Last night, irritated by the peaceful sleep of the Lad, I said “Why do English people call all desserts ‘pudding’?”
“I don’t know,” the newly-awake Lad responded gamely. “It’s like tea, I guess. Tea the meal, I mean.”
“You know what’s funny,” I said, “is that young children don’t even get to drink tea with their tea, they drink milk. At least in the books I’ve read.”
“That is funny,” the Lad yawned.
“But at least with tea, the drink tea goes along with the meal tea. Whereas you don’t necessarily eat pudding for dessert, I mean what we call pudding — pudding the flavored glop, you know.”
“But you don’t necessarily drink tea with tea,” the Lad pointed out reasonably, “as you just said, about the kids.”
“But it’s supposed to go along with the meal. Kids don’t count. Whereas with pudding — ”
“Kids don’t count?”
“Come on, you see what I’m saying. It doesn’t make sense. Why do they call it that?”
“Why do they spell ‘color’ with a ‘u’?” the Lad asked.
“That is not the same thing,” I said, fuming. “Spelling in the English language is just stupid. None of it makes sense. But pudding — ”
“Go to sleep,” said the Lad, and eventually I did.