I need a hero...

>> Tuesday, 13 May 2008

So. Yesterday afternoon. Circular Quay, Sydney, Australia.

I made the mistake of stopping to watch a street performer with the Boys whilst Husband went to check out the ferry times. On his return he announced we had another 40 minutes to wait - so we decided to stay and watch the Cornish entertainer juggling with fire, knives, and a chainsaw. On a bicycle.

This turned out to be a Bad Mistake.

Not only because Boy #1 now thinks such things are perfectly feasible, and I will probably have to hide the silverware for evermore. My son has chosen to ignore the performer's repeated assurances that it took him a lifetime (well, Boy #1's lifetime, in any case) to learn how to do these tricks, thinking perhaps that this is something anyone can do in between their future careers as a lion (!) and an astronaut .

But also because both Husband and I - and particularly Husband - had a 'life flashing in front of your eyes' moment.

I may have mentioned before that Husband is tall. So when, a few minutes after his return from the quay, Street Performer Man (SPM) asked for an assistant, and specified that he wanted 'the biggest man in the crowd', Husband bent his knees, just a little. But it was too late. He had been spotted. And was pulled through the audience to help SPM climb up onto a 6 metre high pole to balance on his bicycle whilst jugging fire, knives, and eating an apple. (As you do).

For one split second I thought Husband was going to be required to stand beneath SPM during this trick, and images of knives through shoulders flashed hideously through my mind. I saw myself and the Boys languishing in Sydney whilst my beloved recovered from hideous burns in hospital.

And apparantly, from the look upon his face, Husband thought much the same thing.

Of course, nothing of the kind happened. He helped the guy up, retreated a suitable amount of feet, the trick passed off smoothly, and the only damage done was to his wallet when he gave the guy $10 at the end of the show, and to his pride when he raced back to ask if I had filmed the whole thing only to be told he had left the handicam on and that consequently we were out of battery. (And thank god I wasn't responsible for that little mishap.)

But the momentary stress was definitely worth it, because later that evening, I had the following conversation with Boy #1.

Boy #1: "Mama, you remember that juggling man?"

Me: "Yes, darling."

Boy #1: "He was doing tricks on his bicycle with knives."

Me: "Yes, he was."

Boy #1: "And he needed help! He needed the BIGGEST MAN in the audience!"

Me: "He certainly did."

Boy #1: "And that man was MY PAPA! My Papa was the Biggest Man there. Nobody else's Papa is as big as My Papa."

Hero worship can be great.

(Note: apologies if the title of this post means you now have Bonnie Tyler wailing like a Banshee in your subconcious - but at least it's got rid of the refrain from One Night in Bangkok. Oh, have you got that too, now?)


jeanie 13 May 2008 at 06:49  

Darn - you put One Night in Bangkok right back in!

Glad you are enjoying Sydney!

Pig in the Kitchen 13 May 2008 at 10:13  

'Where have all the good men gone
And where are all the gods?
Where’s the street-wise Hercules
To fight the rising odds?

Isn’t there a white knight upon a fiery steed?
Late at night I toss and I turn and I dream of what I need...'

curse you PottyM, curse you.

Iota 13 May 2008 at 13:49  

When I was pregnant, I used to go to aquarobics, and one of the songs we had every week was "search for the hero inside yourself" which I found highly amusing. None of the other mums got the joke. Maybe it's not very funny. And it hasn't got anything much to do with this post. So why am I telling you? Who knows?

Hope you're still good and combobulated.

Potty Mummy 13 May 2008 at 13:56  

Sorry Jeanie. Sorry...

Pig - you know the words. Need I say more?

Hi Iota, combobulated, yes. And I wonder if you're telling me this in the build-up of stress pre-flight?

Kelly 13 May 2008 at 16:10  

YOu have my sympathy...being pulled out of the audience for anything other than a large cheque is something I have nightmares about.

The Rotten Correspondent 13 May 2008 at 16:20  

Dang it. I go walkabout for a bit and I come back and you're in Australia?? How did I miss this?

You lucky, lucky woman.

Frog in the Field 13 May 2008 at 20:03  

Bloody-hell mate!
I'd just stopped singing it..Thanks a bunch.

Mya 13 May 2008 at 20:07  

Nevermind the Redbacks, watch out for the Taipans! However, they're still not as scarey as Bonnie Tyler. Thanks so much for soiling my subconscious with that song...it was already bad enough and then Pig 'helpfully' offered up the lyrics for our delectation. I'm going to have nightmares...I just know it.

