Location: Palm Beach County, Florida, United States

Recently have been told I look like Mary Ann from Gilligan's Island. I hadn't heard that in years, but that is a good place to start as to what I look like, although she had a better bod. I have three boys and have been married for 13 years. Born of a Navy family, in Hawaii, one Mom, one Dad, one sister and one brother. The eldest of three children. BS in Applied Mathematics. Consider Pensacola my home town although I moved every 2-3 years of my life growing up. Currently work in the aerospace industry in an engineering position while being a Mom. Of Celtic heritage and very proud of it.

Monday, January 10, 2005

If the Name Fits...

When I was young, my siblings and I used to ask The Great Omnipotent One all sorts of questions. I can’t even remember them all, but if they were relevant, he would answer, but if they were stupid, then he would look at us and say, “What do I look like to you, the answer man?”

Now as a parent, I am inundated with questions from my boys. Inundated. Sometimes I feel like I’m dodging bullets from a machine gun. The questions can come so quickly that I have been known to put both hands over my ears, stamp a foot and say, ‘Just Stop!’ They can truly throw me into sensory overload.

Most of the questions, I can give a pretty good answer to. I know a fair amount about science and math (damn, hopefully since I majored in it), and I’m fairly well read, and I am analytical so I can usually deduce a reasonable answer, but MY favorite thing to say now when they ask me a question that is completely ridiculous and there is NO way of my knowing the answer, is “AND WHY would I know that?” (It’s obscure stuff like, ‘Why wasn’t my teacher in class today?’ to which my reply would be “I have no clue. Why would I know that?”)

However, I NEVER use that response to questions that should have concrete answers, but just require a little research. Herein is the problem. My eldest reads so much, he comes up with things I truly cannot even begin to answer. Last year, the question was related to some deep science that I am sure I studied, but the information refused to meld to my brain, so since we were in my car, I said, “Wait, let me call Big Daddy” (that’s what they call TGOO) and sure enough TGOO knew the answer. So, now, my boys think that TGOO knows the answers to everything. Heh.

Tonight we’re in the car, my son is reading this encyclopedia he got from Santa on North American Reptiles and Mammals (Santa’s big mistake is buying him crap like that) and I get, “hey Mom, what’s oviparous?”

I get to a stop light and break out a pen, having him spell it thinking, “Who in the hell drives around having a 9 year old ask about words like oviparous?” Between having him read me the passage and seeing the ‘ovi’ part of the word, I gather it has something to do with reproduction and snakes, and I tell him that, but then explain we’ll have to wait until we get home to look it up.

His response to me was, “Why don’t you just call Big Daddy instead?”

Heh. I did. I left a message. Something along the lines of “Your grandson wanted me to call you to ask you for the definition of the word oviparous, and since you know everything, you can just leave a message on my voice mail.”

You know what the scary thing is? He probably frickin’ knows the definition without looking it up.


Blogger Caltechgirl said...

It means reptiles that lay eggs as opposed to giving birth to live young (which are viviparous). The weird stuff you pick up without meaning to... Did I mention my husband teaches Freshman biology??

10:51 PM  
Blogger Boudicca said...

I should have KNOWN you would know that!! :) I have another post I'm saving for another day about rats... again... and I am referencing you.

10:55 PM  
Blogger Harvey said...

Someday he'll discover Google...

Safe Search enabled, of course :-)

11:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What do I look like, the answer man?

12:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You handled it better than I did.

Had I been asked “hey Mom, what’s oviparous?” I would have responded: "Am I being punked?"

Everyday Stranger

7:34 AM  
Blogger Contagion said...

My oldest thinks I'm omnipotent, doesn't help that I told him I was. (I did that to try to discourage him from misbehaving). The problem that results from that is when he asks me a question, I have to give him an answer, and usually I know the answer to his questions. However if the question or mis-statement was really off the wall, I will completely fabricate an answer and pass it off straight faced. At first this was just fun, until one of my statements came back to haunt me because he repeated it to the teacher who was teaching his class about the subject. oops. I had to explain to the teacher what was going on.

8:10 AM  
Blogger Jody said...

I'm almost afraid of what Brenna will grow up asking. Between Doug & I we can answer almost anything. But, if we are feeling a bit bullish, we'll give an answer that sounds like it could be right but is so far off the mark as to be funny. Our child may be the bain of her teachers...

8:13 AM  
Blogger Quality Weenie said...

All the teacher training I received screamed out this answer.

You should instruct him to make a note to himself and he himself should investigate the answer. It teaches them how to research for answers themself, instead of always relying on someone to answer questions for them. They will learn other new things while looking up those answers.

8:46 AM  
Blogger Boudicca said...

Machelle... with him I don't worry about that. He's got his own dictionary and thesaurus that he hauls around with him... voluntarily. We just didn't have it with us. He's a real research kind of kid. With as many scientists (social and other) and engineers as are in both sides of our family, I don't fear for him leaning on others.

The rest of you folks. Geez. You sound like frickin' Calvin's Dad! I need to find one of those cartoons and post it. The one where Calvin asks a question about gravity and his Dad goes on this whacked tangent that is

10:39 AM  
Blogger Anita said...

I'm still trying to get over the fact that your 9 year old is reading an encyclopedia. Maybe he'd like to come up to Rochester for a little visit with my son. Maybe something will rub off.

1:54 PM  

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