Some kids first words sometimes are mama or dada. Other times it’s the name of a beloved pet or a cherished cartoon character. Now granted these aren’t my son’s first words but it is the first time he’s decided to throw Automotive terms at me. “No passing zone, pedestrian Crossing ahead, u-turn, yield sign in view, and the occasional daddy take me potty.”
It is definitely one thing to hear your child’s beautiful voice when they’re babbling or having conversations with their stuffed animals, it is another thing entirely for a desperate parent to hear their autistic son utter in perfect clarity the rules of the road.
We were in the locker room just after swim lessons like usual, I was getting ready to throw him into pajamas to make our drive home that much easier when all the sudden he started spouting these terms at me. With his goofy yet very knowing grin he told me that I was in danger of making an illegal stop against traffic. Before I could ask him who the hell he thought he was, he followed up by telling me that this is a loading zone only and to maintain my speed limit. I could tell from the echolalial nature of what he was saying that he had definitely picked it up somewhere and the usual suspect was always his iPad.
Turns out he’s been playing a driving simulator for the last few weeks that announces these terms in order to proceed with the game, now usually when the kids are on their tablets I let the noise of them drown into the background of whatever it is I am doing. There are certain exceptions such as the dreaded “daddy finger” and the international bootleg songs of Disney that are often disturbing.
My Sherlock kicked in and when I got home, sure enough I found the program that he had been using to emulate the DMV so well. The best thing about having children is that they will never cease to surprise you.
Of course I would be happy with my boy if he said anything in that wonderful clear beautiful voice of his, but now that he’s learning when to and when not to signal, I wouldn’t be surprised to find him writing his sister a ticket for not yielding the right-of-way.
Speaking of tickets, I have a ticket to pay from LAX. Turns out my unloading wasn’t as immediate as they would like it to be.