The main aim of my time with my son usually is to make him smile and laugh as frequently as possible. I’ve decided that recieving that gummy, tootless smile from Ned must be one of the greatest feelings on the planet – up there with soft drugs and turning the TV off when there’s a Hollyoaks omnibus on.
Sadly, like drugs, it has become an addiction. I will go to almost any length to get my son smiling, regardless of how much of a nob I end up looking like.
The problem is, once something has been discovered that makes him laugh, it can quickly turn into something that doesn’t even return a smile – I compare our comedy back and forthing in terms of imaging I’m a court jester, desperately trying to impress the lazy king, sat on his butt waiting to be entertained.
So far, this jester has made his king laugh with the following sounds:
Saying the sound ‘Ap ap ap ap ap’ – This is the current tried and tested method. Saying this, regardless of whether is in his face, in another room, or down the phone while I’m at work, this sound makes Ned smile and laugh. For added effect, being on my hands and knees in front of him in his walker adds humour. This was so successfull originally, that one ‘ap’ was enough to get a fit of giggles. Nowadays, you’ll only get a smile if you’re out of breath after a machine gun barrage of ‘Aps’
Saying his name. Loudly. – Short lived, simply saying ‘Ned’ louder than is audibly comfortable made him laugh quite a lot. The fact that his own name makes him laugh may prove hazardous for living a life as a normal member of the public in the future. Luckilly, the power of this has dwindled, and sometimes he doesn’t even acknowledge his name, preferring to travel by walker into the kitchen (where he’s not allowed, which I only found out the other day – I’ve been letting him in there for weeks, apparently Ned knew about this restriction and neglected to tell me I guess)
Saying ‘hello ned’ repeatedly to the back of his neck – a bit of a cheat, since it probably tickles, but other words don’t work (we’ve tried, mainly because it’s really hard to say ‘Hello Ned’ repeatley and fast)
The verbal arrangement of ‘Cough cough cough cough’ – discovered by my wife, this was ‘the’ way to get him laughing. Now, it registers what I can only assume is disgust in his eyes. He’s over that.