Wednesday, October 24, 2007

I Sw...I Mean, I Do Declare

Recently I gave the kiddo a one-day pass on swearing. He'd been asking questions about one or two words in particular: "ass" and "crap" (the latter of which I don't have a huge problem with, but I don't think it sounds especially nice coming out of my kid's mouth). I was never allowed to swear when I was a kid; although my mom had grown up in a family that used "hell" and "damn" fairly casually, my dad declared our house a no-swearing zone. As a result, swearing always held a certain mystique for me, and when I was in junior high and high school, I experimented, let's say, with a lot of naughty language. Despite the no-swearing rule at home, my folks did allow us little sips of alcohol on occasion, and drinking was never that interesting to me, so I figured if I let the kiddo swear under controlled circumstances, maybe he would lose interest in it eventually.

Well, let me tell you, there's nothing quite like spending a day hearing a first grader muttering about one baseball team or another kicking each other's asses. The kiddo shook his head during the games and swore under his breath periodically throughout the day, with the understanding that this was his one chance to do so. I have to say it worked for now. He seems to have gotten something out of his system for the time being, and I spent the day feeling alternately dubious and amused. We also talked about acceptable words to say, like "dagnabbit" and "tushie" and "doggone it" and the like.

As we drove to a parish festival up by my folks' house, the kiddo told me, "We'd better get our asses over there," and I reminded him that his swearing day was long past. "Oh, that's right," he said. "How about 'We'd better get our tushies over there'?" I told him that was totally okay to say.

"What about heinies?" he wanted to know. Also good.

"What about nipples?"

Oy. ;^)