Being an excellent mother with a middle class income at her disposal, Adelaide took her children to see Sharon Keep Ya Hair On. She was no theatre critic, but it was, as all Patch Theatre Company shows seem to be, a most excellent experience. One that her children truly enjoyed and so did she. She could have done with one less trip to the toilet, but it was excellent nonetheless.

Until they got to the part where she had to pay for the carpark. Eight dollars. They weren’t even there two hours. $12 for an adult, $10 for a child and $8 for a car.

Of course, Adelaide could have caught the tram, but she was a bit more tired than usual, having been up at least twice in the night tucking little boys back into their beds. Plus, she had just discovered she didn’t get a job she hadn’t necessarily wanted, but would have been bloody excellent at; a piss-ant weekend course had rejected her because her experience was ‘in excess’ of other participants (read into that what you will about her age which she was already feeling slightly sensitive about, being about to turn 37 and ineligible for just about any course or program that might be the tiniest bit interesting); the financial advisor at the bank had suggested they could stop the income protection on her life because the only real liability on her “balance sheet of suffering”* was the approximate cost of $10,000 for her funeral; her oldest child was about to start school and her youngest child kept calling her booger-head; she was menstrual as anything and what was the point of being menstrual when all the sensible parts of you knew you couldn’t have any more children anyway even if your soul was yearning. And didn’t anybody ever pick anything up?

Things could have been worse, Adelaide knew that, but she didn’t feel like catching the f***ing tram. She wanted to walk out of her front door, get into her car, drive it past the tram stop and into the city and park it as close to the door of the theatre as possible. Without paying eight dollars for less than two hours.

Adelaide’s dark underbelly had been exposed.

*real, actual words used on the insurance assessment