Posted by: cochinblogger | July 21, 2010

Sexy Labels for Schoolchildren

First please read the prehistory to this post here: I had successfully ducked the challenge of explaining to my 10-year-old the meaning of the word sexy.

What I have to report now is amazing. Life is truly a wonderful teacher. I tried to evade my responsibility of teaching my son how to handle adult words like sexy,only for Life to teach me a lesson on the futility of trying to escape one’s destiny. I’m reminded of the Arabian tale on which the title of John O’Hara’s book, Appointment in Samarra, is based. See

My son came home from school one day and showed me this label.

He had got it from the school, which distributed them free to students. In fact, my son got about ten or fifteen of them. He pointed to the middle word and asked me what it meant. I took the bull by the horns. I told him the word meant “attractive,” but that it was only used by adults. Kids like him should not use it. He smiled and told me a classmate had told him it was a dirty word. I asked him if the teacher who distributed the labels had said anything. He said no. I would like to have been around when some kid asked the teacher what the word meant.

Now, I wonder just who is the genius who designed these labels? All the school knew was that it was getting a freebie. I’m sure it did not bargain for this.

All in all, it’s perhaps just as well that in the permissive times we live in, kids should become familiar with adult words early. That is the kind of society we adults have created.

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