The Shriner's Circus deserves its own post, let's be honest. A contortionist who sat on her own head and (while in said pose) shot an arrow with her toes! Tigers leaping through flaming hoops! (Roaring and slashing their claws at a man dressed in leopard skin pants, picture that!) Rainbow-colored ponies danced and acrobats flew through the air; we ate cotton candy and touched a python and rode an elephant. But alas, I am not writing about this. Oh no, no sir. Today's topic is The Thumbs Up.
Before we even entered the circus, the entertainment began. My skinny blond boy, walking past the ticket counter, said something in Spanish. The acrobats, all from Latin America, heard him speak and gushed about how cute he was. Flaco turned back to them and made ojitos (wiggling his eyebrows up and down in the most coquettish of ways.) They flocked to him, squeezing his cheeks, asking him his name. But did my boy tell his name? Oh no, no no. Instead, he decided to tell a joke. Tentatively, quietly (with some cajoling) "Como son los hijos de Superman? Son supermansitos!" They squealed, they clapped. "Que dijo un jaguar al otro jaguar? Jaguar you!" He was creating a scene. "Como se dice espejo en japones? Ahitoyo!" Now adding motions, leaning back with arms out for the punchline: "Que pasa cuando un elefante se para en una pata? El pato se queda viudo!" They covered him kisses, red lipstick marks all over his little face. I took his hand and managed to pry him away. "What's your name, what's your name?" they called after him. "Lucas!" he said.
We went to buy cotton candy at half-time, and as soon as he approached the table, the girls behind the counter said "Oh, there he is! It's Lucas!" He smiled a flirty smile and waved goodbye. The show continued and finally drew to an end; we headed for a side exit but didn't get far before we heard someone yell out "There he goes! The true star of the show!" We turned around and there were the Shriners in their caps, waving goodbye to my son. "Everyone here has heard about you, kid!"
But back to the thumbs-up. Right before the show began, we doubled back and asked the acrobats who remained if we could take his picture with them. They were delighted and pulled him in, then shrieked again. "Look at him! He's giving a thumbs-up!" And indeed he was. Just standing there, slightly stoic looking, little thumb pointing. He had never done that before in his life, but if ever there was a context where it fit, let me tell you, it was then.
A visit home to Washburn Wisconsin
6 days ago