I’d Rather Be a Smart-ass Than a Dumb-ass

The title of this post is what my husband always says when he gets called a smart-ass. Yes, he gets called it a lot. It's pretty much a toss-up on which one of us passed on the smart-ass-y gene to the kids. He says me, I say him. The kids have taken it to a new level. 
At one point when our youngest (the son mentioned in the cornfield post) was in his teens, he was upset because he felt he wasn't able to keep up. When everyone else was smarting off, he was lost and couldn't come up with snappy retort. This frustrated him to no end. I can imagine he was feeling a bit different from the rest of the family and wondered for a short time if he possibly could have been adopted. (Not a chance. He is Hubs' clone.)  Well he came into his stride when he hit his 20's and now he's as quick-witted as the next one.
It is one of my favorite things when the family gets together. I even referred to it when I was interviewed a few days ago and asked what one memory I would like to keep. It was this – all of us sitting around the table being smart-asses and laughing so hard at each other (okay…um…yeah… WITH each other. Whatever.) … laughter is contagious!
Sometimes I pity the first time a "significant other" is brought in to meet us all. I am sure there have been conversations that went something like, "My family isn't typical. We're a bit weird. If you're lucky Mom will have clothes on and Dad will shut off the TV long enough to talk to you. Oh, yeah, and it gets really noisy and don't be surprised if you are totally embarrassed." By which point he or she is really wondering what they've gotten themselves into. So far, we've lucked out and the significant others are generally right in there smarting off along with the rest of us.
When MIL comes over it changes the chemistry a little. Because of logistics (she lives really, really close) and the fact that she has hearing like a bat (I swear she can overhear cell phone calls at 200 yards) she is often included. It just makes life easier. Trust me. However, she can be a bit of a wet blanket. She sits there and glares because a.) she doesn't approve the language, my kids we all cuss like sailors  and b.) she doesn't get half the references – sometimes we're talking about World of Warcraft, sometimes we're "sneakily" and "subtley" talking about the blogs without actually SAYING blog, 'cause, you know, that would just give it all away and we'd die slow painful deaths. Occasionally we'll be talking TV shows, none of which she's seen or heard of but maybe she thinks she wants to … until she finds out what they're about (Hello? Dexter?).
So. If you ever get invited over, don't be surprised by the total breakdown of the Heartland of America Corn Fed Squeaky Clean image. We just don't work that way. We're a bunch of smart-asses….but better than a bunch of dumb-asses!

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Middle-aged. Anti-social. Mom. Grandma. Town-raised farmer's wife. Iowan. Want more? Come read the blogs.

16 thoughts on “I’d Rather Be a Smart-ass Than a Dumb-ass”

  1. Sounds like a great family to me!

    It’s wonderful that you all can interact like that..and laugh! All families should be so lucky.

  2. Hi Sue,
    I feel sorry for your youngest son who was outwitted by his bigger brother when he was a teenager. They go through phases when they are not great talkers but deep thinkers. That’s what I tell my pupils in classes: “You might not be a great talker (at the moment) but you sure are a deep thinker.” It helps a lot.
    I am glad your youngest son has overcome his shyness and is just as quick as the rest of his “smart-ass” family. I loved this post, it made me smile. Thank you.

  3. I was never fast on the draw either, that is why I like to write my ideas down. But my philosophy is better a slow wit than a dim wit. Every now and then I come up with an immediate response and can’t believe it actually came from me.

  4. I think the other night was one of my most favorite grandma moments…When I asked what pact she made with the devil. I thought her eyes were gonna pop out of her head. Me loves being the black sheep.

  5. Hi namesake!
    Oh dear, our SigOths get similar warnings….they usually end up with a glazed, stunned mullet look on their faces after the first encounter with ‘The Family’.
    Luckily for Craig it’s going to be a quiet family Xmas at our place this yer – only 18 of us…

  6. Yeah, sounds like you have to stay on your toes intellectually!! I’m sure there’s scientific proof that living in a family like yours will keep your mind sharp and stave off senility in old age…

  7. girl- this so sounds like my family. smart asses for sure. i always feel bad for my baby brother when he brings home girlfriends. my dad usually screams out that “I CLOGGED THE TOILET AGAIN!!!” and my older bro is talking about how loud his farts can can get. and my MA is telling us we all need to pray the rosary or we are going to hell in a handbasket. my sisters are fighting over who has a smaller ass. you get the drift….but it’s lots o’fun that’s for sure! 🙂

  8. Must be an Iowa thing. The Spousal Unit and I both come from smart-assed families. We were making lists of our parents’ expressions last week. Her Dad’s “Where are my testicles (spectacles)?” took top prize.

  9. I think my siblings and I get along pretty well, but I don’t know if we could all live close to each other and see each other all the time. But our wet blanket can sometimes be my mom b/c we can never tell what kind of mood she’ll be in. She can go from being the funny, sarcastic one to suddenly being offended if we swear. It’s strange.

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