Here's yet more free advice from the voice of experience-- don't ever give your kids any authority over you, even in a seemingly harmless game. Case in point:
After watching The Incredibles again yesterday afternoon (with my parents, as a consolation for not getting to go on a hard-core bike ride and run/walk with J-, Katie, and I), D- was very much in a mood to wrestle people and hit things and somehow be both a hero and a villain at the same time. Not unlike The Shield, I suppose.
Anyway, this is a very common and predictable effect, so I figured I would indulge these impulses by wrestling with him for a while when we got back. Unfortunately, while it helped somewhat, it did not stop the baby testosterone from surging the rest of the day, so we had to try again later in the evening.
This time he ended up sitting on me and declaring me "under wrestle and in JAIL now!" I went along with this, since it meant I could just lay there on the floor and relax, or at least relax as much as one can with a hopped-up 4-year-old threatening supposedly fictional violence and a 17-month-old stalking around wielding a bear with 8-pound shoes who's as happy as she is to have a grownup at floor level and who both express said happiness by jumping onto anything soft.
With his tough-guy attitude (plainly underlined by his repeated declarations that "I'm TOUGH!") and arbitrary bossiness in full bloom, I chose to continue my ongoing explanation (despite his clever insistence that I was not allowed to talk while in jail) to D- that even when you are a police officer/prison warden, you still have a boss in the form of the law as determined by the people and their representatives.
Building on this lesson, I assured him that the law allowed for a pillow in a prisoner's bunk. He responded by fervently stating that prisoners are not even allowed a bed. I felt a moment of indignation at having my constitutional rights violated, then I took a breath and kept up the game by appealing to J- as an agreeable voice of reason. This did little to sway my captor, so I decided to instead go to the person much more likely to take appropriate action in a pretend game, and I asked M- to get me the pillow I knew I was guaranteed by the people of the United States of America.
She of course took right off to get one, because she is a good little girl, and like a dog spotting a small animal fleeing, D- jumped off his throne and snatched a pillow before she could give me the satisfaction. Coasting on this minor victory, I decided to get greedy, and the following conversation ensued:
Me: The law also says I get to have another pillow for my crotch. I feel a little vulnerable here.
D- (using mean voice): Okay! Here is another one, then!
He begrudgingly tosses a pillow down to me and goes back to the couch.
Me: Thank you.
After covering myself, I put my hands over my face and planned to relax for a few minutes while getting credit for Playing With Us.
M- (deciding after notable experience that my covering my face and laying on the floor must mean that she's hurt me): Sorry!
Me (uncovering my face so she could give me the kiss I could hear coming my way): That's okay, baby.
D-: No talking!!* (runs over and presses a third pillow to my face)
Me: Ooooookay, we're all done with this game now.
In his defense, the "no talking" rule had been clearly stated all along. If he's learned one thing from me, it's that you have to take swift, decisive action when needed. In that light, this brings a little tear to my eye, and not for the usual reasons.
* The elite Arrested Development fans out there should undoubtedly be reminded of Take Your Daughter to Work Day at the prison.