You know, I’m not sure how it happened, but one day Hubby and I decided to teach Junior to speak. Now anyone who has been a parent or who knows a parent or who has even observed the strange “parentus weirdus” species close up at the grocery store knows that teaching a child to speak is one of the stupidest things a parent can ever do. And yet, Hubby and I did it.
And I cannot tell you how much we regret it.
Oh sure, it seems like a great idea at first. It’s so fun to have a 2 year old running around saying things like “mama,” “dada,” and “me wuv you.” But eventually these very same children who “wuv you dis much, mama” learn to be smart alecks. And from what I’ve seen so far, there’s no undoing this strange smart aleck phenomenon.
It starts with “I dunno.” This two-word sentence is the phrase most often uttered in our house by our son. “I dunno” can mean anything from “I don’t know who spilled the ketchup on the new beige carpet” to “I don’t know what is on TV tonight” to even “I don’t know why I used your power tools without permission and have now caused myself to have a grievous injury which is bleeding profusely all over the garage and may require me to have experimental surgery so I can grow a new hand.”
I really hate the words “I dunno.”
At times this phrase will cause me to fly into a manic rage which is usually punctuated with me screaming like a banshee, “DON’T EVEN TRY TO SAY I DON’T KNOW TO MY FACE OR YOU WILL BE GROUNDED UNTIL YOU ARE 85 YEARS OLD!”
Look, I‘ve given up even pretending to be calm when I hear the words “I dunno.” I just can’t. It’s like this. Junior can be in his room with a friend. Suddenly, I hear a loud crash, the tinkle of breaking glass and the hiss of gasps coming from the two children. When I say to Junior, “Are you okay? What happened?” He will reply with “I dunno.”
Excuse me? I heard gasps. I heard a crash. I heard glass breaking. What the heck is not knowable about all this? And people wonder why I am crazy. It’s because my son doesn’t know anything.
Of course, once a child masters the art of “I dunno,” he moves up to swear words. Now, I’m not one of those moms that allows her child to swear. I’m also not one of those naïve moms who believes her child doesn’t swear—but that’s another story entirely.
Of course, because Junior is not allowed to curse, he finds fascinating ways to do so which usually involve either a) compound words such as “butt-nugget;” or b) the word “fudge.”
I’ll be honest here. I was not clever enough as a child to invent compound swear words like “butt-nugget.” I was also much more afraid of my Dad than Junior will ever be of me, so even if I had thought of it, I would never have dared to utter them in front of my father.
Junior, on the other hand, isn’t me. I know this because I have heard the word “butt-nugget” so often I have banned both words from the house. As a consequence, we now sit on our fannies and consume chicken Mc-by-products in interesting shapes.
And let’s not even get into the word “fudge.” Look, I’m not an idiot. I know the word for which “fudge” is a substitution. But what do you do? You have to ban both the word and the intent. So we eat our sundaes with hot chocolate sauce. And we say “darn.” A lot. And very forcefully.
And if the word “fudge” is uttered, I break out the hot sauce. Never underestimate the power of a burning tongue to stop the word “fudge” from being used. Hell hath no fury like a mom who hears a banned word.
But the truth is, hot sauce or no, the only people to blame for all these words are Hubby and I. After all, we thought it was darned cute when he learned to say “doggie.” We just didn’t realize that “doggie” inevitably led to “I dunno” and “butt-nugget.” If only we could go back in time. Our house would be fudge-free.Add me to your rss reader | Become a Fan on Facebook!