There's nothing like a good bout of Sonic and Mario's Winter Olympic Games on the Wii to get the blood pressure rising and the red mist descending. I have a reputation as something of a competitive sort which I know you may find hard to believe. Beneath the mild-mannered librarian exterior beats the heart of a raging warrior who DOES NOT like to lose. This competitive spirit is usually under control, but there is something about playing on the Wii which brings out my inner tiger. More specifically, it is downhill skiing and figure skating which turns me dizzy with rage.
Here I am, a grown woman, a sensible mother of one, stood in front of the television waving a Wii remote in an alarming manner. It's downhill skiing. I am Blaze, attractive violet fox, catchphrase, "My skills are superior" uttered in a voice of throaty silk. I set off, the skis are flying and I'm looking good. Then it happens - I miss a sodding gate! Then another. My skills are quite clearly not superior and the rage is rising. O is watching my progress, giving me advice that I DO NOT need. As I fly past another gate, barrelling through a plume of heavy snow, I try to hold back the swearing and grit my teeth together like steel mesh.
"Mummy, you've missed another one. And another! You need to get back on the track! What are you doing?"
I'm just about managing to curtail my fizzing brain. I admit defeat and press the button which takes me back to the start. Cue the teasing from my dear son:
"Mummy, stop being a perfect Polly! You have to finish. Just cos you're not going to be on the podium. Yes! Shadow wins again!"
I am not setting a good example to my boy as I rage at Wario and call him a gurning fool or slam down the Wii remote and mutter quiet oaths under my breath. I press the remote and select the next event. Figure skating! Yes! My forte - I can spin across that ice like Jayne Torville on speed. I might be a bad loser in the downhill, but I can show my boy the glory of a splendid victory celebration as Blaze takes out the rest of the competition during an exquisite Swan Lake performance in the ice dancing.
I punch the air and raise an elegant leg in pure triumph. See my triple lutz and weep, motherfuckers!