Abandon all hope, ye who enter Smiggle

The glamorous but high-pressure life of an Idealog writer can mean long hours. I don’t mind really – I love my job after all – but the long working days can sometimes mean that I don’t get to spend as much time with the kids as I’d like.

So it often happens that, on the weekends when I’m looking to make up for lost time, I’m willing to spend a little bit more money than I otherwise would, willing to give the kids a cheap thrill at a store of their choosing, all in the interests of getting the most bang for buck from our time together.

Last weekend was one of those weekends, so we found ourselves, once again, at the mall.

Ahh, the mall. How I hate it. The soulless sterility of it all, the food is always terrible and it’s always full of people who don’t cover their mouths when they cough.

Nevertheless, the children, and my wife, seem to enjoy it well enough, so I’m usually willing to go with the flow ­– some of the time – if only in the interests of playing happy families.

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