Mya x

Pig in the Kitchen 13 May 2008 at 20:16  

'Somewhere after midnight
In my wildest fantasy
Somewhere just beyond my reach
There’s someone reaching back for me

Racing on the thunder and rising with the heat
It’s gonna take a superman to sweep me off my feet...'

Frog in the Field 13 May 2008 at 20:20  

"Sweep me off my FEEEEEETTTT!"

Altogethre now:
TA DA DA DA Ro till the mornin' li-ight!!

Jonny's Mommy 13 May 2008 at 20:55  

That is so sweet about your son. I loved it! Sniff...sniff.....

aims 13 May 2008 at 21:33  

That is so sweet - hero worship. You just have the best kids don't you?

Nunhead Mum of One 13 May 2008 at 21:36  

Oh I've had One Night in Bangkok going round my brain.......have now added Bonnie Tyler's earthy song to the mix. That's quite without singing the classic Men At Work song that has been reverberating ever since I started reading your Down Under adventures. But hey, I'll cope! David, however, keeps asking me if I'm okay - he can hear me humming a mile off.

Pig in the Kitchen 13 May 2008 at 22:32  

'...Up where the mountains meet the heavens above
Out where the lightning splits the sea
I could swear there is someone somewhere
Watching me

Through the wind and the chill and the rain
And the storm and the flood
I can feel his approach
Like a fire in my blood

I need a hero...

GoneBackSouth 14 May 2008 at 00:24  

That's lovely that is. I clearly remember seeing a really tall man when I was a young child, and feeling really confused and outraged that my daddy wasn't the tallest man in the world after all. He's still the nicest, though.

Tracey 14 May 2008 at 00:54  

Sheesh, it's a cacophony up in my head now! - especially now that 'I come from a land downunder' has been added to it. (Has anyone just smiled and handed you a vegemite sandwich yet?)
I'm loving that I can actually picture you with the buskers and entertainers at Circular Quay! We'll be down there in a months time (kids in a school thing playing recorder at Opera House!). They love some of those buskers - last time their grandma took them there, afterwards they didn't shut up for hours about one very funny performer.

Where to next?!!

Noortje 14 May 2008 at 05:30  

I suppose I am very lucky that my mind can't be contaminated by any of these songs, so I can read all of this without the least danger to my sanity.

So, your husband is one of those tall Dutch people? We do seem to have a lot of those around here. It must be all that good dairy food. What a hero!

Expatmum 14 May 2008 at 16:11  

When I was in my early twenties I had a haircut that was a bit like Bonnie Tyler's (before the perm this was.) Every time I went for a drink after work the idiot guys from the office used to break into a loud rendition of "It's a heartache". Grr.

ped crossing 14 May 2008 at 16:39  

This is one of the moments where I am happy I can't remember who sings what or the names of songs. I have to actually hear them to get them stuck in my head.

And are you mad, letting your children watch crazy street performers and get filled with notions of playing with knives and chain saws. Sounds like a great show though. :)

Carolyn 15 May 2008 at 06:08  

Grrrrrr. Ditto on what jeanie said. One Night in Bangkok is back on. Oh wait. Nope. It's a medley. I Need a One Night in Bangkok Hero 'til the end of the night and the world's your oyster...

Other than that. Papa's a hero. Sweetest thing ever. Thanks for sharing that story and er, stay safe.

Millennium Housewife 15 May 2008 at 14:08  

There's a great book with really clever illustrations (you have to keep going back to look at them to check you haven't missed anything), it's called My Dad and it's about him being the best at everything, worth a look on amazon MH

Mya 15 May 2008 at 20:41  

Pig - shut it - now!

Mya x

Pig in the Kitchen 15 May 2008 at 22:28  


'I need a hero!
I'm holding out for a hero 'til the end of the night
He's gotta be strong
And he's gotta be fast
And he's gotta be fresh from the fight
I need a hero
I'm holding out for a hero 'til the morning light
He's gotta be sure
And it's gotta be soon
And he's gotta be larger than life'


Frog in the Field 15 May 2008 at 23:37  

Hey Pig, you know I think Potty Mummy thins this is her blog!! What's that all about?

Grit 16 May 2008 at 10:22  

you are very brave to even stop and consider watching almost certain death in the first place, let alone partcipating. i cannot bear to look. i think it may be a mummy gene i have evolved now. i want to leap up and stay 'STOP that! i'm warning you, you'll have someone's EYE OUT if you don't put that DOWN. RIGHT NOW.

