Saturday, October 20, 2007

An inconvenient truth. Or four.

With apologies to Al Gore, I find that the most common inconvenient truths in my life spring from the mouths of my children. Small children delight in telling the truth about most things. They have yet to develop those social filters that stop most of us from saying things that, while truthful, might hurt feelings or cause embarassment or are just best kept to oneself. Some examples:

Rachel, to her friend while sharing a snack of baby carrots: "This carrot is long and skinny like my mom, and this carrot is short and fat like your mom." Fortunately, the mom wasn't there. I can only hope that that line wasn't repeated when the little girl went home.

Playing "I Spy" with Leah:
Me: "I spy, with my little eye, something that is grey."
Leah: "Your hair, Mommy? "

Leah when asked how she liked the Royal Winnipeg Ballet's version of the Nutcracker, which we dressed up for and stayed up waaay past her bedtime to see live at the National Arts Centre: "Well, it was exciting and boring."

Rachel to me (and everyone within earshot) at the grocery store: "Look at how big that lady's boobies are! They're HUGE!"

I have learned (the hard way) to not say things within my kids' hearing that I wouldn't want repeated. Well, I've kinda learned:

When Leah was in Junior Kindergarten, 4 years old, she was invited to the birthday party of a boy in her class. She wanted to go, so I RSVPd and got directions. When the day came, we pulled up in front of a mansion. No other word to describe it. It was huge. I was muttering under my breath about the size of the place to myself as we walked up the long driveway. Apparently, Leah was listening to what I was saying. The little boy's mom welcomed us into the foyer, where 3 or 4 other moms were helping their kids off with boots and coats. Leah looked around in wonder at her surroundings. The front of the house -- foyer, formal dining room, and office -- was easily big enough to hold our whole small house. Leah looked at me, and in a clear, high, very carrying voice said, "You're right Mom, this is a big honkin' house!" OK. It was an embarassing couple of minutes helping her out of her coat before I could escape.

I think it will take a while for them to learn that while honesty is the best policy, sometimes honesty out loud is not. I'm sure I'm not alone. What inconvenient truths have your little darlings blurted out in public?


  1. I'll be telling this one at Grace's wedding....when she was just shy of turning three, we were going to see Santa. We were in the driveway, Sunday, 11:30 (all the church goers chatting in the street). I asked Grace if she was excited to Santa, to which she answered/shouted "Fuck yeah!"
    I've also had her point out a huge mole on lady's face in out check out line at the grocery store, to which I lamely replied "it's a beauty mark sweetie"....thank god nobody can understand Edie's garbled talk!

  2. Anonymous3:01 PM

    "Mom, look! It's Abraham Lincoln!" when we passed the Amish man in the store.

    "Mom, look! It's Santa Claus!" when we saw the fat man with the white beard in the store.

    "Mom, look! That boy looks like a big chicken!" when we saw the young man with the bright red mowhawk at the county fair.

    "At least you're not as fat as RayRay's mama."

    "Daddy stinks. Doesn't Daddy smell awful today, Grandma?" to my mom when Andy arrived home from work one day after working all day in his uniform and 100 degree heat.

    "Mom! You don't have a penis!" to me in the dressing room at Goody's. Drew was 3 at the time.
    Feel a little better, now?

  3. I'm still anticipating the worst as Tristan and Simon grapple with the idea that not everybody with a big belly is gestating a child. Luckily, so far only Daddy and Granny have been accosted and asked if they were pregnant. We try REALLY hard not to go out in public until they get the idea cemented in their heads that ONLY mummy is pregnant right now.

    And then there was the time three year old Tristan was locked in a stall with me in the ladies' room when the occupant in the next stall let out a particularly loud and juicy fart. Tristan said, no I'm sure he yelled, "Hey, she didn't say excuse me! And boy, does that stink!"

    I still clearly remember being brought to see my mom's best friend's new baby in the hospital, the look on my mother's face when I stated loudly in front of a handful of people, "You're right, Mom, he DOES have a Jewish nose."

  4. Anonymous9:49 PM

    Bridget, 3, we're at a public reststop restroom on a highway and she's sharing a stall with me. B announces very loudly "Did you know you have fur down there Mom?"

    Annika, 2, at a public restroom at the mall. There's a lady there changing her little boy. We're walking by and Annika detours over to the changing table, looks at the naked boy, and states "Yep, he has a penis"

    My cousin, 4, me 12. We're at an amusement park on one of those sky rides that takes you across the park. We're stopped and there's another cart right next to us stopped going the other way. My cousin looks over at the people in the other cart and says to me very loudly "Geez Sara, look at that ugly chink".

    Bridget, 4, and I walking from daycare to the car. Her "boyfriend" at dc is walking with his Mom to their car as well. B says "Mom, that is Lesley, he is my boyfriend." I smile and say "that's nice dear" while the other Mom smiles as well. B then Says "Mom, when Lesley and I grow up, we're going to get married." Me and other Mom still nodding and smiling. Then Bridget says "Mom, Lesley is going to put a baby in my tummy." Me now looking mortified and other Mom rushing boyfriend away from hussy preschooler.


  5. LOL! Your girls always make me laugh. I remember that last story. (WOW, have we really known each other that long that I remember a story from when Leah was 4? Amazing!)

    I stopped taking the boys with me into dressing rooms when each time I'd take off a shirt they would announce at the top of their lungs, "BOOBS! Mommy, I see your boobs!"

    Other than that, they really haven't said much in public that has been completely embarrasing, yet...

  6. While my "kids" don't actually have the ability to utter the spoken word, they have found several varied ways of communicating. I must admit their timing can be impeccable.

    Clyde, upon entering a seedy cabin (advertised as rustic) promptly lifted his leg on the couch to offer his opinion of the vacation accomodations.

    Haven & Digs are quite adept at reading my feelings. I guess my filter doesn't work with them. They always act 'oddly' around people I don't care for. The behaviours range from, again lifting legs on things when they don't normally, to backing up and growling, which again they don't normally do or my personal favourite goosing people I really do like! With the goosing, I just tell people that my boys have a thing for blondes or redheads etc. and that generally puts everyone at ease.