My Luchadora wife recently developed a genius motivational system for the potty training of our two year old: the coveted Potty Treasure Chest. It’s a Potty Pirates dream, filled with cheap, made-in-China, dollar-store toys which give about 5 minutes of play time before they break. No matter, though, because every time the little Pirate makes a deposit into the Bowl Bank, he is rewarded with a trip to the Treasure Chest! Flawless system… so we thought.
Elias has made some big strides in the past three weeks, to the point where he informs us that it’s time for a deposit and a visit to the Treasure Chest. The other day we were playing with some blocks when he suddenly pauses and, like a bloodhound picking up a scent, perks up his chubby face, sniffs and says, “I gotta go caca!”
I scoop him up and knock down the blocks as we answer the call.
“I get trevor chess!” He yells as we swing around the corner and have the bathroom in sight.
“Si Elias, if you do caca, you get treasure chest.” I assure him.
I plop him on the Bowl Bank and he begins the deposit process with a few choice grunts and growls. Just then, Yarei walks by the bathroom carrying Selah.
“Make sure it’s a big caca,” she says to me, matter-of-factly. “Recently he’s been doing a series of little cacas instead of pushing it all out at once. I told him he only gets treasure chest for a big caca.”
“Clever,” I thought. “He’s maximizing his caca power.”
“But how am I supposed to know if it’s a big one?” I asked, but she had already disappeared into Selah’s room.
Without missing a beat, Elias beams, “I did big caca!”
I inspect the deposit, and in my unprofessional opinion, it was not a “big caca.” He was obviously holding out.
“No Elias. Esa es caca chiquita. Sientate y has mas caca” (sit and make more caca.)
“NO!! Es caca grande, no es caca chiquita!” came his protest.
“Eliiiias”, I cocked my head to the side and gave him what I thought was a “papi knows that’s a little caca” look.
“NO PAPI! ES CACA GRANDE! ES CACA GRANDE!” he pleaded with his eyes as if saying, this is the best i’ve got!
I was at a loss. Without a set standard of caca grande vs. caca chiquita, I couldn’t argue with his claim. I didn’t want to be accused of tampering with the Potty Training scales, because that opens up a whole pandora’s box of consequences. What’s next, right is wrong and wrong is right? No absolute truth? I had to make a decision.
I studied the deposit one more time, rubbing my chin as I squinted at it. After a long pause that probably seemed like an eternity to him, I said. “Ok… es caca grande. Vamos al treasure chest!” I shouted in triumph.
“TREVOR CHESS!!!” He yelled at the heavens, fist in the air.
Just then, Yarei emerged from Selah’s room. She peeked into the Bowl Bank.
“That’s a caca chiquita.”
Elias looked at me as if to say “I need absolutes to find my way in life. Don’t mess this up.”
In my best authoritative voice I settled the issue. “Look… unless you put some kind of scale in here to give me an absolute standard, I have to take his word for it. It’s the law of cacanomics.”
And off we went on a quest for our friend Trevor Chess.