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“That’s a word that grown-ups use…”

October 1, 2005, 10:30 PM

The thing to remember when you’re playing Pac-Man in a game room with children present and you get eaten by a ghost is to mind your language. When I play Pac-Man and get eaten by a ghost, I usually let out a mild expletive (it starts with “D”). Doing that and then realizing that children were present in the game room, I said to myself, “There are children in the room…” and just kept reminding myself of that.

I figure that the children’s parents would really love me if I inadvertently taught them some new words that would be less-than-appropriate in polite company. Sure, the children will likely learn those words eventually, but I don’t exactly want to be the one to teach those words to them.

And you also have to wonder… what would you say if a child heard you curse, and they asked you about it? (This didn’t happen to me, by the way.) That would be one heck of a tight spot to have to tiptoe your way out of. A response might be, “Well, that’s a word that grownups use when they’re not careful about what they’re saying. And you should never say that word.”

Since we certainly don’t want to rob these children of their innocence any earlier than necessary. Television does a fine job of it already, and it doesn’t need any competition. And I need to remember to mind what I say when I get eaten by a ghost playing Pac-Man. Since I don’t want to be the one to teach these children all kinds of naughty words. And remembering my time as a child, naughty words are kind of a novelty. They’re a novelty specifically because you’re not supposed to say them.

And again, I don’t want to provide the children with these novelties.

Web site: Totally unrelated, but this is the sinkers.org coverage of September 24

Song: The "crying kitten" song

Quote: "You didn't say you wanted a challenge again, did you?" - Me to one of our CSMs, who one time naively said, "I want a challenge today." We were insanely busy that day. We were insanely busy today (being the first of the month and all), but no one asked for a challenge.

Categories: Language