The Battery

A couple of years ago, The Oldest, who was nine at the time, approached me while I was standing outside looking at the fresh dirt work that had been done in preparation for a building to be constructed on our property. For the record, I was genuinely confused. I was not trying to be difficult.

TO: “Why did they burry the battery, mom?”
Me: “Burry? What is ‘burry’?”
TO: “Why did they bury the battery?”
Me: “What battery?”
TO: “I don’t know.”
Me: “What do you mean you don’t know? You are asking about a battery but you don’t know which one?”
TO: It’s just a regular battery – AA.”
Me: “Where did they bury it?”
(Keep in mind that I was staring at freshly dug dirt when she started this conversation.)
TO: “I don’t know.”
Me (very confused now): “You don’t know where or what so why are you asking? Who buried the battery?”
TO: “It was the Thorntons. Just some people. And they buried it in their backyard.”
Me: “Who are the Thorntons?”
TO: “I don’t know. It’s just a joke, mom.”
Me: “Well it’s not very funny – it doesn’t make any sense.”
TO: “It was dead.”
Me: “What was?”
TO: “The battery was. It was dead.”
Me: “Oh.”
TO: “So why did they bury the battery?”
Me: “I don’t know. Why?”
TO: “Because it was dead.”
Me: “You should really make sure the listener understands you are trying to tell a joke before you start.”
TO: “Okay.”


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