My OAP mum
Born during the war, my OAP mum is now in her early 70s.
A typical Eastender, by her own admission she has been loud and outspoken all of her life.
Choosing to raise me single-handedly from when I was around 7 years old, my mum displayed a steely resistance to any crap that life would throw her way, and this still shines through in her old age.
Never afraid to say what’s on her mind, and filled with self-confidence, it’s not uncommon to hear her shout “Oi!” as a greeting to someone in the High Street. It’s shouted at a volume ensuring it’s heard by even the deafest of people nearby, and though she intends it as a friendly greeting if you’re not expecting it, it can scare the life out of you.
As well as being a constant source of inspiration to me, she also thoroughly amuses me. Sometimes with a quick wit, quite often with misplaced words, or just by approaching things at a different angle to myself.
I often tweet about her using the hashtag #MyOAPmum. Below are just some of things she’s said (and to give you an idea, this is merely a selection from 2011!)
10/04/2011 – Reasoning.
My mum bemoaned going to Subway earlier by reasoning “I have bread at home!”
2011-08-17 - On solving an anomaly in employment statistics:
I had a conversation with my OAP mum earlier.
Me: “There’s 2.5 million unemployed in the UK, but only 1.5 million claiming Job Seekers Allowance.”
Mum replied swiftly: “A million of them are probably in jail. Or dead.” She then paused as she saw the look of confusion on my face, before continuing: “Because of the riots.”
2011-08-20 - Being unaware of dress codes:
As we drove through Chelmsford.
Mum: “That’s strange of those girls to wear wellies. Must be farmers.”
The fact that we were less than a mile from the V Festival campsite on V weekend had escaped her.
2011-08-24 - When you think you recognise someone from somewhere healthy:
myOAPmum recognised a woman yesterday.
“Do I know you from the dentist? Doctors? Gym?” mum asked.
“I was your local barmaid” she replied. Whoops.
2011-08-30 - Selective eyesight:
I pulled up in the front drive of my mum’s house and knocked on her door. She answered and greeted me with: “Oh, where’s your car?!”
I pointed at the large vehicle that was approximately 2 feet away from where I stood. “It’s there, mum.”
Mum: “Oh I didn’t see it!”
2011-09-11 - This happens far too often:
I tweeted that I was taking mum to B&Q. As I pointed out, we were heading to B&Q as that is where she’d asked to go. I know from the past that she could well mean Frankie & Benny’s. Or M&S. Or anything with an ‘&’ in its name, in all honesty.
23/09/2011 - Right down to describing the consistency and smell:
Never one to spare details, mum has just told me the story of today’s dog walk, which included a dog with diarrhoea and a doggy poo-bag with a hole in it 🙁
24/09/2011 - That’s the name of the company, mum…
#myOAPmum has just asked: “Why have they called the new Stratford shopping centre ‘Westfield’ when it’s in East London, not West?”
08/10/2011 - Pensioner logic:
#myOAPmum is insistent that Rooney “was sent off by the England team to protect him from the betting scandal.”
08/10/2011 - I’ll admit, I did a double take when she said it:
#myOAPmum declared last week that she’d run out of Durex. Further investigation revealed that she actually meant Duracell batteries.
18/10/2011 - What’s my name?
#myOAPmum just said to me “I saw a number plate with your initials on it last week…” before adding “DJB” like I don’t know my own initials
21/10/2011 - At least it wasn’t lumpy:
#myOAPmum said she’d cook me a roast dinner tonight. I got in just in time to find her sieving the gravy. 🙁
24/10/2011 - On Technology.
#myOAPmum just asked if someone on holiday in America would need a different email address “because they are abroad”.
15/11/2011 - On broken electrical goods.
#myOAPmum called me to tell me that the portable tv (sitting in the conservatory) had no screen. Checked today. It was just face down.
07/12/2011 - Well-intentioned, I’m sure.
#myOAPmum: You smell nice today. Me: It’s only Deep Heat on my back. Mum: Oh. You smell like a horse.
12/12/2011 - Well they never had cards back in the day.
Just had a twenty-minute chat with #myOAPmum revolving around the difference between debit and credit cards. It remains unresolved.
24/12/2011 - Christmas dinner.
The kid down the road said to #myOAPmum he wanted a puppy for Christmas. She replied that he should stick to turkey.