With school out and my daughter home, I may be short on time and mental resources. But what I do have, by the metric ton, are Minecraft updates. My brain is buckling under unintelligible reports from my 5-year-old of her Minecraft adventures: where she's been, what she's building, how many chickens and horses she has trapped, stacked one on top of the other, in horrendous conditions, because she loves them.
I know other parents have dealt with this, the interminable, Look at this, Mommy, or, Watch me build yet another stone hut, Daddy, these essays on Minecraft play that never end.
Sure, you've tried generic polite responses, but the "That's great, honeys" don't get you out of hearing more than anyone should have to about an underground library filled with rosebushes. (How is it a library if there are no books?)
So no more saying "Wow" or "Whoa" or "What a Time to Be Alive" while hoping that will suffice to make Dear One go away. You need to be ready with one of the following responses.
The best ones, delivered in just the right tone, will leave your child with the impression that you're encouraging and interested but are also so strange your child will be more than happy to go back to their game rather than engage a mommy who's "being weird again."
Because just as you're over Minecraft, she's over your jokes.
So the next time Junior or Princess starts in on how he or she is building a mansion with a roller coaster running through it, have one of these handy:
10 Most Effective Responses to Prevent a Child From Telling You About Their Minecraft Game
1. Wow, honey, that sounds like a job for the super delegates.
2. Interesting. I bet the Illuminati had a hand in that.
3. Minecraft giveth with one hand but taketh away with the other.
4. Did you know "may you live in interesting times" is a curse?
5. I wonder what Peter, Paul, and Mary would've done if they had a Minecraft hammer.
6. Shh. Did you hear that? I thought I heard a bell. Mommy's listening for beer o'clock.
7. You know how Mommy sometimes says she can't even? This is exactly why.
8. I used to believe Falco and Taco were the same person but then I found out that was just an urban myth.
9. There's no "i" in team. But there are four in itinerant irritant.
10. The Lambada is the forbidden dance.
Full disclosure: none of these have actually worked for me yet, and I'm writing this hiding in a closet, my body covered in flop sweat, but, hey, maybe they'll work for you. If they do, let me know? I'm starved for adult conversation.
This post originally appeared on the author's blog Zoe vs. the Universe.