I have a teeshirt from a friend. It portrays a cat playing with a ball of string. It says “String Theory Research.”
Fleur asked: What does that say?
So, I read it. It didn’t register, so I started to explain:
Everything we touch and feel are made up of these teeny, tiny so small no one can even see them strings…
She changed the subject.
This interaction reminded me of a saying that if you cannot explain something to a 6 year old, then you do not really understand it. Some claim Einstein said. He said a certain topic was not teachable to undergraduates. Feynman was closer in saying if can’t explain in very simple terms, you don’t understand it.
25 years ago, I did some work in a classroom assisting the teacher. After teaching the Solar System, she lamented that I wasn’t doing Elementary Education because I was gifted at helping others understand. Others have said similar.
I love to explain things. So Fleur will roll her eyes. But some things will get through.
There is this in invisible boundary around the planets of the Solar System called the Roche Limit. Should a moon fall into it, gravity will break apart the moon. Where that limit resides depends on the gravitational strength of the planet and the make up of the moon. Saturn’s rings comes from doing this to maybe several moons.
I have a friend from college with this surname. Every time this person goes to shred people online for having said something offensive, I think of this. And it makes me smile.
I never thought I would sing this much. I mean Disney princess movies and musicals are not my interest. But, a fragment of a song works to calm the baby, so I do it. I prefer it to the authoritarian Dad Voice. I use specific songs during specific tasks. And she really likes certain ones, so I’ve settled on them. Some examples:
A bastardization of “Stayin’ Alive” that is “Stayin’ Dry” while changing the diaper
Old MacDonald when she is bored in the carseat or resisting having to wear clothes
Little Bunny Foo Foo when she wants Mama who is occupied (she anticipates my bonks on her head)
I’ve kind of gotten into a rut. I need to pick up some new songs. Please suggest your favorites.
“Even when their parents are feeding them ‘dad jokes’ to try to teach them about humor, half of the jokes that kids hear, they don’t quite get.” So it’s only natural, Dubinsky says, for some children to believe that a couple of absurd or mismatched concepts assembled into a familiar “knock-knock” or “What do you call …” structure adds up to a joke.
“Kids say, ‘Oh, jokes are about incongruity. I’ll show you some incongruity,’” Dubinsky says. “But they haven’t got the sophistication to construct an incongruity that’s going to be resolvable.”
Which, coincidentally, sometimes results in jokes that resemble a more advanced form of humor: an “anti-joke.” Anti-jokes deliberately deny the audience a clever or satisfying punch line, and they often serve as edgy or sophisticated commentary on jokes themselves.
Poor Fleur will suffer from “dad jokes.” She already hears them. She just has no idea she is inundated with them. And I love me some incongruity. So much of my attention is analyzing rules from social behavior to code to business process rules. I am always interested in the how and why to tease out mismatches to learn from them. Maybe that is why I love “dad jokes” so much?