I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before or not, but we have a bit of a “bad word” problem at our house these days. It all started when I, in a fit of totally-inappropriate road rage, honked my horn and called a fellow driver a “Fucking Idiot!”. Yes, Greta was in the car with me and yes, I know I should’ve known better, but, wow, that chick really was driving like a fucking idiot and, well…actually, that’s my only excuse. Sorry.
Anyway, months passed. Literally. Entire months passed with no mention of the dreaded “bad words” I had uttered. And then one day, while we were looking for parking at the library, someone in the parking lot honked their horn at another driver and Greta busted up laughing, pointed at the cars and said: “Look, Daddy…a fucking idiot!” Yep, that’s me, SAHD of the year. Urgh…I just about died.
I’d like to say that since that day Greta has never again said those two choice words aloud, but, I’d be lying. Whenever possible, I do try to use the term “sweetheart” in lieu of swearing these days, and, for the most part, Greta has followed suit. In fact, she says “sweetheart” like a character from an old gangster movie, it’s kind of hilarious. But, substitute swear words aside, she still lets loose a good, old-fashioned “fucking idiot” when we least expect it, so, again, bring on the parenting medals.
And now, she’s started saying “shit”. Yep, I guess I say that a lot too. In fact, since Greta started saying it, I’ve noticed that several of our friends and family members use the term pretty liberally as well. So, who knows where she first heard it? The fact is, she says it sometimes and all we can do now is lead by example, put a penny in the bad word jar every time we swear, and, you know, shame the hell outta her when she does it too. Just kidding. Kinda.
So, the latest twist on all this played out yesterday. I was waiting to make a left turn at an intersection that I have since vowed never to use again (Fuck you, Riverside and Hollywood Way!! Seriously, get a green turn arrow already!) and I got really, really mad at another driver. And just when I was about to let loose with some choice profanity, I caught a glimpse of Greta’s face in her little rearview mirror and stopped myself.
And what did she do? She smiled and said: “Daddy said a bad word.” I was like: “Um, no, Daddy did not say a bad word.” Greta just smiled again and said, and I kid you not, she actually said this: “Daddy thought of a bad word.” Great, now she’s reading my thoughts too?
Urgh…we’re gonna need a bigger bad word jar.