After seeing Disney's Hercules one of the kids I baby-sit, about 5-years old, decided Hercules was the coolest. He went around for a year dressed as Hercules wearing a vest and bearing toy sword. We all had to call him Hercules. That was his name now. If you called him by his real name he'd say "People call me Hercules now!"

Since then he's been Peter Pan, Tarzan, and now he's into Power Rangers.

One must wonder whether the odd character is the 5 year old kid ... or his parents? Certainly, if left unchecked, a child that age could do a lot of odd things. I imagine if my parents looked the other way, I could have spent a whole year not bathing or changing my clothes, eating nothing but peanut butter jelly sandwiches.

I am all for giving a child every opportunity to use his/her imagination and explore his/her identity. If Disney's Dream Kid had been my son, though, I probably would have sat him down after a few weeks of this and tried to explain how I am not Zeus and that he should probably not be standing in the middle of the road, trying to stop cars with his bare hands.

All in all, though, I envy that kid. He's going to have a healthy inner child when he grows up. I imagine that he'll have to find employment someplace that fits his 'habits', such as an amusement park or San Francisco.

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