Wednesday, March 17, 2010

4-year-old part III - the Tank

The Tank

Unflappable, unstoppable, focused and tireless - kid Tanks truck along, physically and emotionally, with a singular purpose that might not be immediately obvious. Scientists have attempted to determine their construction, but have failed: how can a child be made of steel, smashing into tables, through gates, over other kids, while at the same time bouncing off of things (like skiing into trees - thanks for that story, Marc!) with all parts intact? Could these children have extra-terrestrial origin, with sci-fi-like smart exoskeletons that determine what quality their armor must have? This pediatrician has no idea.

Like an actual tank, kids like these shrug off simple obstacles and barriers (psychological or physical) as mere nuisances. Must have toy. Must get out of crib. Can't stay in time out. Must eat dinner despite brother throwing things at me. Must keep playing despite Mom saying "Time to clean up." Must leave house without coat on despite Arctic conditions. Picture Godzilla squashing cars on his way to wipe out the Japanese army. Tank kids could read "War and Peace" in a Hurricane and upside-down, all while their headphones repeatedly blared the theme to White Hen Pantry. They are hard to budge, but calm and cool.

But, also like a tank, beware the cannon. If one raises ire of these kids (though it might take a while), expect the Howitzer. Cue the ear-splitting, grow-hair-on-your-bald-head fit with a side dish of Mattel-dump-truck-meets-brother's-head. Then the cloud passes, the storm of Mayhem and Incapacitation clears (the child may even say, "Whew, I'm done"), and the floodwaters recede. Back to the task at hand!

Signs that you have a Tank? Well...the above, but also expect to have a brass-bound set of rules on your bookshelf that is different than the random rules for your other kids, probably scrawled on scattered receipts and take-out bags. Dust off your lectures to the others that "you get what you get and you don't get upset," and know that the summary of the entire school day may consist of flowery replies like "Good," "I dunno," and "Don't remember." Oh, and lots of bruises and scratches.


  1. White Hen Pantry has a theme song?

  2. Sure does...

    I can't find an audio file, but the words are "When you...go out...go White Hen...when you go out for anything...go White Hen."

    Etc. Most annoying. Commercial. Ever.


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