Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Lord of Bats and Lady of Darkness

Though it is delightful and fulfilling to have the experience of mothering both a son and a daughter, there are some challenges to having a child of each gender. One problem is that they have trouble finding a game they both like to play. Not that my son is an archetypal boy or that my daughter is an archetypal girl – far from it, really – but still their interests are different. She likes to play twisted princess pretend – "EAT THE POISON APPLE MOMMY! EAT IT!!” and he likes to draw figures from Greek myths for hours at a time.

But, at long last, my children have found a game, one single solitary game, that they both enjoy. It is called “the Lord of Bats and the Lady of Darkness and Thunder Game.”

They both put on sunglasses and as many other weird accoutrements as they can find – tablecloths draped around their shoulders, sweatbands on their arms and underwear on top of their clothes. Then they run around shouting about how they are going to wreak havoc on Earth.

As far as I can tell, this game relies heavily on announcing their titles over and over again.

“I am the LORD OF BATS!!”



“Wait, Primo, I have to do peepee! Don’t rule the Earth until I come back, OK?”

“Ok but hurry up.”

When she gets back from the bathroom, they announce their titles again and their master plan for world domination. They’ve never gotten much further than that because it takes so long to get into their outfits, and what with a break for peeing and all, it’s already been five, six minutes by the time they reach this point. And six minutes is an absolute record for playing nicely. After six minutes, tops, someone inevitably says, “That’s MY evil SCEPTER!” and it’s all downhill from there.

But still, its reason to hope. Maybe one day they’ll learn to stand each other’s company long enough that I can load the entire dishwasher or write a whole email. I dare to dream.