Calling All Smug Tweens

Calling All Smug Tweens!  So funny when our teens & tweens try to mock us -- but misfire!  #humor #kids #teens

So then…I plop on the sofa, nearly toppling 3 tweens in the process, as I balance my plate of delectable desserts from the buffet table.

I toss a couple Lemon Squares and a Brownie onto my friend Tracy’s plate as we chatter away amongst her relatives and friends at her party.

Music’s playing, people are laughing, the adults are talking…it’s a fun time.

But I notice all the tweens sitting and standing around are mesmerized by their Iphone screens instead of…you know…talking to each other like we did when we were their age. So I point this out, in the most tactful and delicate way possible, of course. (Ha!)

Whereupon, my tween daughter Chloe interrupts me to say in her most exasperated, long-suffering tone of voice, “Mom, we know, we know – when you grew up, all 7 of your family had to share a rodeo phone!”


Then all the adults within earshot burst out laughing.

Chloe asks, “What? What? What’s so funny?”

I’m practically choking on my Lemon Bar.

I ask, “Did you say ‘all 7 of you had to share a RODEO phone?’”

“Yeah,” she says with a confused look. “That’s what it was called, right?”

Tracy says, “Rotary, Chloe – it was called a ROTARY phone.”

Chloe waves her hand dismissively – “Rotary – rodeo – same thing.”

We laugh some more. “No, not the same thing!”

Can you imagine? How cool would that have been to really have a RODEO phone?

“Calling all clowns!”

“Hello, I’d like to speak to the bull, please.”

“Any cute cowboys on the line today?”

Of course we never let Chloe forget her faux pas – and we bring up the “Rodeo Phone” whenever possible –

mainly because she delivered her line with so much cocky gusto, trying to tease me about my antiquated communications notions, and she was so dreadfully wrong about the correct terminology.

So of course you can imagine how delighted we were when David Letterman asked Justin Bieber not to tattoo his arms like those people who practically ink whole murals of the Sistine Chapel – and Justin cockily retorted that he’d never get a tattoo of the “Sixteenth Chapel!”

Justin honestly had no idea what the Sistine Chapel was – and tried to mock David for suggesting such an absurd idea for a tattoo — the Sixteenth Chapel!  You could see Justin’s confused, annoyed expression like why are you even saying the 16th chapel, Dave — what about chapels 1 through 15?  You’re so weird!

When I saw that video clip, I was crying with laughter! I couldn’t wait to hop on my Rodeo Phone and tell Chloe all about it!

— Darcy Perdu

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(Any of your kids or co-workers mispronounce a word — or bungle song lyrics? How about YOU? Time to fess up! I always thought Yosemite Sam was pronounced “Yossa-Might” Sam. My sister read the entire book Gone with the Wind thinking that Sue Ellen’s name was pronounced as one word (SueEllen like Suede) so she called her “Swalene.” Share your misconceptions — and those of your friends and family!)

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70 replies on “Calling All Smug Tweens

  1. IndolentCin said:

    Along those lines, my younger daughter was in the car with me once at a gas station, with her window down. She was probably about 13, maybe? A woman asked me directions, and when she left, my daughter excitedly informed me that “that woman was Persian!” “Persian?” I asked carefully. “Yes, I could tell by her accent because one of my friends is is from Peru and I recognized her Persian accent.” I did not laugh — much, or too loudly. And it only comes up once in a while.

    • Love it! Although, who knows, perhaps you’re daughter was right and the lady was a Persian Peruvian?

  2. Caitlin said:

    My mom lost it once when I was telling her about hearing that famous waltz, the Blue Danoobie, instead of Danube. And my roommate in college remembers thinking that melancholy was pronounced mel-ANKLE-e.
    And our kiddo used to not like to eat slicy foods, which actually made a lot of sense to us. My husband was bummed when she finally realized it was spicy.

    • those are hilarious! and now I am always going to pronounce that word as mel-ANKLE-e! love that!

    • Exactly! I’m gonna call AT&T and try to get one installed over here!

  3. Paul said:

    Really Darcy, I was curious after your last post why, given you have a tween (or tweens), we haven’t heard more about them. My experience is that they provide an unlimited amount of amusement (mind you also an unlimited amount of aggravation, too,but we’ll keep it nice here). Especially since you seem to appreciate self-deprecating humour.

