Thursday, October 20, 2005

Things that Make You Go, "Duh!"

One of the most interesting/rewarding/difficult things about raising really smart kids is that they often make connections (and very young ages) that I wish I could have thought of myself. For example, yesterday Klaus and I were discussing the Intelligent Design movement and I told him the argument I had picked up from my reading about the Dover PA school board court case. I knew this example incorrect but couldn't quite articulate (to my own satisfaction) what the counter-argument would be. Turns out I didn't need to.

Argument 1: You're walking along the sidewalk and come up a wristwatch lying there. You don't wonder how it could have evolved to be how it is; you recognize that it's an incredibly intricate machine which must have been designed by someone of higher intelligence. Similarly, human beings must have been designed by someone of higher intelligence.

Klaus says (immediately), "That's ridiculous. Watches are inanimate objects. Inanimate objects don't evolve."

When Klaus was 4, he was very interested in outer space. We lived in Denver at the time--great for stargazing--and had watched comets, etc. on tv, like the comet fragments that crashed into Jupiter. One day Dad was telling him the names of the planets. "And this one we call UR-anus because otherwise it sounds like we're talking about your anus."

Klaus: "Urine-us. (with water spraying sound) Heeheeheehee!"

Also around this same time, Klaus was talking with one of Dad's colleagues from medical school about the comet impact that may have killed the dinosaurs. Dr. X told him that nothing like that would ever happen nowadays.

Klaus: "What about Fragment G?" (The largest of the coment fragments that hit Jupiter.)

Dr. X hadn't made the connection and frankly, neither had anyone else I know.

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