, taking care to omit the fact he’d seen me wearing my grandmother’s bathers in the hotel’s pool.
These days, however, my Happy Place is a bit realistic and involves listening to one of my ‘Flight of the Conchords’ CDs and pretending I’m still in my twenties and sharing a flat with Jemaine and Brett in downtown New York – you know, where I’m the third member of the band and they’re always saying stuff like “Shit you’re funny NDM”, except they pronounce it “In-Dee-Im” but I forgive them for speaking like goddamn New Zealanders and they forgive me for being a “fucking Aussie” and we go hang out with Arj Barker and it’s all sweet as, bro or whatever the hell they say in New Zealand when they’re having Good Times.
But just as I was about to step into my Happy Place, I suddenly remembered that somebody recently told me Jemaine was married with children or something equally disturbing like that, which was completely at odds with my strictly child-free Happy Place, where even the vaguest whiff of Napi-San or the smallest piece of Lego on the floor could threaten its very sanctity.
So I went back onto the internet to find out once and for all if this disturbing rumour was true. What I found there beggared belief: not only were both Brett and Jemaine both dads, but Brett only had one T in his name and was in fact “Bret”. Moreover, they’d both been dads the entire time I had using their albums as my Happy Place and now I’d have to go revise my whole Flight of the Conchords experience without that extra T in Bret’s name because really, there’s a big difference between watching a show with a “Brett” in it and watching one with a “Bret” and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
So now I’m looking for a new Happy Place. Any suggestions? (First person to say “Phantom Menace” gets a smack. Although, if you’re suggesting a version of “Phantom Menace” where the whole planet of Naboo gets accidentally-on-purpose blown up, I’ll deliver that smack dressed as a Naughty Mermaid. And that’s a promise.)