Man in his Pyjamas A collection of comedy writing, poetry and Asperger Syndrome.

Workbenches, bedtimes and £300

Emailed – 01.09.2014

A real man has a workbench. A bench on which to do man’s work. If you are male, over 40, and have never stood in your garden DIY’ing on a workbench in the rain, you’re missing out.

If you don’t have a workbench, there is a test to determine whether you are suitable. The test is, can you build the ******* workbench that arrives on your doorstep as a box of jangly bits. I know I am suitable, because I have built two workbenches this week and owned four……

I had to explain to the man with the quietest voice in the world that no this wasn’t the workbench I had ordered, even though it looked the same and came in a box that said it was the workbench I had ordered. That was fun. Three times.  The third time I bought a workbench from him, I unpacked it in the car, in the car park, suspecting that IT WAS THE WRONG ****** WORKBENCH. It was.

The guy with the quietest voice in the world actually said ‘Oh Jesus‘ when I walked in for the third time, after only having left 5 minutes ago. I heard that!  I think he may have found me annoying? – Get in line buster, I annoy everybody.

Turns out I, in my helpfulness, have uncovered a ‘UK wide’ problem in the packaging and marketing of workbenches at Screwfix; or so the manager who was eventually called by an exasperated employee, tells me. I have ‘gone on the system’. I feel quite proud. I may audition for Watchdog. I am assuming I am an honorary staff member of Screwfix now, seeing as I can do their job better than them?

In the end my wife bought me a smack daddy workbench from TOOLS STATION.  I know it’s smack daddy, because it took me three hours to build it. I have washers and screws left over if anybody needs any…..

Man shed pimping is coming on well. I’m in the final stages of cladding. Turns out I miscalculated the cost of tongue and groove and it actually cost me £140 to buy the cladding for my man hole. Please don’t tell my wife.  I have stopped calculating the cost of renovations now – it’s a labour of love. I dare not work it out. (about £300). The other night however, after a minor disagreement, I sat in there, watched a film and drank whisky, on my own. For three hours. So it’s kinda paid for itself.  When my curtains are installed, I could be nude in there. And I shall be….mark my words.

In non-DIY news, my wife has instigated a brand new bedtime routine for our youngest child, in a bid to prepare her for having another, even younger sibling vying for our attentions, and boobs. THREE CHILDREN. I may D.I.Y my own castration snip atop my new workbench.

Is it even humanly possible to jigsaw your own man sack – or would self preservation kick in? Would you just pass out before the tubes were severed? Who would tie them? Maybe I’ll leave it…..

Anyhoo – new bedtime routine.

The routine is effectively thus:  I sit in the bedroom with my daughter, in the dark, and comfort her, without speaking, whilst she attempts to kick me in the face and scream MUMMY for 40 minutes until she passes out through sheer exhaustion. Check.

At any point during her laps around the bedroom, standing on her head, playing with her toys, or banging on the door, begging for early release,  I am not allowed to speak, or God forbid reprimand her, lest I ‘stress her out‘. Check.

My job is to gently, and without jerky movements, lift her kindly and put her back into bed, without speaking. I am lovingly to suggest bedtime. I must try not to upset her, as she punches me on the nose and tells me ‘I DON’T WANT YOU I WANT MUMMY’.  Check.

This is why I am building a man shed….

In other, other news,  the other morning I followed my son into the bathroom and found poo on the skirting boards? How on earth does THAT happen? What kind of ablution gymnastics are happening in the lavatory? I did enquire just how he’d managed to get poo on the skirting boards, but he seemed unsure? And unconcerned.

I may need to go back over the old toilet routine, just in case at some point he misinterpreted my instructions  of:

“- paper, wipe, check. Paper, wipe, check. Paper, wipe, check. Flush, lid wash”


” Mindlessly smear excrement all over the skirting boards and then casually forget in a brazenly nonchalant dirty protest”.

oh and:

“You don’t need THAT much toilet paper, for your child’s size bum hole! Toilet paper costs money you know! YOU DON’T NEED AN EGYPTIAN MUMMY HAND TO WIPE YOUR BOTTOM”.




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