Michael Hill Jeweller is currently urging the public to buy for “all your Mums” this Mother’s Day, including your real mum and your ‘work mum’. Madeleine Chapman wonders how many other mums are out there.
Did you ever accidentally call your teacher ‘mum’ in front of the class? Did you shart? Did you not speak for nine years, drop out of school, move to another city, and become a street magician? Me too.
Thanks to Michael Hill Jewellers, I’ve just learned that in fact it’s completely normal to call your teacher ‘mum’ because that’s what they are. Teachers are School Mums. Your female colleagues are Work Mums. Your real mum is just your Mum.
And they all need jewellery this Mothers Day, preferably bought from your local Michael Hill outlet.
Buses in Wellington are currently carrying a Mother’s Day advert for the jeweller proclaiming “Celebrate all your Mums”, and featuring a grown man with his arms around two women. One is his mother, and is labelled “Mum”, the other is a random young woman, labelled “Work Mum”.
Ah yes, the Work Mum. Every man has one, whether they know it or not. Responsibilities include, but are not limited to, 1) doing her job, and 2) hoping you do your job. Classic Work Mum. As Clementine Ford commented on Twitter, “It’s an insult to everybody. Your ‘work mum’ doesn’t want a shitty necklace, she wants you to stop being so incompetent while getting paid more.”
A Work Mum is like a regular mum, except she doesn’t love you and actually probably hates you for thinking of her as a maternal figure. Because a Work Mum is basically a woman who is good at her job. So of course she should be named after the only job that women are really good at, raising children aka the grown men at her workplace.
Work Mum is a new term. It used to be Work Wife. Back in the good old days of sadly not that long ago, a man would talk about his time being split between two women, his real wife and his work wife. Every woman, on the other hand, split her time between two men, her real husband and her boss.
Michael Hill obviously just want to shift more stock and feel they’re narrowing the market by only advertising gifts for actual mums. On their website, they suggest buying for literally every woman, man, or child in your life. “Celebrate all your Mums with beautiful, heartfelt jewellery this Mother’s Day. Work Mum, Friend Mum, Dad Mum…”
Folks, everyone’s a mum. You’re a mum, I’m a mum, Michael Hill is a mum. Frankly I don’t know why I haven’t been asked to appear in Mother’s Day advertising. I’m a Friend Mum to my friends. I’m an Aunt Mum to my nephews. I’m a word Mum, giving birth to this article. Some (Michael Hill) would say I’m as Mum as a person with children. And I’d agree.
So this Mother’s Day, make sure you do something nice for your mum. Do not buy anything for your Work Mum because if that thought has ever crossed your mind it means you don’t have a Work Mum, you have a woman with whom you work who absolutely resents you. Maybe for Mother’s Day you could give her the gift of respect instead.
But if you insist on buying Mother’s Day gifts for your colleagues then don’t stop there. Here’s every mum you need to buy for this Mother’s Day. Happy shopping!
Mum – the woman who birthed and or raised you
Work Mum – the woman who works with you
Sex Mum – wife
No Sex Mum – every woman who is not wife
Friend Mum – friend
Dad Mum – dad
Flat Mum – any women you live with
School Mum – teacher
Sport Mum – coach
Tooth Mum – dentist
Shopping Mum – supermarket cashier
Money Mum – bank teller who charges you to make a withdrawal from your own account
Child Mum – your child
Vroom Vroom Mum – bus driver
Ouchie Mum – doctor
Feelings Mum – therapist
Jail Mum – lawyer
Fake Mum – babysitter
Tax Mum – accountant
Scalpel Mum – surgeon
Sky Mum – pilot
Nation Mum – prime minister
Colonisation Mum – the Queen
Out of Touch Jewellery Mum – Michael Hill
Join The Spinoff Members for as little as $1 to help us hire more journalists and do more investigations. Or get a free Toby Morris-designed tea towel when you contribute $80 or more over a year.
The Bulletin is The Spinoff’s acclaimed daily digest of New Zealand’s most important stories, delivered directly to your inbox each morning.