Teeth

My grandson. A flurry of words, observations, questions, and Confucius-like wisdom contained in the mind of one 8 year old boy.

We are in the car, on a weekend adventure, and he rattles off one knock-knock joke, then another. Then silence. Soon enough, another joke; 'If you are American in the living room, what are you in the bathroom?' (The answer: European.) Elementary humor, but I am amused.

As we wend our way through the canyon, along the river, I take the curves slower than I would if driving alone. He is prone to carsickness after traveling this winding road. Quietly, he watches the sky, the trees, the steep rocky hillsides, and points out the cows grazing on the hills across the Kern.

'Grandma, do you know what?', he asks from the backseat.

'What, my love?' I cast a quick glance in the rear-view mirror.

'If you have a big mouth, and small teeth, do you know that you would never have to floss?'

'Hmm. Really? How do you figure that, Isaiah?', I dumbly ask. I am not comprehending what he is trying to convey. I am translating 'big mouthed' to mean 'loud mouthed.'

'Well, think about it: A big mouth with small teeth - all that space between your teeth! I mean it, you would never have to floss.'

He may already be disillusioned with daily flossing, likening it to a daily penance. He is learning it is the maintenance required of teeth. This curious child, always thinking, always questioning; determinedly trying to understand the world around him. He is fitting together the pieces of a world-sized puzzle.

Today he contemplates the mysteries of life, tooth-by-pearly-white-tooth.

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