Idioms Gone Wrong

One day last week Curtis sent King to clean his room. A while later I wondered what he was doing because he had been in there a really long time. His attention span isn't that long for anything, especially cleaning. Curtis went to check on him.

When I saw Curtis again he was holding the Children's Tylenol and a spoon.

"This is a teaspoon, right?"

"What's going on?"

"King has a headache, and he's crying... uncontrollably."

"He doesn't want to clean his room?"


I gave Curtis the proper dosage of Tylenol for cleaning induced headaches (a band-aid on the forehead used to work for these types of pains, but I guess King is getting more sophisticated as he grows older).

It wasn't long before Curtis came back.

"Everything o.k.?"

"Yes. He's cleaning."

"Hmm. Really?"

Not long after that, King appeared.

"All finished?"


Then Curtis, rightfully basking in his moment of child-behavior-modification success, said, "I'm really proud of you, King. You didn't want to clean your room, but you sucked it up and did what you had to do."

King got this horrible look on his face and said indignantly, "I DID NOT SUCK IT UP."

Realizing the misunderstanding, Curtis launched into an explanation of the meaning of the phrase.

I added, "... not like a vacuum, Honey."

This example of idioms gone bad reminds me of a previous incident:

King and Michael where horsing around when they accidentally butted heads.

"Oh... head butt!" I said.

King corrected me, "No... it was head-cheek."