Here I am standing at the front door, beach bag slung over my shoulder, and the boys are insisting they don't need to wear swim trunks because they're not going in the water.
Me: "Whaddya mean, you're not going in the water?"
Ethan: "I'm just playin' in the sand."
Noah: "Well if you're not going in, I'm not going in."
Me: "Are you two serious? It is 88 degrees outside and we're going to the beach and you're trying to tell me neither one of you is going in the water."
I'm not sure what precisely about this situation chafed so much—maybe I wasn't in the mood to take lip from a kid who's been calling me "Smitty," or maybe it was just that I knew to my very core that on this marital issue I was a Paragon of Rightness—but I sensed there was a ripe Principled Stand ready for the picking.
"If it's between regular shorts and shorts that can also be worn in the water, and we're going to the beach, why not wear the ones that can also go in the water," I said, concluding my question with a full stop, as one does when one believes the people you're talking at know the answer lies in the asking.
Noah tried to put back on his regular shorts one last time, but I overpowered him with my aura of faultlessness, and he acquiesced. Ethan wouldn't yield. Though, I did win a small if secret victory by slipping his swim trunks into the beach bag.
In the end, guess what?
Smitty knows best.