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Saturday, April 28, 2007

Pick your poison

“You drink potty water! You drink potty water! You drink potty water!” he giggles. I am uncertain what developmental stage this signifies? I do know that the difference between his chronological age and developmental age is narrowing. I should be celebrating this breakthrough, I think?

Everyone is at home as it is the weekend. The child lacking volume control skips and spins around the room working himself up into a frenzy. I down a bottle of ensure as I don’t have the time to create a more interesting liquid. I dither, what should I be doing with whom? He is happy and vaguely foul mouthed. He does have some wiggles to wear off. Which is more important? I tune him out, whilst I listen to the exchange between the other two.

I have no idea how many hundreds of beastly little Pokemons there are in existence, but I know that there are far too many, a bit like dinosaurs, or Thomas and is ever burgeoning army of ‘friends.’ Pokemons are vile little creatures, most of them sexless. They start life as one thing, say’Pidgey,’ and then ‘evolve’ into a Pidgeotto,’ to finally reach the pinnacle of developmental prowess, in the form of ‘Pidgeot.’ It’s enough to drive a mother well away from the nest towards the supermarket to buy more ear plugs.

His sister holds the contraption, the Gameboy. She manipulates it such that each character makes it signature tune. Each Popkemon has their own annoying little ditty. They all sound more or less the same, that would be to say, very annoying, not to over stress the point. They are electronic sound bites, less than a second. She hides the screen from him, “guess it?” she commands.
“Right. You’ll know this one too!” I listen.
“Marshstomp!” he snaps back.
“Hey! You won’t know this one!” We listen.

They trot through the sounds and matching names for a good 17 minutes. Ordinarily, this would be an example of terminal boredom, perseveration and heaven knows what else.

But of course there is also a flip side, the good stuff, the reciprocal exchange and that truly astonishing auditory memory and processing, from a child that cannot remember the name of the colour ‘green.’ When he does remember and retrieves the word ‘green,’ he alters it to a more accurate shade, such as Chartreuse. The fact that he knows them all, can read and pronounce them, has learned their ‘qualities and abilites,’ with staggering exactitude, leaves me quite breathless.

I won’t rush to stock up on ear plugs then.


Mom said...

We go through the same thing here because Jon became a Pokemon addict and Charlie and Rachel are getting into it. I don't clamp down on it because I think it's just kid's stuff. Some people are really against it, but I look at it as just a game and it does stretch their memory.

I think I know more about Pokemon than I ever need to. I know their first evolution, their second evolution...I am on speaking terms with Mew2.

Sad, but true.

Lora said...

Stoppin by to say Hello and hope that you are having a great weekend. Griffin doesn't know what Pokemon is but I wonder if he would get into it, he does like his V-Smile and his computer (educational)games. Take care

kristina said...

It's the details that sometimes catch our kids' eyes and ears, no? Charlie tends to be a bit opposite in his word usage---he applies one word (green) in an overly general way.

No Pokemon in our house though----Charlie did take my iPod but he seems more interesting in keeping it on a special shelf in his room than listening.

One never knows what our boys will take a liking for next!

bigwhitehat said...

I often wonder: if Tiger starts talking, will I want him to stop?

Glad I finally found your blog. When you comment at my place again, type in your url correctly. It was wrong and it threw me off for a while.

I like it here. Your funny.

The Jedi Family of Blogs said...

Perhaps one reason I like pokemon so much is that Brendan is not into the video games at all... :)

It definitely was "the next level" for Brendan after Thomases & he loves the quizzes & memorising the evolution sequences. He has moved on to learning the japanese names for each (& the human characters) & I've been using his japanese pokemon calendar to help him learn to read the katakana alphabet. He's rather disgusted with the newest group's names in english & refuses to use them (Turtwig- come on!). We have also decided that one of our purchases when we go to Japan in June is the latest movie, since we had some quibbles with the dialogue & think the japanese one will be better... So I guess we've turned the obsession into something educational- not unlike your kids! :)

Melissa said...

Hmmm... we never have gotten too involved in the Pokemon thing... but if it would bring out some language, I just might do it :)

Haddayr said...

. . . and the fact that they picked something as annoying to their mother as humanly possible is proof positive of their developmental ages catching up! :-)

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