I must have mentioned before how many questions Rocco asks in a day. He questions everything, big and small, from Why is the writing on the gas station sign green? to Why did Baby Angelo die?
I love it. And I hate it. Let me explain.
We went into a simple sandwich shop for the first time the other day, and the minute we got in there the questions started up. Just to orient you, here is a picture of the sandwich shop:
Is this the first day it’s open? Has it been open for one week? Is a year a long time? Why did the old restaurant close down? Did you ever order anything there? We’ll never run out of money, right? What does that sign say? Why does the sign look like that? Why is there an R behind the L? Why would they make it look like the letters are changing? Can I write on the chalkboard? What does the chalkboard say? Where are the t-shirts? Where? I still don’t see them. Are they there? Are those the t-shirts? Can we buy one? Is that building out there attached to this one? If they look out the window, they see this white building, right? And we see a brick building when we look out, right? Are they attached? Did they destroy the old building to make this one? Painting walls doesn’t destroy anything, right? Do you remember when Vincenzo rode his bike into the fountain out there? What does two milks plus one chicken equal? What does organic mean? If I save my apples to eat in an hour will they be moldy? Soda isn’t good for your body, right? Then why do you drink it?
Rocco spent the afternoon asking these questions and many more as we ran our errands, and I answered them all as patiently and thoroughly as I could, even though they didn’t seem like particularly good questions to me and he often didn’t even listen to my answers. Then we got home and I was worn out from explaining and being misinterpreted and re-explaining everything…and as soon as we turned on the lights it started hailing and lightning and Rocco started asking really good questions, like, How is hail made? and Does lightning make a sound? and What happens if I get hit by lightning?
Unfortunately I had used up all my good explaining answering questions about why the walls are painted white in a restaurant and I kind of felt like screaming at the skies for doing something interesting at such an morally low point in my day, and so I set Rocco down with the computer and let him watch an hour long documentary on just exactly what happens to your body if you get hit by lightning.
While it doesn’t hail and storm every day of our life, the constant questioning by Rocco is just daily life. I am living in a constant thunderstorm of questions. Take these ones (below) which were asked in five-year-old terms during the course of lengthy discussions; I shortened the wording for you to save about 3 hours of your life:
How and when will the sun burn all its gas and what life might exist on Earth at that time? (He somehow walked away from this discussion knowing that it will be in billions of years, and he’ll probably be around ten years old.)
Is God alive or dead, and what is the difference between abstract and concrete things? (This one was very hard to explain. I said we can’t see abstract things and he said, “So brains are abstract!” I explained why brains aren’t abstract and he said, “Okay, then wind is abstract!”)
What is slavery and why did the civil war happen?
Why did the American Revolution happen and what is taxation?
How does the movie industry work and why can’t movie theaters show all the movies in the world at once?
Why are some people poor? Why don’t we all just share with them so they aren’t poor anymore?
What is a vegetarian? (He has gotten in the habit now of holding up something he is eating, like a corn dog, and saying, “What did we have to kill to get this?” He expresses adequate concern for the animal, then happily eats the corn dog.)
How are babies are made and how does the reproductive system work? (He went to bed clutching this book for the rest of the week.)
I still have more on Rocco, but it will have to wait. Rocco’s mom need a reboot!
WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Kalbi steak quesadillas, compliments of Kevin