Sunday, February 07, 2010

Captain Chaos and the Matchbox Cars

Gav inherited a solid wooden box from my Dad. It's about 13" x 8", roughly, and was a Christmas gift to Dad years ago. A bucolic hunting scene is on the front. For those years that Dad was alive, it sat next to the fireplace at the cottage.

It's still next to a fireplace, but now it's our fireplace. The box used to hold matches for the fireplace. Now it holds Matchbox cars. It's a good little box, sturdy enough to survive the abuse even a six-year-old can dish out.

And the other night, well...

Chaos does not own just brand name, indestructible Matchbox cars. He also owns a few dozen cheaper ones from the local dollar store. Those cars break rather easily -- which he discovered that Friday night. The handle of a wrench can easily smash one of these cars.

Very easily.

Six cars later, the Big Guy told him that enough was enough, that his curiosity should be appeased, and to quit bashing cars on the kitchen table.

Always a good little man, Gav handed over the wrench. Reluctantly, I might add.

The Big Guy was wrong, however. Curiosity was not appeased.

Stripped of his wrench, he needed a new method to crush the cars. Preferably one that was a bit less noisy so as not to attract the notice of his parents (who have this crazy tendency to back each other up on things like this).

The next thing I knew, he was adjusting the kitchen chair, then sitting down rather hard, then adjusting the chair, then sitting down rather hard, then adjusting... well, you get the idea.

I'm not sure if I should take the science books off of him or not. Seems that we've moved from Rube Goldberg machines to simple machines. You see, he was putting the cars under the chair's leg then slamming all fifty pounds of himself onto the seat to effectively (quite effectively) crush them.

Wheels, fake glass, and cheap plastic were flying all over the place. While it was certainly quieter than the wrench, and certainly more thorough, it was much less controlled. I'm still finding occasional pieces of the wreckage in distant corners of the kitchen, leading me to think it wasn't so much a crushing but an explosion.

Chaos demolished two cars before I had to swoop in, hide my laughter, and make him stop.

He, again, was reluctant to obey, but he knew that it was the wiser course of action. Anything else would have resulted in the remaining cars residing on top of the fridge.

But he hadn't really stopped. He'd paused. It was now all a matter of determining what he would use next to accomplish his objective.

Ah, but bedtime has a way of hampering the best of plans, so he had to wait until morning to annihilate the remaining ten cars. So for the next nine hours, all was calm in the Louch house.

"Mom. Mom. Hey, Mom. Are you getting up yet? Mom. Mom..." When he was three, I would wake up and be eyeball-to-eyeball with him. Now that he's six, he has to lean over a bit, but we're still eyeball-to-eyeball when I open my eyes. "Mom, can we go downstairs yet?"

Gathering my wits, I got up and we did just that. He fussed with his cars while I made breakfast. I was curious that he hadn't started trying to smash them, but wasn't about to remind him.

Then I saw it. The wooden box, which is a good 15 pounds or so when filled with toy cars, sitting a bit a-tilt on the fireplace hearth. Underneath, a cheap plastic car, slowly... very slowly... being flattened...

No comments: