So the other day I noticed Philosopher Bean was inspecting her elephant again. After a few moments of poking the tusks she said, "Huh...there's some clay on my elephant that's not hard like the west. I think we need to cook it some more."
I hustled her off for her nap.
But as with all children, she has a mind like a steel trap when it suits her purposes. She is incapable of remembering that jumping on the beds is against the rules, but any tiny imperfections on a clay elephant is forever stored in the lockbox of her brain. Which is why a few days later she started picking at the aberrationally soft lime-green clay on her elephant tusks. And what should she discover underneath but brownish—why, some might even say blackish—clay.
She gasped lightly (all our girls have melodramatic streaks; neither Top Management nor I can imagine where they got said streaks and frankly, we’re shocked, shocked at the very idea), then tipped her head to check it all out from a new angle and decided, "Oh, dat’s okay. Its ears were already burned anyway."
And whenever I look over at that still magnificent pachyderm in its place of honor in the center of the kitchen table, I marvel at two things: how flexible and resilient children always are and, even more, the fact that Top Management and I can’t even put one over on a four-year-old.