[car door dings]
C’mon, kiddo, climb in. We’re going to be late for the soccer game.
— I’m in.
Are you buckled?
Tell me when you are.
[many seconds pass]
Are you buckled?
You were supposed to tell me when you were.
— Oh. Right.
— four months in, with their supplies exhausted and winter setting in, the castaways began to consider resorting to cannibali—
— Daddy, what was that?
What? Oh. Nothing. It’s just a book I’m listening to.
— What’s it about?
— Oh. Can we listen to it?
— I have a question.
Sure. What is it?
— Why is the sky blue?
Well, you see… uh… I think it has something to do to with how light refracts through the atmosphere, and how different wavelengths of light—
— Why do leaves change color in the fall?
Because of chlorophyll.
— What’s chlorophyll?
I don’t know.
— How do planes stay in the sky?
Ah, that’s a good question. It’s due to the aerodynamic principle of lift, which is an upward force generated on the airplane, when air passes underneath the wings—
— How do stop signs stay on their poles?
Bolts. Confident in that one.
— Why is grass green?
Once again here I’m going to have to say chlorophyll.
— Why are bricks red?
Ah, now there’s one I know. You see, bricks are made out of clay mud, which is formed into a brick shape in a mold and then baked in a big oven until it dries out and becomes hard. Bricks can be practically any color, depending on the pigments that are mixed into it, but the natural color of the clay is usually a reddish-brown shade. It’s interesting that you ask that, because most of the clay mud comes from near rivers, and that’s why here in Louisville we have so many brick buildings, because we’re close to the Ohio Ri—
— Can we get something from the snack bar after the game if we win?
Hey, now, you know your Mommy and I are proud of you no matter whether you win or not. Of course it’s nice if we win, but the most important thing is that you try your hardest, have a good time, and get some good exercise in. We’re not going to be disappointed if you don’t win.
— So can we get something from the snack bar?
One thing. And no soft pretzels. You got salt everywhere last time.
— Who named the colors?
— Colors. Who came up with “red” or “blue”?
I don’t know. There’s different names for colors in every language, but there’s also many different ways we perceive colors. Did you know that the Ancient Greeks didn’t have a word for blue? A famous Ancient Greek writer referred to the ocean as being wine-colored, and there are some scientists who believe that they weren’t able to perceive the color blue at all, but rather—
— Do you know what Yoshi’s full name is?
I do not but based on you asking me this question, I suspect that you might.
— It’s T. Yoshisaur Munchakoopas.
What does the ‘T’ stand for?
— I don’t know.
I bet it’s Tim. Tim Yoshisaur.
— Who just honked?
Because I disagreed with what that person did with their car and felt it would be helpful if I let them know that, so that they might improve their driving in the future.
— Are there supposed to be any tornadoes today?
No. There’s no chance of tornadoes today. It’s a sunny, 40-degree day.
— Can you check your phone to be sure?
Not while I’m driving.
— In the song “Jingle Bells, Batman smells, Robin laid an egg…”, why do they say that Batman smells?
I think it’s just because it fits the rhyme and meter of the original song nicely.
— Do you think Batman smells?
I doubt it. He’s rich, and most of the rich people I’ve met smelled really nice. On the other hand, it’s probably hard to wash the Bat-suit. I’ve heard that mascot costumes can get really smelly inside. But, again, he’s got a larger budget to work with than your average minor league baseball team. In conclusion, no, I don’t think Batman smells.
— Did you know that ‘peanut butter’ is the most offensive word there is?
Because it’s pee, nut—
Nevermind. I got it.
— How many days do I have left in school this year?
I think it’s like twenty-six.
— How many does [sibling] have left?
— Why do I have more school than they do? That’s not fair!
I do not set the school calendars. I wish that I did.
— How many days until Halloween?
Around 180. It is currently April.
— I think I’m going to go as Kirby for Halloween this year.
I feel like the proportions of that will be hard to pull off but I encourage you to follow your dreams and also trust that you will change your mind several times between now and six months from now.
— How do chameleons change colors?
I dunno. Let’s say chlorophyll. It’s gotta be right one of these times.
— Can I ask you one more question?
You can always ask me questions, kiddo. That’s what I’m here for, and I’ll always try to give you the best answer I can based on the knowledge I have.
— Who is God’s mom?
Ask your mother.
—Scott Hines (@actioncookbook)
I want to be clear that everything in here is a real question that one of my kids asked me in the last 48 hours, including one while I was doing final edits moments before publishing.
Sometimes, I am very glad I don't have kids because the temptation to give them the wrong answer is too great. My nephew still believes I lived on the moon for most of his life.
-Who named the colors? Your Great Uncle Leonidas
-Why does Batman smell? He doesn't, the Joker has an overly sensitive nose
-Any chance of tornados today? No, I don't have one planned for us.
-How do planes stay in the air? The Force. Pilots are secretly Jedi Masters
My sister is still upset at me for the moon answer, and would be very mad for answering my nephew with any of the above.