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    Has A Hiss-tory With Cats

    | Milwaukee, WI, USA | Cousins, Sons & Daughters

    (My family is together for my brother’s wedding. I’m talking with my cousin’s daughter, who’s only recently started talking.)

    Cousin: “[Daughter], what sound does a dog make?”

    Daughter: “Woof!”

    Cousin: “What sound does a lion make?”

    Daughter: “Roar!”

    Cousin: “What sound does a cat make?”

    Daughter: “Hiss!”

    Me: “I have a feeling she learned that last one through experience.”

    Going On A Playful Trip

    | Cremona, Italy | Parents & Guardians

    (My dad and I are walking down towards a small cafe when we see a man burst out running and a waiter follow soon after.)

    Waiter: “Stop! Stop him!”

    (My dad looks uncertain but sticks his foot out and trips the ‘runner.’)

    Runner: *falls and curses*

    (The waiter catches up and pins him against the wall. Later we see him drag him away back to the cafe.)

    Me: “Wow, such action.”

    Dad: “I thought they were playing because they were smiling!”

    Me: “Then why’d you trip him?”

    Dad: “…”

    (When we ate at the cafe the waiter gave us 50% off!)

    The Sky Is The Zip Code Limit

    | NJ, USA | Aunts & Uncles, Children

    (It’s a slow day. I only have two or three tables filled at the time, one of which is a mother with two young daughters, the oldest looking no more than five, and young lady who, from overhearing the conversation, is either her sister or sister-in-law. I’ve taken their order a while back and the young girl is filling out the kid’s place mat: a map of America with some landmarks to match to states. The map is just America.)

    Little Girl: “Aunty, where are we?”

    Aunt: “Well, New York is here so we should be about here:” *points to New Jersey on the map*

    Little Girl: “And where do you live?”

    Aunt: “Hmm… well, Montana is here so Calgary would be about here.”

    (She then puts a dot above the map with one of the crayons and looks over to the mom to confirm the location. The little girl’s eyes light up in amazement.)

    Little Girl: “Aunty, you live in the sky?!”

    CAN’T Spell

    | CT, USA | Parents & Guardians

    (My dad and I are talking to my mom, describing something funny that happened in an episode of a TV show he and I watch together. We’re in a fairly crowded restaurant, with both older and younger diners surrounding us.)

    Me: “So the main character volunteers to write an obituary for his wife’s aunt who had just died, but the newspaper printed it wrong.”

    Dad: “Yeah, they spelled the word ‘aunt’ wrong. Instead of an ‘A,’ they used a ‘C.’”

    Me: “Isn’t that funny?”

    Mom: “So you mean they spelled ‘cant’?”

    (My dad and I look at each other and then at my mom.)

    Me: “Nooo, they spelled a-u-n-t, but used a ‘C’ instead of the ‘A.’”

    Mom: *very loudly* “OOOOH, C**T!”

    A Marrying Together Of Ideas

    | USA | Children, Nephews & Nieces

    (My 15-year-old niece and I are discussing gay marriage.)

    Me: You know, you probably won’t believe this, but when you and [Cousin] were little, you used to put a veil on your Patrick doll and marry him to your Spongebob doll.

    Niece: *laughing* “Really?”

    Me: “Oh, yes. A Teletubby was usually the preacher.”

    Niece: “Well, I guess there’s nothing wrong with Spongebob and Patrick getting married if they want to.”

    Me: *after a brief pause* “Actually, there are probably about a million things wrong with Spongebob and Patrick getting married. It’s just that the fact that they are both boys isn’t one of those things.”

    (And then we both laughed until we almost were sick.)


    | AK, USA | Cousins

    (My whole family is eating dinner at a nice restaurant on our trip to Alaska. My little cousin has, as usual, insisted on sitting next to me while her parents are on the other end of the table.)

    Me: “I’d like a virgin mojito, please.”

    Waiter: “A mojito? Very good. Which tab will that be on?”

    Cousin: “I’ll get it! I’m paying!”

    (She waves around her room key-card and tries to hand it to the waiter, but my dad waves him over and adds his own drink to our tab.)

    Waiter: “Here you go.”

    (I taste it, and it’s a bit more citrus-heavy than the way I make them at home.)

    Cousin: “Can I have a sip?”

    Me: “No, you wouldn’t like it.”

    Cousin: “But I paid for it! I can have a drink because I paid for it!”

    Me: “No, my dad paid for it. You can get one of your own.”

    Cousin: “But I need to! I paid for it! MOMMY SAYS I CAN HAVE SOME!”

    (I look over, and her mother isn’t even in the room.)

    Me: “You really want some?”

    Cousin: “Finally! I paid for it; I can have as much as I want!”

    Me: “Just a sip, to see if you like it.”

    (She takes a sip and makes a disgusted face, and wordlessly hands it back to me.)

    Me: “I told you, you wouldn’t like it.”

    (Later, I realized that why it tasted strong was that it might not have been ‘virgin’!)

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