When we took the Beaner in for his two-year checkup last Friday, our pediatrician was half giddy, half amazed as his verbal and cognitive abilities. I tend to discount any assertions that the Beaner is smart, precocious, advanced for his age, etc. because really, who cares? If he's any of those things, the only reason to be glad of it is because it makes him a better conversationalist and more fun to be around on a daily basis. It's not like he's going to be applying to Harvard any time soon.

And besides, "advanced for his age" is really relative. Our doc said, "you don't realize how advanced he is because you have no one to compare him to. Wait until he goes to school." Now, technically, we *do* have other kids to compare him to—and all of them are at about the same level as the Beaner (at the same age), with some being slightly more verbal, others being slightly more musical, and so on. Maybe it's because our friends who are having kids right now are all wicked smart engineers, musicians, scientists, writers, or a combination of one or more of those? Maybe it's that all of these smart, accomplished parents actually talk to and play with their kids? Maybe it's that we all had kids when we were slightly older than *our* parents were, when we were more established, more able to provide for them, more able to arrange our schedules around them?

Who knows—and again, who cares?

Of course, now that I've said all that, LET ME TELL YOU HOW SMART MY KID IS. No, I'm just kidding. I mostly want to record that we're seeing more and more examples of him pointing out facts and details about his world like a crime scene technician circling shell casings and labeling lint. It's so neat to see him processing, thinking about how Fact 1 + Fact 2 must mean Fact 3 (even if he draws the wrong conclusion, which is often hilarious). He's also comparing things, which didn't strike me as odd until I heard him do it for about the fifth time this week. (This morning he said, "that pan is hot?", and when I said yes, he held up the pancake I'd flipped out of the pan about two minutes before and said, "this pancake is cooler?")

Yesterday morning, while Al was getting ready to catch a plane, I was getting ready for work, and the Beaner was running around the bedroom half-dressed, the Beaner said, "I have brown eyes."

Al: "Yes, you do."

Beaner: [You know what's coming here, right?] "Why?"

Al: "Because I have brown eyes."

Me, shouting from bathroom: "That's how genetics works: Brown eyes are dominant."

Al: "What color are mommy's eyes?"

Beaner: "Green."

Al: (to me) "Did you tell him that?"

Me: "No."

Which I guess just proves that the Beaner's eyes are not only brown, but also that they work.

Posted by Lori in parenthood at 1:51 PM on March 20, 2007


I have memories, albeit vague, about dominant vs. recessive genes from high school science. In our case, The Toddler got my green eyes rather than the spousage's brown. And so far, #2's are decidedly not brown, either. But there are some non-brown eyes in the spousage's family tree, so this is not as unlikely as it might otherwise be.

Posted by: ratphooey [TypeKey Profile Page] at March 20, 2007 4:09 PM

Yeah, it's that whole big B/little b thing. I *think* green, hazel, yellow, etc. are considered variations of brown (B), but I can't remember for sure. FWIW, my mom's eyes are yellow, and my dad's are blue (b); I'm not sure what the Bb BB bb grid would look like in that case, but it's probably just a coincidence that I ended up with green. :)

Posted by: Lori at March 20, 2007 4:39 PM

Doesn't it just amaze you what they will utter? One moment they're grunting, the next they're making wonderful observations and declarations. So much fun!

Posted by: lori at March 21, 2007 12:30 PM

Completely agree on the "who cares" part of "advanced for his age." I never get it when people compliment ME on how verbal our son is. I just don't see that I had much to do with it. Sure, we're a talky-talky family, but that's no guarantor of a chatty kid. I agree that verbal can make things easier/more fun. I think we've avoided a lot of tantrums because we can understand what he is saying.

Posted by: juliloquy at March 22, 2007 12:22 PM

Something else that you know now (and maybe you did before, too, as this is the only entry on your blog I have ever read) is that he isn't colorblind.

I am and let me tell you, he's better off.

Posted by: Gowan at March 25, 2007 11:13 AM

Good point! I hadn't really thought about whether he'd be red/green colorblind, but you're right -- he can definitely distinguish between them.

Posted by: Lori at March 25, 2007 12:46 PM

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