How to make a child cry in under 30 seconds

Bear "Flea, have you chosen a bedtime story?" I asked my darling daughter this evening.

"Yes, but I don't know quite which one to have, let me see…"

I start flicking through the bookshelf. "Okay, there's Stick Man, Mr Brown Can Moo, Harry and his Bucketful of dinosaurs..."

I look up. Nothing's grabbed her yet. 

"Er, there's How Do Dinosaurs Eat Their Food, or Cat in the Hat, or Oh Boris.."

I pause. Silence.

"Jump in any time you're ready," I say.

Then rifling some more, "Splat the Cat?"



"I want Jump in any Time, please."

"That's not a book, darling, I was just saying.."

"But you said. I want Jump in any Time. Please Mummy, I did ask nicely."

"I know you did poppet, but we don't have that book."

"But you said…" she says in that voice that lets me know I just crushed her childish faith in humanity.  Her bottom lip is quivering like a piano string. A tear slides down her cheek.

Of course, I did what all good Mothers do at these moments. I passed the buck.

"How about we read Stick Man tonight, and when Daddy comes next week you can ask him to buy you Jump in any Time?"

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