My husband and I were finishing up our morning coffee after sending the boys upstairs to get dressed for church. The normal routine involves a couple of reminders, amidst the rumbling and ‘hootin’ and hollerin’ as my mother would say, to stay on task, get dressed… or else. We were discussing art classes for the older two, talking about how though the oldest has most proficiently shown a penchant for art, his younger brother has a strong desire to draw though his skill is just now emerging. We were discussing how we want to discourage too much competitiveness, though a tiny bit can prove to be a helpful motivator.
It was at this very moment that we heard, “YOU DON’T KNOW LATIN!!” being shouted at the top of someone’s lungs. We looked at each other and busted up laughing at the irony of the moment.
I ascended the stairs to get the littlest dude into his clothes and finish getting myself ready. I couldn’t let the Latin based insult go unexplained. So I asked what that was all about.
My oldest explained, “Well, he said he was going to embalm me and I told him he doesn’t even know what embalm means because he doesn’t even know latin. And he can’t say words like that until he knows Latin. And he said that he does know Latin. So I told him he didn’t know Latin. He doesn’t even know history.”
“I KNOW history!!”
“No you don’t!”
The five year old attacks the seven year old from behind, not letting go. “YOU!! You language robber!!”
Oh puhleeeeeeeeeeease! I think my brothers and I usually fought using traditional childhood insults like, “Faced you! Moded you! I am rubber, you are glue, bounces off me and sticks on you!” And other such ignominious name-calling. I never thought I’d hear my offspring dissing each other based on their lack of knowledge of dead languages or how much the other knew about ancient Egyptian burial rites.
I can’t wait until they both really do know Latin. The arguments will be priceless.
“Oh you… Parva leves capiunt animas. “
“Yeah, well… Memento mori!”
“Potius mori quam foedari!”
Don’t even think for a minute that I know Latin well enough to write these phrases myself! I totally Googled them.