We picked up two new residents somewhere along the way. I don’t know how long they were percolating on the fringes of my awareness but they burst forth, much to our collective chagrin, right about the same time. I think it was in mid October or thereabouts. FoodMoTron was the first. It started out innocently enough, as these things usually do. You know how it goes. You’re playing with your 5 year old to get her to stop jumping all over the place and the “I Am A Robot” voice picks up. You think that since robots are calm that maybe playing along will help take things down a few notches on the hyper chart. It did that, but it also took things way UP on the annoyance chart. I asked her what kind of robot she was. A fix – it bot? A calculator bot? A crazy bot? No. She was a food making robot. A “FoodMoTron”. I think this may have come from Futurama (yes I know it’s innapropriate for a 5 year old to be watching. But I am alone and overwhelmed, so, whatever). Either way, it was amusing until dinner time. I can’t remember what I had prepared but I do recall that it had taken some time and work. And when we all sat down to eat, Neve pushed her plate away and stuck her tongue out. Then she claimed that as a FoodMoTron she couldn’t “eat this”. She could only “create food”. Further, she wanted full access to the kitchen to accomplish this. And when I refused, FoodMoTron became Evil FoodMoTron.
We all began to really dislike FoodMoTron from then on. Anytime Neve did anything bad she’d say “I am not Neve. I am FoodMoTron”. And the moment Neve magically reappeared, she “knew nothing” of the bad behavior, because “it wasn’t me, it was FoodMoTron!” As her robotic alter – ego she would tease Oona, push Emily around, get sassy with me and Maddie, draw on walls and furniture, etc. We carefully avoid robot references now to avoid any new appearances by FoodMoTron. Clearly this was Neve’s outlet for naughtiness. What’s funny about that is that Mr. Harold is the opposite.
Mr. Smitty Harold showed up right before Thanksgiving. There were some Groucho Marx style play glasses leftover from Halloween and Neve appeared one evening wearing a pair and doing an imitation of an old man. She introduced herself in this funny voice as “Mr. Smitty Harold”. I learned that Mr. Harold is wildly rich and generous (he gave me hundreds and millions of dollars and cents), likes to clean (he cleaned the entire playroom in an hour, and did a pretty good job, too), likes to tell on Neve (“she didn’t flush the potty, and that makes her pretty gross!”), and, somehow, is my new husband , “but don’t tell Paul when he calls. I don’t want him to know that I will be sleeping in your bed tonight.”
Um……I didn’t let Neve/Mr. Smitty Harold sleep in bed with me that night. It was too weird, even if it IS my little Neve. I have received several love notes from Mr. Harold. They all call me “Boofull”. In general, as Mr. Harold is rather helpful around the house and not given to much sassiness we all don’t mind him so much. It does get to be tiring though when he begins insisting that as an adult he can drive the car and do whatever else he feels like, which is, I am guessing, the whole manipulative point to this character.