Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Monkey see, monkey do

You know that classic book Caps For Sale? Just in case, I'll recap (if you're old enough to read this, reading this should not spoil the book for you). So, there's this peddler peddling caps. No one's buying, so he doesn't have money for lunch. Instead, he heads out of town and settles down by a tree, with all of his hats stacked up on his head. He falls asleep. When he wakes up, the caps are gone- gone! He looks all around, but no hats. Eventually he looks up, where he discovers a bunch of monkeys in the tree, each holding one of his caps. This is where it gets really good, if you're 3 or so. The peddler is steaming mad, and he shakes his fists at the monkeys, demanding that they return his hats, but they just shake their fists back. Then he shakes both fists, then his leg, etc. etc. and the monkeys just mimic him, until finally, in exasperation, the peddler throws his own cap on the ground. Guess what? So do the monkeys, and all of the caps come raining down from the tree.

Why do I bring this up? Because Eleri is like one of those monkeys, blindly copying the big kids. The other night, when Dakota and family were over for dinner, Dakota and Clio came running out of the girls' room with soft blocks in their mouths. Why? who knows! But right after them, Eleri came running, a block in her mouth too, ever the game second child. It's like the way she chases them and says "guys!": she doesn't know what the game is, but she knows she's in.

Tonight, we heard her wail from Dakota's room, and I went running. Clio and Dakota were standing there with spatulas, and, looking at my red-faced baby, asked what in the world had happened. Clio told me that Dakota was "beating her on the head" and when I asked if this was true, Dakota smiled a big goofy smile and said that it was. Not long after, with Eleri fully recovered, after Dakota had apologized and insisted that he and Clio were in on it together, Eleri was eyeing the spatulas and I asked Clio to give her one. Eleri walked right over and smacked Dakota on the head, then turned around and smiled. She may not have gotten the joke, but lord, did she think herself funny.

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