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    To Him A Label Is Babel

    | Lakeland, FL, USA | Parents & Guardians, Theme Of The Month

    (My father is known for failing constantly to read the labels on things. In the past, he has eaten doggie breath strips, and has wiped himself with toilet cleaning wipes covered in bleach. I am making fun of him for this as he finishes some housework.)

    Me: “You know, you should try actually reading things before you just go using them all willy-nilly.”

    (My father marches to the sink to wash his hands.)

    Dad: “You don’t know what you’re talking about. A few mistakes don’t mean anything. I’m careful! How do you know I just wasn’t having a couple of bad days? …hey, this lava soap smells funny…”

    Me: “That’s because you’re washing your hands with hair removal cream.”

    Always Let Your Kaiju Be Your Guide

    | Erie, PA, USA | Children, Siblings

    (I am nine years old. My brother is 18 months old, and has started talking. I’m usually the only one who understands him. He is pointing at the TV.)

    Brother: “Tokyo, Tokyo!”

    Mom: “Did he just say Tokyo? Does he want to watch Godzilla? How did he even see that stuff? You know I don’t want him watching violent movies; he’s too young!”

    Me: “Hold on, mom.”

    (I go to my brother.)

    Me: “Hey, buddy. Does Tokyo go like this?”

    (I place my finger on my nose, and zoom it out, making a ‘whoop’ noise like it’s growing.)

    Brother: “YEAH! TOKYO!”

    Me: “He says he wants to watch Pinocchio.”

    Mom: “Oh.”

    (Ironically, my brother is now 21, and a massive ‘Godzilla’ fan!)

    The Ball Finally Dropped

    | Southend-on-Sea, Essex, England, UK | Grandparents

    Grandma: “So, was your brother glad to be rid of his testicles?”

    Me: “Sorry, what?!”

    Grandma: “I said, was your brother glad to be rid of his chest of drawers?”

    Traditional Family Values

    | Seattle, WA, USA | Boyfriends & Girlfriends

    (I am female. I live with my girlfriend and her military family. They are being transferred to a new city, and I am moving with them. Just before we move, I contract strep throat. I don’t treat it, because I can’t deal with yet another thing during the move. After we arrive, people start telling me horror stories of untreated strep infections causing organ failure, and I eventually find a walk-in clinic. My girlfriend and I have a conversation along the way.)

    Girlfriend: “You know, you’re really part of the family now.”

    Me: “Hmm? Um, thanks.”

    Girlfriend: “Yeah, every time we move, somebody gets a life-threatening problem. You took the fall for us this time, so you’re officially part of the family!”

    Me: “Uh…”

    Girlfriend: “We have dumb traditions.”

    Not All It’s Cracked Up To Be

    | Montreal, QC, Canada | Children, Friends, Sons & Daughters

    (My three-year-old daughter likes to call crackle nail polish ‘crack’, which tends to lead to some pretty interesting conversations. My friends get a kick out of this and are very used to it.)

    Daughter: “I want to use some crack.”

    Me: “We don’t have any crack left.”

    Daughter: “But I like crack.”

    My Friend: “Next time you come to my house, you can use some of mine. I have lots of crack.”

    (My daughter’s beaming, and I’m dying laughing as I watch my friend process what she’s just told her.)

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