Sunday, September 30, 2007

Unintended Consequences Part I:
Fishies vs. Bugs

You never know what things you say or do with your children may come back to haunt you someday. Two came to mind this morning. I'll tell you about one now and the other later.

Back when I was stationed in Norfolk, we would frequently have to drive through the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel. Also, when we would drive from VA up to visit Grammy in Mass or NH, we'd drive through the tunnel in Baltimore.

Just to be silly, I used to tell the boys they had to hold their breath while we went "under water", then while we were in the tunnel we would pretend to point and wave at the fishies swimming by. It was cute. We laughed and giggled at how silly it was.

Then we moved to Hawaii...

In order for us to go to church over in Kaneohe, we drive on the "interstate" that doesn't go to any other states - H3, and it takes us through a long, dark tunnel under the mountains and over to the other side of the island of Oahu.

Greg, our youngest, thinks it's incredibly funny to wave "hi" to the fishies as we go through the tunnel. Brian, our oldest, being the logical, rational thinker that he is (just a wee bit of sarcasm there), get's extremely upset with Greg and tells Greg that we're NOT underwater and all that's above us are BUGS. The result is this back and forth argument - FISHIES! No, BUGS! No, FISHIES! No, BUGS! No, FISHIES!

It drives Amy and I nuts. No matter what we say to them, they can't seem to give up the argument over fishies and bugs. I even tried placating Brian's sense of logic by telling him there was a LAKE on top of the mountain and that Greg was waving to the fishies in the LAKE, but Brian didn't buy it.

It doesn't stop at the end of the tunnel, either. They will continue to argue about the fishies and bugs for the entire rest of the drive down the hill into Kaneohe.

We did find one means of respite though. Normally, we used to take my car on "long" drives (relatively speaking - we're on an island after all) because it's a hybrid and gets better gas mileage. My car doesn't have the frills of my wife's car though. Last week we took Amy's car for the first time, and the boys watched Star Wars on the DVD player in the back the entire way to Kaneohe and didn't say a peep. I think Amy and I were holding our breath through the tunnel - not out of tradition from the Hampton Roads Tunnel, but because we were waiting for the bugs vs fishies fight to start in the back seat. We were pleasantly surprised. We may just have to take Amy's car whenever we're going to go through the H3 tunnel from now on.

Thank goodness for DVD players in cars, eh? I don't know how my parents ever survived those LONG drives across country from CA to CO or FL without a DVD player in the car.


RM1(SS) (ret) said...

You could just leave a little earlier, drive up by Waimea and go around the mountains....

(There's a really nice little beach up there, maybe a third of the way from Waimea to Kaneohe.)

E.P. said...

You could always have them look for hovering bulldozers etc (that were claimed to have been sighted during construction of the H3 some years ago).