I did it for the children

I did it for the children

I was on the radio last week.

At 8.35, Friday morning I entered a short quiz on the radio where I tried to answer ten questions before a fictional toaster popped out some fictional toast.  The quiz is called ‘Beat the Toaster.’

I am not a fan of quizzes, because I am appalling at them; ask anyone I have been in a pub quiz with,  I shout out an answer with extreme confidence and enthusiasm, convince everyone I am right and then face searing disappointment when I am revealed to be an idiot at the end.  In addition, while I have the face for radio my voice sounds unfamiliar and grates on my last nerve.

So why did I do it?

I’ll tell you why.

I did it for the children…

Everyday en route to school my kids jump in the car at 8.33, strap in their seatbelts, turn the radio on and eagerly await the familiar theme tune to ‘Beat The Toaster’, they whoop with delight when every morning I shout out the correct answer at least 80% of the time and they groan when the fools that enter get it wrong as it is soooo easy.

Every morning when the short quiz ends the same question bounces round the car, ‘Mummy, will you go on, Mummy puhlesase.’

So I did – for my children.

The quiz is pre recorded, presumably so people don’t swear like soldiers when they get sent to ‘Loserville’, so I did it in secret without my trio knowing; then I waited eagerly until 8.35 and my time to shine arrived.

I watched my son’s face as the radio announced his mother onto the show, his jaw went slack, his eyes gleams and he mouthed ‘is it you?’

I nodded and both the elder pair beamed in unison; BB continued to sing ‘Beat the Toaster’ in the back, oblivious that I was about to become famous.

The quiz began and I heard myself shout out the answers I had recorded shortly before.

Then came the first stinger;

“What word is phonetic for W?”

“Whiskey” screamed my kids in the car, whilst on the radio I heard myself start to stutter, “water? wine?” I ranted whilst the presenters tried to steer me in the right direction.  Twin Boy stared at me in the car, ‘didn’t you know mummy?’ he asked incredulous.

I stuttered and stammered through the next few questions, each one worse than the previous, quite simply, I lost my nerve.

The show came to an abrupt halt when I was sent to Loser Street and a song began to play in place of my voice.

Leaning forward Twin Boy reached forward and snapped off the radio.

Silence filled the car.

“Well” I grinned, “what a surprise eh, mum went on beat the toaster.”

The heavy silence lingered, like an unwanted fart.

“I am so embarrassed” said a voice from the back and I twisted my neck to see twin Girl holding her head in shame.

“Mum, you were rubbish”, yelled Twin Boy “you were supposed to win, how can we go to school after this?”

As I said, I did it for the children….

I am doing sod all for them ever again.

I have yet to face the playground!




  1. March 25, 2013 / 9:17 am

    This is BRILLIANT! It IS harder when you’re on the spot, to be fair…

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:47 pm

      I blame you for humouring me x

  2. March 25, 2013 / 9:20 am

    🙂 This is soooo funny. Just brilliant:) Well done, they should be proud of their mummy;)

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:46 pm


  3. March 25, 2013 / 10:30 am

    Excellent – my kids laugh at me as I shout out and do quite well, but I bet if I actually did it proper like I would be rubbish!

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:46 pm

      Like me!

  4. March 25, 2013 / 12:25 pm

    Great to read about real life. Think it’s typical that we all under-perform (as such) at a crucial moment. Always amazed how quickly children learn the ‘I’m embarrassed by my parents’ phrase too.

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:46 pm

      Mine now finally seem to be happy that I went on !

  5. March 25, 2013 / 3:43 pm

    This was so, so funny…. good on you for going on the show, and doing your best – never realised how quick children get embarrassed by their parents!

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:46 pm

      very very quick it would seem x

  6. March 25, 2013 / 5:56 pm

    Good on you, I don’t think I’d be able to get a word out, never mind answer questions!

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:45 pm

      you couldn’t be worse than me! so my daughter says!

  7. March 25, 2013 / 7:57 pm

    well done you! At least you did it. Reminds me of hubby auditioning for Total Wipeoout because the kids love watching it and kept saying “daddy WHEN you go on total wipeout” (i.e. rather than ‘if’). He got to the final stage but thankfully didn’t get through. I think your kids will definitely look back and totally understand why you did it for them one day xxx

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:45 pm

      all of mine want to go on total wipeout!

  8. Emily
    March 25, 2013 / 8:45 pm

    Oh no!!
    This is exactly what would happen to me too but I’m too chicken to try so good on you! Xx

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:45 pm

      Ha! Thanks x

  9. March 26, 2013 / 10:01 am

    Funny as! I wouldn’t have got as far as you for fear of the same, but to be honest Jane it’s all in the way you tell the tale, makes me crack up every time! Well done you for being brave enough to give it a go.

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:45 pm

      Cheers Fiona x

  10. March 26, 2013 / 12:19 pm

    Haha well done for giving it a shot all the same – kids can be so ungrateful! I once did a quiz on Heart FM and it was terrifying, it’s much harder when you’re on the spot and against the clock!

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:45 pm

      I think they made the questions harder for me….

    • northernmum
      March 27, 2013 / 9:44 pm

      Because they are my children!

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