Totally Quotable Arlo: long shadow edition


We went to the lake yesterday and stayed a little longer than we’d planned to. By the time we finally packed up and left, the sun was going down, and, on the way to the car, Arlo noticed that his shadow had grown since he’d seen it last. “My shadow’s a grown-up,” he said.

I was tempted to make up a reason for his shadow’s rapid aging, but instead decided to tell him the truth. So I knelt down, and, to the best of my ability, tried to explain why it is that our shadows grow longer as the sun moves closer to the horizon.

And should have stopped there.

But, as I felt that he understood me, I decided to press on and add that the sun, in fact, wasn’t moving at all, but that we were. And I could tell from the look on his face that I’d gone too far. While he could comprehend how shadows might change with our relationship to the sun, he just wasn’t ready to accept that that the sun doesn’t really rise and set at all, but that we’re spinning around it. So I decided to cut my losses, challenging him instead to see if he could outrun his shadow.

The next several minutes were spent watching him zig zag around the park looking over his shoulder and breathlessly yelling out, “It’s… still… there.”

[If you’ve got a few extra minutes, be sure to check out our Totally Quotable Arlo archive.]

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  1. anonymous
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    “It’s not just that your shadow is getting bigger. You’re getting smaller. Your shadow is feeding off of you, taking your energy. Run! You have outrun it!”

  2. Lynne
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    Hopefully he wont remember that! You were wrong. The sun totally is moving. Here is a nice animation of how it tows our orbiting planets along with it! :)

  3. grandma
    Posted June 30, 2015 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

    Arlo is getting so big!! I sure need some Arlo / Grandma time soon! Love that little guy!

  4. Lindsay
    Posted July 1, 2015 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    Eli and I play a ninja fighting game with our shadows. We never hit each other but we can punch one another’s shadow. It is so fun!

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