Monday, January 3, 2011

Negotiating 101

Ben, among other things, has figured out the fine art of negotiating. I think his thought process goes a little something like this: "if I say 'no' enough eventually my parents will give in and give me what I want." The kid is super smart because he is super right.

Usually negotiating starts around any meal time. Ben do you want to have chicken? No. Pizza? No. Meatballs? No. Then it is a process of figuring out which "carrot - and not the edible kind unless it is packaged with something else - will get Ben to eat.

Without a doubt technology has played a role in any feeding/negotiating time. The hands-down favorite is the IPad. Yes there is an App for that! Ben will usually ask for "ipad?" to begin his negotiations. Depending on how tired the parent is how we determine the exact time that the Ipad is whipped out.

We have learned that the Toy Story 3 Disney Book app goes great with mac-and-cheese or brocolli and hummus. Unfortunately, we have also learned that hummus is a lot harder than smudges to remove from the screen. There is no app for that.

Looking back on things and life before "the pad," Ben has been negotiating since he figured out how to point at things and say "Um." During these stages Mom or I would say "This?" at various things pointed to on the table until we got a head nod and figured out the object that would make Ben eat his green beans. It was like a big game of Um and Seek or Um and Cold.

Then, with object in hand, Ben would eat until he decided the next game of Um should resume.

These days "Um" has been replaced by, "big truck, ipad, cars, bear, and book."

It will be interesting to see how the negotiating tactics will evolve from here. In fact, as I am finishing this post I can hear Lori asking me to help her with something. I simply respond, "Ipad?"

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