Bigger, Smarter, Faster, Better, More
a two-year-old. His birthday was almost exactly a month
ago. I think, from this point, that I'm going to quit
counting his age in months. On the other hand, I should
probably start dating these entries, so I can figure out
when I wrote them.
I keep expecting to reach a point where most of his
development is done, and I can talk about his activities
instead of how much closer he is to being a
fully-functioning human being. Surely, at some point,
we'll reach a time where I can talk about what he's
doing rather than how much he's changed.
...But we aren't there yet.
As of today, Theron has started asking questions. Well,
one question. He's started asking, "What's that?" He
asked it when the obnoxiously loud motorcycle drove past
my parents' back yard, when the outside unit for their
air conditioner switched on, and again when an airplane
went past overhead. (It's the Fourth of July weekend,
and I suspect they're running a lot of extra flights: we
don't usually see as many planes as we did this
He's also talking a lot more. He asks for particular
episodes of Elmo.* He sings along with Elmo. He even
repeats sections of the dialogue. This probably means
that he's seen waaaaaay more Elmo than is good for him.
Or for us, really.
On top of this, he's making a fairly serious effort to
learn to swim. Apparently he figured out what a water
slide is, at one of the public pools a few days ago. His
mother, rather than trying to explain the concept of a
height requirement, told him that he couldn't go on the
slide until he could swim. This has done wonderful
things for his motivation, to the point where he almost
won't let us get out of the pool. ("Mo swim!")
The wonders of Genghis Grill
On our way home from my parents' pool, we stopped at the
Genghis Grill. For the uninitiated, this is a restaurant
where you go through a line and pick out a selection of
ingredients, spices, and sauce, then hand over your bowl
to the cooks, who fry it up on a big flat stove. The end
result is basically stir-fry, except that occasionally
ingredients from someone else's meal will wind up in
The room arrangement is fairly simple -- it's a
restaurant -- but almost all of the tables are set up
with chairs on one side, and booth seating on the other.
The booth side is, basically, a padded bench that runs,
uninterrupted, all the way down one wall. I mention this
only because the arrangement plays a part in the day's
We arrived a little before four o'clock, which is an odd
time for a meal but we were starving. Theron was
apparently quite hungry, too. Almost as soon as we were
seated, he slipped out of his booster seat and made a
run down the booth-bench. (This being the middle of the
afternoon, the place was relatively empty.) The
Beautiful Woman was sitting on the outside of the table
-- the side with actual chairs -- but she didn't move to
pursue him. So, after a moment, I did.
By then Theron was all the way to the far end of the
bench, where a young (well, twenty-something) couple was
just getting up to leave. Before I could reach him, he
grabbed a fork and took a bite out of one of their
left-over bowls. Fortunately, they were already done
eating, and thought it was funny.
I brought him back and got him settled at our table
again, this time with some distractions (chopsticks, a
straw, and the little holder full of sugar packets). He
managed to stay put until our food was ready, and then
went to work on his bowl... with the chopsticks.
Now, I didn't really learn to use chopsticks until I
was, maybe, twelve or fourteen. Theron, on the other
hand, has managed to put a chunk of carrot in his mouth,
using chopsticks one-handed, one month after his second
For the sake of my ego, I really hope he won't be able
to repeat the trick. He's starting to make me feel
Once we got home, we put in a movie. This was not what
Theron wanted to watch. ("Elmo Fwiends!") So, while we
watched the movie, Theron amused himself by running from
one end of the house to the other and back, while
yelling: "Faster! Faster!"
I have no idea where that one came from. It kept him
busy, though, and he didn't have any trouble going to
sleep when bedtime rolled around.
The Opposite of the Terrible
Theron has added one other new skill, and this one
is strangely encouraging: he can now say, "Yes." I was
re-watching Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon a week or two
back -- not the whole thing, just one or two key scenes
-- and Theron was playing in the living room. When I was
done, I looked down at him and asked, "Okay, are you
ready to put in some Elmo?"
He replied, with the sense of complete certainty
typical of small children and their hearts' desires: "Yes.
Elmo Birthday." So I took the martial arts movie out,
and put in the Elmo Birthday episode. He was very, very
And now, more pictures.
* Usually not by their actual name, though. "Elmo
Twiangle!" is his name for the Guess That Shape And
Color episode, for example.