“Knock, Knock,” I say, a sly smile on my face. Wide eyes and excited grins greet me from below.
“Who’s there?” they chorus.
“Eat mop who?”
“EWW! YOU SAID EAT MY POO!” I yell. They collapse in fits of giggles.
The joke is one I learned from a coworker at Eldora. It’s sly, disgusting, and exactly what little kids enjoy. But there’s a twist that I truly love. A half hour on, the kids are typically telling each other this joke over and over, some trying to change it or break it, usually unsuccessfully. And that’s when I spring on them variations:
“Knock, Knock,” I say.
Sometimes I need to finish the joke, others they figure it out solely from context. Either way, watching them have that revelatory moment, realizing they can change verbs without losing the fecal funny, is priceless.
At dinner the other night, in the midst of an unrelated conversation, my favorite knock knock joke came into my head.
While the joke flitted through my frontal cortex, it replayed itself in variation:
“From… With… Under…”
A wide smile crossed my face and I stared off into space, the world open wider than ever before. The conversation stopped, everyone staring at me in this embarrassed moment of utter joy.
These are the moments with kids that I cherish. It’s easy to forget that I can still have them too.