I see bread people

October 31st, 2008

I pride myself on having a good memory. Or I should say, I used to pride myself on having a good memory. That was before Mad Mama Dementia set in. Now I need to make lists and lists of lists just to keep from leaving my own head somewhere. Babyzilla, on the other hand, has a memory that’s downright uncanny. It’s always been my understanding that before about the age of about four, kids just don’t have the capacity to recall events from very far back in the past, unless they experienced something particularly traumatic. And Babyzilla certainly doesn’t remember everything, my admonishments to “keep your hands to yourself” being a prime example, but he surprises me quite often with the recollections that come to his mind, seemingly out of nowhere.

About a month ago, we were getting ready to read a bedtime story –’Sasha The Sea Lion’, if my parenting-addled memory serves me correctly. I had just gotten through telling Babyzilla, that, no, I really don’t enjoy having his ratty stuffed dog shoved in my face, despite what he may think to the contrary.

Suddenly he asked me, “Where’s my gingerbread?”

Gingerbread? Whaaa?? Sasha The Sea Lion had a penchant for fish, but there wasn’t any mention of gingerbread. I had no idea where this was coming from, but being a parent who likes to encourage the intelligent and diligent exploration of thoughts and ideas, I eloquently replied, “Huh?”

“My gingerbread man,” Babyzilla said again. “The one with lots of frosting. What happened to it?”

I trolled through the scrapheap of my mind, trying to recall any recent conversations or events that concerned gingerbread men or even gingerbread or just any sort of comestible in human form. Nada.

And then I had a sudden inkling of what he was talking about.

“Do you mean a gingerbread man that you made?” I asked him.

“Yes, at the place with the sand toys and animals,” he responded.

About a year ago, Hubby and I took Babyzilla to a little Halloween fair being put on by a school out in a rural area of our county. It had attracted my interest because the theme for the fair was based on bringing characters from books to life. Most of the activities and entertainment centered on various classic stories, like ‘Alice In Wonderland’, with the participants dressed for and acting the part. Attendees were also encouraged to dress as their favorite story character. I’ve always been an avid reader and love the classics, so I thought this would be a great way to introduce Babyzilla to an essential part of every childhood. I imagined he would be enthralled by the whimsy and wonderment of it all.

Needless to say, he was unimpressed. The costumes and cute games and story themes were decidedly lacking in entertainment value for him. The thing that interested him the most was a sandbox in the back of the school that contained a nice collection of sand toys left out for kids who didn’t have an appropriate appreciation of literature. Babyzilla has sand toys and a sandbox at home, not to mention two parks close by our house that also have sandboxes and at least a few communal sand toys scattered around. You’d think that he’d have had more than his fill of sand toys, that sand toys would be old hat, while a re-creation of the Mad Hatter’s tea party would be, quite literally, new hat. But these sand toys were different. These sand toys sang an irresistible siren’s song because Babyzilla had not played with these specific toys before. When it comes to playthings, the new-to-me factor seems to rank high with the preschool set. Apparently the same can’t be said for a human-sized rabbit with a pocket watch.

So we spent a lot of “quality time” with the plastic shovels and pails and dump trucks and whirly funnel contraptions. The other activity of moderate interest to Babyzilla was a small petting zoo set up in the corner of the playground, across from the exalted sandbox. I paid a couple bucks so he could pet a chicken. Or try to pet a chicken. It seemed like he wanted to pet a chicken, but then another kid picked up the chicken he wanted to pet, and suddenly that chicken was an Untouchable. Babyzilla didn’t want to pet that chicken while the other kid held it. He didn’t want to pet a different chicken. All chickens were now taboo. In short order, poultry was out and a hasty retreat was made back to the sandbox.

I sat there withering in the heat of ‘Indian summer’ (Mother Nature’s evil trick on those of us who prefer the temperature to stay under eighty degrees and look forward to the arrival of Fall), trying to figure out how we could separate Babyzilla from Sand Nirvana and depart without him making a scene. There’s something about being at an event yet not participating in any of the activities whatsoever that I find wholly unappealing, especially when I have to sit in a puddle of my own sweat. If Babyzilla wanted to play in the sand, I could sit in my sweat in our backyard or the park near home.

Then Hubby decided we should take a shot at an activity that involved one of the only things more interesting than scrabbling around in the dirt with plastic toys: FOOD. Decorating a gingerbread man to be exact. The cookies were already made, so all the kids had to do was glob on the frosting, sprinkles, candy corn, etc. The obvious draw here is not artistic expression through high fructose corn syrup, but consumption during creation. Have to make sure those miniature marshmallows are of the highest quality before one is employed as a nose. Needless to say, this was the one “real” activity that Babyzilla enjoyed.

Shortly after Mr. Bread was all dressed up, we were able to leave. He was wearing at least a half cup of frosting, which immediately started to liquefy in the afternoon heat. Even the air conditioning of the car couldn’t save him –the final throes of departure and the walk through the parking lot did him in. I had his burial planned before we hit the main road. Surprisingly, my son seemed to forget about his sticky friend rather quickly (or so I thought), and Mr. Bread now has his final resting place in a landfill somewhere.

Whatever made Babyzilla think of this, how he ever remembered it at all –something that happened ALMOST A YEAR AGO –is beyond me. Nothing we were talking about at the time of his recollection had anything to do with gingerbread men, quaint school fairs, or anything of the like. It was September and Halloween wasn’t even on the radar at that point. And his relationship with Mr. Bread had been sweet but very short –nothing, in my mind, that would make a lasting impression, particularly because my son was essentially still a two-year-old back then. He didn’t even ask about the dearly departed after his hasty disappearance. But Babyzilla has done this on a number of occasions: Recalling things that I would never have imagined him remembering. Or even stranger, expressing knowledge of something about which there was seemingly no way he could know.

Really, the kid’s a little spooky sometimes.

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One Response to “I see bread people”

  1. schwinn Easy steer Tricycle on April 8, 2014 8:28 pm

    Hey there! I know this is kinda off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could locate a captcha plugin for my comment form?
    I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having trouble finding one?
    Thanks a lot!

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