“Are they gonna dance?”
“At the election. Are they going to have a dance?”
The majority of the conversations we have with C these days hearken back to her toddler years in that there is a good bit of deciphering we have to do on our grown-up end to figure out what she’s talking about. This time around, we understand her words well enough – it’s not like back when she was 18 months old and we had to figure out that when she asked for “goppy,” she was saying (inexplicably) “broccoli” – but we have to do a fair bit of troubleshooting when it comes to determining the context of her questions. The other day, she told me she had to go to Speech at school. I was taken aback at first because although she speaks with a bit of a lisp and has a hard time pronouncing th- words, I thought that her teacher would have at least told us that she was going to work one-on-one with her. It turns out, though, that C had just gone to the Speech room to work with one of the lead teacher’s assistants on phonics. We had to dig deep for that info, though. Four-year-old’s aren’t famous for their clarity, but perhaps that’s what makes life with them so entertaining.
So when I took C to early vote with me this week, obviously the first question she asked me was if we were “going to get to see them dance.”
“Um, well, maybe after they announce the winner next week, the person who’s elected president will have a celebration where someone famous will come out and dance.”
“No,” C replied. “I mean are we going to get to see them dance now?”
“Well, probably not. Usually the candidates don’t have celebrations until after we all go to bed. (??????)”
“No, no, no. Is there going to be a dance before we vote? Like are we going to get to see their friends dance now?”
“Uh, no. All we’re going to do is drive to a church and then walk up to a booth and push some buttons. I have to agree with you, though, that seeing their friends dance would be awesome.”
“OK. Let’s go.”
So we arrive at the church to early vote, and that is exactly what we do that. (You should do that, too. I’m not going to get into the semantics of why you should vote or who you should vote for. Honestly, if you haven’t made up your mind by now, this single paragraph in my blog post is not going to sway you one way or the other this late in the game. But let me just say that voting in this election in particular is incredibly important and you should do it even if, like me, you’ve felt through this entire election cycle like South Park probably used the turd sandwich/ douche nozzle comparison from twelve years ago a tad bit prematurely. But, please, go vote. Here is a blog post by Seth Godin that tells you in like 100 words why you really have no choice but to do so. End lengthiest parenthetical remark I have made since I wrote my college thesis.) We vote. We wait in line for 10 or 15 minutes, and then we get stickers in the shape of Tennessee which C then proceeded to put on her knees because “they look like Band-Aids.” No confusion there.
We then went home. C had to stay home from school that day because she had been sick the day before (TRIGGER WARNING: she expelled all her Halloween candy/ pizza from her class Halloween party from both ends at the same time. We pay tuition partly because the joy of cleaning up these fluids just became too much for us to bear) so I turned on what she is now declaring “our family’s favorite movie,” Napoleon Dynamite, while I got some work done. And she’s not wrong; on the continuum of films that everyone in our entire family unit enjoys, Napoleon ranks the highest. We’ve probably watched it 300 times since moving to our new house and no one has complained yet.
We finally got to the part during the school dance where it occurs to Pedro that he should run for class president.
That was when all the pieces started falling into place.
By the time we got to the scene at the end of the school election where Summer and Pedro have to procure for their constituents a skit that demonstrates their fitness to be class president, C was up busting a Napoleon-esque move. It really is a shame that the Internet is pervy ergo my policy not to post videos of her on social media because YOU GUYS WHEN C DOES THE NAPOLEON DANCE IT IS HILARIOUS AND AMAZING.
So when she was done dancing not upchucking while doing so, I asked her, “Um, just now when we went to go vote, is this why you asked me if someone was going to dance?”
I should have just written in Pedro.