Three Kid Circus : Bad to the Bone

Friday, August 13, 2004

Bad to the Bone

I've got a bit of a potty mouth. I try to keep it under wraps, but occasionally I let fly with a few choice expletives. I'm not proud of it, but sometimes it's just the way I need to express something.

Most notably, I do it when I'm rehashing on the telephone with my dear friend. We like to pretend we are cutting edge. She comes up with lots of hilarious sayings. I stick to good old profanity, mixed with hip hop slang that I pick up from my friend PW, (that's Pee-Dub, folks) who assures me that her verbal stylings are authentic and truly "ghetto."

It's not surprising that some of my uh, verbal indiscretions have been regurgitated by my wee ones. I act shocked and scandalized, and bust forth in the Voice Of God:

"Civilized people do not use that language! Children DO NOT use that word. Ever."

Then I go hide in the closet and laugh. I just know I'm going to end up in the principal's office some day, forced to explain how and why my child was able to use swear words in the proper context. Mercy. Anyhoo, I rarely treat the outside world to potentially offensive language.

So, one day I take the kids to the park. We're on the playground, whee! Lots of sand being eaten, lots of yelling kids. I am pushing my youngest in the swing, and holler at my oldest. "You've got sand on your butt!" and make a swiping motion. I turned back to give my swinger a push, and got stared down by another mother.

I smiled, noting that her face did not change. My oldest was feigning deafness, and I gave it another shot. "Wipe the sand off your butt!"

The staring mother now fixed her face into a snarl and descended on me. "We do NOT use that word."

I was genuinely confused. "What word?"

"Bee You Tee Tee. Its foul." She bristled at having to spell it out.

Resisting the urge to laugh, I rearranged my face into an earnest expression and asked "Oh, I didn't know. What are we allowed to say?"

She rolled her eyes and said "Bottom."

Ah! I tried to explain. "But, it is a butt, you know short for buttocks. Not bottom-tocks."

She, I kid you not, held her hand up in my face and said, "I will not listen to your foul language."

She hauled her kid off the swing and shot me a dirty look. "Hey," I called to my oldest. Get your sandy ASS over here, swing's free."

I'm just incorrigible.