September 23, 2005

Unlikely Entertainment

LiL J's new favorite TV fix is The Weather Channel. Nevermind the Justice League or Little Bear. Somehow, while clicking through his animated options, he found TWC. Never teach your child how to use the remote. Don't even let them see you using it, because their minds are far more adept to mastering electronic devices and before you know it, they will have taken over.

Today he's been watching for a full twenty minutes. First it was fascinating to him that he could see all the states on screen with brightly colored borders and whirly-woos. You see, my five year old son is obsessed with geography lately. LiL J has never known a time when live TV couldn't be pasued or re-wound. This means we get to see the same thing over and over which is really a must for any human being under age seven. And a personal passion for any human being under age three.

"Look!! This is where we live mom! That's our weather happening above us."

He rewinds indefinitely if they show any action over Wisconsin, Minnesota, Texas, California and Michigan. Those are his favorite states and he knows where they are like the back of his hand.

It was very cute at first but after watching the same twenty second clip of 'possible' rain clouds going over Wisconsin, again and again, I'm ready to watch anything else, even Barney. Weather forecasters lie. Barney's just a bad singer.

Then he notices the Rita reports so he asks me if a hurricane is a tornado in the water. He's a genius.

When he sees the simulated image of Rita heading for Texas he gasps and his face shows panic.

"Mom!! That's Texas. They said the hurricane is going to Texas! Oh no, grandpa is doing to die!!"

"No honey, he's too far away from the hurricane. He's near Austin."

Still pausing TWC and pointing to the map, "where in Texas is Austin?"

After I explain the distance to him and calm his fears I realize he's NOT going to change the channel anytime soon. At five years old, he's totally into geography land weather and the only thing that will pry him away from TWC is a 100 piece puzzle of the United States which he insists I help him with. I then have to tell him what each one is and answer the same question every single time.

Do we know anyone there?

With three older children idling their engines in slackerville, I am overjoyed that he loves to learn new things and asks us about the world he lives in. Have you watched the weather channel for hours a day over and over though. It's not natural. I'd rather be picking dried play-doh out of the carpet. And truth be told, he asks big questions and big questions by little people are hard to answer . The answer only leads to more questions. So I am forced to employ The Husband's tried and true response to the evitable, "but why?"

Because the sky is blue. That's why.