Thursday, April 26, 2007

Whatcha Gonna do When They Come for You?

Ms. Boo is going through a phase. Every time she sees a policeman, she asks what he is doing. Every time she sees a police cruiser, she asks why it's there. The sight of anything even remotely related to law enforcement (mall security...) often ushers in a slew of questions about going to jail, getting arrested, and what behaviors are "against the law."

She came in the house one day, sobbing, because the neighbor girl had joked that Boo was going to be arrested.

Good gracious. The girl is afraid she's going to do something that lands her in jail.

I wasn't thinking much about this phase when I started making dinner on Tuesday night. Chicken, rice, applesauce. The kids asked what I was making and, when I told them, I immediately heard two responses. Mr. Bug said, "I love rice." Ms. Boo said, "I don't like rice."

To which I thought: I know and I know. Respectively.

So, when dinner time came, I offered to put some of the sauce from the chicken on the rice for Boo, telling her it might taste better that way. Then, I went on with dinner without paying much attention to what she was eating.

Near the end of dinner, I asked her if she tried the rice. Her reply: Yes. Then I asked if she liked it. Her reply: No.

And I was fine with that. She walked over to the trash can to scrape the scraps (and the pile of rice) into the garbage. It was then that the questions began again. I didn't think much of it, as it is really commonplace now.

Boo: Mom, is it against the law to tell a lie?
Me: Well, it's against God's Law to lie. But not all lies are against the government's law.
Boo: What kind of lies are against the law?
Me: Uhh, (thinking....) if you lie about how much money you make so that you don't have to pay taxes, that is against the law.
Boo: What other lies can make you go to jail?
Me: (tired, and still totally clueless) I don't know, Boo. If you are worried that you are going to go to jail, I don't think you have anything to worry about.
Boo: Mom, can you go to jail for saying that you ate rice when you really didn't?

I almost bust a gut laughing, but I held it in and calmly asked her, "did you just lie to me about eating that rice?"

She looked at me with this expression that said How on earth did you figure that out?


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Blogger Luisa Perkins said...

"Bad boys, bad boys..."

This post made me LAUGH because I have been there countless times as a parent.

The wide-eyed, chocolate-smeared face shaking back and forth in vehement denial when asked whether any cookies had been eaten without permission; the wet pant cuffs belying the disavowal that anyone had turned on the hose aftr being told not to...I could go on and on.

Fri Apr 27, 12:23:00 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

You're such a smart mommy. I don't know how you figured that one out. ha ha ha.

You could tell her that you can go to jail for lying about anything if you're under oath.

Fri Apr 27, 03:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Linda said...

Lori, That's funny! Caleb went through something similar a couple of years ago. Apparently while he was playing outside he overheard some neighbors talking about someone going to jail and he ran in crying thinking they were talking about him! For months afterwards, every time he would see those neighbors, he would run in with the same reaction. And he was paranoid every time he saw a police car, officer, etc. Thankfully, it passed, but it was hard at the time to know how to convince him that they weren't talking about him and that no one was coming to take him to jail.

Sun Apr 29, 12:00:00 AM  
Blogger Addie said...

Hee, hee!

A couple of years ago, Sporty tried to tell me that she had eaten her carrots. Unfortunately for her, she was drinking her milk out of a clear glass, and I could clearly see the layer of orange around the bottom.

I can tell you that she didn't relish finishing that glass of milk! ;-)

Mon Apr 30, 11:32:00 AM  
Blogger Shalee said...

Oh what a tangled web they weave...

That reminds me of a time when my boy was jumping on the couch (not allowed) while I was cooking at the stove (faced away). Not turning around, I said, "You know that's not allowed. You'd better quit it now." He very slowly and with awe in his voice said, "How did you know?" As if I couldn't hear the squeaking and the hard breathing that was only 15 feet behind me. I told him that I'm a Mom. I know things. It worked.

Mon Apr 30, 05:21:00 PM  

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