MOTHERS hold families together, but even they have secret terrors that stalk their very nightmares. These things scare them shitless:
Permanent coffee table rings
Even if you go to place a dry mug on a shitty beaten-up table, a mum will dive across the room like a bodyguard taking a bullet in order to place a coaster. It’s an instinctive reflex built up through generations of reading Ideal Home magazine.
Mud on carpets
A single, dried flake of mud traipsed into the house can send even the hardiest mums into a tailspin of panic and despair. Expect them to emerge with a cocked and loaded vacuum cleaner like Schwarzegger with his minigun in Terminator 2, and much the same stone-faced determination.
Mothers will say that they’re just bitterly jealous of youthful, attractive women swooping into their family and stealing away their sons, but that’s merely a front. Deep down they’re actually deeply afraid of daughters-in-law judging them based on sons they’re aware haven’t really turned out that great.
What next door thinks
Fear is an incredible motivator and mums scared of the neighbours’ judgement try to protect themselves with new kitchens, needless extensions and large family cars. None which quell the anxiety but work like a nightlight to help keep the gnawing paranoia of social expectations at bay.
Tables, shelves, windowsills: they’re flat surfaces. People put things on them. Then a mum enters the room and falls to her knees in horror at the sight of a set of keys left on the mantelpiece, cluttering it so foully that the entire house may as well just be burned down to erase the shame.
The other phobias on this list are nothing compared to the horror of other mums. Franklin Roosevelt claimed we had nothing to fear but fear itself, but he’d never met these bitches and their vicious invitations to Macmillan coffee mornings. Your mum would rather go bungee jumping in a shark cage. But she has no choice. She has to go.