Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Metaphysics & Chewing Gum

It was last Thursday afternoon, right after school.  We were in the car, headed to Trader Joe's.  The boy was complaining about school, like he does.  Then the conversation took a sharp turn.

The Boy: "What I'd really like to know is, what makes us us?"

Me:  "I'm sorry?  What do you mean by that?"  The hell?  I thought we were talking about the trials and tribulations of fourth grade.

TB: "I mean, how'd we get here?  And I'm not talking about the Big Bang or evolution or anything like that.  I mean, what came before that?  What made the Big Bang happen?"

Me: "Hmmm.  That's a great question.  That's a question that scientists and philosophers have been trying to figure out for centuries.  Thousands of years.  No one knows."

TB: "Really?  Huh.  Maybe I can do that when I grow up.  Be a scientist.  Because I'd really like to know."

Me: "That's a great idea.  Really interesting..."

TB: "And Mom?  There's something else that's been really bothering me."

Me: "What's that?"  

TB: "Why don't you let me buy the kind of chewing gum I like?"

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