He won't go too far. He does not enjoy seeing his parents wild with fury, bleeding heavily, or sobbing uncontrollably. No, he just likes to make us a little bit cross - perhaps a raised voice, or perhaps a sigh accompanied by a gazing into the middle distance and a yearning for a child-free existence.
The following are Jamie's preferred tactics for achieving this:
- If it's dark outside - turning the lights off.
- If it's light outside - turning the lights on.
- Throwing the television remote control over the fence into next door's garden in the hope that the TV will stay on CBeebies channel until the next door neighbour eventually finds the remote and brings it back.
- Knocking the cup out of your hand as you try to drink from it. This works best with scalding hot drinks.
- Making you think he is about to kiss you on the cheek, but licking you down the side of your face instead.
- Loudly calling his parents "gran and grandad" instead of "mum and dad", in public.
- Rearrange all the books on the bookshelf, into a big pile in the middle of the floor.
- Running away, especially towards busy traffic or open water (as he knows this creates a better reaction than just running towards, say, some swings).
- Posting things out of the letterbox onto the street outside. If left alone for long enough he can create a pile of our belongings 12 inches high before getting bored.
- Throwing smart-phones from bedroom windows.
- Microwaving household objects (I can report that he found the reaction resulting from destroying my Nintendo DS in this way particularly satisfying).