Alex does this amazing thing where he makes up robust stories out of thin air for no reason. For instance, my father once told him there were sharks in our lake to keep him from going in there.
Weeks later, Alex began telling me about the sharks in his lake. How he bred them, what types of sharks there were, how he’d placed them there for protection before we moved in. It was pretty adorable. Because I’m a fan of whimsy, I’ve never really bothered to tell him that most sharks don’t live in fresh water lakes. This causes some people to think he’s simple. Ah, well. Tough noogies for them.
The first fall that we were here, Alex had just turned three. When harvest came and the corn around our house began quickly disappearing, Alex was angry. I couldn’t understand why until he spat “I cannot believe that bad bear ate all our corn.”. He was furious.
I have absolutely no idea why he thinks a bad bear at the corn.
The greatest part of his creativity to me is that he’s never stopped saying that a bad bear eats the corn in the fall. As he’s gotten older and learned more, the story has evolved so that he’s not wrong to think that it’s a bad bear. The bad bear only eats corn in the fall. The bad bear eats other crops too. The bad bear only eats food when the farmers are ready to harvest. The bad bear only comes out at night which is why we don’t see him. Most recently, Alex informed me that the bad bear drives a tractor which is how he harvests the corn so quickly. He’s taken all he knows of reality and simply incorporated it into his story rather than letting it prove his story wrong. This is how most adults approach politics. It’s less annoying in a kid.
But BEST of all, Evan seems to have caught on to what he’s doing. So now, Evan adds details to the bad bear story. He also fakes being afraid of the bad bear. The two of them take car rides during the evening as prime time to develop their bad bear stories. “The bad bear only drives tractors with four lights.” “The bad bear eats apples!”
Last night, as they were telling bad bear stories, we happened to drive by a field, at night, where a tractor with four lights was harvesting corn. “You guys! There’s the bad bear RIGHT THERE!” I shouted with delight.
So, basically, last night we all saw Santa.