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Mashing-Up in North London

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One Saturday morning, a small boy (6) found himself stuck for something to do.

He’d got up early (“middle of the muffled word night,” apparently) so as to make a good start on the day, and by 10am had played a gleeful and riotous game of football (in the living room), built and destroyed an alien spaceship loudly and with much scattering of small pieces, eaten several sweets – oh, the joy of finding a long forgotten party bag! – ‘helped’ in the garden, and badgered for withheld pocket money. It was several hours before his first birthday party of the weekend – what could he do to fill the void?

As he leant against the sofa, his legs weakened by boredom, he remembered that book his mum – Kirsty Stansfield – had been working on, the one with the excellent pictures of dinosaurs and the jokes that made her snort with laughter in a really embarrassing way. Where was it? Ah, yes…

An hour later, covered in felt-tip pen, his tongue sticking out in concentration, he looked up from Mega Mash-Up:Romans v Dinosaurs on Mars to find his mother taking a photo of him. “I’m SUPPOSED to finish the pictures, honest,” he said, warily, but she was looking strangely pleased to see him scribbling all over a book.

Hmm, he thought. Worth a try, anyway… “Can I have that pocket money, then?”

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