Monday, October 02, 2006

Meet the Lupiters

"That guy is a Lupiter," Eli 5.2 said.

That's pronounced "Loop-i-ter," by the way.

We were watching the Cartoon Network, and some somber-faced fellow was trying to get us to apply for a lower-interest mortage.

"A Lupiter? What's a Lupiter?" I asked.

"A Lupiter is someone who doesn't know anything about what they're talking about," Eli said.

"People tell me that all the time," I said. "It's good to finally know what it's called."

So now, we're The Lupiters. Every third sentence is "Hey! Don't be a Lupiter!" or "WHAT a LUPITER." Followed by long bursts of laughter.

Today, we went to our weekly Monday lunch together, and on the way home Eli said "You know, Dad, a half-rabbit, half-X DOES NOT EXIST."

"Oh, no!" I said. "But I just ordered one!"

"They can't exist," he said, "because the RABBIT would have an X for a BUTT."

Which is good to know if you've ever spent any time speculating on the possibility of animal-alphabet hybrids.

Eli's starting to learn at this freaky, scary rate, which I think has something to do with being five and moving up to the next level in his school. But it's still freaky.

He's learning this song about the states--believe it or not, you can actually sing a song that includes all fifty states. So last week he starts singing this song, and he is absolutely RIPPING through the states--in alphabetical order. He got forty-eight, missing Maine and Utah, and since then he's added them as well.

If I ever wondered how powerful mnemonics can be, I wonder no more. Turning those names into a song made him learn them unbelievably quickly.

Here's the other freaky thing he's doing: he's reading. He brought home this big set of beginning reader books three weeks ago called Now I'm Reading!, which is a collection of 20 phonics books.

So when he started, three weeks ago, here's an example of what he was reading:
A cat.
A tan cat.
A tan fat cat.
A tan fat cat ran.
A tan fat cat ran fast.

Now he's somewhere around book 15 of 20, and here's what he read to me today:
Bill and Tess are fishing. Bill and Tess are on a ship fishing for bass.
The ship smells. The ship smells like bass.
Bill and Tess sit still. Bill and Tess sit still and wait for bass to pass.

There have been many cool moments about being a father, but sitting with him today, listening to him carefully sound out words, was probably one of the best moments I've had since he was born. I was so happy for him, because I get so much enjoyment out of reading, and I know that he will, too.

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