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Thursday, April 06, 2006

Tattletale

On the way to Grandpa and Grandma's house last Tuesday, I found myself driving behind someone who apparently thought the speed limit was 20 rather than 50. I was extremely irritated as this particular stretch of road is not one on which passing a vehicle is easy. So I puttered along for several miles at 20mph behind this woman who was slower than a seven-year-itch. Apparently I was saying out loud the commentary that was going on inside my head. Fortunately I am not prone to four-letter words (unless you count "crap," which I did not say this time).

When we pulled into Grandpa and Grandma's house, Grandpa met us in the drive way. He barely had the door open on Dear Daughter's side of the family-mobile when she said, "Grandpa, we were behind a stupid lady! And Mommy was saying, 'Oh, come ON!'" Note that Dear Daughter had all the voice inflections in exactly the same places as I had uttered them. Of course, Grandpa got a good laugh out of my little tattletale.

Several days ago, Dear Husband told Dear Daughter that our neighbor's dog, "Skeeter" is a "little rat dog!" We've never been fond of the little yapper who can hardly be called a dog in the first place. He has kept us awake on many an early Saturday morning and several late nights. I didn't know Dear Husband called him the "little rat dog" in front of Dear Daughter until one day Dear Daughter was outside with me and heard Skeeter yapping. She announced, "Skeeter is a little rat dog!" I prayed silently that she would never tell this to the owner. When Dear Husband was on the deck with Dear Daughter having a conversation with the neighbor across the fence lines this weekend, Skeeter was yapping away as usual. I was just sure that Dear Daughter would use the most opportune moment to inform the neighbor of this opinion. Fortunately, she was being too shy at the moment to spill the beans. And fortunately the neighbor and her little rat dog are moving next week anyway.

Dear Daughter did tell on me, inadvertently, at the library one day though. Let me preface this one with some background information. There is an obnoxious 12 year old who lives across the culdesac from us. Dear Daughter is scared of him (for good reason, if you ask me). We consoled her by saying that he's just a goofy kid. He has since been deemed "The Goofy Kid" by those in our household. Whenever he is out in his yard or playing in the street (as he frequently does), Dear Daughter says, "There's The Goofy Kid!" We are not typically in earshot of him. On our weekly trip to the library to get Dear Daughter her 14 new books to read (that's the number that usually satisfies her reading fix for a week), Dear Daughter ran to play with a wooden train set in the children's section. It's her favorite attraction right now. A boy about 4 years of age was standing by the train behind a pillar, hidden from Dear Daughter's sight until she got close enough. She continued to run toward the train until she saw him. Then she stopped short in her tracks. At this moment, the library was completely quiet (not a frequent event in the children's section). She loudly exclaimed, "Oh! There's a goofy kid!" as his mother stood nearby looking on. I think my face turned a couple shades of red as I said, "Sweetie, that's not a nice thing to say!" and I inside I thought that indeed he was goofy looking and that we were going have start being a lot more careful what things we say out loud to Dear Daughter since explaining the nuances of what is not appropriate to repeat would be lost, even on our little precocious one.

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