"Ron," Jan said, "why did you write those words on the church? Why do you think that Jesus sucks?"
She shrugged. "Well, it was because of my friend Becky. She starting seeing this guy, and I told her not to fool around with him, but she didn't listen to me, and then she got pregnant, and I told her to go the hospital and take care of it, but her family didn't want her to, they said it was a sin, but I said, 'You've got to go and take care of this. You're not smart enough to be a mom,' I told her. 'You're not even smart enough to be a teenager.'"
"You must have been a big comfort to her," I commented.
She smiled. "Well, she's my friend."
"So," Jan asked after a moment, "what happened?"
"Oh, she wasn't pregnant anyway. Her ... thing was just off schedule, probably because she was so freaked out. I told her, 'Listen, you need to calm the fuck down, right now.'"
"Her 'thing'?" Jan asked.
"You know... her ..." She scrunched up her face and glanced around us before whispering, "her period."
I knew that Jan would have a whole discussion with her about calling things by their real names, along with the one about intellectual rigor, methods of argumentation and debate, and the importance of respect, but we were at the hotel by then, and Ron was not going to tolerate any theoretical discussions without getting some food.
I was relieved to find out that there were at least some facts about human reproduction that Ron knew about already. That was a start. If there were gaps in her knowledge, however, I was willing to bet that it would end up being my job to fill them in.
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