This morning on "The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That," the Cat in the Hat whisked the two kids he's always having adventures with off to watch a group of beavers build a dam. "They're building a dam!" he would exclaim. And when the dam sprang a leak, the Cat and the kids helped the beavers repair it with mud. When it was all finished, the Cat proclaimed, "Now this river is dammed!"
Perhaps you can see where this is going.
Later, while I was changing Elyse's diaper and getting her into some clothes--quite a challenge these days--Jessica was playing in the corner of Elyse's room, pulling down clothes we had stacked on Elyse's dresser and piling them on the floor.
"You have a busy little beaver!" Jessica told me. "And she's building a dam."
She started taking shoes out of a box, shoes that are way too small for her but which Elyse isn't quite ready for, and lining them up on the floor. I was busy trying to convince Elyse to squirm in ways that are conducive to getting arms in sleeves and socks on feet, so I can't tell you exactly what Jessica said. But I think it was something like this:
"These are all my dammed shoes."
I assure you that she got that phrase from this morning's episode of the Cat in the Hat, not from anything she ever heard me say once upon a time when I was struggling to get those same shoes on her wriggling little feet.
I just hope that if she plays Busy Little Beaver at preschool tomorrow, she makes it clear to her teachers that that's what she's doing.
I also hope that if the kids on the show have a dog, it's not a Shih Tzu.