    My wife, Marie, and I were sitting at the kitchen table one evening discussing a work-out regime since my company had just offered the employees and spouses a huge discount at the local high-end Ottawa Athletic Club. Our tween, Chantal, wandered into the kitchen to do her hourly inspection of the contents of the fridge – tweens don’t eat, they graze. She stood, with the fridge door open (no doubt keeping an eye on the food so it couldn’t get away from her while she was talking) listening to our conversation. Then she, quite obviously, looked the two of us up and down and offered her opinion: “Bit late for you guys, don’t you think?”

    • Ouch! Sounds like Chantal needs a time-out and a writing assignment of an essay about how fabulous her parents are and how they definitely deserve an athletic club membership! ha! :o)

  4. Lady Anne said:

    My mom was an English teacher, and a stickler for correct pronunciation. For quite a while, I referred to carbon paper as “carving paper” because you HAD to put that G on the end of a word.

    Eldest daughter made up words that ought to be in general use. The thing in the park was a “spountain”, not a fountain, and her PJs and nightgowns were “bedfits”, because when you go out, you wear an outfit, so when you go the sleep…My favorite word was a time we went to visit an elderly relative, who could talk the bottom out of an iron kettle. It was like getting caught in a wind tunnel. As we left, Eldest Daughter said, “Whew! I could hardly get a word in sledgewise”. It conjures up such a perfect image!

    • omg, Lady Anne, I’m laughing out loud at your examples! Carving paper is adorable.
      And your eldest daughter is genius — “bedfit” makes perfect sense! And not getting a word in sledgewise? — hilarious!

  5. This is all so hilarious that I wish my kids were already tweens so I could mock them!! OMG I had not heard about the Justin Beiber thing but that is too funny!! Your ending to this post is awesome. I love it when a story comes together.
    Allie recently posted..How To Survive the Elements & 20% Off…My Profile

    • thanks, Allie — and feel free to mock your kids before they’re tweens! ha! :o)

  6. LOL you know if you hang around tweens for about 10 minutes you’ll feel like Einstein or maybe as wise as Aristotle. However, too long and their ‘intellect’ might rub off on you. My nieces are 15 and 16 and oh boy are they a treat *sarcasm*.. they drive me BONKERS; especially the oldest who just “wants to be famous.” Lord help us all. Have a great weekend Darcy! -Iva
    AwesomelyOZ recently posted..The Turtlesque ReaderMy Profile

    • uh-oh, the one who just wants to be famous makes me nervous — hopefully she does so by inventing some vaccine, instead of twerking with the Pope or something!

    • Dishducky, those are hilarious — so hard to pick my favorite from your list — I’m leaning towards “a vast suppository of information!” :o)

  7. My brother notoriously butchered the English language growing up, but my favorite was from a commander at the police department. While several officers were conducting an undercover investigation, he told us to “make sure we all simonized our watches so we would be all be harmonious together.” What?
    donofalltrades recently posted..Rockin’ arcade fun and a bumper sticker for your penis?My Profile

  8. Amy Reindl said:

    Darcy, my husband and I had the privilege to take an Italian cruise not too long ago. We were one of the youngest couples on board and received constant travel advice from older travelers. Sometimes they had a bit of attitude like we were the riffraff of the ship. I always took great pleasure when they would refer to the Sixteen Chapel. I love when someone is so sanctimonious and I am dying inside because they sound like an idiot. Is that wrong?

    • sanctimonious is the perfect word! and yes I’m dying inside and biting my tongue to keep from laughing when people do that! too funny!

  9. Alex said:

    I nearly choked on a sandwich once when in the staffroom a new restaurant had put up a notice claiming to be a “brassiere” instead of a “brasserie”. I wonder what the portion sizes would have been…A,D and GG instead of small, medium and large?

    • ha! I love this! I’d love to dine at a Brassiere! I imagine it as a very fancy cosmopolitan Hooters!

  10. William Kendall said:

    I hadn’t heard that the Biebs (otherwise known as the Mop Headed Cretin) had said that, but it’s not surprising. He strikes me as the dimmest bulb in the bunch.

  11. Bea said:

    Once, when I was 12 or so, I casually asked my father, “Dad, can you make an appointment for me at the obstetrician sometime soon?”

    He looked absolutely horrified and said, “What? Why?!”

    “Because I think my glasses prescription needs to be updated,” I said, wondering why he looked so upset.

