Me: What are you doing? Catching something?
Me: Catching what?
Me: It’s a spider, isn’t it?
Bean: Yes. See? (Holds up jar.)
Me: Do you have plans for the spider?
Me: What are you going to do with it?
Bean: Experience spiders.
There aren’t really words for how I love Ron’s photos.
Bean and I are in sync, never mind the ‘is it a moustache or is it a barbell? controversy.
I was supposed to be a faerie but ended up a firebird.
Face paint is big in our house. Always has been,
..there exist pictures not unlike this of me and my mom, standing together in front of her big round vanity mirror. She actually let me hold the tube of lipstick all by myself, which is the holy grail when you’re three.
Today I’m over lipstick; somehow always forget to paint my lips, even - especially? - on Halloween.
“No, Mickey! Don’t do it Mickey! You don’t need that hat, Mickey, put it down! Mickey! MICKEY! You don’t know enough magic Mickey! NEVER TRUST A BROOM, MICKEY!”
|Me:||Bye, honey! Have a nice day at school!|
|He:||Bye, Mommy! Have a nice day.. uh.. in your room!|
|How you feeling this morning, kiddo?||THERE ARE TADPOLES IN MY NOSE.|
|Grandma:||You seem to having trouble getting up in the morning. Is Mommy letting you stay up too late?|
|Bean:||FOUR MORE YEARS! FOUR MORE YEARS! FOUR MORE YEARS!|
Bean whipped up some gorgeously simple bookmarks out of lavender index cards, duct tape, and MOUSTACHES. The he declared that they were GARBAGE, and moved on to his next project, which is top secret but involves the big tub of glue.
Want a Bean-made book mark? Be on the of the first five to make me laugh when you reply, and I’ll send you one.
Bean was three years old the day Michael Jackson died, so he’s going to learn about Michael exactly the same way I learned about John Lennon.
Well. Perhaps not exactly. Because with me and my dad it was all about sitting cross-legged on the living room floor, listening to Beautiful Boy with our eyes closed. I peeked once; may have seen a tear.
Recently I screened Thriller for Bean. He was mesmerized. So we found more videos to watch, which was not impossible but not as easy as it should have been.
Me: “When Mommy was your age there was a WHOLE CHANNEL that only showed things like this - people singing and dancing.”
HE: “Reeeeeeaaaallly?” (Here he sounds just like Donkey in Shrek 4 when he finds out he’s married to a dragon.)
“So what happened,” he asked? “Pearl Jam,” I answered.
So we watched Michael as the baby of the 5, Michael moonwalking on stage for the first time, Michael with his glittery outfits and killer, killer smile. Finally, we got to Smooth Criminal. I remember watching the MTV WORLD PREMIERE of this video with my brother, back when such things were possible.
And then it was over. No more videos for Bean to watch There’s later Michael, of course, but something changed. Course, tone, something. The video for Leave Me Alone left me profoundly sad in a way I could not articulate at the time. Now I realize seeing Michael dwarfed by that enormous roller coaster frightened me. I don’t care who’s driving. The machine wants to eat him alive.
Maybe that’s when the metaphor became literal.
I had to explain to my son that there would never be another real Michael Jackson video again, because he was gone, and if after death the legends continue to record, they are surely not allowed to share it with us. So Bean cried and I held him and remembered with aching nearness how sick my heart felt the day I realized John Lennon had been shot before I’d been old enough to be truly aware of him and his music, and what a loss that was, in a selfish, personal way, to me, and a in a grander, bigger way, to the world, and so Bean and I cried together.
My mom’s taking a permaculture class and my brother won’t be back from Colombia until Wednesday, so Bean and I are alone together for this whole long weekend. I asked him what we should do when it’s just the two of us and he said:
“Make the house zero-gravity.”
and Woody from Toy Story tells him his score is amazing even when it’s zero. Says he, ”Can you even believe this?!? ZERO IS NOT AMAZING.”
In which the artist has graduated to oil pastels.
So help me I’m thinking about introducing him to oil paints.
But this post is about the cardboard box it came in.
It’s quite large, of course, and as soon as I saw it I realized it would be perfect for making puppet show scenery.
Yesterday, I unveil the box to Bean. Tell him to do whatever he wants with it. Make a few suggestions. (“It could be an airport runway. Or a lake. Or a pirate’s treasure map!” Etc.)
His response? ”You really love me, Mommy! You really do!”
Then he runs downstairs and I hear him confiding in his grandmother. “DID YOU KNOW MOMMY IS AN ARTIST?”
Then he runs to the family room and proceeds to create a line of belts, custom-made for each member of the family.
Custom-made. Yes. This led to a talk about how some butts are small (his) and some butts are large (grandma’s) and still other butts are enormous (mommy’s), and all these butts are acceptable, happy butts.
This was last night. This morning he runs into my room, naked except for the belt, shouting, “BELTS THAT FIT WITH YOUR CLOTHES ARE TOO BIG WHEN YOU’RE NAKED, SEE?”
Then he lets go of the belt, it drops to the floor, and he steps out of it, the cardboard circle, while doing the Snoopy dance, and is on his way back out of my room again faster than I can say, “Mommy has to work now, sweetie.”