Potty Mummy 16 May 2008 at 13:45  

I just don't know. I go off-line for a couple of days, and what happens? Pig takes over my blog... Mind you, I suppose you could say it serves me right for landing you all with those two 'interesting' songs. Hope you like the next one better...

Anyway, I shall try to answer you all in order but make no promises...

Kelly, you've been pulled out of the audience and given a large cheque? Now that is a street performer I HAVE to see!

Hi RC, don't worry. We're coming back. With more crxp songs...

Frog - I live to serve. You're welcome.

Mya, what's a tai... Never mind. I will google it shortly and scare my own pants off, no doubt.

Pig, do I sense a teenage fantasy playing out here, what with the arched back and Sydney Harbour bridge in the background? And if the fireworks are symbolic, I do not want to know.

Frog - stop it. You're encouraging her.

J's Mommy - I know. No doubt in years to come I will look back on that moment and wonder where all that hero worship went, but for now I'll just bask in the reflected glow.

Aims, I kid myself that sometimes that's true. But read the next post and you'll see that I can't always do that...

NH Mum - I'm sorry. So sorry. Especially now that Pig has got her trotters into this one...


Hi GBS - Husband is tall, but not the tallest. No doubt Boy #1 will work that out for himself in time, but it's nice he believes it for now!

Tracy, hello, no vegemite sandwiches yet but I'll keep on hoping. The trip to Sydney with a performance in the Opera House sounds amazing! Your daughter will remember that forever, I can guarantee it.

Noortje, I totally agree on the dairy thing. I'm sure that's one of the reasons the average height in the Netherlands is 6'. Yep, ladies, you heard me, 6'. Book your tickets to Holland here...

EPM, sorry for bringing back what sounds like a painful memory. Of course it may have been the low-cut tops and the welsh accent that forced the comparison... (oh, sorry, was confusing you with Frog...)

Ped, I must be off my rocker. In my defence I didn't know what the act was about when we stopped - though admittedly the torches, chainsaw and knives laying on the ground should have given me a clue.

Hi Carolyn, I voted for you btw. And we will stay safe. Plastic cutlery only from now on.

Mya, hear hear.

Pig, I would ask if you're finished now, but am worried you might come back for an encore... (I am laughing very very hard, btw).

Frog, don't worry. I gave up on the illusion it was my blog at around Pig's 53rd comment on this post.

Hi Grit, I thought that was why so many mummies have their hands over their mouths when they watch this type of thing. Not because they're scared, but to stop themselves shouting out the very things you mentioned!

A Modern 3 November 2008 at 14:52  


I can't believe you didn't video tape it.

If you ever go to San Diego and visit Seaworld make sure you volunteer for the dolphin show.

texasholly 4 November 2008 at 12:41  

So funny. So glad everyone is now safe, but concerned that a reenactment may occur with your flatware at home.

Julie@Cool Mom Guide 4 November 2008 at 15:04  

That is adorable and I can imagine the panic. Too funny that your hubby tried to bend down to be inconspicuous. Ha!

Jo Beaufoix 4 November 2008 at 19:31  

Heh heh, that was brilliant. Apart from the song. Bad Potty Mummy. I love that that is the part your boy took home with him.

Jo Beaufoix 4 November 2008 at 19:32  

Heh heh, that was brilliant. Apart from the song. Bad Potty Mummy. I love that that is the part your boy took home with him.

Jo Beaufoix 4 November 2008 at 19:33  

Oh my Bob, sorry, I have this weird illness where I have to say stuff twice.

Jo Beaufoix 4 November 2008 at 19:33  

Oh my Bob, sorry. I have this weird illness where I have to say stuff twice.

Potty Mummy 5 November 2008 at 21:44  

Susanna, not sure I like the sound of that. Should Husband go in hunched over like a little old man?

TH, thanks for the visit and like I wrote back then - plastic cutlery only from now on. So it's a little trailer park...

Julie, thankyou for commenting, and I'm sure it won't be the last time Husband tries to escape these things...

Jo, ????

Jo, ????

Alyson, the 3 P's Mama 6 November 2008 at 01:36  

'k great...now I will indeed be hearing that song in my head all night!! Thanks Pig! Glad all turned out and that is so sweet he loves Papa so much!

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