Monday, January 28, 2008

Dirty words

A conversation about/with my son recently:

His teacher: I think you might want to talk to your son. Some other students said he said a bad word.

Me: Which word was it?

Her: ???

Me: I mean, I'll talk to him no matter what. I just wondered which word it was so I might know where he picked it up.
(I didn't tell her I assumed it was "damn," owing to a "dammit-dammit-dammit" montage that had slipped past my and my husband's censoring remote control trigger fingers during prime time.)

Her: Well, I think it was ... (Here there was a pregnant pause, then whispering as if he'd committed manslaughter during arts and crafts. I love kindergarten teachers. They're the only people I know cleaner-mouthed than me.) ... shit. The students all said they heard him say the S word.

Me: Really? I have no idea where he would have picked up that word. (I really didn't.)

Her: (Skeptical, unbelieving evil eye.)

Later in the car:

Me: David, did you get in trouble for saying a word you shouldn't today?

Him: Yeah. I'm sorry. (Here he made the breathy, lip-flappy about-to-cry noise.)

Me: It's OK, as long as you learned not to say it anymore.

Him: Oh, I did! (Long, mucusy, relieved sniff.)

Me: Can you tell me what the word was?

Him: ...

Me: It's OK, if you're telling me to let me know it doesn't count as saying it.

Him: Well ... it was the S word.

Me: The S word? Do you know what that word means?

Him: It means someone's not very smart. But I only was talking about what someone did!

Me: Wait a minute. What exactly did you say?

Him: The S word! (More quietly): Stupid.

Me: Stupid?

Him: Yeah. And I'm sorry. I was only talking about what they did, and it was stupid because it was mean, and I know you told me it's different than calling somebody stupid, but at school we can't say it at all, and I forgot. But I won't say that or any of the other letter words any more.

Me: The other letter words?

Him: Yeah. The F word, the S word, the D word, the C word or the M word. (Getting into it now, clearly pleased with his free pass to say verboten words): We can't say freak, or stupid, or dumb, creep or moron.

Me: (Quietly reveling in the extreme privilege that is having a child who is still a child, and is likely to remain unaware of other forbidden F, S, D, C, and M words for quite some time): That's probably a good idea.

Him: But I heard one of the boys call a girl a poopface. I don't think we should say the P word either.

Me: I think you're right.

Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?

C'mon; you know you know it.

How you know you love your son:

You sit through several, several rounds of SpongeBob Go Fish, knowing you'll be treated to this sound each time he gets a pair.

And you actually like it.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Inanity in my life and the news

More bona fide blogging to come, but now:

It seems like the news stories I'm reading today were all designed to aggravate me.

Lindsay Lohan is apparently preparing to write her life story. Um, don't you have to, I don't know, live several years of life before doing that?

A family (using the term loosely) was nabbed when three generations, as young as five years old for Pete's sake (yeah, I'm a member of the geezer club now; I say "for Pete's sake" in real conversation as well), were caught shoplifting from Target. Five years old! I never planned to use the acronym, but: WTF? I learned a lot of things from my parents, useful things like "how to drive," "how to wipe oneself," "how to eat Buffalo wings the proper way (with blue cheese, of course)," and "how to read." Also maybe some not so useful things like "how to properly appreciate (and obsess over) Star Trek," "how to make brownies the right way (with frosting, of course)," "how to properly recite the 1983 starting lineup of the St. Louis Cardinals," "how to play every version of poker known to man," "why a pool table is green (you would be too if someone was knocking your balls around all day; har har)," and "how to convince your third grade teacher you didn't learn about poker and the pool table from your dad." But fortunately, "how to shoplift" or "when to remove your class project to free up backpack space for hot electronics" were not among my lessons.


Also making me a little mad, for different reasons, is this story about an idiotic fight that netted a couple $800,000 for their petty douchebaggery. Apparently a guy's girlfriend kept giving him grief about a pair of jeans he promised to get for her at a casino boutique (I didn't even know they had "casino boutiques," save to sell those skimpy dresses like Demi Moore wears in Indecent Proposal), and to shut her the heck up, he finally relented to get the stupid jeans, whereupon he played slots to kill time, and won big time.

What the heck? My husband and I fight about stupid crap all the time. Where's the payoff?

(Seriously. We fight about the normal stuff: sex, money, sex, kid-rearing stuff, sex, scheduling, and sex. But we have some seriously dumb fights as well. Two of our last fights: First, we fought about what size of trash can we should have in the kitchen. Seriously. And last, we fought because we were both unsatisfied with the lack of response from the other when we played the "What do you want to do tonight" game. We both wanted to watch a movie and maybe play a game, but by the time we discovered this, it was too late. I've ended a few such discussions by storming out of the room, whereupon I remember we live in a small apartment, with nowhere to storm to. So I storm into the bathroom, and slam the sliding door, which slides back open, naturally, making me feel like an even bigger dumbass. I then slam it more deliberately, whereupon I realize that hey, I'm in the bathroom, with not much more to do than use the facilities in an angry fashion. I suck at arguing.)

But we've never gotten a payoff like that. So not fair.

Then there's this story, whose subhead says it all: A driver hit a man in the head with an orange, then tried to hit him with his car, deputies say.


My horoscope, meanwhile, claims: "Your brainy side is on display today and you might spend at least a little while lost in deep thoughts."

Yeah, not so much. The brainiest and deepest I've gotten today was either when I discussed (with a vengeance) the virtues of eating one's peanut butter sandwich and not spitting it on the plate in protest, or when I was seriously proud of myself for beating the boss battle in my son's new video game.

More, hopefully brainier, blogging to come.