Like father, like son?

I sometimes wonder what quirks our little boy will inherit from me.  Believe me when I say there are plenty to choose from.  I got thinking about it this morning when I realized a subtle quirk I inherited from my father.

When I arrived at work this morning, I went through my routine of looking at my calendar for the day and updating my outgoing voice mail message to reflect the various meetings I would be in.  I found  myself saying to the voice mail system, “…however, I’ll be in meetings from 11am till 6 pm.”  I had an equally packed schedule yesterday.  When I hung up the phone and stared at my calendar, I said to myself (outloud), “Gee whiz!  That’s two days in a row.”

“Gee whiz!” is my dad’s #1 expletive.  He seems to say it when he is surprised by a particular circumstance (as opposed to his #2 expletive, an opprobrious barnyard term he utters when he is particularly annoyed by something).  At any rate, I find myself saying, “Gee whiz” from time-to-time, and it seems as though I have been doing it with increasing frequency.  It makes me wonder if this soft expletive will become generational, and our little boy will wander out saying, “Gee whiz!” when he encounters something he doesn’t quite expect.

(For the record, as most people know, I rarely use profanity.  However, when in my office, with my door closed, working on some coding that doesn’t behave the way I expect it to, I let go with a string of profanity that would make George Carlin blush.  However this is for my ears only, and I can assure you that it is unlikely anyone other than me will ever hear me blurt it out.)

About Jamie Todd Rubin

Jamie Todd Rubin writes fiction and nonfiction for a variety of publications including Analog, Clarkesworld, The Daily Beast, 99U, Daily Science Fiction, Lightspeed, InterGalactic Medicine Show, and several anthologies. He was featured in Lifehacker’s How I Work series. He has been blogging since 2005. By day, he manages software projects and occasionally writes code. He lives in Arlington, Virginia with his wife and three children. Find him on Twitter at @jamietr.

1 thought on “Like father, like son?

  1. First, I think it would be adorable to see a toddler-sized Zipper running around saying Gee Whiz!

    Second, I am equally interested in hearing the long string of profanity from you.

    (Actually, I’m not sure which would intrigue me more.)

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