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The Metamorphosis of Destroyer Dan

Daniel, as we all know, loves to take things apart. He’s had a rather destructive tendency since he could walk, something that got exponentially worse once he figured out how to use a screwdriver. If Daniel has access to a screwdriver, nothing is safe. Anything that has a screw just seems to scream out to him, “Take me out! Take me out!” He simply can’t resist. (This is the reason, incidentally, why he has no doorknob on his door. There just didn’t seem to be much point in putting it back on again.)

As he’s gotten older he’s become somewhat more self-controlled about thinking at least SOME of the time before destroying things, but it’s still a major drive with him. Now, he usually asks first before dissembling something, though, which is a huge improvement.

Wednesday, he came up to me and asked if he could take apart an old toy cash register he found in the basement. I had it in a box of “baby toys” that I keep for the times we have company with smaller children. My first reaction was to say no, but then I figured that it wasn’t that great a toy anyway, and we had others, so why not. But I gave him a challenge. I told him that he could take it apart IF he could put it back together again.

He took me up on my challenge. It took him one afternoon to take it apart, and he’s been spending two days putting it back together again. He’s been determined, keeping with it until he figures it out. When he had gotten done taking it apart, it was in tons of tiny parts, but as of this morning, he’d gotten it to this point.

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And he’s still working on it. It looks like we’ll have to change his name from “Destroyer Dan” to “Determined Dan.” I should have given him this challenge a long time ago!


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