I don’t know about you but I love a bit of Strictly. There is no greater escape from what can be, let’s face it, the mundanity of parenting two relentless small children than grabbing your Saturday night gin cocktail (that’s gin and tonic to you and me 😉 ) and immersing yourself in a magical world of sequins and spray tan. But, hang on just a minute, lately I’ve been noticing some alarming similarities between what goes on out on the dancefloor and life with munchkins. See if you agree with my Top Ten list:
- Strictly: This is a programme about a bunch of complete dance novices who have signed up to face the one of the steepest learning curves of their lives in order to achieve ballroom perfection.
Parenthood: This is a life choice which sets us on possibly the steepest learning curve known to man or beast in order to, at the very least, keep our babies alive and at best achieve the holy grail of sending off well adjusted, well balanced, well-educated individuals into the big bad world – parenting perfection.
- Strictly: Offers the chance for participants to dress up in any number and variety of showy costumes
Parenthood: Offers the participants the chance to dress their kids up in any number of showy costumes (see: Elf baby, below).
- Strictly: Can result in a serious injury if your professional dance partner does not keep an eye on your technique.
Parenthood: Can result in a serious injury if your complete amateur of a parent makes assumptions about you that simply aren’t true (e.g. three month old babies are fine on high surfaces – they wouldn’t know a tummy roll from a spring roll).
- Strictly: Unlimited opportunities to show off. (See: Bruno Tonniolli).
Parenthood: Unlimited opportunities to show off (See: Elf baby, below).
- Strictly: Disco lights and sequins are a winning combination.
Parenthood: Anything that flashes and twinkles is a winning combination.
- Strictly: The contestants must get used to a whole new vocabulary – discovering the meaning of everything from their ‘free arm’ to their travelling voltas.
Parenthood: You must get used to a whole new vocabulary – from Lansinoh to muzzies to sock-ons.
- Strictly: Speaking of new vocab, there is nothing like a good fleckle.
Parenthood: There is nothing like a good session of random spinning (i.e. a fleckle).
- Strictly: Involves learning to throw yourself into complicated lifts.
Parenthood: Involves your child learning how to throw themselves into your arms at a second’s notice without taking you both down.
- Strictly: Contestants must find the energy to take on a fast-paced quickstep
Parenthood: you must find the energy to take on a fast paced toddler on a scooter, ensuring they come to a stop before either a) crashing into a tree or b) taking out an old lady.
- Strictly: At the end of the dance there is always someone there to judge (the judging panel).
Parenthood: At the end of the day, there is always someone there to judge (from your peer group, to the lady at the till in Tesco, to your mother in law).
So there you have it, a very brief rundown of the remarkable similarities between parenting small children and vying for a ballroom dance trophy (ahem..)