The kid joke – That gag that continues to hinder your day to day thought process and sully your ability to be a normal functioning adult.
My kids are just entering into the joke stage. They are at the increasingly annoying place in time where they spit out a joke they have summoned up from the depths of their intellect, which rarely makes any sense in the first place, but to make matters even more hilarious, they repeat the same line about a thousand times to really ensure that I got the jist of the punch line.
What punch line? I ask myself, but there must surely be some sort of punch line, since Sophie has just literally peed her pants laughing so uncontrollably hard at this last doozy. Allow me to elaborate.
"Hey Mama, can you put a TV show on for us?"
"Ya sure guys…"
"Good job sandwich!" And the tirade of hilarity ensues.
I didn't get it at first and the little humans took much offence to my lack of laughter at their funny. So to ensure that I would eventually find the amusement in it, they continue to call me 'sandwich' in any and every endeavour I set into for the day.
"Thanks for driving me to school sandwich" "You're so cool sandwich" "I love you sandwich". Each yarn spewed from their little mouths followed by this laugh, this laugh that is currently placing me on the edge of insanity. But despite my annoyance I do laugh – this is only brought on by the penetrating giggles that follow their anecdote.
This is my dilemma though, I cannot for the life of me tell them to stop.
Humour is my go to, it always has been. I love to laugh and in turn give the people around me a chuckle too. Comedy keeps one's psyche in check. It lifts us up when it seems as though things just couldn't get any worse. And it is always there, you can always find a laugh if you look hard enough.
But you see, the ability to sling out a witty comment is few and far between, so if I want my kids to embrace this aptitude, then how could I possibly ask them to stop calling me sandwich at this moment? I can't already crush their little dreams of making people laugh, can I?
In my very humble opinion, those first few years of understanding humour are pivotal in the way these children will grow up to grasp the quality of joking. If I tell them to stop now, get mad at them, or simply say that the joke made no sense, what long term effects could this have on my wee darlings?
There Sophie is, hanging out in her advanced biology class in high school when the class clown Jimmy busts out this great one:
"Q: What did the femur say to the patella? A: I kneed you."
Everyone is laughing, slapping their knee, one kid even shoots a booger out of his nose because he is so engrossed in this merriment, but Sophie… Sophie doesn't even bat an eye! She just stands there with a snarky glare on her face explaining that school is no place for joking around.
Or even worse, what if Lars becomes the mean joker type. Maybe this whole 'Sandwich' deal is just a preview of the horrendous names he will call people, because he just thinks name calling is the cat's pajamas.
Well of course I can't have that. I do admit a good gut-splitting laugh is pretty much one of the greatest things to indulge in, but I draw the line at bullying. The thought now spins in my head and I wonder if this new phase is only foretelling heinous things to come.
But then I bring myself back to reality and look at the two of them.
There they are doubling over in laughter, cheese chunks flying out of their cackling mouths, and they have now begun snorting intermittently between gasps of air.
I decide not to intervene, they are having fun, and to be perfectly honest I am not offended by their gag, so why give them a hard time about it? I'm sure there will be moments in the future when a hurtful joke is flung out there, and then I will deal with it accordingly.
But for right now, I will just sit and enjoy the endearing sound of my children's giggles.