Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Great Deconstruction

With a week home from school, children find new ways to be bored or new ways to make you think they are languishing in a bored state when really they are doing something dastardly. Such a one is The Boy.

The Boy has shown a great interest in tools. In order to foster his interest in a safe and constructive way, I have bought him numerous kits from the crafts store. The thing is that he hardly ever shows a great interest in putting these thing together, not even the toolbox. He's very happy once it has been constructed and he loves the smaller-sized but real wrenches and screwdrivers that come with the kits. In fact, he prizes them above all and will immediately set about using them to do what he does best - deconstruction.

The Boy's great interest in life is not in putting things together, but in taking them apart. He has disassembled a robot, an artist's easel and a gumball machine - all Christmas presents. Disassembly yields even greater prizes, for he then has a pocket full of screws and nuts and bolts that jingle-jangle and he proudly makes his deconstructed music everywhere he goes.

I suppose you could say he has a curious mind - takes things apart because he wants to know how they work. That would be very comforting, but I am afraid he takes things apart just to get the parts. Perhaps he is planning some large and secret construction of his own. That is an unsettling and yet amusing thought.

I wonder what he will make with a robot head, some wing nuts, a plastic bubble and a dry-erase board?

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