Niko was running back and forth through the house the other day, screaming and barking, while Nesko and I finished dinner. Then there was a big crash in the living room. We called him in to find out what he’d been doing.
I’m going to break in for a moment here and explain something.
Delilah is a stuffed animal.
Delilah is a stuffed dog with curly fur and floppy ears.
“Well, Delilah was chasing me and barking and then I was chasing her and yelling and then she was chasing me and barking and then I was chasing her and yelling and then she ran into the living room and said she was going to dump my balls all over the floor and I said NO DELILAH DON’T DO THAT, THAT’S NAUGHTY and then she dumped all my balls on the floor and I stood there and I said HOLY CRAP–”
We interrupted him at this point, to laugh.
I tried to keep a straight face. I did! I swear. But then I saw Nesko trying to keep a straight face too and I lost it. I kept dissolving into snickers.
“And then I said NO DELILAH THAT WAS NAUGHTY and she chased me into the kitchen and what’s so funny?”
“No, nothing. Nothing’s funny.”
“Is it because I said HOLY CRAP?”
“Noooo… Tata told me a joke and I’m laughing at that.”
He insisted on hearing the joke, Nesko told him a knock knock joke, and then Niko resumed running through the house arguing with Delilah. Yes, arguing. Taking both sides.
Because I have the light and joyful heart of a child, I laugh at fart jokes and enjoy hiding behind things and jumping out at people. However, in part because I have the light and joyful heart of a child (READ: am really immature) I usually give myself away by giggling while hiding. It’s pathetic and hilarious, I know! But my big question is this: does Niko giggle while hiding because it’s his NATURE to hide and giggle or because I’ve NURTURED a hiding and giggling set of behavior in him?
What sorts of behaviors have you observed in your kid that could be nature or nurture?
Are you familiar with Candle Cove, that brilliant bit of horror by Kris Straub? It’s a relatively short piece of fiction in the format of an internet forum dedicated to old tv shows. Some users reminisce about a horrific low budget kids show called “Candle Cove” that was pure nightmare fuel in the most literal sense possible. It’s atmospheric and creepy in the best possible way, the unease and horror build slowly.
Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
Ugh mike, I got a chill reading that. Yes I remember. That’s what the ship always told Percy when there was a spooky place he had to go in, like a cave or a dark room where the treasure was. And the camera would push in on Laughingstock’s face with each pause. YOU HAVE… TO GO… INSIDE. With his two eyes askew and that flopping foam jaw and the fishing line that opened and closed it. Ugh. It just looked so cheap and awful.
You guys remember the villain? He had a face that was just a handlebar mustache above really tall, narrow teeth.
“YOU HAVE… TO GO… INSIDE.”
Niko frequently creeps me out. FOR INSTANCE, there was the time he stared solemnly up at the sky and then told me “there is a storm coming and we will never see the day again” or the time he informed me that he ate the sun and we would thus be in eternal night.
Today he stood in the middle of the living room and intoned in his spookiest voice “YOU HAAAAAAAAAAAAAVE… TO GO… INSIIIIIIIIIIIIIDE” while waving his arms ritually, a blank look on his face. He crawled under the coffee table. “YOU HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAVE… TO GO… INSIIIIIIIIDE… THE CAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAVE.”
And then he started talking about picking up a cargo load of coal and making chugging and puffing noise because he was a train.
I mean, talk about your Occam’s Razor moments, right? The most obvious solution is the correct one. He’s never heard of Candle Cove, but he HAS read/watched a lot of stories about trains going into dark, spooky caves. Also he seems to delight in fucking with me and being creepy on purpose. <3
I told Nesko about this and he said “Well, we’re going to have to leave the television on AT ALL TIMES NOW so he can’t find any static to watch.”
<3 <3 <3
What’s the creepiest thing YOUR kids do? What have you done that royally creeped out someone else, all unintentionally?