A list of things I’ve eaten:

Cat food
Cat litter
Cat poo
Dog food
Dog biscuits
Dog poo
My own poo
Ceramic coal
The inside of a pillow
Wrapping paper
Foil wrappers
Plastic wrappers
Cardboard boxes
Other people’s hair
Small stones
Inflated balloons
Uninflated balloons
Entire bars of soap
A large rubber chewy toy
Raw chicken (taken from a stranger’s basket in the supermarket. Bonus!)


A list of things I’ve attempted to eat:

(some things are just too big to swallow, even for me)

The sofa
A comfy chair in the Doctor’s consulting room
The mantelpiece
The banister rails
The contents of a Hoover bag
Plastic bags
Plastic syringes
My toes
My fingers
Anything Velcro
Anything rubber
Toy soldiers
Barbie’s feet
Lego bricks
Lego minifigures
Brio wooden railway track
Tubes of toothpaste
Car seats
Felt tips
Pillow cases
Duvet covers
The insides of a duvet



Warning: those of a squeamish disposition might not like to read any further.

No really, I mean it.


Still here?

Well don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Faeces, Excrement, Dump, Discharge, Stools, Crap, Droppings, Logs, Doo Doo, Dung, Number 2s, Manure, Turds or Sh*t… whichever way you describe it, it all comes down to the same thing…


Now it has to be said that I’m quite fond of poo and have a very close relationship with it. It’s a subject that’s very close to my heart and never very far from my bottom. For various reasons (not least of which is a certain amount of laziness on my part) I don’t use the toilet and therefore wear nappies – but if it was good enough for Neil Armstrong I don’t think that’s anything to be ashamed of.

A dirty nappy is hardly a pleasant task for a parent to deal with when it’s on a newborn baby, but let me assure you when it’s produced by a 14-year old boy it’s a whole new experience.

Just take a moment to try and imagine it. Not pretty is it?

Nature dictates that I produce around three of these per day and there’s no way I’m going to clean them up myself. Well, would you? That’s what parents were created for; I think it’s their moral duty. I can’t help feeling a little sorry for them, but hey, c’est la vie.

I have less sympathy for school assistants and care workers who are contractually obliged to roll their sleeves up and get down and dirty with it; at least they’re being paid for the job and quite frankly it’s their own fault for not reading the small print in their employment contracts more closely. They won’t be making that mistake again.

Anyway, on to the nitty gritty. My poo comes in just about every consistency you can imagine, from something similar to modelling clay all the way down to a warm brown liquid not unlike hot chocolate. If it is a little on the runny side and I put in a lot of effort I can sometimes get the thing to overflow and run down my legs, which is an absolute sensory delight.

As for the smell, there are occasions when it’s so bad that people are barely able to be in the same room as me and those that try and brave it out start gasping for breath. At the opposite end of the scale it can be almost completely odourless which can be a problem if no one notices for a while – makes it very difficult to walk.

Although I don’t take part in the actual cleaning process, that doesn’t mean I have an aversion to the product. Quite the opposite in fact and I like to take every opportunity to get involved at some point and see exactly what I’ve managed to produce. These days it takes two people to handle a changing session and if one of them isn’t paying attention I can easily grab a handful and study the texture. If you’ve never let your own excrement (or anyone else’s for that matter) squeeze through your fingers it’s an experience not to be missed.

In fact I like to grab every opportunity with both hands: many barriers have been put in my way from mesh over-pants, tight belts, long vests with poppers between the legs and all-in-one outfits… but puh-lease… do they really think these will stop a boy on a mission? If I want a handful of poo I’m going to get a handful of poo no matter what. Nappies are surprisingly flimsy when you start tearing at them and they can easily be shredded in under 10 seconds. And once you’re in there you can really go to work; I’ve used the contents to re-decorate my room on a couple of occasions.

And it’s not just my poo that I’m a fan of; I like to study it in all its forms. Cat poo is surprisingly unsatisfactory: small and stiff and curly. I regularly try samples that are studded in cat litter but I can’t say I’d really recommend it. Dog poo comes in a much wider variety of shapes, sizes and textures and the local park can be particularly rewarding source. Most of the time I’m kept well away from any unpleasantness but there are plenty of opportunities when people are chatting or occupied with some toddler I’ve just sent sprawling. If there’s a good-sized doggy doo-doo on the ground I’ll always pick it up and examine it. They’re generally very squishy, especially if still warm, and if you press one firmly between both hands it squidges through the fingers in a very satisfying way. The smell is very different to anything I can produce and I like to push it right up to my nose for a really good sniff.

But that’s only half the fun as the clean-up at this point can be a hilarious game: whoever’s with me can’t leave me like that but doesn’t want to come near me. Quite a dilemma for them. Eventually they’re faced with the reality of having to dive in with whatever inadequate cleaning materials they’ve brought along: despite my well-documented history of this kind of behaviour you’d be surprised how ill-equipped people still are for the task so little bits of tissue, leaves, newspapers and whatever else comes to hand are all employed. For bonus points I can usually smear a good quantity on their clothes and if I’m really lucky, their hair. On a couple of occasions things have gone really well with one or two passing strangers being drafted-in to help. There are few things in life more satisfying than smearing a Good Samaritan with excrement.

