Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Froms the Mouths of Babes

“Billy and Joey lost their dicks,” says Jake.

“Do you mean they lost their discs – the discs that go to their bionicles (futuristic terminator looking lego thingies)?” queries Dad (in a hopeful tone).

“Yeah, they lost their dicks.”

Three-year olds and words with compound consonants – the two should never be mixed. But the situation doesn't improve much even at the age of five. The Easter Bunny, who over the years has morphed into something more akin to a very cheap Santa Claus, got the three of them bionicles on Sunday. As the Hatcher constructs Joey's bionicle, Billy marvels at its endowments:

"Wow, Joe, you got two huge humongous dicks. You must have the biggest dicks of all the Bionicles."

"Yeah, that makes me the leader of the bionicles," answers Joe. I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried.

The conversation put me in mind of a disturbing thing I read recently in a book called The Professor and the Madman, about the making of the Oxford English Dictionary. The madman was an American schizophrenic who had murdered a man in London and spent the majority of his remaining years in an English institution. He had been a doctor in the war of Northern aggression (ha ha) for the Yanks. In his early seventies, he performed a rare procedure on himseld called a peotomy, described in the book here:

The surgical removal of the penis is at the best of times a dangerous practice, rarely performed even by doctors: An attack by the renowned Brazilian fishlet known as candiru, which likes to swim up a man's urine stream and lodge in the urethra with a ring of retrorse spines preventing its removal, is one of the very rare circumstances in which doctor (sic) will perform the operation, known as peotomy.

Now those men who read the blog wondering if they will ever gain anything from doing so must concede that this little gem of knowledge is of unmistakable value - had you not read it, you'd have thought nothing of taking a dip in Brazilian waters. And ask you: how does evolution make the survival strategy of the candiru viable?

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Jake takes a bite out of his chicken nugget dinosaur, taking off the head and front leg (silhouette) of the breaded stegasorous. “I am mouth man, and I’m jumpin around on one leg.” Apparently the open wound of the cut-in-half stegasorous had turned into the large mouth of a one legged creature. Normally we don’t allow them to play with food, but that was pretty creative, so I let it slide.

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The David Grey tune Be Mine has a lyric that recurs in the chorus: “Jumpin Jesus, Holy Cow, what’s the difference anyhow.” Joey sings along with the version that brings a smile to any four year old, in a classic mistaken hearing of the true lyrics: “Chuckee Cheeses, Holy Cow, What’s the difference anyhow?”

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“Mom, can you please show me the soft spot on Charlie’s head? I promise I won’t press it too hard.”

“Joe, I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

Joe is obsessed with brains – wants to push from the soft spot down to Charlie’s brain so he can feel it. About a year ago, when I was working with the twins in tandem on their hitting, pitching whiffle balls to them, Joey awoke earlier from his nap, so I decided to get some one –on-one batting practice under his belt. I had suspected that he hadn’t done as well with Billy around because he is too conscientious of how he compares to his sibling, who is a good switch-hitter. So I bring him out there, and he’s hitting the cover off of the ball consistently. I am getting really excited for him, and I say to him that he must be practicing on his own without his dad, and he says to me: “No, upstairs I was thinking about it in my brain, and that’s how I got better.” He’s employing sports visualization techniques!

What is hilarious is the lack of any implicit endorsement of a mind/body duality – he’s a true materialist. A disembodied “I”, separate from (but nonetheless one with) his body did not think about it – the proper bodily organ initiated the thinking. Or perhaps the disembodied “I” went right to the brain for the heavy thinking. Either way, he knows it is not his ass that does the thinking, and so he should be a good Republican.

2 Comments:

Blogger Incredible Dirigible said...

Regarding the "peotomy", thanks Dr. Hatch, for making me squirm first thing in the morning. Ouch. There's gotta be a better way.

Regarding the bionicles, that reminds me of an incident that occurred when I was babysitting my nephews a few years ago. The oldest was playing hide & seek with me with this rubber ball. He was about 3 or 4 at the time. Goofing around, he shoves it in his pants & says, while pointing to the bulge, "Look! I have a really big tinkler!" It was too funny.

6:25 AM  
Anonymous hansirr said...

From the mouths of babes... while enroute to NY City yesterday, my three year old son announces:

"I like to go to New York, I'm not afraid of the aliens."

6:43 AM  

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