Sunday, December 4, 2011

Where’s Luca?

When Luca was a baby, we, like most parents, played that game where you drape a cloth diaper over his head and say, “Wheeeere’s Luca? Wheeeeere’s Luca?” Then we’d lift the diaper, we’d shout, “There he is!” baby laughs would be delivered from New Jersey and we’d repeat until he needed to eat.

Luca hasn’t figured out that we stopped the game.

We’ll be minding out own business, most likely explaining to Elijah why he cannot watch his 30th consecutive hour of television, when one of us will say, “Where’s Luca?” But not in that entertaining, draw out the “e” way.

And then we search. For someone who hasn’t lost his delightful baby fat, Luca can cram himself into some pretty tight quarters. His favorite location was, until recently, my closet. And why not? There is a ton to entertain himself with during the hunt: Plaid shirts, unused dress pants. The occasional tag from the dry cleaners. Lint.

But after yanking down the clothes bar and burying himself in J Crew, he banned him from my closet. So he’s had to find new places to hide.

We’ve found him in the sill of our front window (which, when naked, gives passersby a nice show) and in our Christmas present closet. Luca hasn’t yet figured out if he turned his attention from hiding to opening, he’d discover Santa’s loot. But he much prefers to awkwardly lean heavy boxes onto his own body in painful dedication to his art.

In the end, it’s never too difficult to find the boy. He can’t resist laughing when you go from room to room asking for him. This is why I think he won’t make it as a criminal. At any crime scene, the police will merely have to say, “Wheeere’s Luca?” into their megaphones and Luca will respond, “Tee hee hee…”

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