Ralph Mustachio

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When you need the hard truth, turn to the little people in your life. They’ll give it to you straight, usually when you’re not asking for it.

My niece Gabi is very advanced. I know all aunts say that, especially the ones that are mothering vicariously like me, but it’s true. Since she popped out of my sister’s womb, all bright eyed and ready for action, she has been advanced.

She easily picked up baby sign language. Milk (Cow milking motion). Share (Hand waving like “a little for you, a little for me”). She wowwed her audiences. Remarkable little human being.

At around fifteen months she started learning the distinction between boys and girls. Mommy is a girl. Daddy is a boy. Uncle Marshall is a boy. Auntie Lala (me) is a girl. (Good so far)

Then she learned about mustaches and their association with boys. Sign for mustache? A curved finger held up under one’s nose, of course.

Brilliant! Yes, quite. Until one day, when I was babysitting Gabi on a particularly sunny day, she looked at me sideways with concern. She was staring at me from all angles. Then slowly she raised her finger to her lip and made the mustache sign with her eye brows raised in a question.

I could hear her brain processing, “Auntie Lala is a girl… and yet…”

If you ever want to know when it’s time to get a lip wax (thank you to my Italian and Hungarian ancestry), then ask a toddler. Especially Gabi. She’s very advanced.

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write by Mfalme Odie

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