    He immediately looked very relieved and then started laughing. “Well, I’m not sure an obstetrician can help you with that,” he said. “In fact, I’m hoping an obstetrician won’t be able to help you with anything for a very long time.”

    “Wait, what? What kind of doctor is Dr. Seidman, then?”

    “Dr. Seidman is an OPHTHALMOLOGIST.”

    “Oh, okay, that’s what I meant, I think I need to go see Dr. Seidman,” I said. “What’s an obstetrician do, again?”

    Funny thing is, 12 years later, I’m now in medical school! :)

    • That’s hilarious! You almost gave him a mild coronary with that question!
      And how cool that you are in med school! Perhaps you could open the first combo Ophtalmologist-Obstetrician practice — slogan suggestion: “git yer Peepers and yer PeePee checked out at the same time!” :o)

      • Lady Anne said:

        Well, I’ve never confused an obstetrician with anything else, but I hate to admit how old I was before I discovered a pediatrician wasn’t a foot doctor. (Hint: I had two children.) There was enough Latin floating around in our house that I knew “ped” meant foot – pedals on a bike, use a pedometer when you walked, put someone on a pedestal, and all that jazz. I simply could NOT figure out how it was that so many of my little friends had trouble with their feet.

  12. Malinda said:

    I love these! Our family has adopted several new words that my littles have come up with: my favorites are “bednight snack” which you eat before you go to sleep, and “hanitizer” which is what my little one calls hand sanitizer. I’m sure the tween years will bring some better ones, and we will certainly not let them forget!!

    • those are adorable! I want some bednight snacks!
      when my daughter was little, she’d tell everyone she’s getting in the “mivivan” — she’d also ask if I was getting on the “treadmeal” and I’d laugh because yes, it was much more likely I was getting a treadMEAL rather than walking on the treadMILL!

  13. That’s brilliant. My son was a bit younger when he had his major faux pas, but I never let him live it down, either. He was 11. His father and I had just divorced and were still living together for financial reasons. Major headache. One day, after school, he came home and I asked him what he had for lunch. Normal routine. In a proud tone, he said in front of both of us, “I had orange genitals. Oh, ma, I REALLY like orange genitals!” It took me a few seconds to figure out what he meant. I just stared and stuttered while his father fell off of the couch laughing and saying over and over, “I bet you do, buddy!” I threw a shoe at him (my ex, not the kid), and then looked at the lunch menu on the fridge…the one I was too lazy to check out first. Then I fell to my knees in tears, pulled him into a hug and squealed, “baby, it’s GELATIN! NEVER say orange genitals again. PROMISE ME!” He swore he wouldn’t, but it went right in the baby book that day anyway. And, obviously, I share it with total strangers on blogs now lol.

    • laughing out loud!
      and BTW, honey, if your genitals are orange, get to a doctor and get that sh*t checked out!
      that’s too funny!

    • that would be so funny! I should do that! and yes, I love a pompous tween — they are hilarious!

  14. Celia said:

    When telling my daughter that we should buy her some new underpants, she said she wanted the ones that were “greasy”. I’m thinking she meant the silky ones. Another time, my young son said he wanted a shirt for Christmas that had hair and feathers in it. Um… Soft sweatshirt?

    • good grief, Celia, what kind of garments are you clothing your children in?
      that’s hilarious! greasy, hairy, feathery clothes — comin’ right up! :o)

    • ha! I remember how gently and reverently I treated my Walkman! I was terrified I might bruise or break my very first personal tech device.
      Of course, NOW, my kids drop, plop, skitter, skatter, toss, shove, and manhandle their Iphones which cost a kabillion dollars more than my little Walkman! :o)

    • the YouTube clip is definitely worth it — you can see Dave just dying laughing inside, but to spare poor JB, he tries to quickly move the discussion to something else and JB keeps muttering about the “16th chapel!” too funny!

  15. My husband is famous for these blunders! He totally thought it was the 16th Chapel, too!

    My now teenage daughter asked me a few years ago how in the world we found things out when I was a kid, you know before Google. “If your parents didn’t know, and you didn’t know, how did you ever find anything out without Google?”

    This resulted in a twenty minute explanation of what an encyclopedia was and why we used them. *sigh*
    Angela recently posted..Excited to Announce New Members of the Team!My Profile

    • Oh, I remember the Encyclopedia Britannica quite well! It was a kinder, gentler time. If you were a curious kid and looked up “sex” in an Encyclopedia, you might see a brief scientific definition of reproductive intercourse.

