I was doing sprint cleaning jiggling to Nat King Cole's, "your story seemed so touchy but it sounds just like a lie" when my eyes were feasted upon a book on the dusty shelve. It was written by none other than Bill Cosby titled," Kids say the darnest thing". I read it years ago, during the days when I was still trying to get my head together, AND my body had not yet fallen apart (unlike the present moment whereby it is versa more than vice) . Gosh..those were the days..
A degree, marriage and one kid later, I find that I now truly decipher what the story was all about. They do. Kids say the darnest things. I recall when my daughter was about 5 years old, she drew this huge snake on the wall from the beginning of a staircase, right up to the the end , in permanent marker mind you. Pissed, but always believe in asking politely why kid perform their pranks, just out of my curiousity, I asked her, " Sayang, why did you draw that snake on the wall. I bought you lots of drawing papers so that you can draw on them. You should not have done what you did. Now the wall is a dirty."
She looked at me and in all honesty answered, " Sorry Ummi. I thought you'd like my beautiful drawing of this snake. I wanted to draw the longest snake for you, but the paper is too small and the snake won't fit in it ."
I was, speechless before bursting in a fit of laughter. But of course I had to explain to her why a small snake will make mommy happier.
Her grandfather tripped over the toys she left on the floor one day and before he could turn around and scold her for leaving her toys recklessly around, hurriedly with widened pupils she instead scolded my father in law, "Dadu jaaan. You should really watch where you are going. See, now you fall down and wreck my toys !!". My father in law found it totally amusing and was awed by the speed of which my daughter could come up with self defence at age of 5..
Then there was this time when my sister narrated an incident whereby she had an argument with my daughter. I find it funny that a then 20ish year old lady would get into a squable with a 5 year old kid. My sister nagged, "You have manage to wreck every single thing you put your hands on. What else have you not wrecked so far, tell me!!!".
My daughter gave an odd expression, as though she was in deep thought and answered back,
"The TV?". My sister just found it difficult to stay angry for long.
Still, at the age of 5, I remember her conversation with the father, who happen to be a doctor who smoked. (No, he did not die of lung cancer, instead, of a car crash. And we are all terrified of dying from cancer when the probability of dying on the road is much higher)
Mira: "Abah. Do you know that smoking is harzardous to your health?"
Abah: "Yeees", the father dragged the affirmation while puffing off what looked like smoke that came out from a guilty mouth.
Mira: "Then why are you still smoking?"
Abah: "I will stop someday"
Abah: " Promise. You know I never break my promise"
Mira: "Abah, 'never' is a strong word"
My hubby and I looked at each other wondering where at age 5 a kid gets all this bombastic phylosophy.
My nephew who was 3years old back then, use to play "enjit enjit semut siapa sakit naik atas" with the maid, but with a twist. The maid would say, "enjit enjit semut, siapa sakit....." and my nephew would resume, "siapa sakit pergi hospital"..and we would always laugh at this.
Then there was this time when she was awfully naughty and I just got real mad and told her, "I swear by God you can be insufferable at times. I can't take it lar!!!". She was then 9years old, a precocious puberty I'd call her then. She just snorted and said, "If you can't take it now ummi, I'm telling you, life is not going to be easy for you in the near future."
Even at 10, I refuse to allow her to go off with friends to shopping malls etc, or go to the nearest shop, no matter how much she begged me. I'm just a paranoid when it comes to safety, a trait passed down for generations to ensure longevity of life. My excuse for not letting her go would be, "you are not street smart. It's dangerous.". She'd answer back defiantly, "Ummi, how can I be street smart when you won't even let me go on the streets?", to which I kept silent as I was face with a deja vous of the story of "which comes first? The chicken or the eggs?"...I guess, that is why the word,"because I told you so" was invented by not so genius moms like me. The phrase is obsolete in usefulness currently.
And at the age of 10, she kept insisting that she was a "pre-teen" and was in a phase whereby she was beginning to be aware of her physical growth. She would get into trouble at school for contesting her Uztazah's (female religious teacher) statement "Pakai Quitex adalah haraaaaam" by asking the Ustazah,
"Cikgu, mana dia orang tau Quitex tu haram cikgu, sebab masa zaman nabi dulu, Quitex belum dicipta lagi cikgu?" ( Translation: "Teacher, how do you know that Quitex is banned ? It was not even invented during our prophet's time?)..I am sure she wasn't trying to be funny because she is the inquisitive type , but the Uztazah was not at all amused.
She would stay at her grandparents' place over the weekend sometimes. My mother is fond of keeping the curry or certain dishes overnight or a few days, because apparently these dishes taste better after some time. I remember buying some food from the stall one day and it looked quite foul. My daughter had one look at it and ask me,"how sure are you that this dish has gone bad?". Holding a responsibility of a mom means you sometimes have to come up with a brilliant answer at all times, unless dumbfounded, I told her, "well, when in doubt, don't eat".
Hitherto, I still cannot comprehend how fast her mind network works when she answered, "Greaaaat...that means I have to starve at Tok's place lah..."
Really. Kids can be more receptive at times. I remember travelling in an LRT with her and as we passed by Station Dang Wangi, she commented, "Malaysians can be really confused people sometimes ummi." Bewildered, I asked,"what do you mean?".
"Well," she answered half smirking,"How can you call "dung" wangi?". We just giggled away.
I enjoy having conversations with my daughter. She's 13 now but never fail to keep me entertained with her wittiness. We'd have a battle of wittiness when the mood is right and I can tell you one thing, I enjoy every minute of it. Really. Kids do say the darnest thing.
- ▼ October (6)
- ► 2008 (74)
- ► 2009 (106)
- ► 2010 (53)
- ► 2011 (25)
- ► 2012 (18)