“How was school today?” I asked Allie.
“It was pretty good I guess. Learned math, ate lunch, got an indian burn. You know, the usual.” Allie replied while chugging her after school ice water.
I nose-laughed a little for a number of reasons. One being that I’d forgotten indian burns even existed. The second reason, she mentioned it so casually, as if indian burns were just a day in the life, and DUH, of course she got one at school today. Another, I couldn’t believe that in the time since I was a little girl indian burns have yet to be given a politically correct name. Sitting indian style is now called sitting criss-cross applesauce, or at least it was when Allie went to preschool. So I just assumed that indian burns may have been renamed something slightly catchy like the Forearm Twist Ripper of DEATH.
But I was wrong.
Anyway, some parents would probably be semi distraught that their child came home complaining of mild playground violence. However, there were no marks, and she was contusion free. Kids are kids, and I’m sure she wasn’t just on the receiving end of the nonsense.
Plus, nothing surprises me when children are in large groups together. If you told me a group of 100 small children found a way launch frogs to the moon to watch them orbit then rain back down onto earth, I would be all, “UM, YEAH THEY DID!” while considering believing it for a few seconds because those little minds are just working so hard every minute of the day. And, there is really nothing scarier than a group of smart people with too much time on their hands and imaginations that have not been jaded by reality.
Speaking of which, following the discovery that indian burns were still regular elementary school behavior, I investigated what Allie had for lunch. She usually complains that the school lunch tastes like garbage. Which it must, because this kid will eat almost anything. We pack her lunch often, but some mornings we forget or are running late.
But anyway, she was all, “I had the worst hamburger ever. MADE FROM HORSE MEAT!!!”
“Yeah, Mom, made from horse meat. That’s what they make them from at my school. HORSES!” She replied, hissing the last word through her teeth to make sure it hung in the air.
“Oh, Allie. Why do you think that? I mean, I wasn’t there when they constructed the alleged beef you ate for lunch today. So I can’t make any promises. However, I’m guessing that it did not involve the slaying of any equestrian creatures.”
“Mom, the FOURTH graders say it is made of horse meat. They’ve been eating it longer than me. They probably know.”
“No, Allie. Again, I’m making no promises, but I think that there is no horse meat in those burgers. At least, I hope not.”
“Hmmph.” She grunted in a manner that suggested she believed nothing coming out of my mouth, and feared deep within her soul the outcome of the impact that my misguided ways may have on her.
“It really is horse meat, Mom.” She then looked at me with the resolve of a gangster that had accepted his life on the streets. Her blue eyes all serious, and her mouth in a straight line, like that awkward emoticon no one should use. All of this because she had accepted digesting alleged horse meat, which was obviously as serious as an initiation in the Latin Kings.
Horse meat, thug life. It’s all the same.
And that’s pretty much an excerpt that perfectly sums up our relationship.