As Britain thaws out and rebuilds its bread and milk stocks after the Beast from the East, there’s a deadly new condition preparing to sweep the nation on Sunday… Get ready for the Smog from the Smug.
As we speak, mothers up and down the country are preparing to hammer social media with relentless cute photos and humblebragging. Sentient beings are advised to avoid Facebook and Instagram particularly, as filters will be set to max – and blessings hashtags used to the full – on this celebration of the awesomeness of Mums.
Mumsnet has brought in extra moderators in readiness for the floods of enquiries. Examples from previous years include: “AIBU to wonder why my mother, 104 yr old grandmother and mother in law expect something today, when I gave birth the most recently and therefore win?”; “AIBU to chuck my Claire’s Accessories unicorn headband in the bin and march the kids down to Pandora?” and “AIBU to insist my husband writes and records a new song with Michael Bolton in tribute to me and gets it played on Magic FM before he and the baby whizz me down to Claridges?” (Answer: of course you’re not, and if he doesn’t, LTB.)
In Godalming, panic buying and looting has broken out as desperate Dads realise they have only a few days left in which to win Mother’s Day. We spoke to a despairing Neil in Costa, slumped into his Americano while his children watch Peppa on his phone. “It’s no good,” he mutters helplessly, “Lululemon is sold out online and I missed the Boden sale. I’m b-u-g-g-e-r-e-d”. Footnote: He spelled the latter in a Mr Tumble voice whilst gesturing to the kids. We feel a strange mix of pity and revulsion, tbh.
Other parents insist on a strictly homemade approach. As Janice explains: “The sweet spot is to have something homemade, but excellent. Ideally with opportunity to demonstrate advanced handwriting, spelling and punctuation. I’ve told Barry to employ a tutor if needs be. We’re not messing about here. Last year Mary Fotherington’s children wrote their own novel and had it published by Penguin, FFS.”
There is, however, a flipside to this national outpouring of flowers and Ferrero Rocher. We spoke to Carol, a nurse from Weymouth: “I would love to be posting pictures of breakfast in bed all morning, but I have to go to work, and Wayne isn’t likely to get his backside up in time to get the kids sorted before I go.” When asked if she would be making herself heart shaped pancakes or tropical fruit salad with crunchy flower-shaped granola instead, she fixed us with a steely gaze. “I’ll be having Frosties and a cup of tea like a normal person.” Bucking the trend, eh, Carol? Good on you.
Mums, we salute you. Everyone else, take cover. The worst will be over by Monday.
Natalie Willbe for Pf Magazine