3.27.2004

Corrupting the Youth

Last night, Lili and I were hanging around the house, and she asked me for a white sheet of paper, because she wanted to write.
"Can I have a pen too?" she asked.
"You bet," I said. I like it when she takes initiative and writes or paints or plays with LEGO® blocks without prompting. It demonstrates curiosity, drive, and a generally good character. We don't have a TV around here, so entertainment is usually the product of one's own designs. Maybe it's a lame idea, but I think if one has to actively defend against boredom, rather than passively, it's good for the constitution.
Anyway, I grabbed a red pen and gave it to her, and she sat at the table with her paper and pen and started writing. As you all know I picked up a new record this week, and she and I had been talking about a guy who wears a metal mask. It's kind of silly stuff, cartoony, and it's fun to hear a six-year-old pontificate on why someone would do such a thing.
When she was done writing, she carefully folded up the paper and sat in my lap.
"What did you write?" I asked.
"Nothing," she said.
"You wrote something," I said. "What was it?"
"Nothing," she said.
"Show me," I insisted. "I want to see it."
"No."
"Why not?"
"Because."
"Because why?"
"Just because." And then she hopped out of my lap, and stuffed the neatly folded paper deep into her bag, and trotted off to play with Jesus and Olivia, her dolls.
Last night, after she went to bed, I pulled the paper out of her bag and looked at it. She had copied down the phrase from the back of Madvillain's liner notes in red pen:

Written in cold blood with a tooth pick

While I can respect that she noticed how striking the phrase is, I think it's probably time that I keep a closer watch on what pop culture she consumes. Ten dollars says that if she brought that paper home and showed it to her mom, I'd be chin-deep in shit creek.

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