Thursday, June 26, 2003

It's scary how smart little kids are, how they are just taking everything in and you don't even know it. I tell these stories, not to brag on Joseph, for I think probably every toddler on the planet is just as observant. It's simply astonishing, though, and makes you wonder what we're teaching them, what we're not, and what we could be.

Joseph is barely two. 25 months old on July 4, he'll be. Three examples:

A few weeks ago, we went to a festival (enough with the festivals! Okay. Just one more) on a downtown plaza, in the shadow of a bank building, where little kids were invited to do fun activities. As I've been watching little kids do for twenty years now. Anyway, one of the featured players was the mascot of our local baseball team. The team is the Wizards, but the mascot is a dragon. A big, green goofy looking dragon. Joseph, given the opportunity to introduce himself, was terrified. Wouldn't get near the creature.

A couple of weeks later, we were driving by the same plaza, and Joseph calmly said, "Dragon dere." Mind you, we were on a street opposite the green stretch of grass where the dragon had been, mind you that the place was empty, no longer filled with booths and people - and he still recognized it.

Last week, we were cutting through the parking lot of our performing arts center which is, not exactly a notable-looking building. It's built of greyish brick or stone, I believe, and has no external adornments. Joseph said, out of the blue, "Katie pianny teacher dere."

A month ago, I'd taken him and Katie to a performance of Smokey Joe's Cafe that featured ...Katie's piano teacher on, well, piano of course.

This one is almost embarrasing, but maybe not. We were driving, and we passed the remnants of an accident on our left. There were two police cars. Joseph looked out the window and said, "Bad boys, bad boys."