Thursday, September 13, 2007


And by a 7 year old, no less. I don't know if I should be happy about this or not. I was totally flim-flammed by Buddy Boy tonight.

Let me back up a bit. Buddy Boy has been getting into playing computer games, as well as games on a Game Boy that we bought about 6 months ago. I'm sure that many of you are very familiar with the concept of using "electronic bribery" in order to encourage certain behaviors (reading, doing math problems, cleaning room, etc.). Well, not being perfect parents, we also are not above using time on the computer/Game Boy in this manner. The combination of his obsession with our limiting access has made time on electronic games very desirable to Buddy Boy.

If left to his own devices, Buddy Boy would play electronic games every waking minute we let him. Obviously, being an old fart who's first computer game was "Pong" in high school, I don't think that's very healthy.

I'm the one who usually puts Buddy Boy to bed at night. We put him to bed at 7:00 PM, as he will consistently get up between 5:00 and 5:30 AM, no matter how late he goes to bed, and we want him to get a good night's sleep.

I put Buddy Boy to bed at the usual time. We went thru our usual bedtime routine, making sure he went to the bathroom and brushed his teeth, picking out what song he was going to listen to on his "boombox" all night long, tucking him in. Prior to bedtime Buddy Boy had elected to play in his room by himself, not wanting to play with me or Sweet Pea. When I left him to go and play hide and seek with Sweet Pea he was laying under his bed playing with some small squishy animal figures.

I didn't see the Game Boy, and asked him where it was. He straight faced said "I don't know, Dad". I proceeded to take 3-4 minutes to search for it in his bedroom, but couldn't find it, so just left, as I didn't want to break our routine too much.

Liz has been the one to usually take him to the bathroom later, after a couple of hours. She's taken over this duty from me, as she thinks my whispering to him at these times wakes him up and makes it harder for him to get back to sleep.

Well Liz went in to take him to the bathroom tonight, and he was laying under his bed playing on his Game Boy. He evidently had sequestered it away someplace near bedtime, and had been playing it from 7:00 PM to 9:30 PM, when Liz went in there.

Liz wasn't too happy with me.

This isn't the first time Buddy Boy has lied about something, and I certainly don't want him to make a habit out of it. But as I sit here contemplating this, I've got to think that the ability to plan out the operation, lie to my face when directly challenged, and carry it out quietly shows some real skills that could transfer quite nicely to a lot of workplaces.

Now if I can only work on some effective strategies for him to remember faces of people he's met...


Anonymous said...

Under the pillow maybe?

VAB said...

Fabrication is an important social skill, no question about it. MK can pull it off now, but but not without tell you a few seconds later, which really limits the effectiveness.

As for remembering faces/names, we are trying something new this year. We took pictures of all the kids in his class and cut them into flash cards. We are trying rote memorization.

Casdok said...

Imagination! Thats good!

Club 166 said...


You may be right. I checked under the covers, but don't think I looked under the pillow.


I'm not sure if I'll have to get permission to take pics of his classmates, but the flashcards is a great idea.

This last weekend we ran into the wife of one of Buddy Boy's doctors (who also serves as the receptionist in the practice), and she got down and greeted him and said something like "Remember me, Buddy Boy? I'm Dr. Cxxx's wife. I work in his office." Buddy Boy was like "No, not really." And turned away.


Daisy said...

Our boys are both alike and polar opposites. Amigo has an incredible memory for people, and he does it without knowledge of their faces (blind kids will do that). We have found him reading in bed long after he should be asleep; darn kid doesn't have to turn on the lights!

Unknown said...

oh boyu does that sound familiar, caught him as late as 11:30 aat night with the nintendo DS.....and we have a standard rule of not allowing it in his bedroom. Have you guys thought about audiobooks. I usually play those at bedtimes. Spent a fortune on them, but also downloaded a lot from Peer 2 Peer networks like thhe kids download music and movies from.

Club 166 said...

Buddy Boy also reads a lot when he's supposed to be in bed sleeping. What he'll do is get down on the floor next to the nightlight, and read by that light.

His favorite books to read at night are "How Things Work" and "The Big Book of Questions and Answers" (a kind of mini-encyclopedia for kids). I think he is attracted to both books partially because they cover topics in small (2 page) segments, which perfectly fit his attenion span.

We've tried audio books at night, but Buddy Boy either doesn't want to listen to them ("they're boring") or if he wants to listen, wants to keep repeating parts over and over.

He listens to music at night (at least partially because it masks other house sounds, and partially because he finds it comforting). He almost always wants to listen to one song, over and over, all night long. I'd think I'd go nuts listening to Schoolhouse Rock's "Zero, My Hero" all night long over and over, but he loves it. As Kristina Chew might say, "De gustibus non est disputandum".


kristina said...

I'm reflecting on how well Buddy Boy was able to keep a poker face!

mysamiam said...

I was kind of thinking the same thing Kristina said. Cracking up as I was thinking about him. Snake eyes!!! :) I call that a well planned out execution that was very creative!

Anonymous said...

Zero My Hero is better than, the Barney Song. Or my personal hated kids song, The Song That Never Ends. My sister used to sing that song all the time! You should be happy your son at least has good taste in music, lol.