Quick update for the grandparents: Davy is a couple weeks past nine months. He had a check-up and is doing great. The doctor actually printed that on a sheet of paper, “doing great,” and gave it to us to take home. The same sheet of paper also has his height—29 inches, which is 60th percentile for his age—and weight: 18 lbs 13 oz, which is only 15th percentile, and hard to believe since he’s such a solid little ball of baby chub. He eats basically every waking moment, he’s like a hummingbird or something. The doctor’s print-out also says “General appearance: well nourished infant.” I think for a mom that’s like getting a gold star from your teacher.
Davy is fully mobile now: he still scootches rather than properly crawling, but he can scootch really fast. He’s also just starting to pull himself up on what Sam calls “his hind legs” (or, you know, as humans call them, “legs”). He’s enormously proud of himself when he succeeds, and will stand there clinging to the ottoman or the washing-machine rack or whatever, chortling at his own cleverness. His other tricks include playing peek-a-boo, waving, and occasionally busting out with a “dada” or “mama” that a fond ear can plausibly imagine to be directed at the appropriate target.
Less charmingly, he’s also developed the habit of emitting ear-splitting, high-register shrieks whenever he senses that he is not the center of attention, or if a real crisis develops, such as a situation where someone is eating something and not sharing it with him. This makes it nearly impossible for us to go restaurants. It’s sad because Robin has just hit a stage where he can be relied upon to remain in his seat for the duration of a restaurant meal.
Speaking of Robin, he’s now three and three quarters, which seems to be a delightful age. He’s fully engaged in imaginative play, and will regularly come up to me to announce that he’s now a kangaroo/pterodactyl/ballerina/Jackie Chan. Or one of a hundred other things. The correct response is “Hi, Robin [kangaroo/pterodactyl/ballerina/Jackie Chan], show me how you can [jump/fly/dance/do kung fu].” He had his first “observation day” at the preschool last week, after which he came home and announced “I’m a doggie. Doggies love school.” He’ll have another observation day at the school next month, but won’t start until the fall. The observation days are sort of the last chance between school and parents to call the whole thing off, but there’s no danger of that happening—Robin fits in great there. In fact after his first day there he was invited to a birthday party for one of the other children, which we went to last Saturday; he had a great time and it was really nice for us to get to chat with the other parents. So I’m still super happy about the school thing.
I hope all the moms I know are having a wonderful Mother’s Day morning. Mine’s been…exciting, so far. I woke up to Robin’s screams, and the sound of Sam’s running feet, as he shouted “Oh shit, oh shit.” Well, that got me out of bed pretty quickly, and the first thing I saw as I rounding the corner out of the bedroom was Robin’s face covered in blood.
Turns out the kid had hit his head on a corner of our TV cabinet, and produced one of those very shallow forehead cuts that isn’t at all serious, but bleeds profusely. Anyway, Sam wiped up Robin in the bathroom while I got down the first aid kit and found a Band-Aid, and that was about when Sam said, “Oh shit, I left the baby on the couch.”
So then I went running for the living room just in time to catch Davy from taking a swan dive headfirst onto the floor.
Anyway, after that, everything settled down a bit, there was less shouting and profanity, and Sam made me a cup of coffee. Here’s a picture of Robin (with his band-aid) so you can see his sleek new haircut:
Oh, and Sam gave me a pot of tulips (awww), and I was also excited to get roses delivered—but there was no card or slip inside to tell me who they were from! Could the person who sent the lovely pink roses please raise your hand?
I made pumpkin muffins for breakfast, and Robin was very gratifyingly thrilled. He ran around the kitchen shouting “Cookies! Cookies!”
“No,” I said, “muffins,” but it didn’t faze him.
He was even still happy once he had one on his plate, and I thought he was cute so I snapped a photo. Doesn’t he have a sort of Jedi-apprentice thing going on?
He’s getting a haircut today, though.
You know, I have some experience at wading into flamewars on the Internet, and I have to say: if I was going to choose somebody to start a war of words with, it wouldn’t be Neil Gaiman. It’s not so much the legions of rabid fans that would put me off—I’m willing to tangle with people who are merely popular—but you have to stay in your weight class, right? This is a man who can eviscerate reputations with a single offhanded remark. This is a writer whose words are being taken down for posterity.
If you read up on the whole thing, once you come to this line from Neil: “I would not be human if I didn’t admit that I looked at his neck in the photograph, to see if it was as mighty and bull-like as I felt he had implied, and that I might have been just a tiny bit disappointed”—well, it reads a bit like that thing kung fu fighters do, you know. When they stretch out an open palm, and then wave the enemy in with a little flick of the fingers. That invitation to an almighty beatdown.
It’s like—I’m reading Norse sagas right now, and the poor fools who thought it was a good idea to tangle with the skalds, people are still laughing at their humiliation. It’s poor planning to insult a bard. Just saying.