While watching The Goonies as I cook dinner, Lady J enters the kitchen and whispers, “Mom, what does shit mean? Because Chunk says it a lot in the movie. Like, a lot, and I just don’t know what it means.”
All I can think is, “Oh SH*#! This is the beginning of the end.”
From her tone I can tell she knows it’s not an appropriate word, and my initial thought is to respond harshly with the standard, “We DO NOT use that word. It is a bad word and I don’t EVER want to hear you say it. Understand?”
But a flash from my own childhood played in my head. I was standing at our front door, maybe around 8 years old. I asked what the word Hell meant. It was an honest question that I really didn’t know the answer to. I have no idea where I had heard it and I had no idea that it was an inappropriate word to use. So I asked. The reaction I got was less than explanatory, though I never said it again in front of my parents, as a child.
So I take a step back and answer her with honesty, “It means poop. But it’s not a nice word and you are not allowed to say it. It’s rude.”
“Is it like ‘hate’ and ‘stupid’?” She questions with translucent innocence.
“Yes,” I reply.
“Okay. Then I won’t say it. But Mommy? Chunk says it a awfully lot of times when bad things happen that are also silly. It’s kinda funny. He kinda says it like when you say ‘oh dear’ or ‘oh my goodness,'” she chuckles knowing she nailed the context usage.
“Oh poop,” I mutter, “Here we go.”
She exits the kitchen quietly giggling, “Oh poop…”