Darth Vader and the Sphinx

“Mummy! It is so hard to be nice all the time,” exclaimed Small girl aged 6.

I surprised myself by falling back on what my mother said to me as an angst-ridden teenager, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”

Over the past few days I have had long conversations with a sphinx.

I think it annoys me just as much as the reverse.

Now after spending a number of increasingly uncomfortable nights where REM seemed nothing more than a mirage, I undertook to discover the source of my children’s night time anguish.

What kind of monster is he?

What colour is he?

How does he smell?

I based this intervention on the known being less scary than the unknown. Like the alien in Aliens 2, when she is finally revealed in the last scene you think, “Oh, that’s not so scary.”

The monster is a vampire zombie ogre.

He is purple and bigger than a grown up.

He smells like sour milk and oranges.

I appealed on rational grounds.

If he is bigger than a grown up how can he possible fit under the bed.

“Mom! Weren’t you listening when Daddy was talking about bending space and cats.”

Obviously not. I wasn’t anticipating an 8 year old to use quantum physics to circumvent my logic.

The problem has been solved with the purchase of a Darth Vader nightlight.

Small boy is operating on the premise that Darth Vader is so bad and evil all other monsters will run in fear at the sight of his light saber.

I don’t care as long as I get to sleep in my own bed.


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