Dec. 8th, 2008

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A few weeks ago, Tom received an invitation to a Birthday Party from a girl in his class, Leah. Now being a normal four-year old boy, parties are the most EXCITING THINGS EVAR!! Which made it a bit confusing when he showed some reluctance to going.

There's not that strong 'girls are smelly' thing going on yet - indeed, one of his best friends is Olivia - though through Ned's influence there's a lot of Barbie-bashing going on at the moment. So I didn't think it could be gender politics this early on.

I also doubted it was the fancy-dress element to the party. After all, Tom is the chameleon of Leominster, covering everything from pirates to knights and back again.

Meaning the only factor that I could think of that could be bothering him was the fact that it was a disco. It seems that I have bred a reserved, middle-class English male (which in itself is hardly surprising), but that seemed to be the key. Tom didn't want to have to do any dancing.

It's difficult to persuade a child to the merits and freedom of dancing when you yourself have all the grace of a foal on ice. For me, dancing without self-consciousness is something I had to work long and hard at to overcome my inbuilt reticence, and trying to explain that to a four-year old is nigh on impossible.

So, the only thing I could do to enthuse him to go was to get him to have complete control over his costume. Let him get excited about what he's going as, and the fact that it's a disco might just fade a bit. Did he want to go as a pirate? No. Knight? No. (See, going for all the familiar (and easy) option first).

Then I don't know what possessed me to suggest Robot. We don't have a robot costume, and I'd end up having to make it. But suddenly I found myself suggesting Robot, and Tom immediately snapped up the offer, and I was duty bound to oblige.

One long day with a Dell computer box, permanent marker, some google image results, a couple of split pins, some elastic, foil wrapping paper, a whole pritt-stick and bout 2 miles of gaffa tape later, these were the results. I'm pretty proud of myself. And Tom loved the party, and apparently did plenty of dancing. Little sod!

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