I get Doodles out of the house and to Target by telling him he can pick out a new lunch box that he’ll take with him to preschool. He’s psyched for the idea, and all the while I’m shopping, he’s asking, “Where are the lunch boxes? Can I get my lunch box now?” I say we’ll get there soon and I remind him that Sweetie Pie will need a lunch box too for the Tiny Tot room. “Can I pick out her lunch box?” I shrug, and say, “Sure!” Sweetie Pie is babbling away in my mei tai carrier and doesn’t seem to mind the idea.
So, we make our way over the lunch box aisle finally, and they have *the* cutest dinosaur lunch boxes. I quickly move Doodles past the Spiderman, Batman, and the like lunch boxes.
Me: Wow! Look at this! Are these the coolest lunch boxes or what?
Doodles: They’re dinosaurs!
Me: They are dinosaurs!
Doodles: I want a dinosaur lunch box!
Me: I think that’s a fabulous idea. Would you like the orange one or the green one?
Doodles: Um, the orange one.
I pull the orange one over.
Me: Look! Do you see what kind of dinosaur it is?
Doodles: Is it a triceratops?
Me: Yes, it is! That’s very good, Doodles.
Doodles: I want to pick Sweetie Pie’s lunch box.
Me: Great idea. Do you think Sweetie Pie would like the green dinosaur?
Doodles wrinkles his face in distaste.
Doodles: No. Sweetie Pie wants the Hello Kitty lunchbox.
Let me interject here and ask: How the hell does my son know what Hello Kitty is!!?!! Okay, back to our story:
Me: I really think Sweetie Pie would like the green dinosaur.
Doodles: No, the Hello Kitty lunch box.
Me: I think the green dinosaur is the baby sister dinosaur. Don’t you think Sweetie Pie should have the baby sister dinosaur?
Doodles starts getting upset: The Hello Kitty lunch box!
Me: I have an idea! Why don’t we get you the Hello Kitty lunchbox and we’ll get Sweetie Pie the dinosaur lunch box!
Doodles: No, I want the dinosaur. Sweetie Pie wants Hello Kitty.
Now I’m debating with myself. Do I get the Hello Kitty like he asks for? (I can't find the lunch box online, but it looks almost like this.) After all, I did say he could pick out her lunch box. Or do I override him and get her the green dinosaur? I even contemplate buying both the green dinosaur and the Hello Kitty and then secretly returning the Hello Kitty when Doodles’s forgotten about it. Then I have an idea. After all, Sweetie Pie has my genes, right?
Me: I know! Let’s let Sweetie Pie decide!
Sweetie Pie is happily reaching for everything from inside my mei tai.
I hold up the dinosaur.
Me: Sweetie Pie! [lots of cheer in my voice] Do you want the neat green dinosaur!!
I hold up Hello Kitty.
Me: [voice goes lower] Or do you want this one?
Sweetie Pie looks at both. Her eyes start to sparkle and she gives a big smile.
Me: Look! Sweetie Pie wants the dinosaur! Here Sweetie Pie!
At which point Sweetie Pie squeals loudly with disgust, bats her hand out until it makes contact with the dinosaur, throwing it down on the ground, and grabs the Hello Kitty lunch box with both hand, cackling with delight.
Sweetie Pie: Eee! Eee! Eee!
I buy one dinosaur lunch box and one Hello Kitty lunchbox.
I’m a failure as a feminist mother. They’re going to take away my feminist credentials. Might as well buy those Barbies now and get it over with.