My father, God rest his soul, was not a fan of big words. Although he was a linguist and had an expansive vocabulary, he believed that communication should be clear and direct. My maternal grandmother, however, did not. One fidgety afternoon as the chair seat itched my sweaty little legs, I reached for a fourth golden butterscotch. “No more candy, Ellen,” Daddy said, “Sugar rots your teeth.” Grandma’s face looked like she’d bitten a lemon. “Rot is such a vulgar word,” she announced.
Laughing, he quickly rephrased, “No more candy, Ellen. Sugar has a deleterious moreContinue reading