My recipe called for ¾ of a cup of dry, red wine. That left the rest of the bottle for me. I’m now sufficiently liquored up enough to tell the story of how the birds and the bees talk went down with my 4th grade daughter.
It was not a planned talk, like these things probably should be; there was no thinking, strategy, or forethought involved.
No. I got sick and tired of her dressing like a skank.
When I told my friends about how our talk went down, they all said that they were preparing their discussions, too, by ordering books and discussing it with their husbands. At that point (strangely not before then) I was kind of embarrassed about my lack of forethought.
Is a weird talk better than no talk?
It started like this:
We had girls over for a sleepover, and they played “pop star” all night. Katy Perry, Ke$ha, and Britney Spears roamed the house looking for singing, dancing, and paparazzi action. The girls remained in character for hours, even through pancakes the next morning. There was so much makeup, glitter, and tight clothing involved that I had to use a fire hose and the Jaws of Life to pry the crap off their skin before they went home. Even after the other two girls left, my daughter continued to talk like Britney Spears. She’s too young and sheltered to know what Britney’s voice really sounds like, so she used her best Valley Girl voice. On top of the obnoxious accent, she was dressed like a ho bag. It was stuff she had in her own closet—some of it outgrown— all combined in an unfortunate fashion.
I asked her to change before we went out, and she politely refused in the Valley Girl voice. She straight up didn’t understand why I wanted her to look like a normal person instead of a glamorous and tightly-clad fashion icon.
After the past two years or so, I had grown tired of this conversation. She routinely mixes her clothes in a way that makes her look like she walked out of Bebe. How she does this is beyond me, as most of her clothes are from Target. I thought I could save myself some future time and energy if I went ahead and busted out the penis talk.
I thought she knew a bit about sex. She’s old enough to have heard all kinds of misguided rumors, so I didn’t think this would be traumatic. Also, we’ve talked and joked about puberty several times because we get high on all the Axe body spray floating through the air upstairs, and that makes everything funnier.
However, she started crying once she realized that this was going to be that conversation because she was embarrassed and tired. Also, I think she didn’t want to know the truth, and I was about to confirm it. Let’s face it: anytime estrogen isn’t rushing through your veins, the facts sound yucky.
Our conversation went something like this, although I have condensed 2.5 hours down to 20 seconds:
Please note the delicacy, tact, and flow with which I carried on this conversation with my crying 9-year-old daughter.
Me: “You know why I don’t want you to dress like that? Penises.
Wait, wait, wait— let’s back up and talk about women’s rights and how far we’ve come through the ages. We women are finally being treated with more respect! We have more to offer than our bodies, and modern, developed society is finally realizing this!
Oh, and we should probably preface this with a quick science
review. Keep in mind that we are mammals, and those eggs have to be
fertilized somehow. Remember those orangutan monkeys we saw at the zoo
this summer? You saw how the male monkey was sticking that pink,
slippery-looking body part into the female monkey?
And then the male went to the other side of the cage and covered himself with hay so nobody could see him, while the female hid behind her straw pallet and put a blanket over her head, like she felt dirty. [Do y’all sense it, too? THERE IS A BAPTIST TEENAGER JOKE IN HERE SOMEWHERE.]
Me: “Yep, that’s sex for ya!”
Me: “Oh, yes! Hahahahahaha! The monkey sex was so funny. God is hilarious! The whole process is crazy weird!
Except for that’s how human babies are made, and someday that may sound nice to you.”
Me: “Don’t worry—you won’t want to do that until you have estrogen rushing through your body. Coincidentally, you should be married and fully medically insured before that happens.*
Have you seen that story in the newspaper about polygamists? Old men get married to really young girls just for sex. It’s horrible and illegal. That’s why those dudes go to jail. Would you like to be treated like you are only good for sex and don’t have a brain of your own? No way!
Katy Perry and Ke$ha sing lyrics and wear clothes that make people think they are only good for sex, so they are just like sad, hopeless, polygamist girls. Except for the pop stars also sing about excessive drinking and drugs, which is even worse. So now they are sad, polygamist girls who drink Jägermeister instead of milk, which means they will surely develop osteoporosis by age 35.
By the way, I want to touch on this subject again. Don’t do drugs because I once knew a guy on LSD who thought he was a leprechaun, which was funny until he felt threatened and tried to kill people with a kitchen knife. And meth will make your teeth fall out.**
That female orangutan monkey did not even like having sex. You should definitely take off those tight pants.
I want you to be pretty and fashionable, but stay away from the whore look.
*In the perfect bubble we live in
**Don’t worry: we completed the full meth & cocaine discussion a couple of months ago. It was as delicately delivered as this conversation.