Object Permanence: Now You See It, Now You

Children can be cute, but they don’t know bupkis about anything. Take, for instance, the word bupkis, which most kids know bupkis about. Also take, for instance, every young child’s favorite game: Peek-a-Boo. 

Kids love this game because they believe adults disappear every time they cover their face with their hands. Adults tolerate this game but always kinda wish it would disappear.

Yet we keep playing because we know the innocence of our Peek-a-Boo loving kids will vanish soon enough. Because once they learn the concept of object permanence, it’s all downhill from there.

Psychologist Jean Piaget, who first coined the term “object permanence,” described this stage of development as when children grasp the concept that things continue to exist even if you cannot see them. But wouldn’t we be better off if he’d just left well enough alone? Peek-a-Boo’s a fun game because it feels like magic.

Why burst our bubble, Dr. Jean? Who Peek-a-Hurt you?

Which gets me thinking…there are a ton of adult things I wish I could play Peek-a-Boo with. I’d put a hand over my face every time I think of my credit card debt, my inability to commit to a relationship, or my Aunt Ruth’s goiter.

But because I understand the concept of object permanence, I know that ignoring my problems won’t make them go away. I know that as soon as I move my hands and open my eyes, Aunt Ruth’s goiter’s gonna be staring right back at me. Which, I gotta say, is a real bummer. 

But what if we actually could make things disappear for good? What if there was some magical way we could conquer the stronghold of object permanence and rid our lives of the things we no longer want to look at? Things like rich old cis hetero white men who think they should be president. And minimum wages that are criminally low because of rich old cis hetero white men who run the country. And antiquarian laws that govern a woman’s body written by rich old cis hetero white men who should mind their own business. I’m sensing a theme here. 

So, what if we could play an epic game of Peek-a-Boo with rich old cis hetero white men? The wonderful truth is, we can. By voting. Voting is the ultimate game of Peek-a-Boo! Block out those rich old cis hetero white men with your vote. If enough of us do it, we can make them disappear for good. Object impermanence, bitches!

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