Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Frank's Books

A trick that I never used before a couple weeks ago has lost its effectiveness after only three uses. It's just as well, it's a dirty trick, and there are other dirty tricks and outright lies that I still have up my sleeve to keep the balance of power tilted in my favor. I wasn't this dishonest before the current regime in Washington came to power.

A few months ago, Franklin was going to bed later, and later, and I was having to wake up at the same time. His appetite for stories is as voracious as his father's, and there were nights when he heard Go, Dog, Go four or five times in a row. Then there was Chitty, Chitty, Bang, Bang, and now we're back in a Cat in the Hat phase. I came across the idea somewhere of setting limits of how many stories he could have. Now, I tell him that I will read with him until eleven o'clock and then the lights must go out. Franklin can't read the clock yet, so he has to take Daddy's word for it that it's time to sleep. Sometimes, when I close the book and say, "Ok buddy, it's eleven o'clock" and it's...well, it's dark out...Frankie will immediately turn over and bury his head in the pillow and say "Frankie shui jiao (sleeping)."

Now, in the last couple weeks, to make eleven o'clock arrive even quicker, I skipped a couple pages. Don't gasp, you've done, or will do, the same thing, I'm sure. The problem is, though, Franklin is getting so good at following these books, he can fill in the blank for just about any word in Curious George or Cat in the Hat, or I'll Teach My Dog One Hundred Words. A couple days ago, I got a little greedy halfway through Cat and skipped two pages at one go. Frank, sucking on his bottle, said "Ah!" and his eyebrows arched as he looked at me. He started to laugh, not the little boy giggle he uses when we play peekaboo, but a heh heh heh, you think you're pretty clever. Then he turned the page back to where it was supposed to be. Then he laughed again, sucker, and turned back three more pages.

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