If there's anything worse than a smug face grinning at you, it's the face of a smug seventeen year old grinning at you.
Despite my misgivings and warnings that she would annihilate half the planet, my daughter finally took her driving test a few weeks ago, and passed first time. The law being on her side, I had to let her drive on her own, and for the last few weeks she's been doing just that. All the usual things that either I or my wife would have had to do, she's been doing herself.
Today I decided to go with her. She's young, I thought; probably a menace. I convinced myself but promised not to moan (too much) but just sit there with a fatherly and indulgent smile.
But to my amazement (horror), she's turned into a very good driver. Despite my occasional cringe when I thought she was going to hit something far heavier than us, she didn't; cornering with verve, smiling benevolently at the many, many, complete idiots on the road.
All the way back I could feel the heat of her smugness radiating through the car. Try as I might I could think of nothing to say to dent that palpable aura of superiority that only a young woman can produce.When she turned off the engine with an unnecessary flourish she turned to me. She didn't say "See." or anything remotely cheeky, giving me the opportunity to swat her like an annoying midge. In fact she said nothing - just that smirk.