I had an extended and quite interesting discussion with my firstborn yesterday. We took Toop out for a walk (Wump had expressed an interest in going to visit her great-grandmother who was enjoying some time to herself with Wump’s grandparents out of the house), and then found ourselves trapped when strong winds, horizontal hail and sleet came out of nowhere.
Ah, May in Finland.
So, anyway, finally we were headed home and Wump was telling me all about girl colours and boy colours. I asked enough questions to ascertain that blue was for boys and pink was for girls, and that one of her dimbulb peers at the daycare had put this idea in her head. I tried to tell her that any colour you want can be a girl colour, and that there are in fact no such things as gender-specific colours. This idea seemed to obscurely upset her, so I took another tack. This is a transcript.
Hatboy: So pink is a girl colour?
Hatboy: What about purple?
Wump: Well, that’s a boy colour.
Hatboy: What about purple with pink spots?
Wump: That’s a boy colour.
Hatboy: What about pink with purple spots?
Wump: Girl colour.
Hatboy: Pink with purple stripes?
Wump: Girl colour.
Hatboy: Purple with pink stripes?
Wump: Boy colour.
Hatboy: How can you tell if something is purple with pink stripes, or pink with purple stripes?
Wump: Well, that’s a long story.
Not sure where she picked up that particular conversation-closer from, but she’s obviously heard it as an answer to some of her best questions so I suppose I’ll have to let her get away with it.
We left it at “there are some colours you can call girl colours if you want, but you’re free to like and wear any sort of colours you want regardless of whether they’re boy or girl colours,” and began a conversation about poo.
Dog poo, I explained, could be pretty big depending on how big the dog was. But, I told her, horse poo was usually bigger because horses were much bigger than dogs. Elephants, likewise, were bigger than horses, and brachiosauruses were bigger than elephants. “Do you know what’s bigger than a brachiosaurus?” I asked her. Wump shook her head. “A blue whale. And you know what’s bigger than a blue whale? Nothing.”
That’s when Wump told me about the grasshopper that was bigger than a blue whale.
In your face, nature and conservation of mass and volume-to-surface-area-to-weight ratios.
What, I asked her, was bigger than the grasshopper?
Well, she said, there was a giant talking poo that was bigger than that.
From now on, when I need a go-to graphic for what a giant steaming load I think something is, I am coming to this picture.
And what was bigger than the poo? Why, the brain. The giant brain, that could talk and fly. Because otherwise it would just sit around collapsing under its own weight and getting grit all up in its medulla oblongata, right?
The brain, in turn, was smaller only than the giant flying, talking rock. But the rock was something special. It also had a magical power. When it said “Abracadabra pru”, it could turn little girls into princesses with enormous blue dresses and magic wands, capable of casting spells of their own.
We were unable to ascertain how large its poos were. But maybe that’s where the big talking poo came from in the first place.
My daughter’s brain is an interesting place to spend an afternoon.