Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Stalling for Time
It occurs to me far too often -- and somewhat after the fact -- that my children repeat what I say. These days it is somewhat funny, balancing on a hire wire stretched taut between humor and humiliation. I waffle on my opinion about this, thinking things like, "Oh my gosh, is that really what I say to them?" and, "Now that's a great use of that word!" They don't realize it right now, but there will be a day when they will utter something -- a phrase, or a threat -- and stop not me, but themselves realizing that they sound exactly like me. Oh the horror!
I hear the very best samples of my own work when I spy on my children. Sometimes it's subconcious. I'm actually doing something else... making dinner, putting away dishes, blogging... and I realize one of them has said something to the other one that is both recycled and hysterical. Case in point:
In a heated adverse possession debate, Mason and Cooper were bickering over the rightful ownership of a particular LEGO guy. At this point I've been privy to so many of these negotiations that I don't even try to mediate. And while most of these debates end in pushing, shoving, name calling, even tears -- tonight's debate came to a screeching and wildly peaceful standstill when Cooper said (in all seriousness, folks), "Hmmmmm... Let me think about it."
Hmmmmmm..... Let me think about it. Which is to say, let me take so long to think about this, that eventually you will forget how much you want it and I will win out by virtue of the statute of limitations. Let's see, the last time I put this tactic to use was, oh yeah, this morning when Cooper asked me if he could have peanut M&Ms for breakfast. I thought about it all the way until 6:16 p.m. when he had at last eaten three bites of chicken and a few spoonfuls of couscous.
Gratefully Mason is tolerant of these remarks and even takes the bait -- waiting out Cooper's mental deliberation. Just to give you an idea how fun loving he can be (when he wants to be)... When he found dog poop in our yard the other day he exclaimed, "Whucca Heck!"
PS -- If you let your dog poop in my yard let me issue a warning. I can only choose to be happy about this for so long. Someday the tide will turn. I don't know what I'm likely to do. I'm just saying.
PHOTO NOTE: Cooper is actually eating peanut M&Ms in this photo. And he's wearing pajamas. Come to your own conclusion.