Monday, 15 September 2008

A Real Brick

I do realise that I hardly ever mention Jack, apart from in Second Child Syndrome he has never had a post dedicated to him. When you're the youngest and can't speak/whine/negotiate/bribe you tend not to get much of a look in I'm afraid. He is lovely though, and going through a Duck Phase at the moment. This is not, as you may be forgiven for imagining, an actual fixation with ducks, or even one duck in particular, not at all. We call it the Duck Phase because (apparently, I'm no Duck enthusiast except if it's number 72 on the Jade Palace menu) when they hatch out as Ducklings they decide that the first thing that they see is their mummy and fixate on her for life. Fantastic evolutionary idea if the first thing they see is Mummy Duck; instant rapport and easy discipline for Mummy Duck as offspring simply follows Mummy around and around, simple. Not so clever though if Mummy Duck has been taking a well earned break from egg hatching (she's allowed some life you know) and Baby Duck hatched out of sight only to open its world-new eyes and alight on a brick. A brick is a jolly useful thing obviously if you want to build a house or some such thing, but it makes a pretty rubbish duck. It doesn't peck at seed or quack, it doesn't flap its wings, indeed it has absolutely no wings at all with which to demonstrate flapping to its new offspring, and it's a dreadful swimmer. Sinks, you see, straight to the bottom. In fact a brick would be the best thing ever if you needed to drown a duck, but not to teach it to swim. A Rubbish Duck is all I can say. Baby Duck would be at a disadvantage from the start, all the other ducklings would be waddling after Mummy Duck to the water to try it out for the first time, while Baby Duck was left, standing very very still trying to look as oblong as possible, next to its Mummy, the brick, wondering when it was going to teach it anything useful.
Anyway, Jack is going through this Duck Phase in that the first thing he sees in the morning becomes his fixation. He loves it, it is his new best friend, he wants to marry it. And to prove his commitment to his new fiance he absolutely has to carry it around with him all day. On Saturday he wanted to marry the broom. Not his own, appropriately sized plastic broom, oh no, Mummy's big wooden dangerous one. Said broom was dragged from place to place, had to be found its own place in the car, was used to sweep the toys up in creche and carried home again, exhausted, to bed. Yesterday was Tupperware Box Day, easier obviously than Broom Day but more reluctant to be useful at creche. Today it's Half A Coat Hanger Day. I'm not sure why or how we have half a coat hanger but at this moment Jack is proposing to it earnestly. It has been used to poke the dog, eat porridge and lever a dog biscuit from under the sofa.
The only way out of this that I can see is to pre determine his crushes and present him with an object immediately upon waking. Tomorrow I'm giving him a carrot to fall for. It's small, easily inserted into the car, not sharp enough to hurt the dog when poked and can double as a snack in creche.

21 comments:

Irene said...

You could give him all sorts of useful implements that may form his malleable mind, such as duct tape to tape his toys together in one lump or a dust rag to wipe up all the dusty surfaces in the house or a little hand held Hoover to clean the stairs. He could come in real handy for those low and hard to reach places. Maybe he would like a little ironing board, nah, he'd burn his little fingers. Just tell him to do the lower surfaces of everything and then you will take care of the stuff at your height. A small bucket with suds?

Mom/Mum said...

Very funny and I'm with iremne on this. channel his affections into some very useful domestic duties and then you can out your feet up all day yeah?!

A Confused Take That Fan said...

Aah how cute!! Perhaps not for you on broom day. Agree with above, go for a pack of wipes, then they obsessively clean all day. Or a pebble. Mine have always loved pebbles, ones that are too big to swallow, but small enough to fit in the pocket, they sit on the table nicely, are quiet and are only harmful when thrown at speed. Or at a window. Oh. On second thoughts...

valley girl said...

Littleboy 1 also has these fixations - I'm glad you have discovered a name for the syndrome! When we were on holiday this summer with friends that have a dog, he fixated on a dog lead and had to carry it round with him every minute of the day, even when the dog wasn't on it.....not surprisingly it really riled and confused the dog, which kept thinking it was about to be taken for a walk.

Bill Stankus said...

Hiya! Thanks for the stop-by. And, "no", I'm not a strict person - I'm really a pussycat. But if you don't believe me then go to your room and you won't get dessert after dinner. :>)

blogthatmama said...

Irene's idea is brilliant, the chore possibilities are endless!

HER ON THE HILL said...

Just popped a comment on your 3 Sept post. Little ones going off to school for the first time - makes me SOoo nostalgic. I dread my youngest finishing infant school as she will next July. The moment they step into juniors, the innocence fast disolves.

Love this post and the idea of duckling trying to look 'oblong'! Fascinating what they latch onto when they're little. I remember my youngest being wedded to a little red plastic bell on a small cheap chain which came out of a Christmas cracker. Went everywhere with her. Broom would have been more useful...

rosiero said...

Oh My God. Let's not hope he sees a man up a tree with a chainsaw!!!!

Millennium Housewife said...

Irene, thanks for all that - woo, projects for a year.

MM, I hear kids this age are quite good up chimneys too...

CTTF, hmm great advice, thanks?


VG, LOL!

Bill, you sound like my dad!

Mama, see above MM. MH

HOTH, it really wasn't useful at all.

Rosiero, you have just assured me of absolutely no sleep whatsoever until this phase ends.

that girl ? said...

I think I went through a Duck phase in my mid twenties, only I actually latched on to an actual duck! Its name was Chickpea and it had been abandoned by it's mother so I rescued it! Even now when I eat crispy duck in pancakes I get a small pang of guilt - but not enough to make me stop eating it!
Small Child has been securely latched on to a Jeremy Clarkson book for the past year - I'm not even going to try and understand that one!

The Dotterel said...

How he did like his carrot?

Millennium Housewife said...

That Girl? I'd worry if I were you.

Dotterel, lovely with a bit of houmous

david mcmahon said...

The carrot sounds perfectly logcal. Good thinking!!

SandyCarlson said...

This post could be the basis of a children's story. I love it. And I hope he wakes up to pleasant things that are easy to carry!

Millennium Housewife said...

David, carrots are a symbol of incentive so hopefully it will do the trick!

Sandy, welcome and thanks for stopping in, looking forward to checking you out MH

Moannie said...

Very funny,, BOTD well deserved.

My No.1 and only son had a dummy, a blanket and two imaginary friends. He's grown up ok though.

Fat, frumpy and fifty... said...

well, this YOU can guide and nurture...and good luck with it, they are so malliable and easy to please young! hey ho!

Merisi said...

Duck phase! I love it, the name and your story. I read Konrad Lorenz in school, but never ever thought that anything I learned then could apply to human offspring as well! :-)))

Congratulations on winning David's "Post of the Day" award!

Millennium Housewife said...

Moannie, you give me hope - thanks!

FFF, you mean they get less malleable with age? Oh dear...

Merisi, thankyou, and thanks for dropping in

Millennium Housewife said...

Moannie, you give me hope - thanks!

FFF, you mean they get less malleable with age? Oh dear...

Merisi, thankyou, and thanks for dropping in

Sandi McBride said...

You could give him a dust cloth and let him know that the affianced likes being dragged along tables...fun post! Congratulations on the post of the day mention at Davids!
Sandi