Archive | 8:37 pm

Does it even matter if it’s true?

3 May

It was late. My sister was in the kitchen relaying a story to her husband about something embarrassing that had happened to her friend. It was for adult-consumption only. And then, out of the blue: a voice. “Hey – isn’t that Herbert’s mom you’re talking about?”

And standing there is her child, who – if he had a tribal name – would respond to, “Little-Pitcher-Big-Ears.” Record scratch.

So now a nine year old is equipped with a story that is attached to a real person and isn’t exactly appropriate for an elementary school audience.

This has happened to you too, right? I mean, I don’t even HAVE kids and I’ve had my words come back to haunt me, though it’s usually like when Ralphie swears as he flips all the nuts into the snow in “The Christmas Story” and everyone wants to know where he learned such an awful word. (Spoiler alert: his dad.)

In my defense, if a child correctly deploys a word that can function as EVERY one of the nine parts of speech, then I say: we should let him, regardless of age.

I digress. The point is that when my sister retold this story to me – in all its sordid details – it completely cracked me up. “Can I blog about it?” I asked.

She paused. “Can you make it anonymous? So the person doesn’t know my child knows her business?”

And that’s when the fun began.

Me: “Sure. Like, I’ll say it was about a teacher from his school?”

Her: “Except make it an art teacher because he doesn’t even HAVE art.”

Me: “And I’ll make your son a DAUGHTER.”

Her: “And make the story I was telling about her something gossipy instead of something funny.”

Me: “And I’ll make you my FRIEND instead of my sister.”

Her: “And make me the daughter’s ‘mother’ instead of her ‘mom.'”

Mom, indeed. I think we’ll go with “mum” just to really throw them off the track.

Disclaimer: All names, places, and events contained herein are fictional. Any resemblance to actual people, events or conversation is sheer coincidence. Also, I’m pretty sure there are no children named Herbert.