Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Start 'Em Young

When Aerie and I first moved to Austin, my mother advised her to "take a class in Texas History. It explains a lot." And it does. Texas was a sovereign nation, you know. That's why we don't care what the rest of you think.

Since Thumper's a native Texan, I thought I should indoctrinate him early in the history and culture of God's Favorite State in God's Favorite Nation, so today we went to the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum. Since cheapness counts, I'm not proud to say this trip cost us $8.50, including meter parking. Not our most frugal afternoon foray, but it was for the good of his Texan soul.

"Where's the star, Thumper? Where's the star? Go get the star!"

Moments after that photo was taken, he tripped and sprawled out flat. Two women walking by gasped and asked him if he was OK. The man they were with said, "Aw, he's OK. He does it all the time. You can tell by that scab on his chin."

Surprisingly, a history museum wasn't the best choice for a 17-month-old. It was dark and somber, and sparsely populated on a Wednesday afternoon. Plus, they don't allow photography in the exhibit areas, which is kind of a buzz kill when you're hanging out with a photogenic toddler. So we decided to hoof it over to the Capitol and play on the grounds instead.

It took awhile to get him to move on from watching the landscapers. "Doo Nie?" he asked over and over again. That's Thumperish for "What are they doing?" "They're trimming bushes," I said. "Booses. Doo Nie?" "They're trimming bushes." "Booses. Doo Nie?"

The cannon was almost as interesting as the landscapers. Almost.

There were lots of folks in matching green t-shirts that said "I Support" some damn thing or other. So I explained to him how the legislature was currently in session and that a lot of the people on the grounds were there to demonstrate, protest, or lobby their legislators. He headed right up the steps to see about addressing the legislature himself.

Lobbying is hard work, so we sat down in the grass for awhile and had a snack.

Which attracted a few squirrels. They must have been Democrats, always looking for handouts. Ha! Just kidding. They were actually registered independent.

He pointed at the dome and said, "Ball." I said, "Capitol." "Ball." "Capitol." "Ball." Just then a young man walked by, overheard, and said, "Well, it does sort of look like a ball. Ball!" And Thumper said, "Capew!" That's my boy: always the contrarian.


Jennie said...

The part about the squirrels was hilarious! Also: I want to nom your baby's cheeks like no other. PPS: I am so freakin' jealous of your weather.

I, Rodius said...

You mean it wasn't sunny and upper 60's in Ohio yesterday? I'm sorry.

His cheeks are very munchable. That's why I took the snack picture. Sitting there with that hair and that cheek right next to mine, it made me happy. I had to share.

Jennie said...

Yeah, but I imagine Texas as THE FINAL FRONTIER when it comes to uncompassionate conservativism. Plus, tornadoes AND hurricanes?!?! That seems like a bad deal. Still, roses in December? I might be willing to make a trade.

She Said said...

I really love Austin. I should have gone to UT instead of Texas A&M. I might have lasted in east Texas longer than the 3 semesters I barely managed. You can always take him to 6th Street for some diversity and culture if the museum scene doesn't pan out. ;)

Thumper is an absolute cutie!

I, Rodius said...

That's a good idea. Thumper could probably make a few bucks doing street performances.

suttonhoo said...

the cuteness threshold has been successfully breached.

all toddlers attempting to clear the threshold from here on out? turn back. too late. Thumper has it covered.

I, Rodius said...

In Boston, they would have said of him, "He's a pissah!"

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