Is it still bad luck to open an umbrella indoors? I guess I’m not really that superstitious, but I hope not, considering that my two-year-old discovered his brother’s Batman umbrella and played with it until its metal brackets and frame came unhinged, until it could do no one any good in the rain as it lie there broken and bent out of shape in the middle of the living room floor. Batman looked less like a superhero and more like a shadow of himself in tights and begging for mercy from my curious and determined little boy.
Who is Batman’s archnemesis? If you ask my husband, who I’m mildly embarrassed (for him) to say knows all about these comic book characters, he might suggest “The Joker”, “Riddler”, “The Penguin”, or “Two Face”. Don’t ask me how he knows these things. I might also add that once I got him talking about comics, it was hard to get him stop. But after considering all those imaginary enemies the masked man in tights battles in comics, on television, and on the movie screen, I imagine his real (and ultimate) challenge might actually be my curious and somewhat destructive two-year-old as he repeatedly opened and closed Batman’s flimsy fabric wings, turned the umbrella upside down and spun it like a spinning top, and dragged that poor superhero down the stairs and all throughout the house. There was even a point when my little boy stomped inside the open umbrella (I think) just to see what would happen. I knew what would happen—it would lose all its superhero powers, and therefore lose its playful mystique. And of course after a few minutes it did. So how do I break the news to my seven-year-old that his little brother broke his Batman umbrella—my guess is very gently.