Sunday, April 03, 2005

Kick kick kick

When Pete starts to feel a fairly strong emotion, he kicks his legs emphatically, back and forth, as if he's marching in place. I gather this is pretty standard baby behavior, and Pete now applies it to many kinds of emotions, more and more including excitement about a toy or face that interests him. What a world it would be if this reflex never left us: I would know, for instance, how a given class was going by checking whether students were kicking unrestrainedly during conversations. Or some students would learn how to kick kick kick as if interested in what's going on the way I used to try to maintain an attentive facial expression in certain classes. Especially good actors might brag that they could keep kicking in a class or at a lecture even when they dozed off for a few minutes. We could try to cut off discussions in faculty meetings when pretty much everybody has stopped kicking. Kick kick kick kick.

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