Show How Smart You Are Growing Up Girl
Some girls, probably all girls are smarter than boys. That’s why, learning to dumb yourself down is so hard. When I was a little girl, I had already developed a love for words. I thought I wanted to be an English teacher. If I were, schools of people would diagram sentences with me. Sure, that’s childish thinking, but I was a child.
The thing is, I corrected everyone. It’s my mother’s fault. She was a grammarian. Not professionally, but in our house, she sure acted like one. I picked up the habit of correcting people, the same way my mother corrected us. If some kid said, “He should have ran to the next base.” Stop everything. Who cares about running to home plate? That grammar needs correcting.
“He should have run,” I would call out.
“Why don’t you, should have run now?” someone might holler.
“Well, say it right and I will.”
“Tag, you’re out.”
Now, everyone on my team went into a huff.
“That’s why girls should never play baseball,” one of the boys might say to me.
I didn’t care. My mother always said, “If you speak poorly, everyone will think poorly of you.” It sure sounded like a right-minded idea to me. I went on correcting people. Anyone and everyone. It was my duty.
One day, I was maybe ten, one of my mother’s friends came over for a visit. I hate to tell on her, but she used bad grammar all the time.” Well, without thinking to stop myself, I corrected her. She had said something like, “I bought the kids over to play.”
I said, without pausing, “Brought.”
My mother gave me a look. Oh boy, there was trouble in my future. I left the room, hoping my mother would forget all about it. I didn’t like those kids anyway, so I didn’t care about not playing with them. I read in my room. After those people left our house, my mother called me down.
“You don’t correct adults,” she said.
“Well, she shouldn’t speak so poorly.”
“It’s not your job to correct her.”
“You didn’t do it.”
“It’s not my job either.”
“Whose job, is it?”
“No one’s. She’s a grown woman and you don’t correct adults.”
“She should go back to school,” I said.
I had gone too far. My mother said, “Where is my belt.” She gave me some good lickings. When she finished, she said, “You don’t need to show how smart you are all the time.”
Nothing she said, made sense to me. I wasn’t trying to show how smart I was. I wanted to help that woman. The thing is… I wonder if she would have said that to my brother.