My Son Says I’m Paul Ryan (And My Dad’s The Gorton’s Fish Sticks Guy)
As far as my son Jack knows right now, I am running for Vice President of The United States of America.
Last Saturday while I was turning on the TV to set up Sesame Street for him, a few seconds of the news was on, featuring coverage of the 2012 Presidential race.
Onto the stage walked Paul Ryan, who is Mitt Romney’s running mate.
It was a statement; not a question.
There was no hesitation in my son’s voice as he looked up at the screen and proclaimed that I was both sitting in the room with him and on the TV at the same time.
Turns out, I am not Paul Ryan and I’m not running for office.
But my son, in all certainty, believes Paul Ryan and I are the same person.
Similarly, Jack thinks that every man with a grayish white beard and hair is my dad, who he calls “Papa.”
From the Gorton’s fish sticks guy to Santa Claus, if my son sees a picture that resembles any likeness to my dad, he dubs that man as Papa.
What’s really interesting concerning my son’s perception of people is the way he sees himself.
I can be pushing him in the jogging stroller around the neighborhood and every time we see another kid around his age, he says, “Baby.”
Other toddlers are “babies” to Jack.
At least he’s consistent. Recently I showed him a picture I had just taken of himself; one where he didn’t realize he was the one in the picture.
His response: “Baby.”
So I guess Jack understands that he is a baby. He is self-aware like that.
Meanwhile, I am Paul Ryan and my dad is the fish sticks guy on the yellow box.
(It is possible to assume I am attempting to subliminally convince you to vote for Mitt Romney and to make Gorton’s fish sticks for dinner tonight. Just keep in mind: I am both a Libertarian and a vegetarian. But man, I do sort of miss fish tacos.)