Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Toothless Jonah

Jonah lost his first tooth a few weeks ago. True to Jonah form, he named it Mr. Toothy.

You see, everything in the house, nay, everything in the universe to which Jonah feels some attachment has a name, and that name is usually "Something-y." Chairy, Lampy, Beddy, the immortal Bikey. Some exceptions exist, such as Dragadote, a little stuffed dragon (stuffed as in plush, not as in taxidermy; wouldn't that be cool?). Another interestingly named item is Clip, Jonah's blanket (or night-night). The blanket has been named Clip for about 3 years now, and we have no idea where the name came from, or what it's supposed to signify.

It's like naming a cat Sparkles. Let this serve as a warning to all you folks who think letting kids name stuff is a good idea. It's not. Whenever I hear of parents letting their older children help name the new baby, I get nervous. "Thank you for seeing me Mr. President. I'd like to talk with you about this new environmental regulation . . . Yes sir. My name is Clip Sparkles McDonald's Jameson. Yes sir, that's my real name. Well, my parents let my older brothers name me. Please sir, if we could get back to the agenda . . . Yes sir, it is a ridiculous name. Is that . . . okay. Have a nice day sir."

Back to Mr. Toothy. The method of his (arrival? departure? independence? release?) removal was unique in 4boydom. There was no crying, no wincing, no running away from well-meaning parents. Neither Timothy nor Stephen would let us near their mouths after the first 2 weeks of a tooth beginning to wiggle. Jonah would walk around and order us, "Feel my tooth! Cool huh?"

Then he pulled it out. He held it up and grinned bloodily, like a barbarian who'd just pulled a trophy bone out of a still-breathing animal.

He ran around the house, making sure that everyone (including himself in a mirror) saw both the tooth and the raw hole in his mouth where Mr. Toothy used to dwell. Pure Jonah.

Also, true to form, when the time came to put it under the pillow for the Tooth Fairy, he couldn't let it go. "I don't want her to take Mr. Toothy. Will you make sure she doesn't take him?"

We agreed that we would pass along the information.

Mr. Toothy stayed with us for a few days, still hanging out with his pal Jonah, like a newly minted sailor, home on leave before shipping out. There were the usual scares of "Where's Mr. Toothy?" We'd ask, "Where did you leave it?" and Jonah would say "Oh," and then run upstairs to the bookshelf where Mr. Toothy slept.

Finally, however Jonah's love for Bionicles overcame his love for human dental detritus. He needed money for the new Toa, and the First Tooth payout of $1 was just too large to resist (it's 50 cents for each tooth after the first one).

Under the pillow it went, and true to 4boydad and 4boymom form, we forgot all about it. "Mr. Toothy's still here! Where's my dollar?" Oops. "Make your bed, Jonah, and see if the Tooth Fairy stops by later today.

She did.


At 7:23 PM, Blogger fiorinda said...

Our boy lost his first tooth at school, they sent it home in a bag. The second one mysteriously disappeared. We think he swallowed it. He was quite concerned that the tooth fairy wouldn't know he lost a tooth so he wrote her a note. She almost forgot to visit, but she stopped by on her way home and disaster was averted.

I like your $.50 after the first tooth policy.

At 1:25 AM, Anonymous the canadian said...

Today we had to give away our family bird.

Something about a $7 bird costing lots of money to cross a border and having to spend all day making appts. with border patrol vets to meet us at the crossing to tell us whether we had to be quarantined or could go on to our already paid for hotel room in Connecticut being an issue, not to mention the thought of toting a very messy seed thrower across country and having to pay for hotels to accept pets. Other than that we loved the creature....

Jonah has nothing on my children for not being able to give things up.

I wrote a blog about KF's first tooth incident in California. She had to take it to school for show and tell and wondered if the tooth fairy could give her an extension. That extension later found me in the dark searching thru a pebble pathway for a tiny white piece of enamel. Miraculously, it was found.

At one point it was wondered it she could rent the tooth back from the tooth fairy (meaning, she got the money but the tooth fairy would leave the tooth alone- I can certainly see the great benefit promoted- "you give me something and I'll give you nothing- okay?")

