My 4 year old walked up to me one afternoon. He asked if I could print out a picture for him, from the computer.
Usually, I don’t print out pictures just because the kids ask.
We have various drawing sessions – drawing on plain white paper, in their scrap books, working on a puzzle/maze/activity book, or a colouring book – and occasionally – colouring a print-out from the computer.
I get my colouring-in print-out pages from this very cool site. I’m sure it’s not properly licensed, but hey, what’s the internet for, if not for free print-outs for young children to scribble and drool on.
So I decided that, yes the boys may start a new activity and yes, they may have a colouring-in page. I asked Callum, “Which cartoon character would you like today?”
Now. Callum has never actually SEEN this website. He just knows that I twiddle on the computer and hey presto the printer spits out the most coolest picture in the WORLD.
He usually asks for Spiderman, Buzz Lightyear, Madagascar, Peter Pan, Nemo or Cars. To all else (Star Wars and Ninja Turtles) I say no – because of fighting scenes, guns and swords etc.
Callum answered, “Today I’d like a picture of a big man.”
“A big man? Which big man? Do you mean a giant? Like in Jack and the Bean Stalk?”
“No. That BIG man! With muscles!”
“You mean that green guy? THE HULK? How do you know about The Hulk???”
“No no no. He’s – you know – big, and kinda like – his skin is all – ergh!”
Callum’s face twisted with frustration and the inability to express his thoughts. He stopped. Then walked over to the pantry, pulled out something and walked over to me. He handed me a bottle of honey, pointed to the label and said, “The big man’s skin looks like this!”
Two scary things happened that moment.
First Scary Thing : The realisation that my 4 year old son pays attention to the background watermark in the graphic design of our honey bottle.
Second Scary Thing : Is that I ACTUALLY UNDERSTOOD who he was talking about – The Thing (from The Fantastic Four). And that I was momentarily thrown by this display of uncanny aptitude that I blurted out, Yeah Ok.