Of course I always save the best bit till last: taste-wise doggie poo is a lot nicer than you’d expect… not exactly chocolatey… it’s difficult to describe without a common frame of reference so I recommend you try it at the earliest opportunity.


These boots were made for… walking?

I’ve always had a bit of a problem with footwear.

In fact I hate boots.

I don’t even like socks – I didn’t start walking until I was four years old (more of that another time) and it can take me up to a year to get used to the feel of a new pair of boots, by which time I’ve usually managed to destroy them or grow out of them so we have to start the whole cycle of torture again. Quite frankly I’d be far happier to go around barefoot. Much more comfortable and just as nature intended.

Ok, I will admit that when walking on gravel or hot tarmac things can get a little uncomfortable, but then I’d much rather be delivered to a destination than have to walk there anyway. Winter can be a bit chilly on the toes but I’m sure I’d cope somehow.

But no.

Early on it was decided on my behalf – and without my consultation – that I must wear footwear of some sort. Shoes were a complete non-starter, I could get those off with just a flick of the toe, and with the speeds I was reaching (Usain Bolt? Pah!) it was also thought that a bit of extra support wouldn’t go amiss, so the consensus was that I should wear heavy boots at all times. These are more of a challenge to remove but with a little determination and the help of a solid object (the back of a car seat works well) I usually find I can get one or both off in under a minute.

If no solid object is at hand (or foot) I usually just kick my heel on something which looks expensive until the offending boot is removed for me. I once tried this on a built-in DVD player in the back of a Mercedes S-class and you wouldn’t believe how quickly they took the boots off.

I will admit that wearing big boots does have some advantages: if you want to kick your way through a panel door or a plasterboard wall then a pair of substantial boots is highly recommended. And it’s not too taxing to tap someone in the nose while they’re struggling to lace the things up. I once kicked a toddler in the face while in the queue for the checkout; well, she was an annoying little brat and it did get me out of the shop and back home very quickly. But on the whole boots slow me down.

I really hate boots.

Now don’t go jumping to conclusions and assuming all of this behaviour down to my sheer determination not to wear footwear of any sort – ok, 90% of it is that – but some of it is due to the negligence of others: you’d be amazed at the number of times I’ve tried to tell people that I have a stone in my shoe or that it’s uncomfortable in some way. The most incredible incident took place in a shoe shop which carefully measured and fitted my feet for a pair of new boots… only when we arrived home did Smiley discover that the balled-up paper was still stuffed in the toes. On another occasion school sent me home with a sock stuffed in the toe. Ouch.

And to make matters worse, most of the people who look after me think the remedy to my kicking the blasted things off is to tie them doubly-tight. This can be excruciating, both for me to wear (making me more determined than ever to get them off) and for the person being kicked in the face while they’re trying to untie the knots.

I ask you, is it any wonder I’ve grown up with an anti-footwear fetish?

Anyone with experience of Special Needs suppliers will probably be familiar with Piedro boots. These could hardly be described as the cutting-edge of fashion but to judge from the feet of other people I see that might be a good thing. They’ve done the job well enough over the years: they’re stiff and relatively strong (even if the lace hooks do always bend off in the first week) but hardly what I’d call comfortable. In fact I’d go further and call them decidedly uncomfortable. We had a brief flirtation with Caterpillar boots but as I was able to pull the sole off one of these on the first day they were consigned to the drawer Smiley refers to as “Expensive Mistakes”.

Now to the problem.

After 10 years of walking about in clumpy boots my feet have started to look decidedly odd: the bones at the sides have begun to protrude and I’ve been getting various calluses and blisters. Frowny and Smiley aren’t the most observant people in the world so the only way I could persuade them to take a proper look was to refuse to walk altogether until they did something about it.

They consulted various specialists who, as usual, umm-ed and ahh-ed. Apparently ‘old’ thinking is that boots should be stiff and offer lots of support, while ‘new’ thinking is that boots should be soft and as close to the sensation of walking barefoot as possible. Very little evidence seems to have been offered either way (at least not to me) so as we’ve tried the ‘stiff’ option for several years, this summer we went ‘soft’ in the form of canvas Converse boots. Ok, they were cheapo Converse rip-offs… times are hard.

Much better! I was back on my feet again and running hard. Trouble is they weren’t up to my levels of daily abuse and I was stripping the canvas in a week. Good job they didn’t pay full price for the brand name. After four pairs it was decided enough was enough and that they’d have to address the problem properly.

Then Smiley noticed one of Frowny’s more Bohemian friends was wearing a pair of ex-NATO Desert combat boots. Ideal. Soft straight out of the box yet tough as, well… old boots. Normally it takes me a few weeks to get used to the idea of anything new on my feet but these were great straight away: soft enough to run in but still tough enough to give someone a bloody nose.

Of course, they may be NATO combat-tested, but are they up to the sort of abuse I’m likely to give them?

I’ll let you know.



NATO boots destroyed after first day back at school. So much for combat testing.

