Thursday, April 16, 2015

She's got the usage down pat. And the spelling.

One of the things my dad likes to talk about is how different his three children are, despite having been raised by the same parents with the same rules and the same amount of love.  (For the most part, re the rules.  Josh and I maintain, I think correctly, that Sam, as the youngest child who experienced parental discipline after they had already been worn down, got away with much more than either of us would have).

And obviously, we're all different people.

The personality differences between Zeke and Josie are becoming more pronounced.  She likes hard rock-type headbanger music (I've seen her jump around to Ozzy Osborne).  Zeke prefers singer-songwriter stuff like Mumford and Sons.  They still both love Katy Perry.

Zeke is very sensitive, and extremely concerned with being in my good graces.  For me to tell him that I'm disappointed in him is about the harshest thing I could say.  But at the same time, he's receptive to being corrected.  If I tell him that I don't like something he's doing and that he needs to change it, he usually will.

Josie, on the other hand, gives zero fucks about being in trouble (most of the time).  If she misbehaves, I can go on a tirade about the various ways she's pissing me off, and she'll pretty much roll her eyes at me and just wait patiently until I'm done.

So they have extremely divergent attitudes about swear words.

Neither J nor I swear in front of the kids (save for the occasional slip-up, or words like "hell" or "damn").  I know that they know the words, and probably use them with their friends when adults are out of earshot, but I hate it when I hear kids swearing.

Zeke is very conscientious.  On the rare occasion that I'm watching a grown-up movie (i.e., something rated beyond PG) when they walk into a room, Zeke will hear bad language and say solemnly, "Mama, we shouldn't be hearing language like this."  Josie, on the other hand, will soak it all in before I have a chance to turn it off.  Filing it away for later.

When we were leaving Iceland, we decided to get something to eat at the airport before getting on the plane.  The airport is kind of weirdly sprawling, so there are endless hallways and a huge duty free area.  It was hard to figure out the best place to get something fast.  We finally settled on Joe and the Juicea cafeteria-style place where you can get stuff like pizza and hot dogs (Icelandic hot dogs are the shiz) and pre-made pastas like lasagna.

The place was a zoo, and ridiculously disorganized.  Nobody could figure out where the lines began or ended, or what the procedure was for ordering something.  And getting the food took forever.  I ordered a small cheese pizza.  It took 20 minutes, and by the time I hustled back to where the kids were sitting with my parents, I was a frazzled mess.

"Geez, that was crazy.  I can't believe how inefficient their system is,"  I said.

Josie waved her arms around and exclaimed, "what's with this fucking line??"

My eyes widened.

"Seriously, can you believe this fucking line??" she repeated.  She sounded like an indignant New Yorker.

"What did you just say?"  I was shocked, but the way she said it was so perfect that it was also hilarious, so I had to keep a straight face.

She kind of shrugged and just looked at me.

I gave her the "we do not use that kind of language that is inappropriate missy" speech, while she gazed at me, looking bored.  I was trying really hard not to laugh.

Zeke was scandalized.  "Mama!  Josie used the 'f' word!  The one ends with an 'n.'"

At this point I'm biting the insides of my cheeks to keep from cracking up.  My parents, who were grinning at this whole exchange, weren't helping matters.

"Actually, the 'f' word she used ends with a 'g,'" I clarified.

"No, Mama," Josie corrected me.  "It's the one that ends with an 'n.'"

And the way she said it, I guess she was right.

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