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I’m not obsessed with superheroes. I’m not. I just spent my entire youth thinking about/reading about/pretending to be/playing with them.

Well, not them clearly, but little models made out to look like them. Superheroes don’t play; they act! In a way it was a relief when Star Wars came along as my obsession tilted slightly towards Jedis. I could reasonably argue that they weren’t superheroes at all……….. Because they were real…….

I’ve often considered what my Superhero power would be and had many an internal argument about the suitability of various strengths, but now as a loving and caring father of three I’ve started to wonder where my kids would fit into the whole Marvel/DC Universe.

Tom with no front tooth
Take Tom, my six year old. He has the build of a superhero weighing in at a hefty 5 stone and standing tall with quite broad shoulders for his age. Mind you, he’s no Hulk. Unless you count the colour changes he endures if you place a tomato on his plate. In these situations he just about manages to control his first instinct, which appears to be to pick up the entire table and hoof it through the French doors. Instead he turns slightly green, well, more lime really, twists his mouth as though he’s just found a human foot in lunch and stares at the plate with a look torn between pity and confusion. Stick The Hulk behind a till at Primark at 3.42 on Saturday afternoon and you’ll probably come close.

Harry, at 4, should be more difficult to place. Daredevil is a decent fit. DD is a blind crime-fighter who depends on his senses to defeat evil and confound his enemies. Problem is that Harry’s no fighter of evil; in fact having put him to bed regularly for the last six months I would say he’s a positive fan of it. Ok, perhaps ‘evil’ is too
Harry on the waterslide
strong a word to describe his actions between 7.25 and (sometimes) 9.30 of an evening. But then again, perhaps not.

Still, the issue of vision is a valid point. Before you all back-blog that it’s really sad that Harry has vision problems I have to tell you here that he doesn’t. At least not in the usual sense. He can sift through our dvd collection well enough until he finds Ratatouille , hidden at the back in the hope that he’ll pick a shorter film. He can spot a muffin at thirty yards and his eyesight is like a sniper’s when he suspects that Caitlin has done something that deserves a good telling off. (‘Daddy, daddy, daddy, Caitlin stuck her tongue out at the telly,’ etc etc)

And yet ask him to pick up a book, that he’s standing over, on the floor, in the middle of an otherwise empty living room and suddenly his eyesight falters.

‘Where?’ he asks, looking at the ceiling.
‘There. There, by your foot.’
He’ll turn 180 degrees, pick up his foot and look at it.
‘There. Turn around.’
Caitlin dressed up

So he turns around. 360 degrees. So that he’s facing the same way.
‘Behind you. On the floor. By your foot.’
At which point he will sometimes look directly at the book. Hesitate. Then…
‘There! The book! By your foot!’
He’ll frown, look at the book.
‘This one?’
And that’s when I pick it up myself and put it on a shelf.

To be fair his other senses aren’t that great either, even though he takes great pride in digitally clearing his olfactory organs minute by minute throughout the day.

Caitlin in the swimming pool
Caitlin should be tricky. Girls traditionally are, for two important reasons. 1. There are less obvious female superheroes and 2. Girls and women don’t ever seem to give a monkey’s about superheroes. I know it’s strange but they appear to think other things are more important. Like getting the children’s bags ready for the next day, or organising the tea, or quickly putting out the washing to dry in the 18 minutes of clear weather we’re likely to have on any given day. Clearly not quite as fascinating as who would win a fight between Batman and Superman for all right-thinking people but that’s women for you!

All the same Caitlin is relatively straightforward. Catwoman. Caitlin loves a cat, will often search out a cat just so that she can talk about them, will pore over books just for the sight of a cat and, I think, will often see cats where there are none. All of which sort of puts her in the frame for ‘Odd-Sitting-In-Park-Talking-To-Herself-Feeding-The-Pigeons-Woman’ if only she didn’t have many of the other characteristics too.

She is so sweet, so lovely, so helpful, so utterly determined to be a good girl for her old folks and then suddenly…she discovers the irresistible lure of the dark side. To be fair, she’s still sweet and lovely it’s just that now she tends to smile sweetly and shriek, in a lovely way, ‘Nooooooo!!!!’ when we ask her do something. She always gives us a little smile to show that she understands it’s all a game; she just needs us to understand it’s a game that she wants to win.

Of course, I’m their dad and to me they’re all ‘super’ and I wouldn’t want them any other way. Yadda yadda yadda, blah blah blah.
But if anyone does have an irradiated spider, let me know.......


Dave Fouracre aka "Dave the Dad" is a regular feature writer & blogger for TheBabyWebsite and is Dad to two sons and a daughter!
August 2012

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