Monday, October 3, 2011

Rita's tuna fish water ice

In which Robin takes her daughters to their local water ice shop; her daughters refer to water ice as ice cream, order their 'ice cream' with custard on top, and talk at the same time, louder and louder and louder, in a decibel-escalation race for attention.

Also known as, pretty much any Sunday of Robin's life. 

In the following transcript, E's words appear in purple and L's appear in pink. Not pictured: the very confused teenage water ice scooper.

What's that line called again?

Mama, what's it called again?

An apostrophe.
What's what called?

What does it do, though? Why is it even there?

The red one I like.

In this case it indicates the possessive, and sometimes it indicates a contraction. Let me explain.
It's called Swedish fish, love. Swedish fish. Did you hear that, E? 'It's' is a contraction. 'It's' is short for 'it is.' That's one use of an apostrophe. But the one you're looking at is a possessive apostrophe.

A procession apostrophe? Like at a wedding?

Why is it called Swedish fish?

Not 'procession.' Possessive. It shows that something belongs to something.
I don't know, love. It just is. The candy it comes from is bright red and shaped like fishies, but I don't know why the fishies or the candy are Swedish.

Like I belong to you?

Is Swedish fish the same as tuna fish?

Sort of, well, it could. Like that ice cream belongs to you.
No, babes. Tuna fish is really a fish and Swedish fish is a yummy candy that's just shaped like a fish.

So I should write this is mine's ice cream?

Why is it shaped like that? I don't see it shaped like that. It's smooth, Mama.
No, you'd write 'mine ice cream,' not 'mine's.' No, wait. You'd write 'my,' and that doesn't have an apostrophe. Make it be someone else's. Say, 'that's L's ice cream.' Right? 'L's ice cream,' not 'L ice cream.' You're indicating the possessive. You're showing that the ice cream belongs to L.

I don't like her ice cream! I wanted no custard and she got custard! I wanted TUNA FISH!

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