Things Our Kids Saw When They Were Little

Once when we were in the car, wait­ing at a stop light, a big, grimy cement truck pulled up along­side.  Our tod­dler looked at it for a moment, then exclaimed “CANDY!”  Candy?  Of course, there wasn’t any candy.  But there was a round yel­low light on the top of a red-and-white striped stick.  To a young child, the effect was quite candy-like.

One night, as we were finally get­ting the kids ready for bed, one child expressed con­cern about the “blue cir­cles float­ing around on the bath­room floor.”  Yeah, right.  We were all pretty tired, but just to humor her, I told her I’d go look. 

So I sat down and looked at the floor for a while, until I real­ized I, too, was see­ing blue cir­cles float­ing around on the bath­room floor, and was wait­ing for them to go away so I could tell her there weren’t any.

The explan­ation was sim­ple. There was a bright orange sticker on the floor, the kind that super­mar­ket check­out clerks stick on deter­gent boxes, milk bot­tles, and lit­tle kids’ hands.  The intense orange was pro­du­cing fatigue on our ret­inas, result­ing in the blue cir­cle effect.  I explained it to her as best as I could, and since I wasn’t wor­ried, she wasn’t either.