Famous in Kazakhstan

14 10 2010

We play in the alley every night.  Our neighbors who moved here two months after us and have a daughter PJ’s age, come outside and we follow the kids around as they bicker over push strollers, fall off of ride tricycles and practice graffiti use sidewalk chalk.  The kids often eat Cheddar Bunnies healthy organic snacks.  The adults drink beer (no point in trying to pretend otherwise.)

Sometimes older, school age ruffians kids from the neighborhood buzz around on their bikes casing our toy collection.  Tonight one kid was by herself and she stopped to check out the towel and lawn chair tunnel track we had built.  Her long hair was flowing out from under her bike helmet and she had a stuffed animal in her pocket that PJ was coveting.  Every time PJ got close to her, our 8-lbs personal protection dog got uppity.  Because of my efforts to try and keep my small cur dog from biting her, I was having a hard time trying to size her up getting to know her.  She seemed nice and a little strange.  She seemed androgynous like most 8-yr-olds.  I thought she might be a boy, but her beautiful eyes and very, very long hair seemed to say different.  In an effort to break the ice I was doing that thing where you talk to the other person by talking to your kid.  “I know you want to see her stuffed animal PJ.”  And to the dog, “It’s okay Scolly, she is just getting to know PJ.”  Then she spoke up.

“There is one thing you should know – I am a boy”

“Well, I thought you were a boy, but you have such beautiful eyes and long hair, I also thought you were a girl.”

“No, I’m a boy.”

“Oh, well I kind of suspected.  Has anyone else ever told you that you have beautiful, handsome eyes?”

“No, never.”

“My name is Semi-Feral, what is your name?”

“My name is A____, I am 8-yrs-old, I was born in Kazakhstan and I am very famous there.”

“Oh, what are you famous for?”

“I don’t remember.”

“You’re famous but you don’t remember why?  Is your whole family from Kazakhstan?”

“No, just me.”

“Are you adopted and the rest of your family was born here?”

“Yes, but they weren’t born here.  Well, they were born in the United States but only one was born in ….”  This is where I interrupted him and said the name of our state (I am noticing that I have been a big time interrupter lately.)

“Well this is Little Dude, he was born in Ethiopia and Little Dude is his Ethiopian name.”

“Oh.  I think I should be famous in the U.S. also.”

“Really, what do you want to be famous for?”

“I don’t know”

“Oh, you don’t know what you want to be famous for, or …”

“No, I think I should be famous for the same thing I was famous for in Kazakhstan, but I can’t remember what it was.”

“Oh.”

After A____ left my husband said he would Google A____ and Kazakhstan so he could find out exactly what he was famous for and let him know.

And because I can’t just leave this funny story as is (silly brain)….

I have some thoughts on helping adopted children fit in with their peers, but I have directly conflicting feelings about encouraging your kids to follow their bliss.  I know this boy has siblings (I hesitate to say sisters or brothers, because, well…).  And I know they all have the same very long, stringy, flowing hair.  There is something about them that makes me want to call child protective services.  But there is also something about them that makes me think, “Oh, aren’t their parents wonderful free spirits raising their kids to be the same?”  I guess it all depends on motivation.  If the hairstyles are the kids ideas, awesome.  If they are the parents way of living vicariously through their children, or getting back at the grandparents, or who knows what else, well that is a different story.

Hopefully when A___ ‘s fame is revealed and People magazine interviews him they will ask about his hair and I will learn the truth.

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3 responses

14 10 2010
claudia

wow, this is a SERIOUSLY bizarre conversation!

I like your description of not being sure whether the family is beautifully free spirite or in need of intervention 🙂

15 10 2010
Christine

Very interesting boy (who presented like a girl). Hair, it’s always an interesting topic. You know, I am thinking of myself and I think I express myself through my kid’s hair. It’s short because that’s why I like it. Plus, we live in tick hell so that is my rationale for keeping his hair short. However, I am well aware that I do like his hair to be nice and neat and short and it requires not even a comb! I hope you’ll let us know what this kid is famous for.

18 10 2010
tamara b

Well, you always amaze me with your conversations with people. The interesting convos in my life are about my lying daughter telling her grammy that two of her 5 lungs hurt and she needed the blanket that she was told to leave alone to cover up with and rest. She may be creative, but she’s still lying… 5 lungs… if only her lies will always be that obvious.

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