29 May 2012

Classic quotes, Vol. 37

Here's a selection of some recent notable quotes, this time (again) all from my very quotable 5-year-old daughter M-:

M- (apropos of nothing one day, after she'd been playing by herself.... possibly a sign she may have been playing with her older brother too much): I would be a great astronaut-killer! (asked to elaborate) It's a guy who attacks and fights astronauts!

M- (showing off her strength, before almost falling over a basketball her little brother E- had accidentally rolled in her path): I can carry this HUGE chair, Dad! ... As long as E- keeps his BALLS out of the way...

M- (coming breathlessly into our room one morning, after we'd ignored an automated call identified as coming from my wife's teacher union): It's an URGENT call, on the answering machine-- it's an emergency! They're attacking our pensions, and our rights, and we need to vote!

M- (referring to Silly String, in a voice like a commercial): Kids LOVE this stuff!!

24 May 2012

A conversation between M- and D-: Bill Cosby, eat your heart out

My 8-year-old son D- and 5-year-old daughter M- are apparently taking some interesting lessons to heart about the fundamentals of good parenting, as evidenced by their recent conversation in the back of our parked van, regarding their 1-year-old brother E-:

D- (possibly sarcastic, after M- had been speaking through rage-clenched teeth at E-): Boy, you'd make a real good parent, always grabbing and pulling on his (inaudible)...

Me (thinking she had been grabbing his face): Pulling his what?!

D- (quickly polishing an explanation, likely due to a favor he owed his sister): I said, she'd make a real good parent, because she always gets real serious with him. And he listens to her...

M- (eagerly): Yeah!

D- (aside): Oh, by the way, your pants are on backwards.

You may enjoy my previous D- conversations, M- conversations, and (wife) J- conversations.

14 May 2012

A conversation with M-: A teachable moment...

Despite two years served under the patient ears of The Tattling Turtle at school, my 5-year-old daughter M- still tattles like nobody's business*, and her 8-year-old brother D- has long ago earned his Veteran Kid status, which entitles him to get away with all kinds of secrets and sneakiness under our noses, as this frustratingly inconclusive conversation demonstrates:

M- (the "eager" version of The Tattling Voice): Last night, I was trying to sleep, and D- was keeping me up by saying a bad word. One that means "horse poop"?

Me (mild curiosity officially piqued): ...Oh? Which word was that?

M- (wishing she could help, realizing she's out of ammo): Ummmm... I don't remember. You should ask him.

Me (recklessly pressing the point while the iron is hot): You won't get in trouble for saying what it was. Was it something like "cr... cr... cr..."

M- (blank stare): Uhhhh...

Me (scrambling, hoping she doesn't start asking followups, to add to her extensive vocabulary, but now confident I've nailed it down at Level 2): Was it something with "sh... sh... shhh..."

M- (another blank stare, then resignation, which is apparently what you get when you seem to take tattles seriously): Umm, well, I don't really remember what the word is, but I know it's bad, and I know it means "horse poop".

So, it seems that D- is either cataloging new slang words that don't spring to my mind, or he may have invented a hilarious new game of 1) declaring secret, scandalous meanings to made-up words; or 2) assigning new meanings to existing, innocuous words; with the primary or secondary intention of getting his sister to cash in all her tattling chips on unenforceable violations. Both of the latter options are genius, and make me pretty perversely proud.

* If anything, this stuffed turtle just allows her to practice new techniques. She talked about him all the time in the beginning, but the very first time I made reference to him myself, she made a point of assuring me, with an expression and tone that suggested I might be an idiot, that he is "not real". Thus, he is powerless to act on any of her solid intel.