Kids are about as close as a human can get to being an iPod Shuffle. Their brains are full of information and curiosity, but they’re not tied down by agonizing questions like, “is what I’m about to say relevant?” or, “does this person even care”? Interacting with a little kid is a choose-your-own adventure of sorts, but the kind that has a bunch of pages missing and half of the clues say “open the book to literally any page.” Are kids, in fact, trying to tell us something? Is there any method to their madness? One Reddit dad made a valiant attempt to figure it out by charting a full week of everything he learned when his son asked, “wanna know somefing?”
Reddit user wequiock_falls told The Dad, “About two weeks ago I noticed that my son said “wanna know somefing?” a lot. I thought it would be fun to keep track of how many times he said it in a day. That quickly turned into me wanting to know the breakdowns of the subject matter.”
This detailed dad got to work, pulling out his phone every time his son uttered the all-important, “wanna know somefing?” before tracking the data points in a notes app. He then shared the colorful chart to the subreddit r/dataisbeautiful, a community that finds great joy in visual representations of data. Early on, he realized there were more categories than he expected. From Paper Mario to future aspirations and everything in between, this six-year-old clearly had a lot going on.
“Most of the comics and television categories were him acting out scenes, but the really fun ones were when he would talk about his life,” explained wequiock_falls. “One of my favorite things he said I categorized as ‘future aspirations.’ He told me that we should save up enough money to buy an airplane. I asked him why, and he said he wanted me to fly it super high up and then come down quick so he could experience zero gravity.”
Wequiock_falls continued, “Another, I put under past experiences. He said, ‘wanna know somefing? This one time I fell out of the chair and caught my sandwich.’ It happened not even 60 seconds earlier and I helped him get back up. Wild.”
Over the 7-day period, wequiock_falls collected data in 18 different categories. The most frequently discussed category being Minecraft, likely because the father-son duo often play together. When discussing the data with his wife, they wondered what the chart would look like if she had been the one collecting data. What information was more important for his dad to know, and what info is reserved for the 6-year-old’s mom? One difference, they hypothesized, is that he would likely share more Paper Mario facts with his mom since that’s the game they play together. How would this chart look a couple of weeks into school? The week of his birthday? There’s only one way to find out.
While may not have unraveled the great mysteries of the kid brain, at the very least, we most definitely learned somefing.