You see, being the child I was, I spent a lot of time in that building. It was the coolest place in the world. When I couldn't fall asleep as a kid, my mom told me to imagine that I was sleeping in a huge fluffy yellow bed in the middle of the science centre amongst model tornadoes, the miniature rainforest, and the freaking awesome bat cave.
The science centre was home to a lot of my firsts.
- First purchase bought with my own money (a pocket sized puzzle for $1.99)
- First time getting lost (I was having fun in the physics area while my parents checked every corner of the Human Body section possible)
- First really bad word.
One day, we went on a family outing to - where else? - my childhood's third most prominent landmark. (The most prominent was the Jewish Community Centre, the second the hill at my park that apparently resembled the hill in Teletubbies.) There was a temporary exhibit showing at the museum about the five senses. 4 year old me walked into the exhibition hall, looking something like this:
As Young Me without any pupils attested to in her thought bubble, the giant thing to throw my voice across the room to my brother was exactly what it sounds like. It was large, and yellow, and funnel shaped, and there was another identical one across the room.
We soon got to the lovely pastime of rhyming nonsense words by changing the consonant sound up in words with the same endings. Then, the fateful moment. We arrived at the ending 'uck'.
I like to imagine that the entire room went silent at the sight of a young toddler in ugly fleece clothing dropping the F-bomb in the middle of a haven of science. Mom and Dad certainly did.
On our rushed way out of the science centre, my parents explained to me that I had said a bad, bad, word. I asked them what it meant.
"Oh, really bad things. Even I don't really know what it means. Just don't use it, sweetie."
I proceeded to whisper it to my entire senior-kindergarten class the next day, and was the coolest kid on the playground for an entire week.
Moral of the story? If you're going to swear in public, do it as a young child. Then it only embarrasses your parents.
PS: I have, in my digestive system right now, a tomato from a tomato plant grown by NASA for studying Mars. NASA. MARS. *nerdgasm*