I’m prone to jotting down what my kid says because, like all kids, he comes up with some real gems that are worth remembering. The funniest statements are always off the cuff. Now that he is beginning to understand the power of humor, he tries to make me laugh with vaudevillian efforts—but honestly, while his performances are ludicrous, they’re almost never as amusing as his spontaneous silliness.
But back to the quotes: I’ve recorded some of the recent goodies here, along with what I hope is enough background information for the comment to make sense.
One day as we sat at the table, post-meal, I was singing and decided to show Marcus how you could feel your vocal cords rising gradually as your voice rose in pitch. He watched my throat, and I coerced him into placing his fingers on my neck so he could feel the progression upward, which he found fascinating. Then his dad entered the room, hence this quote: “Hey Dad, wanna feel my vocal cords?”
We have a shoe tray by the front door, to capture wet, messy shoes and boots (I have yet to put it away for summer). Because my husband has the biggest feet, his shoes tend to take up more than his allotted share of space on the tray. More than once, I’ve commented how Daddy leaves every pair of shoes he owns stacked on that tray, crowding the other family members completely out. One day after I’d dramatically removed Daddy’s shoes from the bin into his closet, Marcus realized that at that moment, he held the majority of pairs placed on the bin. His proud, vociferous exclamation? “Guess who’s crowding the shoe tray now!”
Marcus loves to build little towns and neighborhoods, be they zoo- or fire station-centered, or mired by road construction. Inevitably, he’ll get the whole thing perfectly arranged, and then either the cat or one of us big, clumsy oafs (a.k.a. adults) will put something askew as we attempt to walk through the room (how dare we). On this occasion, his dad was the instigator, stepping over a bunch of Duplo buildings and causing a couple to be tipped over. The boy’s indignant comment? “Dad, you’re messing up the neighborhood.”
At our most recent restaurant visit, the establishment kept a steady groove of very danceable songs pumping through the sound system. As he polished off a kid-sized pizza, the boy boogied in his booth seat; several other children were doing the same around us. When we finished our meal and exited the restaurant, a light rain was sprinkling. My boy sashayed out the door and, noting the weather development, sang out jauntily, “I can even dance in the rain!”
Often, I blow off steam about things to Todd. One recent rant was based on upcoming church developments, which are heavy on change and even heavier on member involvement at every level. I was blabbing about how the minute a group becomes organized, it assumes the organized group mentality—which means that people become, among other things, either “doers” or “pretty people.” On and on I went to Todd, explaining (in my best the-boy-is-listening-and-may-repeat-what-I-say code) that the doers are the ones who step up and take care of everything, and when folks attempt to convict the beautiful people to get more involved and contribute, they totally miss the message. Or they get the message, and then beat a quick retreat to an exit in order to find another place that appreciates their beauty without expectation. (My friend had a similar concept about workplaces, only she named the players worker bees and delicate geniuses… Yup.) SO, the boy was listening to me going on in my roundabout way, and he interrupted to say, “Mama, what are you talking about?”
I said, “Oh, Honey, I’m talking about how some people do things, and some people get the privilege of just sitting around looking pretty.”
And my quick-witted boy? He replied, “Oh, the pretty people who don’t do anything?”
Yes, those would be the ones.
We were brushing the kid’s teeth. He’d been especially demonstrative that evening, I’m not sure why, and had hugged me several times and proclaimed his fondness aloud. As I supervised his brushing, he removed the brush from his mouth, looked me in the eye, and said sincerely, “I love you so much, I think about you even when I’m…” He paused, to measure his words. “When I’m—not in this house.” It was one of the sweetest moments of my life to date.
I’ll let you decide which of all these quotes is my favorite.