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Jeepers, Creepers, Where’d You Get Those Peepers? (a.k.a. Si ves algo, di algo.)

August 31st, 2010  |  by  |  Published in Uncategorized  |  2 Comments

Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Superman! No, wait—actually, it is a plane.


Spot the airplane.

This, pretty much, is a typical excursion out of doors with Sasha these days. No matter where she is or what she’s doing, she’ll suddenly tilt her head heavenward, point, and say, “Airplane!” And usually, Jean or I will have to squint and follow her finger because the little speck of a jet is so distant that we can barely see it. But Sasha can, or she can hear the roar of its engines and locate it in an instant. It’s amazing.

In fact, the kid is always spotting planes, bird, bugs, squirrels, cats, dogs, and, whether he’s sprawled huge on a distant subway poster or shrunk to a microdot on a discard diaper, Elmo. And so we’re always asking ourselves: Is this kind of seemingly spectacular eyesight normal?

The Internet is, unaccountably, lacking when it comes to information on toddler eyesight. Googling “toddler eyesight” brings up results related to poor vision, not good vision, and asking the Tubes “Do toddlers see better than adults?” leads to wacko stuff about children and ghosts.

Because I don’t want to imagine my kid is Supergirl—and because I don’t want to be dismayed when she eventually gets prescription lenses like her parents—I tend not to believe she has bionic eyes. Rather, I have a theory: When you’re faced with thousands of objects and events you don’t understand, your eyes naturally pick out the two dozen things they do recognize, like airplanes and Elmo. It’s like when I try to read Chinese—95 percent of the characters are gibberish, but the few I know, I can spot right away.

Still, we’re enrolling her in archery and riflery classes as soon as she’s eligible.


  1. nmw says:

    August 31st, 2010at 5:59 pm(#)

    My 13 month old eagerly signs dog dog dog when no dog can be detected by adults, but soon enough one will hear a faint bark or see the pup on the horizon. Your theory seems right to me.

  2. Kacey says:

    September 13th, 2010at 9:12 pm(#)

    If it’s any consolation, my three year old also spots airplanes when my wife and I swear there are none to be seen. It’s most often when we are in the car and he’ll look out the windows and shout “airplane,” and we spend the next two minutes trying not to drive off the road while we look to figure out if he’s hallucinating or not.

    As we are both very poor sighted, we hold the unlikely hopes that he has not inherited our horrible eyesight.

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