Thursday, January 29, 2009

Our life: A very shot play in one and a half acts

Act I: Yesterday afternoon

(Scene: Car, filled with dozens of empty pop bottles, sticks and leaves gathered from the entire state of Arizona, various Nickelodeon paraphernalia, one six-year-old and two adults trying to make the most of the few minutes this week during which they might actually converse. Silly them.)

Me: So there was this online discussion about circumcision that was getting kind of out of hand.
Aaron: Well, I really don't see the big deal, I mean, to each their own, right?
Me: Some people were comparing it to female genital mutilation, you know, the total removal of the (I glance to the back seat, see the child who won't listen to 90 percent of what I say paying rapt attention) ... of the C-L-I...
Aaron: (Clearing his throat in embarrassment, cutting me off): Yeah, OK, I know what you mean. But it's not like that at all.
Me: That's what I think. Then too, some people are worried about sons looking like their fathers, the whole locker-room issue...
Aaron: So, what? Like he and I are going to line up in front of the mirror and compare notes?
David: Compare notes on what, Dad?
Aaron: Hairstyles, David. (To me): Besides, it's not like if they [makes the snip-snip motion with his fingers] when they're first born...
David: Why are you making scissors?
Aaron: No reason, David. (To me): So, if they, um, skin the snake...
David: What?!
Aaron: Nothing! It's just a silly phrase!
David: Well, I don't like that phrase. Poor snake!
Me: Yeah, Dad. Poor snake.
Aaron: (Shoots me the death glare; addresses David): I don't like it either. Sorry, David. (To me): So if they, er, remove a particular portion, it's not like they're any worse off or are even going to know the difference.
Me: Some folks are worried about loss of sensitivity.
Aaron: But it's kind of subjective, isn't it? I mean, each P-E-N-I-S...
Me: You do know he's been able to spell that for ages.
David: PENIS! You spelled PENIS! Bwahaha!
Aaron: Yes, I spelled penis. Tee hee.
Me: Hey, David, look at that horse! (Son distracted, I address Aaron): I can see your point, though. It's not like they could conduct a scientific study on that. It couldn't really be objective.
Aaron: Right. What, like, "OK subjects, every time you're H-O-R-N-Y, clock your speed of arousal, your partner's arousal, and how good it was for you?"
Me: Ha. Yeah.
(Conversation moves on to Harry Potter, pasta, and my son's new microscope.)
(Night ends peacefully, full of pasta and free from genital-themed discussions.)

Act II: Very, very early this morning

(Scene: The inside of my eyelids. Or possibly the first floor of a house on a mercilessly bright Arizona morning.)

David: Mom, what's H-O-R-N-Y spell? Could it be like for an animal with horns?
Me: Yeah, I guess it could! Let's just say they have cool horns, though, OK?
David (shrugging): OK, Mom.
David: Oh, and Mom? Don't use the hand towel in the downstairs bathroom. I blew my nose into it.
(He exits stage right in search of Pop Tarts.)
(I exit stage left in search of products with which to scour my face.)

The End.


heather said... Best Blogger Tips

It sounds like your son is as smart as your father was at that age. Forget about spelling things anymore.

I think it's a male gene I call selectivus hearingus that they never hear you when you're saying something important to them, they only hear you when you whisper or say something you don't want them to hear!

Kevin J. Hosey said... Best Blogger Tips

Male gene? Oh, please, sis.

Mary said... Best Blogger Tips

hahah! Kim, I love your family. I love your car conversations. And as someone who often says, "I should never be a mother," I still find myself wondering if I did have a son whether I would want to have him circumcised. I think it's cruel and terrible to do to women and girls, and yet it's such a norm to circumcise boys that I don't know what to think of it.

Kim Hosey said... Best Blogger Tips

I don't know, Kevin, I gotta side with Heather on that one. At least, the gene seems to be more strongly expressed in all the males I know.

Certain phrases give the attention a kick start. If I just make sure to sprinkle everything I say with "football," "time to eat," cartoon references and body-part references, I should have everyone's attention.

Kim Hosey said... Best Blogger Tips

Mary: I love our car conversations too. That seems to be when all the interesting stuff comes out.

And yeah, not very many people knew what to make of circumcision, and then there were a few people who felt really strongly about it -- hence the online discussion getting a little out of hand.

I was a tad freaked out and on my own decision-wise for that one at the time, so I just kind of yeah-whatevered it, and the doctor whisked him off, and he was back and snipped. I might think more about it if I had a second son.

And if David finds that comment about himself some day when he's older, he shall surely die a slow death of embarrassment. Pity the children of writers.

Daniel Greene said... Best Blogger Tips

You joked on Flickr about the people who follow your blog "(all four of you)." I don't follow anyone's blog, just fyi. I find blog posts when I Google things or when people post a link as you did on Flickr. I just don't see myself having the time to actually read anyone's blog on a regular basis.

I don't think male circumcision can be compared to female genital mutilation, but I don't think it's necessary, either. I won't go into all the reasons here, but there are some very good reasons to leave the foreskin on the penis. I admire parents who choose not to circumsize (especially if they're Jewish), but I don't think parents who opt for circumcision are mutilators. I just think it's something everyone should learn more about. God gave men a prepuce for a reason. Let go and let God! ;-)

Kim Hosey said... Best Blogger Tips

@Daniel: That was me trying to be self-deprecating and make a funny. It's a habit. But yeah, I have a hard time keeping up on everyone's blogs too; I totally get it. I'm really pleased you stop by mine from time to time. :-)

I think, in the end, something like your position (and mine, and my husband's) is the predominant one -- we fall in varying places on the circ/don't circ spectrum, but sort of a position that it's not mutilation (in the same sense as FGM) but it's not really necessary either.

(I'd find the link to the conversation I mention in the original post, but if you're short on blog-reading time you definitely wouldn't have time to wade through that whole mess.