But what is normal?

Rather than constantly making judgments about whether my five-year-old son is normal, I'm going to work from one of two premises: a) there is no such thing as normal; or 2) I have no way of knowing what normal child behavior is because James Kelley Conklin is the only child I have (and will ever have).

With that in mind, here is the Seamus Report from the weekend of Feb. 7, 2009:

* * *

Friday Morning:
Kid cannonballs onto our bed at 7 a.m. First words out of his mouth: "Mommy, is eight times eight 64?"

Saturday Morning:
Kid calls me into the bathroom where, while sitting on the pot, he asks me if I can find an "E" in the bathroom that isn't written on anything. I guess the towel rack, where two draping towels could be interpreted as a hanging sideways "E," (though admittedly lacking a third line). "No," he says, and points to the door hinge.

Saturday afternoon:
We're driving back from Northfield, playing the new Bruce Springsteen album in the car. On the opening track, "Outlaw Pete," Bruce repeatedly croons, "Can you hear me?" An annoyed response comes from the back booster seat, "Yes, we can hear you, Bruce Springsteen!"

Sunday morning:
I'm trying to get an extra half hour of sleep. James is typing at the computer, asking Anne how to spell "decided." Fifteen minutes later, he's presenting me with the newest page in his current book, "The Magic Paintbrush," which he is writing and illustrating, about a boy who buys a paintbrush at an art supply store, then discovers that everything he paints with it comes to life. (I'll share when the author deems it complete.)

* * *

Ten-odd years ago, I completed a spec screenplay called "Brain Child." It was based on a premise from two friends about a couple who have a hard time conceiving, but then when they finally do have a baby, discover that it can already talk. Among the reviews I received was one from a New York screenwriter who said, "At first, I liked the premise. The idea of a couple giving birth to a baby that is already more intelligent than they are seemed fresh and original, presenting many opportunities for interesting challenges and conflicts." He then proceeded to figuratively tear the script apart. After which point, I, humiliated, proceeded to do so literally.

I'm thinking of revisiting the premise.


Mike said…
I think the time is ripe. Good Lord, you have done enough research.
Aunt Christy said…
Is he TYPING a story?

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