Monday, October 20, 2008

Watching next to nothing can be exciting

The other day, Pa and his mother went to the golf course to chase a dimpled ball all around a couple of kilometres of soggy greenery. What we didn't expect to have to do, infuriatingly, was hang about for eons while the folks ahead of us fussed and fiddled, then drove extra balls off the tee.

A few hours later, we were back at home, watching Sonny with almost lurid fascination while the little fella prepared to heave his minimal bulk forward a few millimetres at a time. Length by painful length, Sonny took a heck of a lot longer to get going than those characters at the golf course. Yet watching the young 'un wiggle his posterior, sway sideways and squish himself into a wormlike stance was entirely enjoyable. Waiting for those golfers, on the other hand, was the equivalent of a devilish torture someone should recommend to the kindly folks at Guantanamo.

All of which is to say that there's a certain fascination attached to the doings of babies that imbues their most trivial actions with interest and suspense. Witnessing Sonny master the rudiments of crawling is just one example. Another might be his attempts to grasp a toy that is just out of reach: You can see the little fella flex his fingers and stretch his arm while hooting and howling as though urging on someone at some Olympic event. There's a whole drama encapsulated in the trivial attempt: How he first zeroes in on one item among several, then how he studies it to work out how best to attack. Then comes the huge expenditure of energy that is actually lunging for it, the agony of missing by a finger's length, the gearing up for another charge...

Even at rest and doing pretty much nothing at all, Sonny can hold our attention. His grandmother swears that 'Twinkle, twinkle, little star', of all the kiddy songs in the world, can somehow hold the little fella in a trance, silencing wild sobbing and shutting down his 'non-stop curiosity' chip so that he will quietly park himself and enjoy the music. Why this should be the case is probably beyond science.

Which is probably true of just why we find infant activities quite so entertaining.


Ruth said...

You are so right...we are always so fascinated by the most mundane of our babies' behaviors.
I "tagged" you in my blog, if you would like to check it out. Maybe Sonny could provide random facts about himself?

Shirley said...

"SEE!! She's so cute! She just stretched out her arms to you!" And it does not end there. When she says Mamamama, when she blinks, when she poops, when she waves her arms, when she crawls, when she...... whatever la! It's always a miracle to the parents and woe to the poor fellow who happens to be around when the little one does any of that! Hahahaha!

Cloudsters said...

Hi Ruth, will certainly tag along. Such fun!

Sometimes one takes a step back, Enchanted, and feels rather silly getting all excited over the little fella wiggling his fingers or whatever. But there's no helping it, eh...

Anonymous said...

it's the new TV!

try adding more kids.

you'll definitely turn on the real tv!


came by via MG's blog ;-)

Cloudsters said...

Do you know, mott, we have a friend who has two TVs in his living room. He and his wife watch one while the kids watch the other. What powers of concentration.