“I am practically a clone.”

July 24, 2014

Notable Stats

Copycat Copies Per Hour (CCH) – The amount of times per hour the baby of the family says the exact words that her sibling said seconds before, while taking full credit for the original idea.
Tone Attitude Amplification (TAA) – The increase in attitude and volume by which the younger child repeats the words of an older child in an effort to one-up everyone in earshot.

The baby of our family is now 2 and a half. So not really a baby. She speaks, she requests TV shows, she can put on her own shoes. However, in her relentless effort to copy her older sister, we sometimes forget that she is a separate being.
Everything her sister says, she just repeats back louder and in a way that expresses offense that we are not giving her credit that it was her idea. All while she will never show any hesitation for the raw plagiarism of it all. She is indignant and definitive in her idea theft. 
She will order food that she has no intention of eating just to trump the first order by her siblings. She will strut to the car and wait to be buckled in to go to places where she is not invited nor enrolled. She will boldly and without hesitation, take the blame for an infraction that her sister is reluctantly admitting just to claim it in a more expressive way and to take credit for having a better and more believable confession.
She may enter a room, hear nothing of the previous conversation and blurt out “no!” which doesn’t really fit when we just asked our other kids about the name of their soccer coach.
I don’t know whether to get her an attorney as she keeps admitting to every crime her siblings have committed (for the purpose of one-upping them) or to put her in a parrot suit and start selling tickets for her next show. But either way, she is a walking copy machine and our older kids are no longer accepting the explanation that her copying is a “form of flattery.”
I get it because she probably is not flattering them at all. She is mocking them, hoping to steal their identity and birth order, to erase their own memories and birth certificates like some sort of evil scientist. She will fight bedtime just to keep up with her brother and sister, remaining napless and delirious, only to fall asleep curled up between the fifth and sixth stair in a half folded pull-up. Yet she is “not tired.”
I imagine this is life for the youngest of three. She is tiny, gets pushed out of the way by our dogs, stepped on by chickens and other wayward living beings on a daily basis. She needs to yell, scream, and make sure no one is overlooking her or treading on her sovereignty. 
Yet, in her clone country, she needs some rules against stealing original ideas and pillaging inventions and thoughts that belong to others. At the very least, she needs to require her mimicking citizens to start off every comment with “Good idea, I….” She must give credit where credit is due, even if she plans to parade around her thievery for the world to see. 
- Doug Glanville


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