Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Kids have it right most times, until we feed them something different. Remember when he said, "Mommy, why is that lady so old?" and you leaned down to whisper, "Oh honey, she's not old!" but she was, and she knew it, and you knew it, and she wasn't as afraid of it as you were.
Oh...and the time she said, "Daddy, why is he all crooked?" and you took her face in your hands and directed her gaze from his wheelchair to the candy counter, deflecting your insecurities. But he wanted to explain his malady...even to a five year old...because they were the only ones who really paid attention.
Children would not consider any of it odd, because it wasn't until you made it wierd. I remember the beautiful man in the wheelchair. I was 30 years younger, but not young by far. He dove into a pool...just right...at the exacting angle, and that cool delicious water you like to plunge into, well... it snapped his neck and swallowed his basketball career. "Why would God change the laws of nature just for me?" he would say when we asked, "why why WHY"? It's physics. We like to make it so much more, so that we have our judgement and our reason firmly in hand.
"Why" is a circular question for adults. It has no landing page. There are no analytics to square off against expense. "Why" is a finger pointed against the circumference, waiting for a target at which to pull the trigger. It's a big word though, and tends to muster all your energy towards an unsatisfactory end. Children diverge in this respect. They ask a repetitive why about inconsequential questions, such as "why are your legs hairy" or "why do frogs croak"....and hell, have you any idea? But if you let them ask the question of people bound by circumstance....well, they have an answer, far better than your bullshit.