Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Short Takes

Ryan and I have spent the past few days with the kids in our lives, taking them to various amusement parks and events. It has been a whirlwind, ending in a collapse of exhaustion at the end of every day, but so worth it, if only to hear the things that come out of their mouths...

On Friday we took Luke and his friend Cooper to "Cherry Hills" a water/recreation park up north. It's ads tout it as the "greatest fun spot you'll ever know." Well, I guess if I had grown up in a Skinner box that would be the case, but I didn't, and it wasn't. The boys had a good time though, because they enjoy any place that they can laugh manically at the top of their lungs. Towards the end of the evening we were sitting having sandwiches made by teens who, let's just say, came from the shallow end of the gene pool. I have never seen two people move slower, and with less certainty. It's a good thing they have no natural predators. While we were eating I looked over to see Copper voraciously spitting on the ground.
"Cooper," I said, "What are you doing?"
"Nothing," he replied.
"You're spitting."
"No, I'm not."
At this point, Cooper's Mom Jen looked over to see what was going on...
"Cooper," she said "What are you doing?"
"I am practicing my spitting," he replied. His tone inferred she had just asked the stupidest question ever, but at least she got him to admit to spitting.
"Why are you practicing spitting?"
"So, that I can spit like Daddy when I grow up."
Jen's husband, Mark was sitting about five feet away from this conversation, and as the words came
out of Cooper's mouth his ears perked up. Before Jen could even comment he said "yeah, I heard it."

Well, at least Mark hadn't been peeing outside. They frown on that at "Cherry Hills."


Last night I took Luke to a "cultural exchange" night at a nearby garden park. It was Scottish night, so we packed our own food. We settled down on the grass with our picnic to listen to a bagpipes. Luke was enthralled. He just stood there staring, turning his head this way and that, trying to figure out how the music was being made. He then started walking around, going behind the pipers, looking at every angle to determine how they were put together. After he had gotten a pretty good idea of how the pipes worked, and how the players were making the different sounds he came and plopped down next to me. "Libby," he said, "I have to get one of those bad boys."

I wonder if he knows that every bagpipe comes with a very itchy skirt...


Our niece Amaya is a burgeoning cynic. I actually told her last week I was going to start calling her "Contrary Mary" since she has to contradict everything anyone says. She informed me her name is not Mary. I informed her I would be happy to call her "Contraya Amaya."

A few weeks ago we went to the big park downtown, which is home to a series of crumbling carnival rides that not even the state fair wants. Amaya wanted to go on them. I informed her that they weren't safe, and were being run by the kids who couldn't get jobs making sandwiches at Cherry Hills. She was nonplussed.
"They are safe," she insisted.
"No, they aren't," I replied. I could not believe I was arguing with a seven year old. Again.
"I know that they're safe," she said.
"When did you get your degree in engineering?" I asked.
Silence. I had won, at least for a moment. But she wasn't ready to give up yet. When I saw her this weekend she had regrouped.
"My Dad says your crazy." That was the first thing she said to me.
"Well, consider the source," I said. "Why does he think I'm crazy?"
"He says those rides at the park are safe, and he works on cars, so he knows." It was an argument backed up by expert witness testimony. She had me on the run.
"Your Dad also used to jump his bike off the roof of his house," I was desperate, and looking for any retort I could find.
"That's beside the point," she was smug in her response.
Game, set, match: Amaya. But I'm still not taking her on those damn rides.


jon deal said...

"it was Scottish night, so we packed our own food." has got to be the best thing I have read on the Internet all week.

Emily-Ione said...

If you get a bagpipe for Luke I can pretty much guarantee your sister will kill you.

Amanda said...

Tell Amaya that I will take her on the rides.

Amanda said...

PS - Em is right

Jen Riekhof said...

I am so proud. Soon he will ask to go to brothel. Cooper loves you so much. He wants us to all go camping. Saturday at "The Hill" (that’s what I’m calling it now) was really great. When do you want to go camping??? I have a raised queen size air mattress you can use.