(since Medium crashed last night and prematurely posted my unwritten first draft as it died)
My son has always had a very interesting world view. For a long time, I would be so tickled by our little conversations that I didn’t think I could possibly forget the things he said but by the time he was four or so, I realized I needed to write that shit down. I don’t know how many hundreds of times the writing has slipped my mind, which bums me out in a big way. But I told him years ago that one day, I’d give them back to him. I don’t have nearly the collection I wanted to have by now, but I keep plugging along. This seemed like as good a place as any to keep them all together. If this is the sort of thing that amuses you, please enjoy. If it’s not, I completely understand.
I’m writing them down for the same reason I’ve always written them.
So that Alex will always know who he’s always been.
Alex is 3. We’re on the bus when a very tall, thin man boards. Alex leans into me and stage whispers, “MOM! On some people, the fat goes up!”
“Mom? That statue’s penis broke off, and that boy said it was his mom’s favorite part. But how can a penis be a mom’s favorite part? Mom’s don’t have penises.” — Alex, watching The Goonies for the first time
Alex at five (chin in hand, big sigh): “I can’t wait until I’m 80.”
(Thinks for a minute…)
“Hey, Mom? Will you be dead when I’m 80?”
“Son, I sure hope so.”
(Chin back in hand. Another big sigh. ): “I can’t wait until I’m 50.”
“Mom? Girls are girls until they turn twenty. Then, from 21–35, they are called ladies. When they are 36–55, they are women. And when they turn 56, they become old ladies”
“Hmmm… your Nana Sue is going to find this VERY interesting, I bet.”
“is Nana Sue more than 55?”
“Well, she was born in 1948, so you tell me.”
…a little bit later…
“Women are women until they are 68. Or maybe 69. THEN they are old ladies.”
“uh huh. So you say… what about boys?”
“Unless they start smoking, they are boys until they turn twenty-one. From 22–35, they become gentlemen. When they are 36…(unfortunately, we are approaching Dad’s house, and we won’t have time for the rest. But I HAVE to know…)”
“So, Alex, what if they DO start smoking?”
“Well, then they become gentlemen when they start smoking. But one thing’s for sure. They SURE aren’t being gentle with themselves!”
So, anyway, now you know.
Alex, responding to me responding to him with doubt:
I only lie when I REALLY, REALLY need to. Or when I REALLY, REALLY want to.”
That clears THAT up.
“All I need are some fireworks, a lighter and extra fluid, a hot glue gun, a kid’s compound bow and arrow, some duct tape, some red paint, and a couple of pillows and I’m good.”
“Hey, mom? I was just thinking about a comparison that shows how nervous i get at the top of a big water slide.”
“What’s the comparison?”
“It would be like if Alaina had to take horseback riding lessons on a giant tarantula. For years and years.”
Overheard in the creek back home last summer:
Alex (fishing 30 feet upstream of Alaina, chest deep in the water): “Alaina! I’m PEEING!!!”
Alaina is also chest deep in the water.
So, revenge doesn’t get much sweeter than that.
Alex is into pranking unsuspecting victims, and he’s always got an ear peeled for new prank ideas.
Just one ear, though. And it’s not the top-performing ear.
Let tonight’s example paint you a mental picture:
Alex: “Hey, mom, I learned a new prank from staff at the Y today that just uses a wheelie and a bong.”
…So, after asking a couple of clarifying questions, Alex had learned two new words, and I’d learned about the Pulley and Gong prank.
It’s loud. And it doesn’t sound anywhere near as interesting as the wheelie bong one.
Me: “Well, Alex. It’s really happening. I’m afraid my phone is dying a long, slow death.”
Alex: “I’m so sorry, Mom. That’s the absolute WORST way to die.”
I don’t think I’ve EVER seen Alex run out of words. Ergo, as I have some words of my own, and sometimes am thinking about something other than what is STREAMINGFROMHISMOUTHATLIGHTSPEED, I don’t always HEAR all the words. I try to hear enough of them to be able to draw reasonable conclusions and answer his questions about the subject later on.
This morning he brought his tool kit to the kitchen. I was eating breakfast when he started the bullet staccato talk. I tried to piece together the subject from context clues (tool bag, things people need on hand around the house, etc.), and was feeling pretty confident in my skills until he said, “and, you have to have a sword covered in barb wire. BARBED WIRE, mom…
I said, “WHO HAS A SWORD COVERED IN BARBED WIRE?’
“MOMMM!! Everyone is going to need one when the Zombie Apocalypse gets here!”
Okay, so that hadn’t crossed my mind AT ALL. THIS IS A Zombie Apocalypse ready kit!
“Is this a Zombie Apocalypse READY KIT, Alex?”
“Mom, you HAVE to be prepared!”
“Ummm…Okay. But a barbed wire covered sword? HARSH!! What do you need THAT for, Alex?”
“MOooOM, it’s so you do so much damage on the way back out that the zombies can’t be repaired.”
OKAY, all you Walking Dead superfans — Is there a zombie repairman I’ve not heard about? Because if so, I think he should be the first target when the apocalypse comes. Zombies are the last beings who should be worried about a face lift.
“Hey, mom? Do you know what it’s like having to get zombie blood out of your hair?”
“I do not.”
“It’s like having to force your pet snake to cough up a diamond ring it swallowed fourteen million years ago.”
Alex, home from school with a head injury I don’t have the energy to explain again.
“Mom? I’d hurt my head every day if it meant I got to spend time with you.”
And so we come to the end of batch #2. If you’d like to read batch #1 you can find it here: