A Burning Sensation

Last night, as I was scraping the burnt remains of my annual attempt at cooking into the garbage, I overheard my children whispering heatedly in the next room. I heard only pieces of their conversation and wasn't really paying any real attention to their squabble as I was still fighting the queasy feeling from trying to digest my overly charred supper. As I was eyeing the blackened remains of our supper and pondering if I should offer them to my dog or not, Frac raced through the kitchen, into his room and then zipped back through the kitchen holding a dictionary.

My heart warmed at the site of this. (Well that, and the heartburn that was currently attacking my insides.) Nothing pleases a writer mom more than watching her offspring navigate a dictionary.

More than a little curious now, I tiptoed to the edge of the living room and tried to become stealth-like. I wondered what word they were arguing over, and I pictured them debating the spelling and definition of a variety of large words. I had visions dance through my head of attending their graduation ceremonies, both of them the valedictorians, and then, maybe one day, watching them win Pulitzer and Nobel prizes for their great works of literature.

I like to dream big.

As my stomach tossed and turned the evenings offerings around in my belly, I cupped my ear and listened.

"No Frac, you are wrong. That is not what it means," said my daughter in her huffy, know-it-all-big-sister voice.

"Yes, Fric it does too. You're wrong," came my son's biting retort.

My daughter then grabbed the dictionary and tossed it aside. "This is a baby dictionary. We need to get the big one from Mom's room."

"No we don't. I'm right. And you're a booger-eater." So clever that boy of mine.

"No, a playboy bunny is just a rabbit a boy plays with at Easter, Frac. That is what it means. You're stupid," my witty girl retorted.

What the fu*%??? I thought.

"No," countered my son, " a playboy bunny is a rich boy's pet. That's what a playboy is. That's what my teacher says. It's a grown man with lots of money and time to waste. So a playboy bunny is his pet. YOU ARE STILL A BOOGER EATER. And I'm smarter than you," he said in a smirking sing song tone.

Suddenly, visions of my darling children's literary accomplishments vanished in a puff of smoke. I quickly backed away and turned on my stereo in the kitchen. There is no way in hell I am going to define what a playboy bunny is.

I wouldn't want to give either one of them ideas.

I had disturbing visions of my son wearing a smoking jacket while my daughter wore significantly less while lounging about in a grotto.

I have resolved to no longer eavesdrop. I don't want to know when they start trying to figure out words like blowjob and sex kitten.

I'm hiding the dictionaries.