By KATE HUNTER
So the other night I wanted, as a privilege of my middle age, to sit on my couch and watch the The 7.30 Report. Not a lot to ask, you’d think.
But I couldn’t because there was TOO MUCH CRAP ON MY COUCH.
The crap comprised of (but was not limited to):
• 1 x iPad
• 1 x laptop
• 3 x sneakers
• 2 x socks (not a pair)
• Approx 40,000 freaking LOOM BANDS
• A hairbrush
• Wimpy Kid Number 45
• A Barbecue Shapes packet (empty)
• A mouthguard
• Three felt pens (lidless)
• The charger for something
Not to put too fine a point on it, but I lost my shit over the crap.
‘Take it all away!’ I yelled. ‘You have a rumpus room! You have bedrooms! That’s it. You are BANNED from this room. From this moment on, it shall be ‘THE GOOD ROOM.’
‘What’s a good room?’ asked my youngest. And the silence was stunning.
There, my friends is what I believe was the reason for what is wrong with society today – the loss of the Good Room.
Our grandparents had a Good Room. Mike and Carol Brady had a Good Room. No wonder their lives were calm and orderly.
After I left school, I worked as a nanny for a family in the south of England who had a Good Room so good it was called ‘the drawing room.’ But no one drew anything but the curtains in that room. It was a crayon-free zone, a tranquil haven where the cushions were always plump and the carpet clean. Sometimes the parents would eat their dinner off trays in the drawing room, watching Michael Parkinson on telly while chaos reigned throughout the rest of the house (I wasn’t much of a nanny, but thanks to the Good Room, I don’t think they noticed).
In a Good Room, children were generally welcome, but only by invitation. And only when clean and not eating anything. This meant visits were rare.
A Good Room was a place for conversation and books. Maybe a glossy magazine or a broadsheet newspaper.