When we're inside the house, the three-year-old I babysit relishes playing Judo Kick. He screams, "Judo kick!" and hurls his body into my legs.
When we're outside the house on the trampoline, he enjoys playing horses. He screams, "Horses!" and hurls his body into my legs.
Bruises generally garnish my shins.
A few days ago, he shrieked, "Horses!" and almost dislocated my hand while dragging me to the trampoline. He then introduced the hoola hoop.
"Horses jump through hula hoops," he informed me.
The night before I had drunk a bottle and raised hell. I was too hung over and too tired to protest to a three-year-old. I elevated the hula hoop, and he either jumped through it or bull-charged into it.
After every time he jumped through, he'd ask me if he had jumped over the hula hoop. I was more likely to vomit on him, but I didn't tell him that. I agreed that he'd bounced over the three-foot high hoop. Every time. He began referring to himself as Superman.
Far too soon for Superman, my arm and brain terminated function. I blame the ethanol fermenting inside my head. I forgot to exercise caution in the hula hoop's placement. One edge of the hula hoop rested on the trampoline while my skull rested on my bicep.
The three-year-old continued flinging himself through the hula hoop. Instead of tumbling onto the jumping mat, his shoulder would smash into the trampoline's outer safety pad rim. He'd land on one arm. He'd slam his head into the mesh. He'd smile. He bounced right off the trampoline. Superman landed on his head. He was inches away from crushing the bunny.