One of the greatest things about a toddler is their sweet innocence. The way they get so excited about the simple joys in life. How they only know to answer a question honestly. How a hug, a kiss, or an 'I love you' are just as likely to be shared in the grocery store aisle as they are at bedtime. And how they have no filter when it comes to saying what's on their minds.
This morning we went to the zoo in Bloomington with Liam and Aunt Melissa. Before heading for home after our zoo morning, we were sitting in the shade outside the entrance of the zoo while Liam and Staley played together. While playing, a man and a woman went by, going for a walk. The man was shirtless. You know the type. Shirtless, unnaturally tan, obviously spends most of his free time at the gym, more visible ab muscles than is humanly possible. As they walked by, Staley said (rather loudly since I'm sitting a little ways away), "Mommy, why is that man not wearing his clothes?" (Louder since I didn't answer) "Why is he not wearing his clothes?" (Louder still since I'm now too busy laughing to answer.) "Why is he not wearing his clothes?" Not wanting to be left out of the conversation, Liam exclaims, "I'm wearing my clothes. I'm wearing my clothes" (as he proceeds to tug at his shirt as evidence that he is, indeed, wearing his clothes.)
I have to assume that the man heard the conversation. And he probably couldn't miss Melissa and I laughing about it either. And although I didn't verbalize it, it's a valid question. At 11:00 in the morning on a beautiful not-too-hot day in a public park where you are not running, mowing the lawn, or using your shirt as a tourniquet to help an injured stranger, is it really necessary to walk around shirtless? My daughter, in all her sweet innocence, was just asking the question that we all wish we could.