So, I was on the phone with Poison Control last night after the girls played in / ate about an eight of a tub of Boudreaux’s Butt Paste. Henry, because he has a big brain inside that big melon of his, did not partake in the snack.
I told P.C. about the incident and what happened, and we had this exchange:
P.C.: How old are the girls?
P.C.: Are they twins?
Me: Yes . . . well, sort of. They are two of a set of three, but the third one didn't eat any butt paste. So, I guess they are twins with respect to each other, but they aren't the only two.
P.C.: So they are triplets?
Me.: Yes. But only two ate the butt paste.
Normally, I would just let the twin question go with a "yes" if I don't know the person, but this was health care related and I thought it might be relevant that the girls are high order multiples.
The "twin" question usually comes up when I am walking with a double stroller containing the two girls and I don't want to flag down Heather with Henry in the single stroller after the person asks to see the other baby. The only other time I said they were twins was when I was in Gymboree on an emergency swimsuit/cover-up/floppy hat run and the salesperson who asked me was a mother of twins. I just didn't feel like one-upping the nice lady who had helped me pick the swimwear ensembles by saying that there was really one more baby, but the other baby already had a full compliment of swimwear and swimwear related accessories. I was also in a hurry to get out of Gymboree because girls' clothes stress me out. In hindsight, my not wanting to one-up the nice lady wasn't reasonable, but I was all out of sorts from the exposure to the girls' clothes.
Anyway, after I got off the phone with P.C., Heather and I were talking about the "twins" thing. She thinks the girls are never twins because they are two of a set of three. I can't argue with that logic, but I also can't get around the confusion and complexity I add to a conversation when I am speaking of just two kids, in isolation of the third kid, and I say they are triplets. As the kids get older and do more girls things and boy things apart from each other, I am going to have to come up with a concise statement in response to this question. As of yet, I don't have one.