Back in the late 1950s the TV personality Art Linkletter published a collection of amusing utterances from the mouths of children. He called it Kids Say the Darndest Things. The book was hugely popular, and no wonder. Linkletter was mining a rich vein — and an inexhaustible one. I've often wondered why more parents don't bother to write down the sayings of their own youngsters the way my wife and I did.
When our three sons were little, I kept a diary. Along with luncheon appointments and tennis match scores and opinions of books and movies, I began more and more to fill its pages with snippets from the boys' conversations. I don't mean "cute sayings" from when they were learning how to talk. I mean serious (to them) dialogues, candid observations and some highly original thinking. I still smile when I read these pages today.
Let me share a few of my favorite entries with you:
At bedtime I sat on the edge of Davey's bed and questioned the boys about what they wanted to be when they grew up.
"What do you want to be, Davey," I asked, "a ballplayer?"
"No," said Davey. "An artist."
"How about you?" I said, turning to Tim. "What do you want to be?"
"Winston Churchill," came the grave reply.