Second course

If you've eaten with us in the past five years or so, then you've heard the phrase. Second course.

Once upon a time, Isaac could not speak. Then he could understand. Then he could respond. The origin of the phrase came in the interregnum between the second and third of those epochs.

The household that Hillary and I ran had dessert as an important part of dinner. It was an oddity when we didn't have something available. This was a throughline from early in our relationship. That said though, neither of us had control issues with desserts or anything. If anything, we'd take too long to go through cookies, cakes or whatever.

But it was important to have it.

So it was a regular part of dinner and towards the end of it, one of us would inevitably mention what was planned for dessert. Well before he could speak, Isaac had picked up on that word. So we started to use various other phrases to disguise what we were talking about. As you'd imagine, a two year old's interest in the main part of the meal diminished immensely when he realized pie was up next.

Those other phrases varied somewhat. Second course was the most common one, though we'd occasionally just use 'SC'. Often it was alternate names for whatever the item was 'gateau', 'cold white stuff', etc. Isaac never reacted with as much enthusiasm, or any really, to these alternate phrases. We assumed that we were being somewhat clever.

Then, early in his speaking career, as dinner was wrapping up, from Isaac, "econd cose?".

Hillary and I just looked at each other. We went with it.

Paige never really learned the word 'dessert'. It's second course in this household. We tried explaining at various points that if we had an appetizer, then it was really third course, but that never sank in.