Today I was informed by an eight year-old boy that I have no sense of humor.
"Mom, you don't think ANYTHING is funny!" he griped.
Of course my boys think they're a regular Comedy Central team around here as they try their best to outdo each other with the best joke. Let me see if I can accurately recreate the one David subjected us to on the way to school this morning. Ten minutes to tell from start to finish, including the frequent complaints and interruptions. Come on, there have been wars that took less time than it took him to tell this stupid joke. And I use the word "joke" very loosely.
I may be able to lay down the storyline (though I've shortened it a bit) but nothing--I repeat NOTHING--can recreate the pain of driving in the car as a captive audience and being forced to listen to this:
There was a boy who was five and he was riding his bike down a road and suddenly he had an accident and fell off his bike and hurt himself. Suddenly a family of monks came out and took him down their hole [there was a slight pause in the telling as we informed David that monks aren't weasels--living in holes and definitely not traveling in family groups] and they took care of him and made him all better and while he was getting better he heard some music [evidently their hole is wired for sound] and he asked, "What is that?" and the monks said, "I can't tell you, you're not a monk.""So what was it?" I ask, sensing what was coming.
So five years pass and that same boy is now eight and he's riding his bike down another street and suddenly he has another accident and while he's laying on the ground hurt some monks come out and pick him up and take him to their home and take care of him. While he's feeling better he hears something and he asks, "What is that?" and the monks say, "I can't tell you, you're not a monk."
Ten years pass and the boy is now 18 and he's riding his bike down another street and suddenly he has another accident and while he's laying on the ground hurt some monks come out and pick him up and take him to their home and take care of him. While he's feeling better he hears something and he asks, "What is that?" and the monks say, "I can't tell you, you're not a monk."
Well five more years go by and he decides that he wants to be a monk [I can't believe you're still reading this] so he goes to the monks and tells them he wants to join them. He trains for years and years and years and finally they take him into a room where there is a gold door and they tell him he has to find the key to the door. He looks and looks and when he finds it and opens the door there is a silver door and the monks tell him he has to find the key. So he looks and looks and looks and when he finally finds it and opens it there is a bronze door and the monks tell him he has to find the key. He looks and looks and looks and when he finally finds it and opens it he hears this sound. He asks the monks what that sound is and they tell him.
"I can't tell you, you're not a monk."
I didn't even crack a smile but he thought it was hysterical and when he noticed that I wasn't laughing he accused me of having no sense of humor. Me. How unfair is that? I mean I'm full of funny, I invented funny. Considering that listening to David's joke was more painful than getting a simultaneous waxing and root canal while standing in line at the DMV I thought his comment to be extremely unjust.
Just to prove to you that I do recognize funny when I hear it here are four things recently overhead in the Mitton house this past week, all worthy of blog posts and proving that anyone who makes it through motherhood with their sanity intact ought to get a prize. Like a lifetime supply of Coldstone ice cream. Yes, that would do nicely.
1. "Who trained Yoda?"
This metaphysical Jedi mind-bender is brought to you courtesy of David and Spencer--the resident Jedis who don't understand English well enough to grasp the concept of "pick up your room" but can grapple with Force-defying conundrums like this. Rather along the lines of "Did Adam have a belly button?" they took up this debate du jour and argued over it with the kind of stamina it takes to avoid eating your vegetables at dinner until they brought it to me to mediate.
"Mom--what do you think? Did Yoda have a trainer? Mom?"
Of course they asked me this while I was simultaneously rolling out a pizza crust, emptying the dishwasher, bathing a child and talking on the phone to a stupid telemarketer who only understood the word "no" when accompanied by explicatives.
"Mom? . . . Mom? . . . Mom?. . . Mom? . . . Mom? . . . " they repeated at two-second intervals like Chinese Water Torture until I was ready to put my hand over the receiver and let them know what I thought of their little green Jedi.
"Did Yoda have a trainer?" Now, that's funny.
2. "Mom, if I got cut in half would I still be alive?"
I was reading on the couch while David and Spencer were recreating a Star Wars battle scene on our back deck for the benefit of any and all neighbors within the sound of their light sabers when I was interrupted by the sound of the patio door opening.
David stuck his head in and asked this probing and poignant question "Mom, if I got cut in half would I still be alive?" to which my ready answer was (without even looking up), "Only if your parents were worms."
You see, when you're a mom you're trained to make critical, split-second decisions like that.
I heard a cheer from Spencer while David sighed and shut the door. Evidently he'd been really counting on the ability to regenerate both halves of his severed body into two mighty warriors strong enough to beat his older brother for once. Good luck kid.
3. "How old was I when I was a baby?"
No answer at all for that. Nothing. Lillian's on her own with this one.
4. "I wish I had a python for a pet and that he would squeeze me but not too hard. That way I could wear him around all day on my neck and not get hurt and everyone would think I was really cool. If I had a python as a pet would you let me wear him to school?"
I learned long ago that you just say "yes" and let it go. Don't bring up the issues of reptilian neck accessories not being allowed by the school district or how hard it would be to use a school restroom with a snake wrapped around your neck or that it would disqualify one from helping out in the lunchroom, don't even bother. You just say "yes" because it'll never happen so give yourself a break by closing the conversation--with "yes" there's no where else for this little scenario to go.
It works with all sorts of things. "Mom if I got a letter saying I'd got into Hogwarts, would you buy me my own owl?"
"Sure, we'd get you anything you want."
"Mom, if I was able to breathe underwater would you build me a swimming pool in our back yard?"
"Of course, how else would you be happy?"
"What if I had been born with two heads could I get my own room then?"
"Sure, and if you ever start to grow a second head be sure and let me know so we can make plans."
Don't try to reason, make your life easy by saying "Yes."
If only teaching kids how to tell a joke that is actually funny were as easy. Anyone have one for them? They're getting low on material.
Congratulations to Felicia from New York City who has won the Jewelry by Jessica Olive Branch pendant. I'm rather jealous--I'd like one for myself.
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