Conversation with Ava and Nate from two days ago, as we got out of the car at our local shops...
Nate: Ew, Mom! Look! Somebody left bubble gum on the ground.
Me: (getting Grace out of car seat) Okay, that's fine. Just don't step on it--it's sticky. (Has sudden, terrible thought) You didn't put it in your mouth, did you?
Nate: No. (still staring at gum, which inexplicably holds some fascination for him)
Ava: Teenagers love bubble gum! They're always chewing it.
Me: (Distracted, holding Grace and wrestling the stroller out of the back of the car) They are?
Ava: (Nodding) Yeah. They just love it. They like to chew it a lot. Teenagers are always asking their moms to buy them bubble gum. It's weird!
Me: Wow...I had no idea that they liked it so much.
Ava: (nods wisely) Yeah.
(We start walking toward shops)
Nate: Mom, when I'm a teenager, will you buy me some bubble gum?
Me: Sure, bud.
Nate: (Stopping and looking at me) For real life?
Me: (enjoying the opportunity to appear benevolent) For real life. I will totally buy you some bubble gum when you're a teenager.
Ava: And me?
Me: Sure, why not? You can have some bubble gum too.
Oh Lord... if only that was all teenagers wanted! I don't know where they come up with this stuff...