4 Y.O. SON: "Yeah, he said something that he said was a joke but he wasn't really joking and he got a time-out for it."
ME: "Oh, he said something mean?"
SON: "No, he told a story but I don't want to say what he said but if you want me to tell you I can."
ME: "Okay, then I definitely don't want to hear it because it sounds bad."
SON: "Well, it started with a 'stu' and ended with an 'id'"
ME: "Well, I guess I know now. Wow, so he said 'stupid', huh? Yeah, I guess that wasn't good." [Note: Stupid is considered a very "bad" word at school]
SON: "Yeah, he said 'stupid,' [son sneaks a quick glance up at me to see my reaction]... "what he said was 'stupid'" [quick glance at me again, tiny smirk detected]... "he said something was 'stupid'" [another nearly imperceptible smirk]
ME: "I got it, honey."
Here I was all proud of myself trying to use my powers of paradoxical psychology to get him to tell me what happened at school and learning he has outwitted me again! He used paradoxical psychology to MAKE me use paradoxical psychology so he can then say a bad word (many times!) while still coming off as a saint. Unbelievable.