Ah, well… back to the drawing board.



Christmas, don’t you just love it?

Most special celebration days – birthdays, Easter, Valentines, Halloween – can be a bit of a non-event: they start and finish pretty much like any other day but with more cake or chocolate. That’s not a bad thing, but hardly worth all the fuss they make about them.

But Christmas is different. Christmas is a time for serious fun and concentrated chaos.

A few weeks beforehand the house is decorated with glittery bits and pieces and flashing lights… talk about sensory overload! Woah… I never know what to go for first! Rich pickings for a fiddler like me, and if I time it right I can wreck several things in turn: start with something fairly large then keep moving on to the next as they’re rebuilding each of the previous displays.

Now whenever I bring any kind of shrubbery in from the garden Smiley and Frowny usually go nuts, but apparently it’s acceptable behaviour if they bring a tree into the living room. I don’t know, it’s one rule for them… Actually I shouldn’t complain because I really like having a tree indoors. We usually have one that reaches all the way to the ceiling so over the years I’ve had several attempts at pulling it down – well I bet you would if you thought you could get away with it, wouldn’t you? And a falling tree in the living room can be quite a spectacular way of gaining attention.

But these days I often find myself distracted by all the twinkly things hanging from the branches. When I was younger these used to smash in a very satisfying way and you could walk through all the broken pieces but nowadays they just seem to bounce pathetically. Health and safety gone mad if you ask me.

Did I mention the lights? These are great fun and can be tackled in a couple of different ways; you can grab one end of the cable and walk out of the room with it trailing a whole string of fairy lights behind you (if you’re lucky it can also bring the tree down), or you can bite them one-by-one and they make a lovely crunch which fizzes on your tongue. Frowny gets very anxious when I do this and frowns even more than normal.

On the whole Christmas cards aren’t worth bothering with: I still grab an occasional handful and run around tearing them up or biting large chunks out of them in the hope that someone will give chase but no-one seems very interested. In fact they often look glad to be given an excuse to throw some of them in the bin, which makes me wonder why people bother sending them in the first place.

I find the rules for the whole ‘presents under the tree’ thing a bit complicated; apparently a lot of the gifts are put there for me, but then I’m not allowed to open them. What? Well I always regard those sorts of rules as a challenge and open one of the parcels whenever I get the opportunity. Of course I can’t read the labels to identify which presents are for me so I just open whatever’s closest. The contents are often not worth bothering with: jewellery, perfume, books… you know, nothing of real value that you can actually eat, though sometimes I can hit the jackpot and discover an entire selection box full of chocolate. But even if the contents are a disappointment, the sensory reward in ripping the paper is brilliant and it always brings someone running so there’s the added bonus of a bit of attention when service gets a bit slow.

Then comes the day when Frowny starts her advance baking ritual and the smell drives me bananas because I rarely seem to receive more than the usual rations. I’m sure she only does this in retribution for all the tree-related mishaps. Very petty.

And to make things worse, my whole routine goes to pot because my school bus stops coming in the mornings – however long or hard I rattle and kick the front door – so I’ve no real way to gauge the amount of time passing.

I know the big day’s getting close when they start talking about the big, jolly, fat guy with a white beard and no dress sense who supposedly travels about with flying reindeer, squeezes down the chimney in the middle of the night and gives us free stuff. Yeah, right… and they say I’m intellectually challenged? Well I’ve never seen him and I’m awake a lot during the night, but the free stuff is definitely there in the morning so who am I to argue? I was taken to meet him last year but he didn’t look particularly jolly when I pulled off his beard so I don’t think it was really him after all.

So, finally Christmas day arrives and all hell breaks loose. People rush about madly, wearing funny paper hats and thrusting parcels at me. And on this one day I’m ‘allowed’ to open the presents, which completely takes the fun out of it so I often throw them to one side just to see the looks on their faces. Some of the parcels are opened for me and I have to admit the contents can be pretty good: in my opinion one can never have too many primary-coloured-music-playing-flashing-light-bits-of-plastic. Often I’m given several of these so I spend the entire day setting them all off at once.

But the very best thing about Christmas is of course the ‘Eat your own bodyweight in food’ competition, of which I’m the reigning champion. They try to make me wait for this for hours and hours, but I’ll have none of that sort of behaviour from them and frequently have to remind them who’s in charge. If I make enough fuss I usually find they’ll ply me with several smaller meals and snacks on the lead up to the big event.

If I was the sort of person who could be patient (which of course I’m not) this would certainly be the meal worth waiting for. My plate is piled high in the vain hope that this will ‘keep me busy’ while they sit and try to enjoy their own meal. They do this every year. And every year they underestimate my capacity to eat as fast as humanly possible and demand more. With some concentrated effort I find I can manage a ratio of at least three full platefuls to their one.

Then it’s on to the trifle, chocolate roulade and Christmas pudding… all in the same bowl… topped off with cream and a good dose of medication as a chaser. And after all that I often find myself unaccountably unable to move and usually crash out on a bean bag on the living room floor.

I’m so Rock & Roll.

A day well spent I think.