Sunday, March 6, 2011

#96 - The Darnedest Things

This morning, Teresa was in her office, working away to solve some crisis developing out of the latest systems conversion at work. Christopher and I were left to have breakfast on our own.

While we were enjoying a bowl of oatmeal, we happened to look out through our sliding glass door into the back yard, where we saw a cat in the neighbor's tree. While we watched, the cat gingerly made its way down through the branches to the top of the tree trunk. As it was looking around for a way out of the tree or perhaps looking for a place to jump, Christopher says to me, "Cats are such drama queens." Darnedest thing #1.

A few minutes later, I hear the following question: "Dad, do you know about sperm?" I suddenly got a little nervous thinking the time has come for "The Talk," the one I never got growing up, the one my single year as a Boy Scout left me unprepared to give. Darnedest thing #2.

I answered, "Yes," and was about to try to formulate an explanation, when he told me what he knew. "There's the sperm whale." "Yes." I said. He quickly added, "Then, there's the other sperm. They're like little balls with tails." Oddly enough, the fact that he already knew that much made it a little easier to try and explain their function to him.

Then he asked me if Oliver, our beagle, had sperm. I told him no, and he asked me why. I told Christopher that Oliver had been neutered so that he would not father lots of puppies because there were already so many dogs in the world that no one wanted.

At this point, I might have expected to have to explain to Christopher what it means to be neutered. However, he astounded me by asking if Oliver's reproductive organs had been removed so he wouldn't get even crazier around other dogs. (Our beagle does not play well with other dogs, the ad on Craigslist not withstanding.) Darnedest thing #3.

After that, there was no more talk of sperm or cats or drama queens. We finished our breakfast, Christopher cleared the table, and then he went off to do some drawing or reading.

Christopher never saw the television show because it was on the air long before he was born, but Art Linkletter had it right when he stated that kids say the darnedest things. At least Christopher sure does.

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