M. has a legacy of attachment that includes crying for days because I threw away a rotted rubber band that had broken in several places. It seems it was, for some reason, "special."

Yet somehow when we explained the bird having to go, all four kids took the news really well.

I think it had something to do with the promise of a dog in the future (not very seriously discussed by the parents and yet viciously latched onto by the kids, relentless in their re-mentionings of the idea day and night even though we have no home and no idea if we will ever live in an environment suitable for dog balms for bird emotional detachment injuries).

The point of all this is the bird's name:

Edward Bear Jerry Orange Beak Hannah.

Edward Bear was my own suggestion in a joking way, being the proper name for winnie the pooh. My oldest became quite attached to the idea and proclaimed it to be so.

That would have been fine except the bird was really a Christmas gift for the second born, who didn't really have a name at first, but was sure she wanted to be in charge.

She later decided that her favourite name in the whole world and universe was "Jerry."

That is an ok name, especially for a turquoise parakeet, until you know that it was named after her first real "French" food we ate after coming to Quebec, which instantly became her favourite restaurant- "Pizzeria Jerry."

If you switch the modifying adjective in a sentence, it instantly becomes a foreign language, as I am sure you are aware judging from you blog about your family's fine language studies. That must, anyway, be the case for the "French" restaurant in the tiny town of Lennoxville where we live, as the neon sign flashes "Pizzeria Jerry" to the delight of my 6 yr. old's heart.

Meanwhile the 4 yr. old had to have a say and was only a little appeased when he was told that he could give it the last name.

He decided that any proper bird should be named "orange beak" despite the loud protestations that the beak was decidedly gray. It was then argued that it was brown and then tan, and then an agreement was reached that no one knew WHAT colour it was but that the girls were sticking together in that what ever colour it might be it was most certainly in no way ORANGE.

But orange is the boy's favourite colour in the world, and he was already getting shafted that his name didn't get to be first, so he won.

The girls decided that they didn't care because no one ever uses the whole name anyway, but in a vengeful jab at the end, the 6 yr. old pointed out that it was the family bird and that the family name was hannah and that THAT was really the last name, so the boy's pick was worse than a last name. It was a third middle name, which as you know is about as used and important as the letters x or z.

The baby had lots and lots of opinions and suggestions that were loudly expressed and severely ignored as he ran around squealing and generally trying to be a part of the important meeting of the Powers That Be.

Meanwhile, the bird was never ever even once called by any of those names, other than to proudly announce his aristocratic title to people who had never met him. It was mostly called "the bird", and as a tender nick name for "bird" was referred to as "Ed."

I hope that The Bird Ed is happy in his new home. I understand they only have a few cats, so he should be fine. I am pretty sure if he survives he will have a new name before the night is out. There are 3 young children in the home.

At 3:20 PM, Anonymous the canadian said...

As if he had read your blog with us last night, the 4 year old boy exemplified your observations on child namery.

In joyous delight upon finally getting a 2 inch plush moose tribute to the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police, for all you southerners) that he had been eying at the french walmart (useless place- closes at 5. Who shops at walmart before the kids are in bed??), he declared, "I shall name him "Reddy" because he has a red coat and red is one of my favourite colours. I shall name him "Reddy Moosie." He will be "Reddy Moosie the Mountie."

Then he reconsidered (probably being offended by how much I was laughing- out of proportion to the serious decision in name donning to be sure, since he did not know about your literary work here).

"On second thought, I will not name him at all."

"What will you call him then," I inquired.

"I will never call him at all. He shall have no name at all, because he is a MOOSE."

At 4:34 PM, Blogger 4BoyDad said...

Aw man, you guys are awesome. Reddy Moosie is exactly what Jonah would name a plush, red-coated moose.

At 1:31 PM, Blogger Because I Said So said...

We have a stuffed horse named Mrs. Horse and a monkey named Froggie because she really wanted the frog instead of the monkey. We also carried around a white plastic spoon for awhile because that was her best friend, "Spoonie". You should have seen the tears when the plastic spoon broke.


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