Every parent I know has remarked at one time or another--usually with a combination of incredulity and consternation (that is, if our Parental Brains aren't too fried to remember such big words)--on the astonishing things that have come out of their mouths, things that they never in a million years thought they'd have occasion to utter. For me, these ridiculous statements inevitably center around Boy Stuff. Now, I did grow up with a brother, but he's 9 years younger than me. I was already busy flitting around in my High School World when he began Kindergarten, and then I went away to college when he was in 4th grade, so I somehow missed a lot of this early male goofiness. (But I know now that I really should have taken better notes when I had the chance!) These days, inundated as I am with maleness, I could not have imagined actually saying to someone: "Do not EVER lick your brother's foot! It's unsanitary!" (Usually after an incident like that, I am shocked into silence by my own words, and end up staring around the room, bemusedly waiting for someone to explain to me what just happened. Sadly, no one ever does...)
Another ridiculous warning I had to give recently was: "If you say the word 'wiener' one more time, you're going to your room!" Seriously? I'm torn trying to decide which is more absurd, that they actually talk about their private parts incessantly, or that I feel the need to regulate penile euphemisms. And then of course there's the fascination with bodily functions, which seem to be a constant source of Male Conversation in our house. I wage a constant, relentless war against "fart talk" (because really, there's nothing that annoys me more...unless it's "pee talk"...or "poop talk". Okay, it ALL gets on my very last nerve!), but it seems that the universe might be conspiring against me. The other day we were in the grocery store (where, incidentally, I don't even flinch anymore when admonishing the boys to "stop scanning each other's butts"! Just another "who knew I'd ever use that" phrase.) when Riley suddenly doubled over, clutching his stomach. It took a second for me to determine that he was not, in fact, about to hurl in the middle of the aisle (thank goodness for that, at least). I realized he was roaring with laughter at something, and when he caught his breath enough to share, he pointed at the enormous, colorful sign hanging overhead and gasped, "Giant Gas Rewards! Mom, have you earned a lot of Giant Gas Rewards yet?" (because, you know, getting a prize for winning a farting contest would be the Greatest Thing Ever to them)
Epilogue: Upon arriving home, they related the story to their father, gleefully and with much snickering. And what did Dad do? Cackled appreciatively and commented, "Yeah, that IS funny!" That's it! I. Give. Up. Anyone with daughters want to invite me over for a polite, ladylike tea party? I could use some girl-bonding right about now!