‘The only things kids wear out faster than shoes is their parents.”
This may well be true, but parents can be equally as wearing to their long-suffering children.
From cringe-inducing faux pas to major misunderstandings because they totally got the meaning of something wrong, parents can be unintentionally hilarious.
Throw confusion with technology into the mix with a puzzled parent and you can suddenly have your very own comedy show.
There’s always the classic case of a mum texting a child to tell them they’ve left their phone at home. Oops.
Acronyms and texting abbreviations can be a recipe for disaster in the hands of the wrong parent.
An aghast friend told me how her mum texted her to say her uncle who had been ill for a long time had died. “Your uncle has passed away. LOL,” she texted.
My horrified friend texted her mum back asking what did her mum find funny about it?
It turned out her mum thought LOL meant “lots of love” rather than “laugh out loud.”
It’s not always abbreviations that have parents flummoxed though.
Sometimes they just hear words and conjure up in their minds a completely different spelling from the reality.
Once during a pub quiz, a family member got quite excited during the picture round as she recognised one of the famous faces.
“Oh I know him, it’s that rapper” she said before dutifully scrawling: “M&M.” Oh yes, that well known rapper “Eminem” named after those tasty chocolate treats!
Someone else explained how they were confused when their mum kept talking about “Ketchup TV” as they thought that was for on-demand children’s programmes. It turns out she meant Catch Up TV.
And sometimes parents just just don’t understand the etiquette when going to certain places.
I was highly amused to hear the tale of someone’s mum who decided to make a solo visit to Nandos for some food. She left in a huff after sitting waiting at the table for 20 minutes as no one came to take her order!
Another of my colleagues said his mum and dad did exactly the same thing when they went to Nandos with his grandparents for a meal and were most put out at being ignored so stormed out and went to Pizza Express instead. I think someone needs to explain to parents how Nandos works.
Over the years, I’ve enjoyed many moments of mirth laughing at my own parents for their moments of foolishness and ineptness with technology and how they can’t even take photographs without ending up with snaps at wonky angles or with a thumb covering the photo.
However, I’m now getting my compeuppance as my children – who take an age putting their shoes and coats on when we want to get out of the house, but can master any new technology in seconds – think it’s hilarious when I don’t understand it straight away.
What goes around, comes around and I’m sure they’ll get scoffed at by their own kids in years to come.