I happened to catch Jay Leno last night and saw his videos on-line segment, and how these videos are usually of cute little children or of stupid things older children do. My Dearest and I looked at each other and waited to see just how cute and/or stupid these videos would be.
There was a video of two boys who gave a third boy, who was a willing participant! a wedgie by hanging the back of his boxers from a 6' ladder and laughed as he screamed and swung from the ladder.
Another video featured a boy who stood on a step-stool or chair and fell onto a cacti garden, after which he started screaming for help getting up out of the cacti on which he had landed.
The last video had a young boy, perhaps four or five, sitting on a chair cuddling with his younger brother, who was perhaps two. The younger brother bit his brother's finger and then the older boy put his finger back in his younger brother's mouth! The younger brother bit down harder and harder, then laughed as his brother screamed.
Yup, these were pretty stupid. The thing I noticed right away was that these videos were all of boys doing these crazy things! Now, as a mother of two boys, about 18 months apart, this scares me and has me on my knees praying for their safety almost every moment. And then it got better. My Dearest started telling me stories.
My Dearest works with a guy.... let's call him Chip. Chip has a twin brother, I'll call him Dale (get it? Chip 'n Dale?). When they were young, they were in a dry field near their house, that they were not supposed to be in, launching rockets. As they watched the rocket sail through the air, they heard crackling behind them. A small patch of the field had caught on fire! Chip 'n Dale took their shirts off and started beating at the fire. Chip ran home and got a blanket to try to beat the fire out. A neighbor ran over with a garden hose to wet down the field so that the fire wouldn't spread so much. Chip ran back home to tell his mom about the fire and she brushed him off, preoccupied with her phone call. Then, he heard the fire engine sirens and a neighbor girl said to him in a sing-songy voice, "You're in truh-bull!!"
The next year, Chip 'n Dale were experimenting with short-wave radio and thought that if they raised the antenna, they could get better reception. They had a radio antenna that they raised on a weather balloon up into the sky. Do you recall anyone famous in a story about metal, a balloon and perhaps lightning? Yup, Dale was hit by lightning and rushed to the hospital. He was fine, but had to have some surgery. One of the paramedics saw Chip and said, "Hey, aren't you the ones who set the field on fire last year?"
When my Dearest tells Chip about things our boys are doing, Chip says it reminds him of him and his brother growing up. Of course, if the boys were as mischievous and curious as Chip 'n Dale were, our boys should have set at least one fire, by now... that we know of. Thankfully, that hasn't happened.
As I was thinking about how difficult it is to raise boys, I received an email about the differences between boys and girls, plus a link to a CNN article, Is it Harder to Raise Boys or Girls?