Rule #5: Make Up Stuff About History

in Rules of Parenting

make up history to kids

Make up history to kids. It's fun, and they'll believe you.

Since your child assumes you’re the conduit of legitimate information, he or she will never know if you make up stuff about history. You’ll look smart, sound smart, and gain respect no matter what the scenario.

When your child brings home an irritating assignment from one of the motivated teachers at his school, you may have to answer vexing gems like “Who wrote the United States Constitution?” But you don’t have to worry, you can sit back in your recliner and confidently tell him:

“Son, everyone knows that’s an impossible question. The Constitution was first written on cave walls thousands of years ago and was discovered by Daniel Boone, who used the drawings to create a map which led him to discover America. But he lost the map until Larry King deciphered it and convinced the country to adopt the translated version in the 1920s. To this day, no one really knows who wrote the original Constitution.”

But you don’t always have to make it so believable. When your daughter asks you if there’s ever been a female President you can rest her dreams assured by letting her know: “Yes, sweetie. When I was your age we had the first female President. She was an elegant Haitian woman and she lived to be 113. Her name Mama Bantu and she used to breast feed orphans from her desk in the Oval Office.”

History = Easy Answers

alex trebek knows history

Alex Trebek has all the answers, just ask (in the form of a question...)

Kids hate history because it’s so hard to remember. To help them learn to think independently and freely, develop a stream-of-consciousness approach to answering your child’s history-related questions. For example:

Your Child:
Daddy, what was the Great Depression?

You:
Oh, honey, that was a really dark time when everyone was sad because the Beatles broke up. People were depressed for a while and really pissed at a woman named Yoko.

Your Child: Daddy, what was the Compromise of 1850?

You: Easy one—the first president of the United States, George Clinton, agreed not to play loud music in Lincoln’s bedroom late at night if the Republicans accepted his resolution to stop waking up so early and running the coffee grinder.

This will ensure that the self esteem of your children will swell along with their perceived knowledge of history…until they embarrass themselves one day on Jeopardy.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Bob October 30, 2008 at 10:32 am

Make up history? It’s all made up. Especially that stuff about Captain Kirk and Spock. I can tell you this– I’ve yet to see a pointy-earred Japanese guy yet.

Reply

Father Knows Worst October 30, 2008 at 1:32 pm

Bob:
There’s no way of convincing me that Captain Kirk is not real. If that’s true, then who’s the guy in those awful commercials?

Reply

edie January 26, 2009 at 1:23 pm

the description of the great depression is classic

Reply

jason May 1, 2009 at 11:01 am

holy shit. how have i never seen this? your best work is buried.

Reply

niyam bhushan September 4, 2009 at 1:10 am

oh! wow! you’ve used a photo of me telling a dinosaur story to my kid, which i published on my flickr account: http://www.flickr.com/niyam . The photo’s right here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/niyam/2383038499/

am sure when my kid grows up, he’s going to be real proud his dad made it to ‘reallybadparentingadvice.com’. hehehehe! thanks for the laugh guys.
:-)
niyam bhushan

Reply

Bett September 10, 2010 at 2:41 pm

@ Niyam, awesome. The important thing here is that you LOOK like you are telling your kid something outrageous.

Reply

Kelly September 11, 2010 at 2:31 pm

Yes, Johnny……….Denial IS, in fact, a river in Egypt.

Reply

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