mrsveteran (mrsveteran) wrote,

We Don't Say "Stupid"

I don't remember the occasion, but the whole family was out for a nice dinner at the Atlantis buffet. Mom, Dad, Charlie, my brother, Taylor and I were sitting around the table, plates loaded to the sky, and chatting about this and that. I believe Taylor was about four or five at the time: just old enough to behave on a dinner out, and not quite old enough not to need a booster seat.

It was all going famously, until, in response to something or other, Charlie said, "Well, that's just stupid."

Taylor's eyes got wide, and he looked at his dad and tugged on his sleeve. "Dad," he whispered urgently, "He said 'stupid!'" This was obviously something of a shock to him, based on his reaction.

My brother regarded Charlie with a grave and disapproving expression. "Um, we don't say 'stupid,'" he informed him.

Charlie looked puzzled. "Why the hell not?" he asked incredulously.

"Because it's not nice," he explained. "Calling someone stupid isn't nice, so we don't say 'stupid.'"

Taylor nodded in agreement.

"We don't say 'stupid,'" Charlie repeated.

"That's right," he confirmed.

Charlie thought about that for a minute.

"Can we say 'fucking retarded?'" Charlie asked.

From what I've seen, my brother never tried to censor Charlie again.

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