Sunday, November 25, 2007

good instincts

Have you seen the ads on Yahoo? There are little cartoon people lined up and the tag line is “Train to Be a...” Each little face takes an occupation: Social Worker. Graphic Designer. Health Care Manager. Accountant. Bounty Hunter. Whaaa? Is this one of those things that they throw in to see if you are paying attention? Like when Mike wants to know if Isaac is asleep yet and Winnie-the-Pooh starts asking Piglet whether he thinks the other candidates are picking on Hillary because she's a woman or because she's ahead?

But now, it's time for another edition of everyone's favorite game of speculation: What Will Isaac Be When He Grows Up? (roar of cheering crowd)

- That guy who used to bring all the exotic animals on the talk shows. Think Johnny Carson scrambling away from his desk as someone in a beige zoo-keeper's shirt and safari hat suggests that the unusually large rodent clawing through his notecards really likes it if you scratch him under the chin. Isaac's new favorite game is called “Hi.” I have to hold one of his stuffed animals (the Carson figure) while he introduces his other animals to me one after another. Take his sting ray for example. (Yes, my son has a stuffed sting ray.) “Oh, hi. Wook my wings. I wap, wap wap my wings in the o-ton. Biiiiiiiiiiig wawa. Touch my tail. Me have eyes, see?” etc.

- I've decided that stage or movie director isn't nearly as bossy or hands on as Isaac would require in a profession. I think he'd do better as a permanent guest on “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” specializing in that game where two people act out a scene but can't move until another player moves their limbs and bodies for them.

- and finally, I may be out on a limb here, but I'm feeling reckless today: poet.

Of course, as off the beaten track as Bounty Hunter may be, you still would never see one of those little faces promising to train you to become a painter, folk singer, stand up comic, poet. One must supplement.

Isaac loves to tell us about his dreams. “Me had deam 'bout, 'bout, 'bout...Mama, me had deam 'bout...oranges!”

I am not concerned in the least that his “dreams” have to do with the first thing his eyes light on. On the contrary, it shows good poetic instincts. Start from where you are. There is a story in the daily details.

“Where going, Mama?” Isaac asks as I head out to my monthly poetry hosting duty.

I answer the same way I always do. I bust out, “I'm going to host a POETRY reading!” making sure to light up like an all-night drive-thru.

“Me too??” he begs, jumping up and down.

Train 'em young.

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