As parents we want to mold our children into fine upstanding citizens. Well, most of us do any way. And one way we do this is by molding our kids into miniature versions of us. Why? Because we know that we are really great people! (Go ahead, pat yourself on the back! You deserve it.)
Okay, that’s enough. So, my son does a TON of stuff that reminds me of me at that age. And we have very similar senses of humor. Well, we both like a good fart sound. That counts, right? So why does he insist on disappointing me??
Let me give you some back-story. Get your time-traveling pants!
We’re not going very far back today, so don’t get too fancy.
A couple of weeks ago, we went Halloween costume shopping with son in tow. First stop was Target. Well, we were AT Target and walked by the costume section. We looked through what they had, and found one ill-fitting Spider-Man costume that he wasn’t terribly fond of. Which is a surprise, as this kid’s been saying some iteration of “Spider-Man!” since shortly after he started talking!
We then headed out to the local “Hey, It’s Halloween and We Rented Out This Gutted Out Borders Bookstore So We Can Ream You With Our Prices!” – type Halloween store. Let’s just get something straight right now, anyone who spends $40-$50 for a toddler’s costume that will be worn a couple of times should be examined. (Unless, you are one of my loyal readers to which I say, “Good Show!!!”)
After calming down from the sticker shock we went to Party City. I was hoping that we were early enough that the costumes wouldn’t be too picked over. And we were! Plus, we got the bonus of hearing two teenage girls (one pregnant) talk about all of the ‘Sexy’ genred costumes they wanted to try on. Being an old fart now, I really wanted to say something, but kept my mouth shut.
We looked around and finally located the toddler section. We asked him which costume he wanted for Halloween. After looking through the pictures and naming off everything he could name, he started naming things again. So, I pointed out the Buzz Lightyear costume. (It was pretty fricken cool looking.) And he said, “Woody.” To which I replied, “Yes, that’s Woody. Now let’s look at this Buzz Lightyear costume!”
I even went so far as to ask the attendant to bring me the Buzz costume for Little Man to try on. And when the attendant came over, my son says, “Woody. Woody.” while pointing at the picture of Woody. So, I said, “Fine, we’ll look at the Woody costume, but you’re gonna like this Buzz one so much better!”
You can guess where this is heading.
Yeah, my son TOTALLY chose Woody over Buzz. I have to say, I was a little disappointed. He tried on the Woody costume and walked out with the hat and badge and everything…he just LIT UP THE ROOM he was so happy to be Sheriff Woody. We got back into the dressing room and I asked if he at least wanted to try the Buzz Lightyear costume on and he said, “Nononononono” while shaking his head. (Side note: This is about as close as you can get to a 2 yr. old saying “No, thank you kind sir.”)
So…Woody it is! Even though, I woulda chose the space-man. Driving home, I talked to my wife about being a little disappointed in his choice, but that I was more aggravated with myself for being disappointed. I mean, this is one of those steps when you watch your child use their own brain and their own personality to make their OWN decision. This is one of those milestone moments and I was too bummed because he didn’t choose the super cool looking space ranger.
My son continues to school me.
So, I’ve really been trying to find out why he chose Sheriff Woody over Buzz Lightyear. If you watch the first movie, Woody is sort of a narcissistic ego-maniac. He’s not evil…just not very nice. At least, at first. But then, over the span of all three movies I see a recurring theme. This is one solid dude. He tells the truth and gets crucified by his friends. They are all ready to condemn him on a moments notice, yet he doesn’t let it bother him. He takes his roll as head toy serious enough that no toy gets left behind. This is seen in the first movie when talking about moving buddies and in the last movie when he’s making sure that everyone is accounted for for attic storage.
He’s the dude you WANT as a best friend! He’s the guy that pulls your ass out of the fire even though you’ve raked his across the coals. For the love of Pete, he even tried to help Lotso after Lotso tried to kill everyone! If anything, he’s loyal to a fault. Buzz…he’s a good friend, don’t get me wrong, but even HE bails on Woody in the third movie.
I know what you’re saying, but in the second movie, Buzz rescues Woody. Yes, yes he does. Woody isn’t perfect. Even he stumbles and needs a reminder of what’s important. But Woody also rescues Jesse and Bullseye and brings them home to live. Why? Because that’s what friends do!
My son loves Woody. And it took him going against my opinion for me to realize that he was the more mature in his decision making. I was thinking “Oooh shiny!” and he was looking at someone that teaches him what a real friend is.
I am a fool. But my son is helping me to get better.