It is humbling to remember your age.
An amusing illustration of this occurred which bears preserving. You engaged in a conversation with your fifteen-year-old daughter which pointed to generational differences.
She leaned on the kitchen counter beside you as you chopped onions for dinner. Without preamble, she launched in. “Mom, I ship Jack Frost and Elsa.”
“I ship them.”
You looked up at her, teary eyed from the onions. “Where are you mailing them?”
She laughed. “No, Mom, Gosh, you’re OLD. (You didn’t need her to tell you. Your body lets you know on a regular basis.) See, Mom, ‘shipping’ is when you’d like to see someone in a relationship. You know?”
“No,” You say. “No, I don’t. A ship is a boat. It’s a conveyance. Why would you shorten the word relationship? Its meaning is very different.”
She sighed and slumped in that dramatic, teenaged way that radiated disgust. “Really, Mom! Don’t you read any fanfic?”
You chuckled. “No, sweetpea. I write my own characters instead of borrowing from the works of other authors.”
The eye roll conveyed her message. Her posture declared me completely out of touch.
“Ship, Mom. Everyone uses the word ship. Geeze.”
You laughed, secure in your stodgy stance. You exaggerated your infirmity. You hunched your shoulders and added a quaver to your voice. “If you young’uns want to play matchmaker, you need to learn to use the right vocabulary.”
Her tiny mouth popped open in an “o” of incredulity. “Really, Mom? Really?”
You laughed. “Jack from “Guardians” with Elsa from “Frozen?” I could see them as an interesting couple. His playful nature would complement her serious side.”
A ghost of a smile tugged at the corner of her mouth. “Exactly. So do you ship them, too?”
You turn back to mincing the onion. “I could see them as a couple.”
“Oh, Mom,” she giggled.
You wipe a tear and steal a glance at this emerging beauty. Ships carry people to destinations, close gaps between land masses. In relationships, generational differences can grow into oceans between parents and their kids if no effort is taken.
You giggled, too, taking a baby-step into youthful language. “You know who I could really ‘ship? Captain America and Black Widow.”
She nods her approval. “That’s it. I could ship them, too.”
Try stay current without tipping into absurdity, old lady.
To read more of Kerry’s letters, click on Kerry!