As a watched pot never boils (even when full of noodles and the most synthetic tasting of flavourings), a constantly monitored mobile telephone will not ring. This is not, I must stipulate, a suggested tactic to avoid those pesky teatime PPI claim back calls; somehow they have the power to overcome this, or indeed, any cliché and regularly do.
We’re at that stage of the pregnancy now, a week from due date but after what is declared ‘term’ (presumably they have this leeway because due dates are actually calculated using a combination of one of the reserve lottery machines and a Ouija board and, as such, must be taken with a pinch of salt). So it could be any day, indeed, any moment now. We’re continually asked whether there are any twinges, parents are keen to tell us about their unexpectedly early babies and Jill has been on the receiving end of my favourite old wives’ tale of all time: “you look ready in your face, it won’t be long now”.
Honestly, if this government want to save a few more quid, why are we spending so much on funding science when there are people who can pre-empt labour by sight alone? It was literally staring us in the mush all along. Perhaps there are folks who can smell sprained ankles or hear lumbago too.
And so my phone is on and pumped up to full volume at all times when I’m out of the house, ready to deliver the news that Baby Coulson has begun making its way towards the real world. I’m constantly coiled like a spring, prepared at any moment to drop everything, dash straight to the car and jump through the window Dukes of Hazzard-style to save time. Possibly.
According to a recent survey the average Briton checks their mobile 110 times a day. Pah, I can rack that up in a morning at the moment. I’m wearing down half the battery just from pressing the button which lights up the home screen to check that I haven’t missed the call. What if it happened whilst strolling through a small patch of the office lined with lead and impervious to even the most intensive American spy radar? Why they’d have included such a feature in the building is beyond me but I’ve seen Grand Designs, those architects are a law unto themselves.
Goodness knows how expectant Dads of the pre-mobile days survived this no-man’s land period. You can’t easily pace around the workplace, grasping one of those clunky rotary dial phones. The cord alone would be a Health and Safety nightmare. I just feel like I’m more prepared with my phone in my hand; imagine the seconds I would waste reaching to pick it up off the desk. Those are seconds that I could be spending sitting in the labour ward, gormlessly chomping Frazzles like one of those dimwits from One Born Every Minute.