My 4-year-old son Noah has discovered how functional his pants are. He can, for instance, jam Legos into the pockets as he darts out to school in the morning. He can shove even larger things down his pant legs.
I noticed Noah’s revelation after a recent trip to the mall. We were there ogling a puppy with whom we’re all in love, a Dogue de Bordeaux nicknamed Clover. Clover was teething, so the store manager gave us some chew toys for her. One was a thick, multi-colored rope. The other was a fluffy mouse. Both were quite bulky. Busy visiting Clover and managing my 19-month-old daughter Syma, I didn’t keep a super-sharp eye trained on Noah.
As we left the store Noah tugged at his pants. Thinking he had to use the bathroom, I said, “Do you have to go potty?” “No, Mommy!” We had just been to the bathroom, so I let it go. He ran to the dog-treat table, where he grabbed a frosted cookie and chomped on it. The store manager guffawed. I offered to pay for it but she said not to bother. In Noah’s defense, the dog-treat table offers confections that look tasty enough for human consumption.
On the way home, Noah apologized. “Mommy, I’m sorry I ate the dog cookie,” he lamented. At home he dashed to the bathroom, still pulling at his pants. I followed. To my surprise, Noah had stuffed Clover’s chew toys into his pants.
My husband was peeved. “Call the store right away. We can’t have them thinking our son is a thief,” he insisted. I called and explained that my son had sacked Clover’s chewies. They were gracious and unfazed. “Just toss them. The dogs here have more toys than we know what to do with,” said one of the attendants.
Thanks to my son, I have more reasons to laugh than ever. As for Clover, she didn’t come home with us. Yet.