Nick is my three year old son. Allison is my wife. That’s really all you need to know. Recently, Nick is into role-playing – he pretends to be me or Allison. This happened the other night after dinner.
Me: Yes, Nick.
Nick: Let’s play I’m the daddy and you in time out.
Nick: You go in time out right now!
Me: Me? What did I do?
Nick: You did a wrong thing!
Me: But what did I do? Be specific.
Nick: You did a wrong thing and have to go to time out!
Me: But I don’t want to go to time out!
Nick: Yes, you have to! Sit in that chair and don’t come out until time out is over! And don’t play with your toys or anything, either.
Me: But I have to help mommy clean the kitchen.
Nick: No. You’re in time out. I gonna clean.
Me: Okay, cool.
Nick: Don’t talk in time out.
Al: Nick, let daddy out of time out.
Nick: I’m not Nick. I’m daddy. That’s Nick.
Al: Daddy needs to help clean the kitchen.
Me: I’m sorry. I can’t. I’m in time out.
Nick: Don’t talk in time out!
Al: But then who’s going to help clean?
Nick: I will.
Nick: Don’t talk! AND DON’T LOOK AT YOUR PHONE!
Al: Nick, seriously. Let daddy out of time out so he can help.
Me: Sorry, Al. I’m in time out.
Me: I did something wrong, apparently. I can’t help you. I’m in time out.
Al: Oh my God, I hate you so bad right now.
Nick: Don’t say “hate!”
Nick: PUT YOUR PHONE AWAY!
Al: So, this game is going well.
Nick: You stay in time out, Nick! I’m gonna clean!
Me: Look, he’s helping you clean. We’re teaching him to help.
Al: We’re not teaching him to help! He’s pretending he’s you! We’re teaching him that daddy cleans up his messes!
Me: Whatever. I’m in time out.