Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Inside the Twisted (and Normal) Mind of a 7-year old

This morning I discovered the latest literary tome my cherubic daughter borrowed from her classroom. It's called Oh, Yuck! The Encyclopedia of Everything Nasty. And believe me, it is.

When I asked her why she likes reading about such icky stuff, my daughter rolled her eyes at me, as if to say, "Geez, Mom! Are you really that lame?"

When I pressed her for an explanation, she said, "Boys in my class are telling me these lies about gross stuff, so I decided to look it up myself."

(It was at this point when I became impressed with my little girl's outstanding critical thinking skills.)

"Like what?", I ask.

"Pee. And something you shouldn't write."

(She knew I was gonna blog about it.)

"Come on, just tell me", I say in my most hip-mommy voice.

She pointed to her groin area and said with a sheepish look on her face, "A boy's...".

I responded in a not-so-subtle growl, "They have penises in that book?"

She replied, "Yep. They look like a hot dog with crumply sides. Not like regular hot dogs."

(It was at this point when I called upon the Awesome Power of the Almighty to subdue the massive giggle fit that was dying to escape from my lips.)

After looking for the picture of the aforementioned human hot dog, it turned out that the book didn't have penises in it at all (at least that I know of.) However, the drawing of the girl eating a squooshy, crinkly hot dog was actually on the page describing Animal Testicles. Yes, Animal Testicles.

Em's also studying leeches, because she "wants to learn how they get into people's skin." She continued matter-of-factly, "There's also funny stuff in there about pee that's really, really funny."

After I picked my jaw off the floor, I perused the well-worn book for a quick sampling of other gross topics to which my daughter has been exposed. (Based on the condition of the book, it was apparent that many other second-graders have discovered this little gem as well.) Here are some interesting entries that immediately jumped out at me: Eye Gunk, Farts, Puke, Poop, Snot and a delightful little sidebar called "the Amazing, Exploding Zit". To be fair, Emma can learn about that last topic right in the comfort of her mother's bathroom.

Just when I was about to send a scathing email off to the Dean of Emma's school expressing my outrage at their literary offerings, I noticed that Acupuncture was listed in this book of All Things Nasty. I was relieved to see that it actually had a very intelligent, insightful, and open-minded way of describing this ancient healing method that I have personally received. It said, "You know what's the weirdest thing about it? It tingles, but it doesn't hurt and it really works. American doctors didn't believe it at first. But now it's becoming a commonly turned-to medical practice, and many American doctors are learning how to pin the pin in the hurting body part...Cool things, those needles!"

WOW. How righteous is that? I continued to read what I thought would be disgusting entries and found that all of them were written in the same thoughtful, knowledgeable manner. Oh, Yuck! was actually really good at teaching the facts about things that all kids are dying to know. Who'da thunk it?

Ultimately, if reading (and sniggering) about pee, poop, and body lint keeps my daughter learning about the miracle known as the human body, then I'm all for it. I just want her to read it in her room where I can't see the creepy pictures.

By the way, did you know that doctors used to drink a patient's pee to test to see if he or she was diabetic? Ewwwwww!!!!


For your comment and/or consideration:

Would you have wanted to read a book like this when you were growing up and why?


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