A much better name.
A couple of days ago, Tiarnan, five, was playing in the TV room, whilst his mother, Syahidah, talked about a film that was on, to Fintan, eight.
Suddenly, Tiarnan stopped his playing and stood in a mix of puzzlement and startlement:
“What’s the Lizard of Oz?”, he asked, seemingly captivated by such an odd name.
My laughter was his initial reply.
“Wizard, Tiarnan: it is the Wizard of Oz”. I then explained about the film.
He didn’t seem so impressed by Wizard, as he had been by Lizard.
I must say that I much preferred Tiarnan’s misheard name: it seemed so much more exotic. This little moment pauses me to reflect that young children are able to think things, that older children and adults not only do not, but cannot. The more we learn, the less that is possible, for us, in a way – for we know what cannot be or should not be. The more we know about the world, the less we can entertain its possibilities. To my mind, Tiarnan’s state is superior to that of an older child – for him, it is quite possible that he had heard Lizard and not Wizard. I fear an older child would not be able to hear such a thing, even if said: their knowledge of film, would intercede.
Posted by Valentine Cawley
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