SWEET MOTHER OF POD!

Ou­tra­geous cat­suit-clad com­edy duo and pre­sen­ters of the hit Scummy Mum­mies pod­cast El­lie Gib­son and Helen Thorn ex­plain to MAR­ION McMULLEN why they refuse to be shamed by In­sta­gram par­ents

Llanelli Star - - SPOTLIGHT -

Your Scummy Mum­mies pod­cast has been down­loaded two and a half mil­lion times in more than 150 coun­tries and there is also a chart­top­ping book, but what is a scummy mummy?

Helen: (Laughs) A scummy mummy is the op­po­site of a yummy mummy. A yummy mummy will feed their chil­dren quinoa and mung beans. A scummy mummy will feed her chil­dren fish fin­gers most days. That’s the essence of a scummy mummy, you don’t have to be per­fect.

The world will not stop if you let your kids watch a DVD. Things are chang­ing. Mother­care have been show­ing mod­els with stretch marks in their ad­verts and they were not skinny or wear­ing flow­ing white dresses.

Jenny Eclair, Dara Ó Bri­ain and Sandi Toksvig have all ap­peared on the pod­cast. Who would be your dream guest stars?

El­lie: The pod­cast is recorded in my house and you of­ten get some­one fa­mous turn­ing up and just sit­ting down. It’s just ab­so­lutely bril­liant. We’ve made many re­ally good friends.

We would love to have Nigella Law­son on, she would be a scream, and Oprah Win­frey – (laughs) I’m sure she’s not too busy – and Michelle Obama, Dawn French... the list goes on.

Helen: We put up pho­tos on In­sta­gram and our houses look a mess, but I think we are pro­vid­ing a pub­lic ser­vice. I’m never go­ing to clean my house again for the good of the free world.

You both met on the stand-up cir­cuit six years ago, but didn’t you later dis­cover you had a mid­wife con­nec­tion?

El­lie: We didn’t know when we met. We were both do­ing com­edy and be­came friends and months later we dis­cov­ered our sons had been born 11 days apart and were both de­liv­ered by the same mid­wife. My son Char­lie is now seven and I also have a four-year-old, Joe.

Helen: We cre­ated the pod­cast for the less than per­fect parent and we now get emails from around the world. My chil­dren Hugo and Matilda are seven and 10 now, but when they are teenagers there may be a break­down. I’m in sweet de­nial.

You’re em­bark­ing on a na­tion­wide tour af­ter the Ed­in­burgh Fringe Fes­ti­val. Have you any new stage out­fits planned?

El­lie: The other day we did a 10k around Lon­don in our bra and pants. Oth­ers do­ing it were say­ing it was re­ally em­pow­er­ing, but we’ve been go­ing on stage in bra and pants and gold cat­suits for years now. (Laughs) It’s down to a lack of shame. You can’t em­bar­rass us. I don’t think any­thing makes us blush. Eye­catch­ing is a word for the cat­suits. We used to buy them on­line from a joke shop, but now they are cus­tom-made for us.

We are hav­ing some­thing spe­cial made for Ed­in­burgh... bet­ter than any­thing any­one could imag­ine.

Peo­ple who come along to your show of­ten re­veal their own par­ent­ing sto­ries. Do any of them ever sur­prise you?

El­lie: We can’t read out some of them be­cause they are too sex­ist ... or un­nerv­ing. But there are few things that sur­prise us. Peo­ple be­ing in a car with kids and hav­ing to wee in a nappy hap­pens quite a lot, or go­ing to a fes­ti­val and putting vodka in their kid’s bot­tle and then the kid ac­ci­den­tally drinks it. Or there is the feel­ing of be­ing hu­mil­i­ated by our chil­dren like if they have a big poo in the show­room of B&Q.

Our au­di­ence is not all women ei­ther. We have had a few dads and part­ners who have come along and find it great fun.

There is a now a new royal baby. What is the best ad­vice you would give new mum Meghan, the Duchess of Sus­sex?

Helen: Just re­lax and don’t take your­self too se­ri­ously. Do what I do – line the house with wet wipes and wine and have a lot of nap­pies to hand. You can never have enough nap­pies.

Some day you just won’t like be­ing a parent, and that’s ok. What­ever hap­pens just re­mem­ber ev­ery stage will pass. I think there is so much pres­sure to be the per­fect mum some­times. Just be hon­est about it.

The Scummy Mum­mies Show tours the coun­try from Septem­ber 21. Go to scum­my­mum­mies.com for tour and ticket de­tails.

Helen Thorn, left and Eliie Gib­son model one of their stage out­fits Re­lax: The duo has tips on mother­hood for Meghan and Harry

Dream guest: Michelle Obama

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