On the Art of Gentle Satire

Good morning Everyone!

I had a proud parent moment on Friday.  What caused that familiar heart thump with the shining glow that courses all over me whenever my daughter does something to make me proud? 

Did she make all A’s that week?  (No, that heart thump was Thursday.) 

 Did she save the world?  (Not yet, but I expect she will one day!)

Help out extra with the house?  (No, that heart thump was the last two Saturdays in a row.)

No, she used, for the first time that I can remember, the art of gentle satire to make a point .

Now, I need to backtrack.  Kayla is in a family where we a) love to laugh, b) admire the exceptionally witty response to any comment, and c) secretly believe that satire and sarcasm are spiritual gifts that Paul forgot to leave off of his list, quite unintentionally, of course.  FN. 1. 

When Kayla was four, she had been asking the same question over and over again, as children do, and about the fifth repeat Mark stopped and looked at her and said, “I know what you’re thinking, child.  Have I asked him five times, or six?  To tell you the truth, I’ve forgotten myself.  So the question is, are you feeling lucky today, kid?  Are you?  ARE YOU?”  FN.2

Mark and I were in gales, and Kayla thought her parents had lost their mind.

Ever since then, whenever a chance for gentle satire arises (one of the best kinds of humor is gentle satire that doesn’t leave a scar on your soul), Mark and I have started laughing, and Kayla just looks a little puzzled. 

But Friday, that changed. 

I went to pick her up and asked if she had received any numbers that day at school.  She told me she had received one, but it was for not being prepared.  (We don’t count those, really, even though we probably should; we are concerned with good behavior.)

I said something to the effect that the one number was okay, especially since it wasn’t a  conduct number, and the child turned to me in the front seat, folded her hands like the stereotypical picture of an angelic child, batted her eyes and said in a sickly sweet voice, “Why mother, your daughter would never do anything to earn a conduct number!  I’m a perfect angel!” 

I was so proud of her!  FN 3.

Have a great day everyone!


 P.S.  If you have any comments you or your children have made that fall within the realm of gentle satire, please share them!  I would love to hear about it!

FN 1.  For people not familiar with the concept of spiritual gifts, read Galatians 5:22 in the New Testament, and then Google spiritual gifts and this reference will make a lot more sense.

FN 2.  If you don’t recognize that paraphrase, rent or download the movie “Dirty Harry” starring Clint Eastwood. 

FN 3.  She really has down amazingly well this year with conduct numbers.  I told her that, too, once I finished laughing at her first comment.   Purple Ambassadors is one of the best things that ever happened to her!

8 responses to “On the Art of Gentle Satire

  1. Ha ha .. she got you there.. fantastic when the kids starts ribbing the mum.. perfect parent proud moment! c

  2. Love this. I also appreciate satirical humor. Sophia often provides us with is, though I’m not so sure she understands what is exactly funny. Congrats! (or Parabems in Portuguese)

  3. The Clint Eastwood tribute satire was masterful 🙂

    • Yes, I though so too. Mark is very good at finding things like that which he improvises at and at telling stories in a really funny way. I’ve often thought he would be an excellent stand-up comedian, were it not for the pressing need for us to make a living and all of the travel for him, which Kayla and I would hate! Plus the fact that he likes to make people laugh in conversation but really isn’t keen to do stand up anyhow.


  4. Pretty good. Another warm Christmas season! Go figure.

    • I imagine that switching seasons can take some getting used to. I probably wouldn’t have nearly as hard a time with Christmas in summer time as I would with winter in June!

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