Yesterday, Eli’s friend Will came to visit. Will’s parents and his young brother came as well, but since Will is about Eli’s age, nothing else mattered but Will. They ran around the house shrieking and having a good time hitting things and dropping things and chewing on things while us parents sat around the kitchen table and looked at each other as if to say, “What were we thinking?”
It turns out Will is in the warped toddler logic stage of development as well. Right now Will’s very interested in what things are made of. According to his mom, that led to the following conversation:
Will: What are people made of?
Will’s Mom: Skin.
Will’s Mom: Do you know what’s under people’s skin?
Eli and Will play together well, especially considering that they’re both about three years old and thus share slightly better than rabid cats. They would each grab a toy, shout, “POGO STICK!”, and then hop around the house giggling madly.
It all went well until Eli and Will became tired. Then negotiations broke down over a set of rubber ducks. Will found them and began carrying them around. Eli demanded them back. Will refused. What followed was enough crying and angry, confused babbling to fill an entire Lifetime movie. We told Eli that he couldn’t take the ducks back from Will because Will had them first.
Then Eli wised up. He rummaged around in one of his toy buckets and found a large ball. “Look, mommy! Look, daddy! Look, Will! A ball! Wow!” He sidled over to Will. “I give you this ball and you give me the ducks, okay? Okay?” It was not okay, of course, and eventually I had to take the ducks away and explain that they needed to go to sleep.
This is how I imagine the United Nations works. “Ooh, light-water reactors! Look, everyone, light-water reactors! I give you these reactors and you give me your nuclear weapons program, okay?”