I used to think that if I was a contestant on a TV quiz show like Who Wants To Be a Millionaire, my time in the chair would be memorable, but for all the wrong reasons.
My appearance would be the one on YouTube that would be viewed millions of times all over the world.
Why? Because I got the first question wrong and went home with nothing.
The pressure of being on live TV mixed with the prospect of become a millionaire would make me so nervous that I would fall at the first hurdle in the most embarrassing way – and I wouldn’t get the chance to phone a friend or ask the audience.
But being a dad and having questions fired at me by my daughters from the moment they wake up until the moment they fall asleep, I now feel in a better position and am now tempted to apply to be on the big money game show.
Research has shown that parents are the most-quizzed people in the United Kingdom, with subjects far and wide.
Surely school teachers are asked more questions in a day with their huge class of children, or maybe a doctor seeing patients one after the other? Well, apparently not.
The sentence I’m about to write exhausts me just writing it, so I apologise if the words make you yawn…
A parent will on average have to answer a question from their child every one minute and 52 seconds.
That’s a lot of questions. I wonder sometimes why I’m so exhausted at the end of the day, especially when the day hasn’t been that eventful, but now I have my answer.
Caitlin is four and this research has shown that girls aged four are the most keen to find out things and ask a staggering 390 questions each day.
Speaking from experience, I think half of those are accounted for by the simple one word question asked by children from the moment they can talk, which is ‘why?’.
‘Caitlin, eat your vegetables’, ‘Why?’. ‘Because they are good for you’, ‘Why are they good for you?’. ‘Because they have vitamins in’, ‘Why are vitamins good for you?’ etc, etc.
I’ve heard that eating your food slower is better for you, but when you’re a parent you’ve no choice with an average of 11 questions being posed by children during meal-times.
I try to answer all the questions to the best of my ability and if I don’t know the answer I’ll ask my good friend Google. But sometimes my answer is just not accepted.
For example, two-year-old Alyssa was playing with a balloon and it suddenly popped. She asked me to blow it back up for her, which left me explaining that a burst balloon can’t be fixed. You can guess the next question that came out of her mouth… ‘Why?’