A Window into Life in the Suburbs


"Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these." Luke 12:27 (NIV)

Friday, September 3, 2010

My Little Sister , My Intermediary

The sibling dynamic fascinates me no end. Now that I'm largely an observer rather than a participant except as a kind of glorified but underpaid referee, it is quite a sideshow. Sometimes I am tempted to have another child just so I can call them The Three Stooges or the Goon Show.

I have two girls... beautiful, talkative and energetic. But they are beautiful, talkative and energetic in their unique way. As individuals they can be simultaneously funny and insufferable... As sisters, the dynamic alternates between a rollercoaster ride and a Punch and Judy show.
No wonder I'm dizzy.

I suppose we have Cain and Abel to thank for some of this sibling rivalry. Or just plain o'l human nature.
The older provokes the younger... the younger provokes the older... anarchy ensues, the adult is called upon to adjudicate and it's time out in the most uninteresting place in the house.
But how much time out, is the question... one is 3, the other is 9... So if the adult is lazy, we deal in averages. If the adult feels a little more energetic, we might use two different timers,because we have 3 afterall...

Lately, I've noticed a new development in the sibling relationship...
The 9 year old, deploying her innate raw cunning, is now using the the 3 year old as a kind of cheap domestic envoy.
Assuming wrongly perhaps that the 3 year old might have more sway or currency with the adults, she sends the little sister as her emissary with some poorly rehearsed request. The speech is rehearsed in some slapdash fashion (and there aren't any tributes to speak of) because it doesn't quite come out right. It's like that game of Chinese Whispers or Broken Telephone. The 3 year doesn't seem to know what she's saying either because the meaning changes and that's usually accompanied by backstage promptings reverberating down the corridor.
"Mummy, can we watch Bananas in Pyjamas?"
"No... no... I said, Spongebob Squarepants..."
"But I want to watch Bananas in Pyjamas."

It behooves the adults to keep a straight face and maintain some semblance of dignity in the negotiations.

A diplomat in the unmaking...
Or perhaps the older sister underestimates her younger sister's innate propensity for self-interest.



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