Reality Bites

I am troubled by the notion of reality. So too is Millie. Though, one would hope, in vastly different ways, given the age gap, and the fact that I do not demand that my toy monkey is lightly chilled in the freezer compartment before I drink my milk.

This week Millie is somewhat taken with the notion of invisibility i.e.
Millie: Mummy do you believe in invisible?
Me: No. Except for the air. That is invisible.
Millie: And fart.
Me: Yes. Fart is invisible.
Millie: And my pants.
Me: No. Your pants are not invisible. You are just not wearing any.
Millie: But I am.
Me: You are not.
Millie: I absolutely promise I am wearing invisible pants, Mummy.
Me (attempting to change subject whilst wrestling pants onto child): Oh look. There is a fox.
Millie: Foxes are not real.

You get the point. The thing is, does it matter about the pants and foxes? Does it matter that she thinks Barack Obama and Zac Efron live together? I mean, I still believe that, one day, I will win the Grand National, possibly disguised as a boy. Or do a competition standard merengue with Patrick Swayze before joining the Peace Corps. No one puts me in a corner…

About Joanna Nadin

A former broadcast journalist and special adviser to the prime minister, since leaving politics I’ve written more than 80 books for children and adults, as well as speeches for politicians, and articles for newspapers and magazines like The Guardian, Red and The Amorist. I also lecture in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University, and hold a doctorate in young adult literature. I’m a winner of the Fantastic Book Award and the Surrey Book Award, and have been shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize, the Booktrust Best Book award and Queen of Teen among others, and twice nominated for the Carnegie Medal, for Everybody Hurts, and for Joe All Alone, which is now a BAFTA-winning and Emmy-nominated BBC TV series. I've also worked with Sir Chris Hoy on the Flying Fergus series and ghost-written Angry Birds under another name. I like London, New York, Essex, tea, cake, Marmite, mint imperials, prom dresses, pubs, that bit in the West Wing where Donna tells Josh she wouldn’t stop for a red light if he was in an accident, junk shops, crisps, Cornwall, St Custard’s, Portuguese custard tarts, political geeks, pin-up swimsuits, the Regency, high heels, horses, old songs, my Grandma’s fur coat, vinyl, liner notes, the smell of old books, the feel of a velveteen monkey, Guinness, quiffs, putting my hand in a bin of chicken feed, the 1950s, burlesque, automata, fiddles, flaneuring, gigs in fields on warm summer nights, Bath, the bath.
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