      If today’s curious kids type “sex” into Google — Lord help us! The onslaught to their eyeballs will result in an immediate STD right through the computer screen!

  16. Jewlee said:

    ahhh I laughed, but I am the person who mis-pronounces EVERYTHING. I went to college studying political science and routinely called it “pole-lit-icks”

    I blame it on having a strong Southern accent and then moving to Arizona and having multiple professors who literally could not understand me, and having to learn a different way of speaking as an adult LOL

    • ha — reminds me of the Southern nuns who taught our French classes! we all ended up with the most embarrassing French accents with a Southern drawl!

  17. One of my 8 year old twins came home from school and announced that he had learned what the colors in the Mexican flag represented.

    He said, “The red is for the blood from the fight for freedom, the green is for hope, and the white is for puberty. Or something.”

    I had to leave the room.

  18. Julie said:

    I have a question. Was your rodeo phone stuck to the wall in the kitchen with about a 4′ cord so there was absolutely NO WAY you were going to have a private conversation? That’s how it was in my house. Eventually we got the longest cord available so you didn’t have to stay right there and have your phone conversation while explaining to whomever was withing earshot what you were talking about.

    A bit off topic, I once went on a job interview and when the subject of computer skills came up I was honest and said it was limited. The guy looks at my resume and says “You graduated college? How did you write papers?” Ummm started out with these things called books, and took notes on stone tablets with my chisel. Then I went to the library, these big buildings where they stored a lot of the books. They also had typewriters. Kind of like your computer keyboard but noisier. sheesh. That there was the first time I felt old. and I wasn’t even yet.

    • Yes! Our rodeo phone was in the kitchen so everybody heard everything!!

      As for the rude interviewer who questioned your computer skills — it reminds me of when my sister applied for a summer job at McDonalds when she was a teenager. As part of the interview, the male manager asked if she could type. She looked around and said, “I don’t see any typewriters here, and I’m applying to make burgers and fries. Why do you need to know if I can type?” He got huffy and said, “It’s on the application form so I have to ask. So – CAN you type?” She replied, “Yes, I can. Can you?” (she didn’t get the job) :o)

  19. I totally want a Rodeo phone!!

    This reminds me of when I learned that most people mispronounce “Dr Seuss” (It’s actually pronounced more like Soice, rhyming with voice!)

    (And I throw that out there because I can’t think of anything that I mispronounce right now!)

    • Holy Cat in the Hat! I’ve been pronouncing if like Dr. Sooce all this time! What-What!?

  20. I cannot make any comments. Back in the day, I called slim shady (Eminem), slim Cheney. In my defense, though, Cheney was VP at the time!

    • Love this! Slim Cheney is a hilarious name for Eminem!!

  21. MaryHS said:

    One of my friends admits that she learned in college that “albino” does not mean your ancestors came from Albania.

  22. Stephanie C said:

    I always thought it was called a disposable thumb not opposable thumbs. I never used the term, until one day it somehow came into conversation with my husband. Who burst out laughing and will bring it up whenever he can.

    • LOL! That’s hilarious! I don’t want a disposable thumb, but I’d happily sign up for disposable hips and a disposable big booty! :o)

  23. Brenda said:

    My 11yo grandson overheard his parents discussing the price of fast food and how nothing is free, so that night when I brought a big bag of burgers and forgot the ketchup he proceeded to tell me that he understands the condoms are not really free at fast food places that we are already paying for them condoms so we should take all the condoms we need. Of course he dropped his plate-burger and all when I explained that ketchup was a condiment and condoms are ….. I will still be telling that one forever lol

    • Bwahaha! That’s hysterical!! Yes, we’re at McDonald’s — let’s take all the condoms we need! Love that!!

  24. Pamela said:

    We have a park in Vancouver called Stanley park. When I was a kid I always pronounced it “stangley park”. I also said “aminal” Instead of animal.

    • That’s adorable! I love “aminal!”
      My daughter used to say “mivivan” instead of “minivan” and I never corrected her! Too cute!

  25. Leslie Simich said:

    My older brother went to West Point still calling it “roast beast”, instead of roast beef. Guess we liked The Grinch and Whoville too much!

    • HA! I love that he still called it “roast beast” all the way to college! Awesome!