Causality Will Get You Every Time

The scene: In the car, on the way to school.

The Boy: You know French, Mommy.
Me: Not much.  I only took French for a year.
TB: My friend at school has had French for three years, cuz he’s six.

(At this point, I understand exactly what the boy means, but I press on, nevertheless.  It’s important for you to say what you mean and not force people to infer your meaning, right?  At least that’s what I keep telling myself.)

Me: What does being six have to do with having had three years of French?  You’re six, and you have not had three years of French.  There is no one-to-one correlation between years of studying French and being any particular age.  When you say “because,” son, you indicate at least a modicum of causality.  Where is the causality?
TB: But he started school when he was three.  Now he’s six, so he’s had three years of French.  He’s had three years of French cuz he’s six.
Me: But you’re lacking causality, son.  Being six does not necessarily indicate having studied French for three years.  Do you mean he’s been studying French for three years?
TB: Yes.  Because he’s six.  He started school when he was three, and he started learning French when he started school.  He went through two years of Pre-K, and then kindergarten, and now he’s six.  He’s had three years of French *dramatic pause* cuz he’s six.
Me: Now that you have explained the scenario, I better understand the causality.  You have to be careful with causality, kid.

There is a reason I have friends who predict a legal future for the boy.  Meanwhile, I’m doing my part to help him along.  I never said it was easy being my children.


    • Wow. I have officially turned into my mother. I knew it was going to happen, but I never thought it would be this soon. Oh well. That’s not such a bad thing.

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