Humor by Diane Farr
"Yes" is the answer I find myself repeating over and over while having lunch at the mall with my daughters. Sadly, I'm not saying it to them, though. I'm giving the affirmative to the slew of strangers approaching us whom I have no interest in talking to.
My daughters are twins. They are 2 years old and cute and smart and everything else every mother thinks about their little ones, but that's not why they get so much attention. Strangers want to talk to them simply because they are twins.
And really, these intrigued and totally uninvited guests at my family's lunch table don't want to talk to my daughters at all. They want to stare at them mercilessly while asking incredibly invasive questions of me that usually begin with a shriek, gasp or whisper and are followed by, "Oh, my God! Look at them! Are they twins?"
This opening query might seem innocuous. But any momma of multiples will tell you she's heard this question 10 times today if it's already lunchtime. And, more to the point, all of our kids have the same look of fear on their identical or fraternal faces when they hear a total stranger scream at the sight of them, only to be further terrified when said stranger steps right up to examine them.
"Are they identical?" is usually the next question at this tableside interview. This is a question I really don't want to answer because no good can come of it. Regardless of whether I do or don't reply, though, the doozie almost always follows:
"Did you have them naturally?"
Hmm. As opposed to demonically?
Let's think about what you are really asking a complete stranger who is currently eating with her children. "Did I have them naturally?" Meaning did I conceive them by having sex with someone? Is that really an appropriate question? At my family's lunch table? For me and you, unnamed stranger?
I like to save conversations about my run-ins with opposite-sex anatomy until it's dark out. And if I'm having that conversation, I'm not eating pureed sweet potatoes or drinking water. I'm having an adult beverage with an adult of my choosing.
But for the record, what if my children were not conceived by strict use of male and female body parts? What if Daddy's sperm, a doctor and a syringe of some sort were all involved? Will you breathe easier knowing that my fate will not be yours without a ton of time and money? Or will you start rummaging through my kids' hair for evidence that they are somehow not real people?
Twins are incredibly common now. They are no longer on par with a polar bear sighting in Central Park. So when you see your first set, or your second or your 100th, please refrain from asking their parents if they had sex in order to make them. And, please, try not to treat the human beings who happened to be in the same womb at the same time like animals at the zoo, either.
"Well, I can tell them apart because this one has a rounder face, right?"
Yes, much like how your arse is way rounder than mine.
Be aware that deafness is not any more common in twins than it is to the rest of the population. Both of my daughters can hear you when you look into both their eyes and judge which one as prettier, thinner, smarter or nicer. The comment is not doing either of them any good and, really, we don't care whom you prefer.
But the biggest affront may be to other children sitting at the table with twins -- like my son, who is usually right next to his sisters. Although he is only one year older, just as cute and smart as the girls -- and actually wants to talk to all of his sisters' fans -- he is completely ignored in this recurring interrogation.
So, please, admire multiples from afar to prevent getting yourself in double trouble.
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