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But Violence Is Okay

| MO, USA | Children, Sons & Daughters

(I am making coffee while my sons, two and four years old, are eating breakfast. My two-year-old starts waving his spoon around.)

Two-Year-Old: “I am God!”

Me: “What did you say?”

Two-Year-Old: “I am God!”

Me: *launches into lengthy explanation as to why we do not pretend to be God*

Four-Year-Old: “No, we’re just sword fighting!”

Me: “Well, you still don’t pretend to be God.”

Four-Year-Old: “We aren’t pretending to be God. He said ‘en garde’!”

Me: “Oh. That’s all right, then.”

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Losing The Power On This Conversation

| CT, USA | Parents & Guardians

(My mother has an electronic lock on her front door. You have to enter a code on a numeric keypad to unlock the door. I am visiting one day. Shortly after I walk in, we have this exchange:)

Mom: “Oh! I forgot to tell you. If you come over and the door won’t unlock, it’s because the battery is dead.”

Me: “Okay, I’ll pick up a new battery and replace it for you.”

Mom: “No, that’s okay. I have a new battery for it.”

Me: “Oh, well, then go get it and I’ll replace it for you.”

Mom: “No, you don’t have to replace it.”

Me: “Do you know how to replace it?”

Mom: “No.”

Me: “Then let me do it for you.”

Mom: “You don’t need to replace it.”

Me: “But, Mom, you just said it needs replacing and you don’t know how to do it.”

Mom: “It doesn’t need replacing.”

Me: “But you said if the door won’t unlock it’s because the battery is dead.”

Mom: “Right.”

Me: “Soooooo… are you having trouble unlocking the door sometimes?”

Mom: “No.”

Me: “Then why did you tell me the battery is dead?”

Mom: “It’s not dead.”

Me: “So… what you meant was… if at some unknown time in the future, I can’t unlock the door… it’s because the battery went dead?”

Mom: “Yes!”

Me: “Gotcha.”

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Stop The Hangry

| Seattle, WA, USA | Boyfriends & Girlfriends, Parents & Guardians

(My dad works from home and so tends to work long hours and often forgets to eat all day until my mother and I get home and cook, something that makes him extremely unpleasant to be anywhere near because he gets angry as all get out at anyone who happens to be in the house. He refuses to believe that he’s being at all unreasonable, though, even after the fact. It’s spring break and my teenage brother has been home with us for a few days. My mother and I start to notice my dad not being crabby at all when we get home and it’s one night at the end of the week when we find out why. Let it be noted that my brother is a very sweet and considerate teenager and is known for never cursing or using foul language, even though the rest of our family has awful language.)

Dad: *talking about how my brother has been making breakfast and lunch all week* “It’s very nice to have someone home who cooks for everyone when they cook for themselves. [Brother] really is considerate like that.”

(My mother and I keep odd hours so we rarely cook meals for anyone besides ourselves outside of making dinner every night. This annoys my father.)

Brother: *wandering through the kitchen and hearing his name* “What?”

Dad: “Oh I was just telling your mother and sister about how nice it is that you make food for everyone during the day.”

Brother: *blinks at our dad for a moment and deadpans* “Oh. No, I cook for you for entirely selfish reasons. You’re a f****** a**-hole when you don’t eat all day.” *takes a soda out of the fridge and wanders away*

(There was stunned silence from my father while my mother and I dissolved into hysterical snorting laughter.)

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