I called Olivia the other day during a break from a weekend workshop in Denver. John and I were sitting in Jamba Juice, sucking down smoothies. His was some chunky green concoction which I'm sure tasted quite lovely although it looked quite unholy; I stuck with the tried-and-true mango/pineapple/orange combo which was a lovely, smoothie-appropriate orange color.
Me: "What are you doing, Liv?"
Liv: "I'm shanking my pointe shoe. Do we have any pliers?"
Me: "Um. You'll have to ask dad where the pliers are. But what do you mean, 'shanking your pointe shoe', exactly?"
Liv: "I'm cutting the shank so that my foot arches more and it's more comfortable."
Me: "You know that shanking is what you do to someone in prison, right? You stab them with a shank."
Me: "A shank. A homemade sharp object. You shank them when you want to kill them. It sounds weird when you say you're shanking your pointe shoe."
Liv: [silence, in which she's either thinking "My god, my parents are strange" or "I have just learned a very valuable lesson and I hope to never go to prison" or "FINALLY! I know how to deal with the mean girl at the lunch table!" Probably the former, sadly.]
We hung up and I turned to John. "In retrospect, perhaps I shouldn't have explained that to our fourteen-year old, huh?" (And probably not in the middle of a Jamba Juice...) Oh well. Better she learns it from me than on the street, right?