A little bit of background. Ethan takes a backpack with some toys in it whenever we get in the car. As much as he likes talking with me on our daily drives (30 miles to work, 30 miles home again), he also likes playing with his action figures. He talks as he plays, carrying on conversations between the toys.
So we're driving along, and from the back seat I hear
Ethan: You're trapped, Count Dooku. Drop your light saber!
Me: Cool - you caught Count Dooku.
Ethan: (Pause, then exasperatedly) I'm trying to play here.
Some more background. The word hell has creeped into Ethan's vocabulary. I know that this is more than partly my fault as a parent. Not that I use the word around him, but I allow him to watch movies, play PS2 games, and watch tv shows that use the word. We've spoken about it, and I've tried to tell him how some words are good words, some words are bad words, some words are fine to use when you're older, and some words are fine to use when no one can hear you use them. He gets the basic concept - he's an incredibly smart boy - but sometimes things like the following happen.
Ethan: (Playing in the back seat, while acting out a battle between action figures.) What the hell?
Ethan: ... Sorry.
Side Note One: I use the word dude way too much for someone in his late 40s.
Side Note Two: There is something incredibly inherently funny about a five-year old saying "What the hell?"
Side Note Three: Side Note trademarked by Side Notes.