At the aquarium in Atlanta, the boys bought an assortment of little plastic ocean animals. For most of today, Owen played with the little plastic jellyfish, punishing her in various ways. He's put her in a squishing machine, flushed her down a pretend toilet, and made a box fall on her, just to name a few. Every time I ask him why he's playing so mean with the jellyfish, he says, "Well, what do you mean? She's been stinging me and all the other fish all day long!" So finally, this evening, concerned with his violent play, I told him that instead of punishing the jellyfish, he should let her play with one of the nice fish, and the nice fish can teach the jellyfish to be kind to others and not to sting. He brought me the seal, and said that he decided the seal could teach the jellyfish to be kind, and would I please play the part of the seal?
Owen: Mom, you be the seal and I'll be the jellyfish, and you talk about being nice to the other fish.
Me (as the seal): Jellyfish, it's important to be kind to other fish, and not to sting them, because --
Owen (as the jellyfish): Bzzzzz. I stung you. [walks away]