You probably had to be there

(Connor. 13 years old. Unintentional Kindergarten Comedian)

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He loved Chinese food. He could read two grade levels above his age. He believed in the magic of the paper fortunes within the cookie. Though he was so much older, in spirit, than others his age he probably already knew the silliness of attaching meaning to random words tucked into a dessert.

His world was black or white (still is) and he assumed that if he knew it then, obviously, anyone a single day older than he was himself should surely know what the heck he was talking about when he said something.

How can you not understand me, Mom? You are 26 years old!

We all entered the Chinese restaurant, eager to fill our tummies, our multiple conversations spilling over in the restaurant.

Two big tables pressed together. Connor bouncing with his newly learned skill of speaking Spanish.  He was fluent, you know. As fluent as a 5-year old could be from learning “please” and “thank you” from his patient Kindergarten teacher, or five numbers, one through cinco, from the “outside voice” stylings of Dora the Explorer.

The demure Asian waitress came over to greet us softly and ask what we wanted to drink. No mention of a menu, the buffet was what everyone got, right? We all joked and laughed while waiting on our drinks.  The waitress first presented Connor his drink in a brightly colored lidded cup and as she placed it on the table before him he erupted, “GRACIAS!!!!” and then looked around, pleased that he could speak the native language of our server.

One by one, as we all realized what he had assumed, broke out into laughter. He thought her to be a Senorita.  Spanish or Asian.  Who can really tell the difference at five years old. The waitress only uncomfortably shuffled and Connor was suddenly confused as to why we all found his foreign-tongued etiquette so funny.

He looked up at her, obviously frustrated that she did not indicate that he had used his big-boy manners and failed to reciprocate the studied response that his Mom and Dad had drilled into him from the start. She was a grown-up…he knew it, so should she!

His ears red from embarrassment, and not understanding just everything that was going on, then sternly told her, “You are supposed to say, “DE NADA!!!!”

Then we all laughed until we peed our pants.

True Story.

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