Lego Batman


It’s been a weekend of two halves, as they say. I drew the long straw on Saturday. Not only did only son sleep in and not put up a fight when my partner took him downstairs for breakfast, leaving me to have even longer in bed, but when we went to the cinema later in the day [much later, given that teenagers were involved] I got to go to Hidden Figures with the girls while my partner volunteered to go to Lego Batman with only son. Result!

“Did you not get a bit bored after the first three minutes?” I asked my partner. “I was bored after two,” he responded. “Can you describe the basic plot?” I enquired. “Does Batman essentially come out on top, but in a sort of square Lego kind of way?” My partner said he had no idea because he was not really paying attention after the third minute. Only son, however, had a great time and recounted in detail how Batman had adopted young [square] Robin and how their relationship was the key to the film.

Hidden Figures, on the other hand, was much appreciated by the female side of the family. “Did it inspire you to do your maths revision?” I asked daughter two who took several years to grasp the concept of odds and evens. “Did you see how maths is applied to the real world of space travel?” “Well, mum,” said daughter two after a slight pause. “I don’t want to be a space scientist, but it did inspire me to follow in the footsteps of the women in the film…and be an actress.” Hmmm.

Any outing in our family is a bit of an achievement because even though certain people say they want to go out and are bored, bored, bored, actually getting dressed is a bit too much of an effort for them. I was feeling bad for the lack of exciting half-term activities so had decided we needed to do something. Only son wanted to go swimming and had dressed in about three layers of tops for the occasion. However, no-one else wanted to go. I got slightly distracted trying to change daughter one’s sheets. She has one of those beds which are like a bunk bed, but with only the top bit and a space underneath for shelves. There is about a foot between the bed and the ceiling which makes changing sheets slightly complicated, particularly doing the duvet cover. I count that as the equivalent of a four-mile run when I am feeling guilty about my lack of exercise.

When we finally left the house, daughter one being the last to wander out the usual 10 minutes behind everyone else, but looking very elegant, we had only enough time to get to the cinema. Only son was a bit upset about the swimming and I found myself promising to take him to the pool “first thing on Sunday”, hoping he might forget by the morning. This was a bit of a big hope, given this is the boy who remembers the place on the CD of every single song he has ever listened to [“could you just put on number 12 of the Made in Dagenham CD followed by number four and number six, mum?”].

This is where the two halves come in. If Saturday was a day of long straws, Sunday was most definitely the short straw. For one, it was my turn to take only son downstairs and start thinking about getting stuff ready for Monday. I also had a bit of a headache. Only son came into our room at around eight and cuddled up. “Remember we’re going swimming this morning, mum?” he whispered before falling back to sleep. I heard my partner stifle a chuckle.

*Mum on the run is Mandy Garner, editor of

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