Mar 9, 2012

The First Adventure of Black Clay and Violet Clay

We gave Neneng a block of clay around three weeks ago. It's 180 grams of pure violet. We used to give her multi-colored sets, clay fingers of green, red, cobalt, and yellow. While I loved to see my daughter's manipulations, I grew tired of watching these brilliant colors merge into a singular mud.

We had a set of instructions for the violet clay: Always with an adult. Wash your hands right after. Don't mix it up with other clay. Play it on a spread of carton to keep it from hair, dust, and crumbs. Also, don't divide the block into pieces too small. The wind might scatter the pieces. Your sister might eat them.

My wife bought a block for me as well. I unwrapped it a few days ago. Neneng was excited to see the black clay in action. Earlier tonight, she asked for a piece of the black to throw into her project, but I said it would ruin her favorite color. Instead, I handed her an old SIM card for slicing.

She was well into her work when I began mine. I rolled some slices into black limbs. I wanted to capture an unforgettable CCTV scene: a student, a split second from falling to the ground. Neneng wanted to know what I was doing. What did it look like, I asked. A boy, she said. She told me to give it a pair of eyes. Okay, anak.

She then flattened a round piece and handed me the disc. Pancake 'to. Kakainin po ng boy.

I attempted a double of the fallen boy, the same basic figure, but it was to stand upright and carry a knife. But the weight was off, and it kept toppling over. Neneng thought my two figures were exercising. Push-ups, but she didn't have the word for it so she went down on the floor to demonstrate. Yes, I said, almost shouting. I did not teach her the word "push-ups," and I said in no uncertain terms that she was to return to her seat.

Was the threat registered? Did she hear the "or else" that was hiding there? If so, then she did not let on. Nothing could disturb her work. She cut a wedge off her block, gave it to my murderer,and smiled at me. Ito naman cheese na para sa isa.

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