17 09 2010

I’m at my desk Sunday afternoon with piles of grammar worksheets in front of me, trying to check-or-ex circled verbs in sentences for my engineers (and cj majors and nurses and programmers etc.) laughing instead of paying close enough attention to what I’m doing, because the exchange going on down the hall in the guest room is just too vibrant and precocious to ignore. (And speaking of grammar, I feel honor bound to mention that when C is not so wound up, he does less grammatical abbreviating himself, because he’s been raised by educators and nerds and doesn’t hear shortcuts much so he isn’t usually guilty of creating them.)
“Doctor Daddy?”
“I wish. I mean, yes Caleb?”
“No, Doctor Caleb.”
“Yes, Doctor Caleb?”
“You sick?”
“I don’t think so. You want to check me out?”
“Yep!” [Insert mental image here of child pressing plastic stethoscope to Daddy’s nearest limb, probaby his calf (I’m in the other room, so I can’t be sure, but it’s what he tends to do to me)]
“You sick, Doctor Daddy.”
“I’ll be all right. Help me make the bed, Doctor Caleb. Throw the pillows on the floor. And the blankets. Throw them! All of them. On the floor. Come on!”
And then the dialogue is replaced by the sounds of child giggling, as he comes to understand that throwing the bedding actually is the work-task he’s being asked to do, and man giggling with him, as it’s terribly infectious.
Task completed a few minutes later, the stethescope-bearer comes to me next, to check my thigh, which, in my desk chair, is at kid-height. “Hi Doctor Tyra,” he says, holding out the blue plastic end of his instrument. “I’m Doctor Caleb! Let me see you sick.” From the kitchen, I can hear Matt say “You’ve got the first part right, anyway,” and then, after a moment, “Caleb, come in here. Tyra’s working.”
Doctor Caleb,” the small one calls into the other room to correct his father, & then continues, conversationally, to me, ignoring the admonishment. “Whatchoo doing?”
“Grading my students’ homework,” I said.
“You students?”
“Yes. I have students. Because I’m a teacher.”
“You teacher?”
“Yes. Only my students are big, not little like your friends at day care.”
“No, I’m the teacher.”
“Really? What do you teach?”
“I Doctor Teacher,” he pronounced, and then added, generously, “You Doctor Teacher too.”
“Daddy’s a teacher too,” I told him, and he laughed. “Nooooo.”
Daddy, apparently, was a daddy, and only needed one job description.
“No, really. He has students just like I do. Big kids. He goes to school to teach them, just like me.
“Daddy Doctor Teacher?”
“Yep,” I said.
“Not quite yet, but working on it” wolf_majas qualifies from the kitchen, thinking about the still-looming dissertation chapters. The small boy is undaunted, and still clutching the stethescope, pronounces: “We all Doctor Teachers.”
“Yes,” I said, grinning at his dad. “We are.”




One response

17 09 2010

Yes. We are.

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