I’m not sure at what age kids learn the fine art of flattery but it certainly isn’t three. No, I would have to say that my three-year old son’s comments are usually of the “brutally honest” variety rather than those of a child trying to score himself some extra playground time.
Quite frankly his words the other day were not that of a child fishing for a cookie. I exited the shower, toweled off, and then proceeded to walk down the hallway naked. Just then I heard him call out from behind, “Hey mom, why’s your butt shaking?”
Actually, it seems that question did earn him a few cookies. All the ones I would no longer be eating.
The good news is that I knew the ‘butt shaking’ was because I’m pregnant. The bad news is I hadn’t realized I was carrying the baby in my rear. Thanks for pointing that out, big guy.
On the plus side I knew that if I was looking for a sincere judgment call on an outfit Honest Abe here was my man. And really, isn’t earnest input pretty indispensable? Who else but a three year old and Simon Cowell will really tell you what they think of an outfit?
So when a dress I ordered on-line arrived I wasted no time ripping open the package and throwing it on. I hadn’t yet showered and the dress was a little wrinkly. Nonetheless, I tossed my frizzy hair up into a clip and turned towards my son. “What do you think?”
His eyes went wide and he said, “You look just like Barbie.”
Pleased with the verdict I hugged him and kissed the top of his head. Then I realized the Barbie I was being compared to was one that had recently been unearthed from our neighbor’s basement and given to him as a ‘gift.’ Exactly how long she’d been held captive down there it’s tough to say.
(Wasn’t there a ‘Down and Out Barbie’ sometime in the eighties?) Her hair was ratty, under her eyes she had dirt smears that resembled dark circles, and she was barefoot. I gazed into the mirror and unfortunately saw the resemblance.
But don’t get me wrong, his honesty isn’t always insulting. (His bony elbows have inflicted far more unintentional pain than his words.) Amidst the verbal abuse there is the occasional compliment thrown my way. Like the other day, I took one look around our toy strewn living room and said, “Your toys are everywhere, Leo. We have to clean up this mess right now.”
He immediately replied, “No we don’t. It’s not that messy. Don’t worry, mom. The place looks fabulous!” (Note to self- stop watching Queer Eye with the boy.)
Also, my son frequently tells me that my boobs make him laugh. That’s a good thing, right? It’s sort of like a compliment. I’m sure there are plenty of women out there getting breast augmentation because they don’t think their boobs are funny enough.
Yet it was truly my husband who received not only a heaping helping of flattery from our son but the ultimate male ego boost. A few nights ago we were in the bathroom getting ready for bed. Our son took one look at my husband peeing and said, “Dad, your nudey looks just like a fire hose!”
My husband happily replied, “Thanks buddy, you really know how to flatter a guy.”