Sunday, June 21, 2009

Watching "Star Wars" with my 4 year old

It's Father's Day again. I don't feel like I can really write a reasonable post on Father's Day without ample repetition of my past self on the subject. So I'll share the story of how I decided to celebrate it this year, with doughnuts and Star Wars.

I woke up with the sun on this longest day of the year, because our properly named daughter, Solstice, came running into our bedroom the instant the sun peaked over the trees, hugging and kissing me and reminding me what day today is. While that is very sweet, it should be noted that this is an everyday activity; whether it is a special day or not, Soli likes to alert us to its presence.

I got the two older girls dressed and headed out the door to the only proper doughnut shop near here, about 7 miles away. And, as with every morning, Solstice talked: "What kind of doughnuts will we get?" Do you think Mommy wants some? Do they have doughnuts in Michigan? Where do doughnuts come from? What if they don't have doughnuts? What kind do you like? What if they're all out and the people say, 'Sorry, no doughnuts' and you don't have a good Father's Day?" And on, and on.

Now I love Solstice and I wouldn't change a thing about her. And though I wouldn't change it, I have never seen, heard of, nor imagined something that talks quite so much as my eldest daughter. No breath is wasted with her, all are spent with words.

On the way home, I tried to think of what else I would do to celebrate my self as a dad. I am a fan of the Star Wars saga and found myself in the mood to watch Episode III (yes, I dig the prequels quite a bit, especially Revenge of the Sith). In retrospect, I should probably have watched Return of the Jedi, the ultimate father-son movie, but honestly the ending makes me tear-up too much.

Solstice and Luna sat down to watch the movie with me. I'm not worried about the strange and sometimes frightening images they may see on the show, as they are the same things I looked at as a child. There's such a plethora of images that I feel that they mix and mingle into sensory overload. (I say this now, but no doubt nightmares of General Grievous will keep Luna and me awake tonight.)

I would like to share with you why this was such a challenging task for me to complete today. It was Solstice's talking. The following is a mish-mash of actual quotes spoken by my 4 year old during the movie:

What are they doing? Are they the good guys? Why are they in that space ship? Do you want to go in a space ship? What are those robots doing? Do you think the robots will get them? Which one is fighting that one? Why is Yoda so tiny? Did you know he is tiny? He's tinier than you! Yes he is! You know what my middle name is? No! My middle name is Butterfly House Explode! Yes it is! Do you think Chewbacca has a middle name? I think it's Princess Rainbow Bright Stupid Pirate! Well, he said 'stupid'! Why does bad guys say 'stupid'? Why are they being yucky? Do you think you could ride on one of those? Those are my friends. I don't want her to be a queen, I want her to be a princess. That baby looks like a princess.

And on, and on. Without end. She just doens't stop. I tried to answer her questions as openly and honestly as I could, with as few "Just watch!" comments as possible. But when the movie was over--and it's a long movie--I was relieved. I didn't get to revel in that last shot of the double-sunset because I was just so effing glad the movie was over and the question would subside. My dermination to finish the movie was simple stubbornness.

It gave me an idea for a money-making scheme. I thought I should watch lots of movies and record the commentary that Solstice makes throughout. People could download them and sync them up with their DVD players and have their minds blow. Butterfly House Explode, indeed.

I need a rest. Or noise cancelling headphones. Or a huge dose of patience.

1 comment:

Erik said...

A bit after the fact, maybe, but it has to be said: awesome post! Honestly, at this point, I can't wait for the questions (my kid just babbles like some French gargoyle on cappuccino).