blue bootiesMy parents were quite the partygoers when they were young. They were also extremely devoted parents (I was born when my mother had just turned 21), so many of my childhood memories are of hanging out at “grown-up” parties.

Yes. They’d take me along (and later, my sister and brother) rather than leave us home, attended to by the nanny.

I don’t know if that’s a shocker in this day and age, but I remember feeling rather chuffed that I was in the middle of all these big, glamorous people.

Hey, when you’re three, doesn’t everyone look big?

Part of the merriment

invariably entailed the classic party game, Joke Telling. And each of my parents had their favorites. My mom’s was “blue booties” (this is one of the variations on the Web) and it went something like this:

Two babies, both dressed in frocks (as used to happen), were arguing about which of them was a boy, and which was a girl.

“I’m a boy, and you’re a girl.”

“No, I’m a boy, and you’re a girl.”

This went on for a bit, until finally the boy baby beckoned the girl baby closer. He said, “You know how I know I’m the boy?”

The girl baby said, “No, how do you know?”

The boy baby lifted his frock and said, “See? Blue booties.”


would laugh uproariously, and I’d join in, even though I didn’t really understand what was all that funny about blue booties.

As I grew older, I did understand. And I still always smile when I think about it.

It’s so sweet. It’s so clean, especially compared to some of the stuff we see, hear and read on a daily basis. It’s just charming to me.

And I think we all need a little charm in our lives.

So if you’re having a bad day, think of “blue booties.” It will make you smile.

And you know how I know I’m a girl and you’re a boy? Pink booties. (Sorry, couldn’t resist!)

Image: simplyla via Flickr, CC 2.0

Shonali Burke
Founder and publisher of Waxing UnLyrical, Shonali Burke helps purpose-driven brands bring big ideas to life. She teaches at The Johns Hopkins University, has gone back to school herself with the Harvard Business Analytics Program, and is creator/lead instructor at The Social PR Virtuoso® online training hub , where ambitious PR pros learn how to unleash their inner Social PR superheroes. Owned by Lola the Basset Hound, she's mad about ABBA, bacon, cooking, dogs, and Elvis, though not necessarily in that order. Wouldn't you like to be in her kitchen?
Shonali Burke
Shonali Burke