Thursday, April 15, 2010

Christmas come early

I picked up Clément from school this afternoon. He came out of his classroom with his friend, Jed, who began telling me that a kid in their class was saying 'bad words' at them. I don't know why, but I always assume the kids tattling are leaving out the part of the story where they caused the offensive behavior. So I maturely retort, "Oh yeah, well what did YOU do to make him say that?" In which case the answer is invariably, "Nothing!" Less than 5 minutes later, the 'bad word' culprit is walking by and Jed screams, "That's him! He said the bad word!" I'm looking at this little pipsqueak of a kid, he's gotta be like 5 inches shorter than both Clément and Jed and he looks adorable, so I give Jed this look like, 'Are you kidding me with this? I've seen this kids photo on Christmas cards.' But then as we walk down the hall, Christmas Card seeks out Jed and Clément, walks right up to them and says "You fucker." I did a double take; wha what is this? And just to be sure they heard him, Christmas Card repeats, "You fucker." And I'm standing right next to these kids! When I was young, I liked to put on some sailor pants and shout a cuss word or two, but I always made sure there wasn't an adult around. However, I AM an adult, in the biological sense, so I looked right at that kid and he looked right at me and I said the first thing that came to mind, "Hey! Not nice!" I'm sure Clément feels safer knowing that I'll always stick up for him with razor sharp words like not nice. I must be 5. Clément could come up with something better than that. The kid had wonky teeth, I could have called him out on his shitty dentistry work or his barber must be on vacay because his little afro is getting nappy. To top it off, Jed marched right up to this kids dad and told him that Christmas Card had just called him a bad word and you know what dad did?! Looked onto his son and gave him a little smile as if to say, 'Oh, you little so-and-so! Always saying naughty words!" Like the kid had mis-pronounced the word beach or sheet. It's unbelievable the hands-off parenting I witness in France. I should have walked up to the Dad and emphatically stated, "You fucker." Perhaps I would have received the same patronizing smile.

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