Six Feet Above: The Future Generation of Experts
We all have them; the little nuances of our parents. Though some can be pretty wretched like prejudices or bad manners, most of them are sweet- cute and harmless (these are what I am talking about here). Do you recall that time when you thought there was no end to the knowledge that your parents' brilliant minds held? Well there is an end and it sometimes leaps up and bites you in rather embarrassing ways.
There is a reason toddlers ask "WHY? WHY? WHY? WHY?" Unknowingly, parents will respond until they either clock what's happening or run out of answers. Hungry little minds wanting to understand it all, and the adult they trust filling them with everything from social guidance, dietary advice, fun facts to utter nonsense, but as kids, we develop our understanding of the world around the borders of these provided moments of insight. This transfer of knowledge is often one of the greatest gifts parents can give, and more hilariously, can be completely mortifying as an adult.
For all intensive purposes, I think..." My friend said.
"I am sorry. What?!"
She misunderstood. "For all intensive purposes, I think..."
"No Darling, I am still on 'intensive purposes'- it's 'intents and purposes'.
"Shut up. It's not. You barely speak English! The purpose is intense, you know?" She looked to Arizona for support. Arizona kindly smiled and shook her head. We googled it: intents and purposes.
"Well my Dad's not wrong, okay?" We made a bet and the next time I saw him, I used every possible conversation segway to pull it from him. Sure enough...
"Well, Boniface, for all intensive purposes..." I smiled smugly. She smiled smugly and knowingly asked if he was sure it wasn't 'intents and purposes.'
"Of course not! Don't be daft!" We Googled it again, and funnily enough, it was still intents and purposes. Bizarrely, the two of them stood behind their conviction. Google was maybe not wrong- but didn't understand the sentiment behind their meaning. They were both wrong. I'm not judging. We all have these things- beliefs, truths and simply mistakes our parents, pedagogues or perceptively cool older friends and cousins have bestowed upon us.
The first of Arizona's Dad Facts that I encountered was a little gross. She didn't wash properly- don't get me wrong- she was hardly unhygienic, but none the less, not properly. Her dear Dad, Gary, is one of those fun-filled-fact guys that thrived before the invention of the internet- before one could simply check him. He's very knowledgable in many ways and so gives you the sense of confidence that he always knows what he is talking about.
Our first sexy shower was less than sexy and a little brief for my liking-again, not in the hot way: Shampoo. Condition. Water wipe-down. Exit.
"Where are you going? You didn't use soap? Not on your arms and feet and body." ...and remember, I am stereotypically French.
"Yeah. I don't." She Answered. Clearly seeing I needed the science behind this explained, she continued. "Soap makes you dry out and causes Vitamin D deficiency" One of these two statements is sort of true and one is a Gary fact.
Legends are bore from this parental wisdom- or lack thereof.
I always looked up to my father- probably because of he stood a dominating 6 feet high...or so I thought, until I met some one who was actually six feet tall. Strangely, we never could seem to find a tape measure that wasn't deemed 'broken' by Papa. My dad never admitted his shortcomings and Gary will never lack vitamin D. I guess this is one of the fun things about being a dad. The other day, Arizona told me Nikko had apparently had a row with his friend over the expression "It's raining all the cats and all the dogs,' not 'raining cats and dogs' I asked how she knew that came from me. "Because he said 'Mon Dieu, its' raining all the cats and all the dogs." Hopefully a girl will find it endearing some day. And now I can relate to my dad, because albeit, incorrect, he made me feel six feet tall.