Thursday, April 21, 2011

Clowns & Guns

I ended the last post with a conversation w/Alexey about getting him a dress. Since I wasn’t about to pay $40 for a dress he saw in the pricey catalog, I told him he can wear one of mine. It is a dress I wore for his christening (which I was against). When he woke up from his nap, we put it on, took some pictures, he walked a bit around and took it off. As he walked downstairs to my aunt’s, I asked him if he liked his dress and he said “yeah.” This is simple, for now.

1. Age 4 ½ - Topic “Fun with clowns” (look up)

We had a good time with the kids on Purim at the local Jewish center where we worked on creating these super fierce clowns. The one on the left was Alexey's creation and as we walked home, we had the following conversation.

Simone: Alexey, the clowns look awesome, what do you want to name them?

Alexey: I want to name mine Purknetta

Simone: Purknetta?! That's an...interesting name.

Alexey: Well that's his name..You see he's a boy, because he is wearing pants.

Simone: Anyone can wear pants, you see Ark's clown is wearing pants and I'm naming her Cleopatra.

Alexey: Fine, mine is a boy.

Simone: They're clowns, they don't need a gender. Purknetta can be a boy, a girl or a transgender person...

The clowns now hang on the wall in my mother's apartment, next to seashells Alexey stuck to the wall with scotch tape, incidentally.


2. Age 4 ½ - Topic “Girls and Video Games”

We were standing on the B3 bus stop looking into a window of a Chinese restaurant that had some men playing video games inside. Alexey was especially interested because he saw guns being used on the screen and he finds guns interesting since we’re pretty anti-gun around the house. He was looking over and said..

Alexey: Look, Mommy, there are guns shooting…

Simone: I know, it’s a field day for you, J even if you know I think guns are stupid.

Alexey: Are people shooting people?

Simone: It’s a game, you play and pretend to shoot people. It’s not good to do in real life.

Alexey: There are no girls that are shooting.

Simone: Why do you think that is?

Alexey: Girls don’t shoot.

Simone: Actually, Alexey, girls do shoot. In fact, last century Russian women were considered some of the best snipers in the world. And women serve in the army.

Alexey (noting a girl shooting on the screen): Oh look! There is a girl shooting. And I thought girls don’t shoot.

Simone: Well, this is a good example of adjusting your views when presented with evidence. Even though I don’t like people using guns, Alexey, I must say that people of all genders own and use guns.
Process: This particular conversation was also difficult to have because I didn't want to go into particular depth about people using guns or what guns are used for but I had to tell him that all people are capable of using them. I consider random usage of guns to be an ugly thing but I don't want my son to think that women are somehow immune from being this ugly.