Saturday, February 7, 2009

The Master Negotiator - Guest Post

Well, since I haven't been blogging much (my resolutions are always doomed!) I thought I would share a story from my friend Dana. She's a great mom and a great storyteller - enjoy the guest post!

G (Age 3) is the master negotiator in our house. I'm considering equipping him with a tape measure and a cell phone and setting him loose on all my tough contracts. He has a roundabout way of approaching what he wants that should earn him a Machiavelli Jr. prize.

At 2 am I hear the (not so quiet) cry from across the hall, "Bombee" (his nose is hopelessly clogged with snot from his most recent cold) and I know from experience that he won't quiet down until I respond. "Bombee, I deed somefing," he says as I walk into his room. And even though I know that I shouldn't encourage him, I ask anyway, "What do you need?" I'm really hoping it's not going to be his usual request to discuss the nature of power tools, vacuum cleaners and furnaces. It's tough for me to hold up my half of that conversation.

"Weeellll," there is a long pause and I don't know it yet, but this is where he is setting up the mark. "I deed by weebote condroll." I'm tempted to ask why, but frankly I'm relieved it's something I can actually do. Last week he urgently called me into his room at 1 am to tell me that "sometimes spiders chase people." I was stumped by that one because frankly, I couldn't have agreed more. But my husband has told me (repeatedly) that I'm not allowed to agree with him.

Did I see that this request for a "retired" remote control was a lead-in to his real agenda? No. The kid is 10 steps ahead of me.

I hand him a defunct VCR remote that is sitting on his bookshelf. He thanks me sweetly (I should have been suspicious) and I'm feeling pretty confident that I might get to go back to sleep.

G then kicks back on his pillows and points the remote at the wall opposite his crib. "This is for my TV," he says pushing several buttons with his thumb.

I know it's late and my feet are frozen but I can't keep myself from stating the obvious, "you don't have a TV in here."

"My imaginary TV Mommy."

Oh, well that's OK then, he can watch all the pretend TV he wants, "Great, have fun then."

I'm halfway to the door when he says, "There's a problem with this TV Mommy. It doesn't play the Mickey Mouse Club or Little Einsteins." I'm thinking this is a pretty worthless imaginary TV if it doesn't play his favorite shows, but I manage to keep that comment to myself. "Wow, that's too bad. Goodnight!" and I head for the door again.

"Only the TV in Mommy and Daddy's room plays Mickey Mouse Club and Little Einsteins," he says slyly. There's no TV in our room either, but now I get it. This is all about him having a cold and not wanting to sleep by himself. But the kid is a terrible pillow hog and kicks all night long so I'm not giving in.

"Well, the pretend TV in our room is Daddy's TV and all it plays is Seahawks home games and Formula One Racing." And with that I say goodnight and shut the door behind me.

Ha! I may be perpetually sleep-deprived, but I can still keep up with a 3 1/2 year old. I figure I have about six more months before he can outsmart me.

1 comment:

ksjjpalmer said...

Well, I was excited to see any post!