Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Strange, Little Space Guy

The kids are into playing "space ship" this week. They have collected a large assortment of "space gear" (toy cell phones, walkie-talkies, old headphones- things like that) and carry them around in backpacks, which I suspect also double at "jet" packs. They've been "shusshhing" around the house, exploring various planets and collecting rocks and dust. My house is a great place to find those kinds of things.

Yesterday I made them a space ship out of a big cardboard box and we took magic markers and made consoles with lots of buttons and even a kitchen with a fridge, oven and microwave. The kids had a lot of fun in that. Honestly, why do we buy them any toys? This morning, David was up well before Sofia, so he and I got about an hour to play "space" together. I learned a great deal about space travel and the complex, slightly scary mind of my nearly four-year old.

We were running around on some un-named planet when David spotted an alien. It was the cat, Whisky.

David: "Oh! An alien!"
Me: "What do we do? Should we capture it?"
David: "No, no. He's a good alien. He's looking out for the bad aliens." Whisky was sitting on the sill, staring out the window at some squirrels.
Me: "What should we do now, Captain?"
David: "Oh, I'm not the captain. Sofi's the captain."
Me: "So what is your job?"
David: "I'm the guy who pushes all the buttons." David really likes buttons.

David gets a signal on his radar thingy. "Oh, bad aliens are coming!! We're going to have to kill them with this killer ink." He shows me an ink pad that he had stashed in his pocket, luckily the lid is shut tight.

Me: "But how do we know they're bad aliens? What if one of them is someone's mommy?"
David: "Well, it's okay if we kill it, because they're really bad. Like, if one of them was a mother, it would be the kind of mother who would kill their own child."
In my head: "Yikes! Has he been sneaking in to watch the 10 o'clock news??"
Me, out loud: "Well, that would be a pretty bad alien, I guess." I suppose if you have to rationalize killing an alien, that's a pretty good reason.
David, serious for a moment: "Mommy, do we believe in aliens?"
Me: "Well, I don't think there's any compelling evidence that aliens have been to our planet, and though I wouldn't rule out the possibility of a planet with life on it in another solar system, I don't think it's likely that..."
David: "To the space ship!" he declares, his finger raised.
Me: "Uh, okay. Where do I sit?" Looking down at the 4'x2' box.
David: "Oh, you can't get in here. Your butt is much too big."
Me: "Oh. I guess I'll get my jet pack."

If it can lift my big butt off the planet.

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