Who's That?

I'm just going to go ahead and come clean about this: I can be a horrible know-it-all. My head is stuffed with all manner of useless trivia, from ancient history to different standards of timekeeping. That guy at the party who's obnoxiously rambling on and on about some sliver of esoterica that nobody else in the room cares about? Yeah, that's me.

It's kind of ironic, then, that the most common answer I have to give to Jason's questions is "I don't know." Mind you, he's not asking me particularly profound or arcane questions. No, the most common thing he asks me these days is some variation on "Who's that?"

Everywhere we go, Jason wants to know who everybody is. At the mall, say, he'll point to some random stranger and ask who it is. Then when I tell him I don't know, he'll just move on to the next person and ask again.

"I don't know who everybody is, pal," I'll say to him. He'll cock his head and squint at me as he tries to process this revelation. I can see the little wheels turning in his head as he mulls over the idea that I don't have all the answers. Eventually he'll say "Oh, OK," then turn right around and ask who someone else is.

The funny thing is, he even asks about people when he already knows the answer. This evening when I picked him up from day care, for example, he pointed to a woman who had exited the building ahead of us, carrying her daughter to her car.

"Who mommy that?" he asked.

"I don't know whose mommy that is, buddy," I responded, recognizing neither the woman nor the girl in her arms.

"That Eva mommy!" he shouted.

"Oh really? That's Eva's mommy?"


I'm starting to wonder if he's testing me or something. Maybe his inner know-it-all is manifesting early.