My father asks questions all the time.
“What does holy mackerel mean?” he frequently asks.
One of his friends explained the origin of the phrase — eating fish during Lent, etc, etc — but the next day he asked the same question. And the next.
“What are heebie-jeebies?” he asks, “and who ever thought of a word like that?”
“If something is ‘pretty good’, does that means it’s both pretty and good? And what about ‘pretty cute’?”
“What do dogs think about?”
To my children who go barefoot in the house — “Why don’t you wear shoes?” “Why don’t you wear socks?” “Aren’t your feet cold?”
To my tattooed son — “Why did you get those tattoos?” “Were you drunk when you got those?”
When we moved from Cheyenne, WY back to NY, our oldest son was just shy of 3. He asked questions ALL THE TIME. We planned to drive through the night to Kansas, and thought Philip would sleep the whole way. However, he talked for hours during that late night care ride.
I remember telling my sister about it when we got to Kansas because I was so tired.
“What did he talk about?” she asked.
“Mostly, he asked questions,” I said.
“Can I touch the moon?” “Can I hold it?” “Can I play with it?” “Where is that car going?” “What’s in that truck?” “Does the moon like me?” “What are you eating?” Where are we going?” “Why are you crying?”
The emotional and physical exhaustion of the preceding days had left me numb, and yet here was this little person I loved asking me questions.
Do you see the parallel?
It’s like deja vu all over again.