Saturday, February 28, 2009

Euphemisms are for sissies

When we had our first child, my husband and I made a decision about names. No, I'm not referring to those that end up on birth certificates. I'm talking about what to call ::ahem:: those all-important parts that are supposed to stay covered up. We were going to teach our children the true names. No euphemisms for us!

We knew that we would be opening ourselves up to embarrassing situations in public, but we were prepared for it. Who cares if the stranger in the next stall hears our child use an anatomically correct term? We're in the bathroom for heaven's sake! I've heard a few giggles over the years. Then came one Sunday.

We were sitting in an oh-so-quiet congregational meeting when my two-year-old son grabbed at me and yelled, "Nipples!" Those around me tried unsuccessfully to stifle their laughter. So much for my pride.

And with three sons, we hear a certain non-euphemism on a regular basis. For the most part, we have de-mystified the term and it is used without giggles or hush-hushes. However, these are BOYS we are talking about.

Sometimes I wonder what my children hear when I teach them a new word. My youngest son has learned that the brown delivery truck is called the "Yoo Pee Ess" truck. He loves to see and hear it go zooming past our house. It doesn't matter that it rarely stops to deliver a package; it has wheels and rumbles! Sometimes he waves through the window, an unseen greeting. Not this time.

The truck had stopped at a neighbor's house. My little guy ran to the door and threw it wide open, greeting the truck and driver with a loud and gleeful, "Hi, _____ truck!"

I'll let you fill in what you think he said. But I'll give you a clue: this anatomically correct term was definitely not a euphemism.

No comments: