I recently cleaned out the car and mistakenly took out all the DVDs,
and as a result, the children didn't have anything to do on our car
ride yesterday. As much as I enjoyed the silence for the last few
months, however, I realized that I was missing a whole lot of other
good stuff. Like the strange turns in the conversations my husband
and I have when the kids are allowed to just jump right in.
forgot that they didn't have anything to occupy them until I
mentioned to my husband that a carnival would be coming to town. My
10-year-old thought I said "carnivore."
"Like a T. rex?" he asked.
"A T. rex? What on earth are you talking about?" I was confused
by the twist in the conversation. Because of the random comments
that come flying out of his mouth on a constant basis, I didn't make
the connection between "carnival" and "carnivore." My husband caught
it, though. He must've been just like my 10-year-old about 35 years
"Not carnivore; carnival," he said, not quite realizing what that
word would do to a car full of kids. Pandemonium erupted in the
"A carnival!!" All three shouted in unison. And, as if it was
planned, they all asked, "Can we go?"
"Well, maybe," I hedged, "Your brother's boss will have a booth
there. Maybe we can visit."
My daughter, apparently having the same hearing affliction as my
son, asked, "Is it a wild moose?"
Dismissing the fact that most moose (mooses? meese?) are wild,
making the question somewhat redundant, I again did not make the
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"Is what a wild moose?" I asked. I thought that maybe I was the
one with the hearing difficulties. How could she possibly get wild
moose out of going to a carnival?
Again, my husband got it. "Not moose; booth. Like a place to sell
stuff at the carnival."
Her moosey mistake, of course, set them on a path of no return.
They started laughing and carrying on, arms and legs flying hither
and yon. If we weren't in the close confines of a car, it wouldn't
have been bad, but it's hard to drive with all that noise.
After a few admonishments didn't work, we had to pull out our ace
card: "If you can't calm down, you're all going to be grounded!"
My 5-year-old's hearing is fine, but his vocabulary apparently
needs to be fine-tuned. As they all quieted down we could hear his
small voice in the back say, "Yeah, and you know what grounded
means," he said. "It means they're going to bury us in a hole in the
My husband and I looked at each other in shock, both thinking the
same thing: Is that really what he thinks we're going to do?! Good
We couldn't help it -- we burst into uncontrollable laughter. The
sort of laughter that we just scolded our kids about. It occurred to
me later that our laughter probably sounded pretty sinister to a kid
who thought we were going to bury him in the ground.
[Text from file received from Laura
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