Part Three

Suckers

What is it with teenagers? They are so full of contradictions.

At 8.00am on Saturday I was in the kitchen cooking bacon, when Lara strolled in. I looked at the clock in mock-shock and opened my mouth wide. Normally we don’t see her until lunchtime at the weekend. She slammed a magazine down on the kitchen table and pointed to the headline. ‘Have you seen this?’ she growled, as though I was the subject of the article.

I picked up the magazine. ‘Polar bears in trouble as ice pack melts.’ I read.

‘It’s sad isn’t it?’ I sympathised.

‘It’s not sad, it’s disgusting, that’s what it is.’ Lara flicked through a couple of pages and pointed to another article. ‘Whaling,’ she continued. ‘Aren’t you ashamed? The fleets catch more and more each year, soon there’ll be none left.’

‘Whaling is bad too,’ I agreed.

Lara fixed me with a glare. ‘It’s your fault.’

‘My fault? Why is …’

‘Your generation’s fault then. You allowed it to happen on your watch. You’ve

sat back and done nothing for years, now it’s probably too late.’

‘That’s not really fair, Lara,’ I said quietly, trying to take the heat out of the situation. I always give to the animal charity collectors when they come around, and I joined the RSPB.’

Lara wasn’t appeased. ‘So, you stick 50p in a tin and think you’ve done enough to save the planet? Look around you Mum, animals are suffering.’

I looked round the kitchen. Spencer was attempting to get the last atoms of dog food from his bowl and Slasher was washing her face after eating a breakfast of tuna chunks. ‘Doesn’t seem to be much in the way of suffering here,’ I joked.

Lara grabbed two sandwiches, slapped them onto a plate and stormed out of the kitchen.

‘That’s right, make a joke of it,’ she spluttered through a mouthful of bacon sandwich. ‘You just don’t care what happens to animals, do you?’

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