Tuesday, 16 May 2017
To 5 Year Old's Mummy's delight, the 5 Year Old has become a bit obsessed with "Anne with an 'E'", the latest retelling of "Anne of Green Gables." This is made even more exciting when we reveal to her that her middle name is, indeed, Anne with an 'E' because of this very book. If only 5 Year Old's Daddy had "The Doctor" as his middle name, how perfect would that be?
Anyway, much like with "Frozen" back in the day, 5 Year Old must be doing what Anne is doing. Anne has a glass of milk, 5 Year Old has a glass of milk. Anne stands on a chair, 5 Year Old stands on a chair. Anne gets accidentally drunk on home made wine she thinks is strawberry cordial, 5 Year Old's Daddy presses fast forward...
She asks 5 Year Old's Mummy if she can get an Anne dress-up costume, which seems quite do-able as she largely wears shapeless smocks. (5 Year Old's Daddy presses fast forward as Matthew goes to his lost love's dress shop for an expensive grown-up dress with puff sleeves).
"Will it come with freckles," she muses, "or must I draw those on? And should they be brown like my hair or orange like Anne's?" This is a philosophical dilemma beyond both parents.
Further through the latest episode she suddenly pipes up with "How do they make the drawings move?"
"What drawings?" I ask.
"The drawings of Anne and everybody."
"They aren't drawings," I protest, "they are real people."
"But they are on TV," she counters, "and you said things on TV like "My Little Pony" were lots of drawings."
"Yes, cartoons are," I agree, "they make those by doing hundreds of drawings where each character moves a tiny bit, then they photograph all the drawings and show them on screen really quickly one after another so it looks like they are moving." Daddy suspects that animation hasn't been done like this since about 1977, but sometimes he has to think on his feet. "These are real people in dress up pretending to be Anne and her friends."
"So how do they get the pretending on the telly?"
"Someone films it like you sometimes film yourself pretending to be Youtube on Mummy's phone."
"Whoa!" She thought that this show was epic before. Now, her mind is blown.
Friday, 12 May 2017
The 5 Year Old looks over her shoulder and leans in to whisper something sotto voce.
"Do you sometimes worry that people are going the other way?" she asks.
"The other way?" I need a bit of clarification on this one.
"When you see someone walking towards you, do you worry that they are going the other way?"
"I don't understand," I confess.
"When they are walking towards you, do you worry that they are actually walking away from you?" She does a face that seems to convey "obviously!"
"Well, no," I say, "they are usually facing me if they are coming towards me."
"But I sometimes walk backwards!" she protests. Which is, indeed, true.
"People walking towards you tend to get closer. You can see which way they are walking!"
She thinks about this.
"Even people behind you?" she checks.
"You can't see them, but you can hear them and maybe see their shadow. If the sound gets nearer, they are probably getting nearer."
"So," she sums up, "you can tell which way people are going by looking at them and listening to them?"
I nod in agreement.
"That's a relief," she sighs. "I've been worrying about that." And off she skips away from me singing, the world free of care once more.
At least, I think she's skipping away from me...
Thursday, 11 May 2017
We have come across a dead hedgehog in the road.
"I am not walking past a hedgehog," the 5 Year Old insists.
"It's okay, just don't look at it," I reassure her.
"No, I am not walking past it because it might bite me!" she explains, confusingly.
"But it's dead, darling," I point out.
"How do you know it isn't just sleeping?"
Well, the entrails are the biggest clue, but I don't really want to point those out if I can avoid it.
"There are flies crawling on it," I indicate.
"Why are FLIES crawling on it??" She is horrified.
"Well, flies like dead things. They eat dead things."
"REALLY?" This is very exciting news. "Would they eat me if I was dead??"
"Um, well, yes, I suppose," I mull, wanting to change the subject. "Anyway, flies, dead, let's go past it!"
"What if the dead hedgehog suddenly comes back to life and is an evil hedgehog and attacks me with its spikes?"
I explain that hedgehogs are generally quite passive, have spikes to protect them from seagulls etc., and are pretty unlikely to attack whether alive or dead. Or undead. We walk past.
"How do you think it died?" she asks, further up the hill.
"I imagine it got hit by a car!"
"Why didn't it run out of the way?"
"Well," I say, "hedgehogs are quite slow moving, and it was probably dark and it didn't see the car until it was too late!"
"I hope it didn't damage the car!"
From the look of the hedgehog, I suggest that this is unlikely.
"Flies are really small," she observes. "It must take a really long time for them to eat a hedgehog." Pause. "I wonder how long it would take for one to eat me?"
And she slowly repeats "munch, munch, munch" all the way home as a rather inaccurate way of measuring this...
Tuesday, 9 May 2017
The 5 Year Old has been in a thoughtful rather than talkative mood recently, but today she has a new idea playing on her mind.
"What if everyone in the world had to cancel their birthday?" she asks.
"Why would they do that?" I ask.
"Because no-one will come to their party!" Obviously.
"No-one will come to anyone's party? That seems a bit unlikely..."
"But what if everyone in the world gets chicken pox?" she asks, with a big gesture.
"What, at once?" I cry.
"People do all get ill at once sometimes!"
"That would be some epidemic," I shrug. "Chicken pox only lasts about a week, though. Everyone doesn't have a birthday on the same day, though, some parties could go ahead."
"No!" she insists. "This chicken pox will last a year!"
Well, no arguing with that.
"Well, in the unlikely event that a chicken pox epidemic overtook the entire world at the same time, even the people who had already had it, and lasted an entire year, then I imagine that lots of birthday parties would be cancelled, yes."
"That would be sad," she nods glumly.
"On the bright side, it would be great news for all the chiggy-wigs!" I chip in.
"Why's THAT?" she asks.
"Well," I say, in a vaguely post-modern nod to this blog I read called The Philosophy of a 5 Year Old, "chiggy-wigs eat chicken pox, don't they?"
"That is ridiculous," she snorts, having spent a half term studying insects since our prior conversation, "they are called woodlice, and they eat leaves!"
Darn you, education. Gosh darn you all to heck!