Monday, January 15, 2007

Why ask why?

The cliche is true... toddlers really do ask "Why" about everything in the world. Samantha asks me at least 50 times every day, and most of the time the question doesn't even make any sense. I'm using this phase as an experiment to see which tactics work best on inquiring minds. Yes, I'm experimenting on my daughter. It's what parents do.

Here are the different approaches I've tried so far, with real examples from the past week or so.


Samantha: "Why does it get dark at night?"
Me: "Because the earth is a big ball and it spins, and the sun is going to the other side."
Samantha: "........"


Samantha: "Why does it cost money to buy kolaches?"
Me: "I'm glad you asked. The economy is based on two important principles -- value and trust. Value and monetary currency are essential for buying goods so we don't have to barter, while most businesses and many people keep most of their funds with banks and other groups, who in turn loan it out to others to make even more money. This trust given to the banks and investment firms keeps currency and goods flowing constantly through the system, allowing for millions of small transactions, like buying kolaches."
Samantha: "........"

Note: The cashier couldn't tell if I was just being a prick, or if my daughter was some super-genius who could actually understand my answer. I let him stir on it.


Samantha: "Why can't Jack talk very much?"
Me: "Boogity boogity. Boogity."
Samantha: "WHAT?"


Samantha: "Cool, Dad! Do you have a new shirt?"
Me: "No, these are my new skis. Do you like them?"
Samantha: "WHAT?! Those aren't skis!"

You just can't get anything past this girl. Maybe she is a super-genius after all.

Boomerang (my current favorite)

Samantha: "Why does Jack like blueberries so much?"
Me: "Why do you like Skittles so much?"
Samantha: "I don't know; I just do."
Me: "Well there ya go."

In conclusion, none of my attempts have proven very successful. Even the honest, direct answers are rewarded with the exact same question repeated again 10 minutes later. Maybe I can just give her a Magic 8 ball and let her ask questions to it all day long. Oh, right... she can't read. I'm screwed!

On a serious note, please keep my friends Rob and Terry in your thoughts and prayers. They've had a rough go of it and need a break. Many of you have seen me post about Rob before -- his blog is here so you can see what's up (and down) in his world.


hardrox said...

Expect a few more years of the "why"s. Rowan is going on 6 y.o. and still hounds me with the "why" question, although he is mixing in a few "what" questions, as in "what makes the Earth spin?". Must say, I'm thankful for the variety.

I've also taken to giving them an option: "Do you want the long answer or the short answer".

Rowan: "Can we watch TV?"
Me: "Long answer or short answer?"
Rowan: "Long answer."
Me: "Well considering its been slightly over 300 minutes since the TV was last on, and during that time the sun has reached its zenith and is now fading in the western sky, we have been playing......."
Rowan: interrupting "OK, OK! How about the short answer."
Me: "Not now."


Redlefty said...

Hilarious, Greg! I can see those days coming soon.

FishrCutB8 said...

I LOVE that answer, HR! Brilliant!

BTW--it's how kids make sense of things, so keep answering. It's also good for them to know they can come to you with small questions. At nine, they start coming with bigger ones--trust me.

Bob Devlin said...

My kids are teenagers and I still do this stuff to them And a good amount of the time they don't know I'm playing them. It just never gets old.

Funny stories guys.