Sunday, July 22, 2007

Triangles, Squares, and Elevators

I spent several hours joyriding in elevators in Metairie, Louisiana, on Saturday.

Friday night, my oldest son emphatically said "triangle!" as we drove around our little town, Slidell. I thought he meant the Sonic drive-in down the road, which has interlocking triangles on its logo, but, alas he didn't mean that at all. "Green cart!" he said, which led me to the A&P Sav-A-Center. Well, he didn't want to go there either. Instead, he pointed to the left, so I turned down the main street of town. He shouted "triangle!" and pointed to the local hospital when we got in front of that building. It was around 10 p.m., and he was clearly very tired. "WTF?" I thought. "I'm not taking you to the hospital," I said, and I drove him home kicking and screaming. I was on the verge of tears, thinking that he was so hyped up that he actually wanted me to take him to the hospital so he could go to sleep.

Saturday morning, I took him to the railyard in the city, then along the track on Florida Avenue, neither of which particularly interested him. I let him direct me back on to I-10, but, strangely, he wanted to drive into the city. I thought, "hmmm. Maybe he wants to go to the airport." However, as we entered Metairie, where we lived until he was two, he shouted "right! up!" both of which mean "exit." So I got off. "Inside!" he said as we passed a 9-story medical building. "Well, that's a little odd," I thought.

I got back onto the highway and drove towards the airport. "Swing?" I asked, thinking he might want to visit a park we used to frequent. "Swing!" he responded. So I got off on an exit that happens to be next to a two-story Best Buy. "Right! Triangle!" he shouted, so I drove into the parking lot. There is an elevator inside the store that is visible from the street. As with most elevators, the up/down directional signal is a triangle, and the button is a square. After an hour and a half of riding the elevators at Best Buy, I took him down the road to the two-story Target, where we spent another chunk of time riding around. My son was furious after we left Target--he evidently believed that we were destined for the airport or back to Best Buy to ride that elevator again. He gave me a bit of a beating from the back seat, and, in that traffic, there was nothing I could do but shout at the top of my lungs for him to sit back. It amazed me that I could be that loud, but it did the trick. His demand to go to the hospital on Friday night was quite practical--it's one of very few buildings in Slidell that has elevators inside. I felt stupid for getting emotional about the whole thing.

My youngest son at his local. Local Wal-Mart, that is.

He's saying "cheese!" but he really means "stop annoying me!"

Finally, a longtime gentle reader of this weblog is going off to study at University College, London. I wish him well.


Sideon said...

You capture simply wonderful expressions on your kids' faces.

Ms-Chievous said...

I tried to read your post...really.
But it went more like: aww, look how freaking old he is getting! (something about triangles?) Holy crap those eyes and that expression! (something about hospitals and/or elevators?) I love that cheese face, my boy can't figure out how to smile either (something about Target of WalMart?)
Sorry Randy, but it's actually your fault when you post pictures of your boys, that the text escapes me.