“Wait until your dad gets home!”

When I was child growing up in the sticks of Yorkshire, these six little words made my blood run cold.

To be honest, I was a bit of handful.

Taking things apart with my screwdriver and not being able to put them back together again.

Trying flying experiments with friends that resulted in cuts and bruises.

I remember once my mum bought me a pair of shoes I hated.

So I got on my bike and rode to the top of a long steep hill.

Then cycled down it, getting up as much speed as I could before putting my feet flat on the floor and using friction to slow myself down.

A short time later those bad boys were ruined.

Acting all surprised and disappointed, I went to my mum and explained I couldn’t wear the new shoes she’d bought me because the soles had worn out.

I don’t think she ever worked out what I’d done, but she knew I’d done something and I got to hear:

“Wait until your dad gets home!”

Those words had the effect of sucking all the joy out of my body, of turning the sun off and replacing it with soul destroying shadow.

Each second felt like an eternity as I watched the clock.

Watched it slowly count down to my doom.

Looking back, I can’t think why those 6 words had such a massively negative impact on me.

I mean my dad never went psycho on me or anything.

In fact I only ever remember him hitting me once, and that was when I was 16 and it’s enough to say I deserved it.

And now I’m a father.

Now I’m the final judge, jury and executioner.

Let me explain why I’m sharing this with you.

I was visiting a friend in Wiltshire yesterday – more about that tomorrow – and at 5pm I got a text from Clarabella asking if I could give her a call.

Hmm, a little worrying.

Long story short, Ollie had downloaded something he knows he shouldn’t and as a result the Internet had stopped working.

I spent an hour on the phone trying to help Clarabella get it working again.

With no success.

And it was disappointing.

You see, Clarabella and Ollie have been reading a book called: Holes by Louis Sachar. And Clarabella had got up early that morning to finish reading it so they could both watch the film together on Netflix whilst I was away. She’d even tocked up with Pringles and all manner of naughty foody treats so they could make a special occasion of it.

And now, thanks to Ollie’s poor choice, it wasn’t going to happen.

Fast forward to today.

I got back half an hour ago and Ollie has clearly been given the:

“Wait till your dad gets home” treatment.

Now I don’t like playing bad cop.

But someone has to.

I have to be the rock upon which Ollie gets stopped. Otherwise what kind of adult will he grow up to be?

When I was a counsellor, working in schools with kids on the brink of being permanently kicked out the vast majority of kids me and my colleagues worked with were from single parent homes.

Don’t shoot the messenger – I’m just telling it how it is.

So now I have to punish Ollie.

And that’s gonna hurt me, but he has to learn that his actions and choices have results. And if he makes bad choices, takes negative actions – and he gets caught out – he won’t like the results.

And we all get caught out eventually.

I’m still struggling to get the Internet back online.

I don’t know what Ollie did, but it’s serious this time.

And I thought I’d write this whilst I was waiting for the half hour to be up before plugging the router back in and then taking it from there.

Anyway, make sure you tune in tomorrow because I’ve some very important updates to share with you.

Until then check this out.

Bye for now

Marcus

P.S. No PS today as this Z+D (ZEN+ Daily) is already long enough.

But if you’re still hungry for more, by all means…

Saddle on up and ride on over here.

P.P.S. It took me two and half hours, but I’ve got the Internet back, hence the delay of todays Z+D.