Monday, April 6, 2009

Animal Control

I know it goes without saying, but our boys are quite different. They think differently, they play differently, they have different likes and dislikes. Lately, we have noticed that Asa is constantly asking for us to play with him. Sometimes, we do. But a lot of times adult life gets in the way... or we are just fed up with being told that we are playing with Legos the wrong way. Jeff attributed his requests with a lack of attention from us... but this weekend he decided that Asa's increase in needy-ness is attributed more to his brother's lack of interest than ours. Most of the time, Addison doesn't like to play with Asa. Asa will want to play with Legos or play house or make art projects or play outside... Addison isn't interested. Addison is interested in, well, the number one thing he is interested is electronics- t.v., video games, computer games. We keep a reign on his t.v. and game allowance, which leaves him playing with his army men or running around the house, hiding behind doors, shooting us with nerf guns. Or moping around looking bored. If Asa doesn't want to play Battleship, army, checkers or chess... then Addison would rather sit in a chair by himself than play Asa's games.

While I was at a photo shoot, Jeff worked to get the two playing together. He asked them if they wanted to take turns playing what the other wanted to play. Asa jumped at the idea. No dice. Addison said he would rather just not play. Finally, after a lot of coercing on Jeff's part, they agreed that Asa would play Battleship with Addison and then Addison would play 'house' aka 'kitty' with Asa (basically just any pretend play that allows him to be the kitty in a scenario).

The game of battleship was a frustrating one for Addison, who pays very close attention, marking each of his selections with a peg. Asa, who has a hard time paying attention to games like this... especially ones that he really has no interest in in the first place, kept forgetting to mark Addison's selection, or else he would misread the grids. When I came home from my photo session, Addison's ships were spread out across the board, untouched by red pegs. Asa's board was a different story. He had grouped all of his ships into the lower left corner of the board... and dropped hints to Addison as to their whereabouts. Needless to say, it was like shooting fish in a barrell.

After the game, Addison slumped to go play 'kitty'. After a while, I heard Asa whining, "I don't like the way you play kitty!" I looked in and saw Asa with a blue fuzzy scarf tied around his neck for a leash (because every kitty has a leash) and Addison had in his hand a Lego creation that looked something like the Y of a slingshot. Closer investigation revealed that Addison had made a Lego taser (not knowing that this invention had a name, he called it the electric shocker thing). Addison was using said taser on the unarmed kitty, who was lying helpless on the floor. Sporadically, Addison would have to wait for it to recharge, stating that the longer it charges the more shock the kitty would get.... leading to Asa's whines about the injustice and lack of quality in the 'play' that he was getting from Addison.

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