Monthly Archives: December 2014

The dinosaur surprise

Recently, a 1.7 meter tall blow-up dinosaur took up residence in our home and it has been the source of great merriment ever since. At least for the three boys in the house that is.

We quickly discovered that the hulking shadow of a dinosaur, that has been left strategically placed in a dark room, provided a shriek of fright from the mom every time she walked into said room. A natural progression of this discovery, for boys of any age, is to promptly create scenarios where this little story plays itself out again and again with the surprise factor of the size of the T-Rex taking top-billing.

The most successful of these scenarios to date has been to stage ‘Rexie’ right at the front door, lying in suspended animation like some sort of prehistoric jack-in-the-box, ready to leap out at the unsuspecting the moment they step through the doorway. Imagine for a moment if you will…

You slide the key into the lock.
You shove the door open.
Your momentum carries you one step into the room.
There a life size dinosaur, with a head big enough to fill a sack, grins back at you with a toothy, plastic smile, close enough for you to identify the toothpaste brand he uses.

This is great for getting the heart rate up and for eliciting high-pitched noises from the gentler creatures in the house. So far, all the women in our lives have been a part of the fun and it really hasn’t gotten old at all.

For the boys that is.

If I’m honest though, I must confess that I too have been Dino-surprised. It was on the night we got him. I had placed him in the dining room before I made my way to bed and then had got up a few hours later to get water. I normally just stumble down the two steps into the kitchen in the dark and only turn on the lights as I round the corner and head for the fridge. This time however, the thing standing in the dining room caught my eye. He was just staring at me, silent, menacing, grinning. And while I did not let out an audible yelp of surprise, my heart thumped so heavily in my chest that it briefly unblocked my ears (another story). The short arms only detract from his unnerving appearance in bright light. In the dark they look twisted and purpose built.

My boys have other dinosaur toys, plush ones the size of chickens and plastic ones the size of chicken eggs, none of which evoke the same response as the big guy which i think speaks to the age old question of ‘does size matter?’

Anyway, I think the best part of this story is that my boys are learning that in some areas of their lives, they never actually have to grow up. That and the fact that women don’t really like surprises. Who knew?