Monday, 9/19/2011 (Part III)

What are Funyuns?

“Why don’t you eat those,” I ask Maddie, referring to the pile of onions she had left on her plate.

“I think it’s mostly a force of habit now.”

“Eat them,” I urge. “They don’t taste like anything.”

“I know.”

“They just taste like onion, cooked onion.”

“What are funyuns?” asks Erica.

“Funyuns are gross,” says Maddie.

“Have you ever had them Dad?” asks Erica.

“I don’t know. What are they?”

“I never had them either. They’re really good.”

“I thought you never had them?” says Maddie.

“Yeah I did.”

“I though you said you never did.”

“I never had them until today.”

“Oh.”

“Who had those?” I ask.

“Someone at the lunch table. They’re really good.”

*

I still don’t know what funyuns are.

*

Fat Man Mowin’

“Tell Dad about that guy who was painting the field.”

“Well,” begins Daniel, “there was a fat guy painting the field there, and he couldn’t get the machine to start, so he sat on it, and started it, and it started shaking, and went ehr, ehr, ehr, ehr, ehr… ” he mimes a person locked into a paint mixer. “A real chunky guy, and he was going…” he mimes a man sitting on a riding mower with octagonal wheels “…all the way down the field. Everyone was trying not to laugh.”

“You know how Daniel does that little chuckle? We were walking out and he goes ‘huh, huh, huh. Mom…’ You know how he does that? That’s Daniel’s giggle.”

“Huh,” says Daniel, smiling at the memory of a shared moment with his Mom. “Huh.”

*

Pigeon Toes

“Do you think I’m pigeon toed?” asks Erica.

“No,” says Mom.

“I’m not,” says Daniel.

“Good,” says Erica

“Am I pigeon toed?” asks Linn.

“Yeah. You are,” says Mom.

“You’re pigeon brained,” I say.

Am I pigeon toed?” she asks again, looking at me.

“No. It’s when your feet point in.”

“Oh, you’re pigeon toed,” says Linn.

“Yeah, but isn’t that from wearing shoes that are too small?” asks Erica.

“No.”

“You’re pigeon toed,” Linn tells me again.

“What’s that?” asks Erica.

“It’s a deformity.”

“Dad, you’re pigeon toed,” Linn says a third time.

“No.”

“Yeah, all your toes point in.”

“No, your feet. Your whole foot points in like this.” I show her with my hands.

“Ohh. Those pigeon toes.”

“That’s weird,” says Erica.

Agreed.

*

Lindsey’s Fat

“Erica,” Mom asks. “Did you have two sausages?”

“No.”

“Did Erica have two sausages?” Mom asks me.

“No, I didn’t. Right Dad?” Wink wink. “Right?”

“Yes, you did.”

“I know.”

“I didn’t have two sausages,” says Linn.

“Lindsey did not.”

“Well that’s cause Linsey’s fat,” says Erica.

Linn glares at her sister.

“I’m just kidding.”

“I can barely… I don’t even want to eat every day! Sometimes I don’t even eat my lunch!”

“That doesn’t mean you’re fat.”

“Oh, well I have to come to school and make sure you are eating your lunch and not throwing it away,” says Mom.

“I eat two sandwiches every day at lunch,” says Erica. “I can’t not eat. I eat my nails. I get really hungry.”

“How come you’re not fat?” asks Linn.

“I’m a responsible person.”

“You eat every day!”

“Yeah, and I exercise.”

“I think it’s because Erica’s growing,” says Daniel.

“No, it’s because I exercise; a lot.”

“When you eat fat, you don’t get fat.”

Hunh?

Now, I think Lindsey said this because Erica does eat fat, looks for and chooses the fattiest pieces of meat in fact, despite our warnings, admonitions, and commands not to because it’s bad for you. But Erica has almost no body fat and Linn still has some of her “baby fat,” so I can understand why she might think this. I’m not quite sure how to fix this misconception, but I do know that I have a lot of work to do.

Linn has about ten more years’ worth of dinners at our house before college. That’s three-thousand, six-hundred-and-fifty dinners where I have to make sure that she is not eating animal fat to be thin. Yeah! On the plus side, maybe I’ll have less time to eat. I could stand to lose a few pounds myself…

*

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