I wrote this five years ago, but thanks to a recent discussion with my son I decided to unveil it again. New posts are forthcoming.
My oh my do I love my son. He consistently makes me smile and laugh, with the intermittent bouts of screaming. He is a miniature version of myself, smaller. smarter and with more energy. The Pentium to my 386.
Today he had me close to doubled over with laughter on a couple of occasions. He called me into his room because he was very excited about something. I moseyed on in and he said to me:
"Abba, my penis died."
"Oh, I see. How did it die," I asked.
"First it was really big and it was standing up. And then it became soft and fell down," He replied.
"So let me ask you a question. Were you touching it before it got really small."
"Yes, first I did a thing to it like this and then after a while it died."
"Ok, I see. Let me tell you a few things about how your penis works and let's see if that works for you."
A little time passes and he comes to find me to ask me a new question.
"Abba, what happens to your penis when you die?"
Ok, this is a variation on the theme of death that I had already covered. This I should be able to handle. And then it occurred to me that at 4.5 he takes much of what he is told literally so I paused for a moment to consider how to answer the question. As I paused he asked me a new question.
"Abba, do you feel ok?"
I smiled and said that I did and asked why he asked that question.
"Because you make a funny face when you are thinking hard."
Boy, the child is observant and smart. I was about to offer answers to both questions when I was saved by a new thought. He wanted to watch Scooby Doo and I consented. In part because I hadn't come up with a satisfactory answer to his question of what happens to your penis when you die.
It is not that I am stumped, but as I mentioned I want to be careful in my answer because he is literal in his understanding of some things. This is the boy who looked at the Mary Poppins DVD, saw Dick Van Dyke's face covered in soot and called him the black man. Actually he asked me about the black man in Mary Poppins and for a moment I was stumped because I couldn't think of a single character who wasn't white.
I am waiting for the day in which my daughter asks me these kinds of questions. Of course if at 4.5 she talks to me about a dead penis someone is going to find out that I can float like a butterfly and sting like a bee.