When we were kids, our parents used medical terminology about our bodies. I don’t remember whether it was always that way: I remember when I was very young, about four, watching a TV programme with nobody else around and then proudly bursting into the room declaring that I had learned the “proper” names for genitalia. Whether that memory reflects reality or not, I don’t know.
One day, when I was six– I can place it quite well, because I remember the classroom– I was allowed to choose what reading books I was reading. And I picked out a book called The Body Book, which at the time looked quite fascinating. I remember my teacher wrinkling up her nose in thought as to whether I should be allowed to take a book with naked people on the cover home, and my mother telling her it was all right.
Anyway, so I devoured this book. It had a lot of information in it about such interesting things as emotions and death, but then I got to the page about sex. In case you didn’t bother to look, it explains that boys and girls have “baby-making bits”. A boy’s “baby-making bits” are named as “a penis”. However, not only is the vagina the only part of a woman’s equipment whose existence is acknowledged, but the book even affirms that its name is “a baby-making hole”. Being a knowledge-thirsty kind of kid, I soaked up this information and forgot that I had previously been aware of any other words.
Now, a few months later, it happened that we were doing some Disney songs in the school choir, including the song Twitterpated from Bambi. When we were waiting by the front door getting ready to go to school one morning, my brother (a year younger than me) got bored and decided to pass the time by parodying the song. He sang:
Things begin to happen when a boy meets girl,
The boy puts his penis in the girl’s vulva.
(Somehow he managed to get the second line into the metre. I don’t think we learned about scansion at school.)
Anyway, I turned on him and said, “He doesn’t! He doesn’t!”
My mother fixed a steely eye upon me. “Really, Thomas?” she said. “And what does he do?”
“He puts his penis in the girl’s *baby-making hole*,” I said proudly.
To her credit, my mother kept a straight face.
–Submitted by Thomas