I'm going to call them parent-isms.
The things parents tell their kids.
Some of which are true.
My Husby's dad was known for his parentisms.
He had his kids convinced that he could measure their potential – with a yard stick.
He'd hold the yard stick near them and announce that their ability was 'nigh onto nothing'.
Fortunately, they didn't believe him.
He was also famous for asking them if they'd rather 'be dumber than they look or look dumber than they were'.
His victim would choose one or the other and he would grin and say, “How could you be?”
Which would result in a heated glare.
And just widened his grin.
He also convinced his children to eat carrots.
Lots of carrots.
By telling them that if they did, they could see better.
Okay, I know that all of us were informed that we would be able to see better if we ate our carrots.
Even in the dark.
But he took it just that much further.
His exact words?
Not only would they see better in the dark, but they would be able to see through hills in the dark.
And at least one of his children believed that one.
For years, my one-day-husby-to-be would peer into the night, trying desperately to see through hills.
He never did.
But he sure ate his carrots.
Sometimes, when his kids were with him in the yard, Husby's Dad would stoop and pick up a small pebble. Then hand it to the nearest child with the words, “Suck on this. The flavour will come.”
They caught onto that one fairly fast.
After trying it only a time or two.
But the dreaded phrase for which he is most famous? “Go get the switch.”
This only occurred during moments of extreme stress.
When a misdemeanour was grave.
I should point out that 'the switch' was a long willow branch.
Kept in the garage.
And that the culprit had to go and fetch it.
Hand it to his father.
Then wait for punishment to be meted out.
The culprit would take the 'long route'.
Through the barn.
Around the corrals.
Through the chicken coup.
And the pig pen.
And finally into the garage.
Emerging with the dreaded willow switch.
By this time, having already suffered agonies.
Husby's Dad didn't have to do anything more.
He would make a light, token swipe at legs or bottom, then hand the switch back with the words “don't do it again”.
And they didn't.
What parentisms did your parents use on you?