The Difference Between Boys and Girls

#5 got a cell phone for Christmas.

He’s too young for it, we know.

We were maxed out on our family plan when it came time to get one for #4, who was literally the last kid in the sixth grade without one. We had to open a whole new account to accommodate her, and at that point it was easy to add him on.

For the record, we’re talking about basic phones here. Not smart phones. An awful lot of kids in the middle school here got iPhone 4’s for Christmas. Our kids referred to them as spoiled, which made me proud.

Though it is quite possible they were just saying what they knew I wanted to hear in hopes that I would buy them smart phones next time around.

I figured #5’s phone would last three months, tops. Turns out it was #4 who broke her phone first.

Ten days after Christmas; water damage.

She didn’t do it, she swears.

Kids text. They don’t talk on the phone. I wish someone offered a plan that was unlimited texts and like, twenty minutes a month. I would totally come out ahead on that. Which, I suppose, is why no one offers that plan.

Most of the texts I get from the girls are either asking for something that will cost me money or complaining about something that will cost me money. They are nearly always misspelled, and not in a fashion that saves them any extra effort.

-Wat is 4dinnner

-Cant we haaav bk instead of stew

-do i haaavd to do choares please say no


-I haaaaate her shez such a b-word!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

-Cn u leev $$$ for me pleeeez?

-I just want to give you a heads up about tour. I’m going to need two new dresses. And probably shoes as well. (#2 always spells everything correctly)

Though I have to say, during the brief span of time before she broke her phone, #4 did send me a picture of Casey wearing the Gene Simmons wig.

#5, however, is different. He never texts me with complaints about his sisters, requests for money, or to say he didn’t like dinner.

This is the kind of thing I get from #5:


A picture of him being attacked by the vacuum cleaner on a Saturday when we left them with an extensive chore list.

“Everything’s better with Perry” was his signature line. A reference to Phineas and Ferb, the greatest TV show of all time.

So when my friend Walter brought me a gift to give to #5, I texted him.

Me: My friend Walter brought me a gift for you.

#5: sweat! tell him i said thanks

I’m pretty sure he meant “sweet”. He didn’t ask what the gift was until I got home. As if it never occurred to him to pester me via text.

The pestering came later, and it was really directed more at his sisters as he proclaimed with great joy, and even greater volume, the two magical words that named the gift, over and over, all day long:


It is his most cherished possession. Thanks, Walter- it’s sweat!