Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Just an idea


"Hey, Mommy?"

"Yes, Jonas?"

"What's that big idea?"

At a little after 7 a.m., who could say. Jonas' probing, though, is not bound by anything as silly as the hour.

Jonas has a sense of things, of big picture things, but even of things edible. Things he can eat, and those he cannot. If I am cracking peanuts for a Martini snack, and kiss him, he will note them on my breath and ask for them but not in earnest. The other day, I'd squeezed a lemon over a roast chicken just before going in to kiss him good night. "Lime and lemons," he said, angling for deep covers. Kelly cannot sneak a midday chocolate chip without that sweet, ancient dark secret invading his sniff and setting the mouth — "I want choc-LIT!" — in motion.

Jonas will mimic cartoon characters, but in things edible he is his own man trusting his own sense. A gourmand in the making? I think. For this quality (if it is that) is born. An appreciation for food and drink can be honed through appetite and lust, but not without what the gourmand brings to the table, which is at least a perception of the edible world going on about him.

In the morning, we leave the comfort zone to the sound of hinges squeaking and cupboards slamming. Jonas and Lucas are on the prowl, breakfast the prey.

Jonas attacks breakfast as if it were alive. He eats bananas like a chimp and pokes at Cheerios as if toying with them, knowing better gruel lies beyond the horizon of youth.

I think that's the big idea.

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