“Papa, Are Giants Real? Yes . . . No . . . Maybe . . . Oh Damn!”

A couple of nights ago, I was sitting on the couch with my four year old granddaughter watching the movie version of the musical “Into The Woods,” which happens to be one of my top five favorite shows. Stephen Sondheim, a brilliantly, talented, composer and lyricist does a phenomenal job engaging his audience with a plot that has many unsuspected twists and turns as well as a score filled with memorable melodies and clever lyrics. But anyway, I digress. So out of the blue, my granddaughter turns to me and says; “Papa, is there really such things as giants?”


As you may have guessed, giants do exist in “Into The Woods,”  but I knew I had to choose my words wisely as I sincerely didn’t want her to think that “Giants” are still around today (that I know of anyway) and I didn’t want her to have nightmares either. Of course, The protective, caring, father, side of me wanted to put her mind at ease and keep her safe from anything and everything that might frighten her, but the teacher, historian, storyteller, side of me wanted to tell her the story of how some people believe that “Giants” did live on Earth thousands and thousands, of years ago and their skeletons have been found all around the world. You have to understand one thing . . .  my granddaughter is four going on twenty four with a vocabulary that would make you stop and take notice. Even her pediatrician calls her his little genius so you see she isn’t like your average four year old. I decided to meet her question halfway in the middle by offering her only enough information that she needed to know without opening Pandora’s Box.

I explained to her about the “Bible” and how there are stories in it that feature giants and that there are many people today who travel around the world looking for the skeletons of giants and trying to find out more about the way they lived. “Well Papa . . . Do you believe that giants lived a long time ago?”  Damn, I was trying to avoid that question, but I should have known better, especially when having a conversation with her. Keeping it simple, I said; “I believe that it’s possible that giants lived here a long time ago, but I can’t prove they did and I can’t prove they didn’t.” How’s that for being cautiously vague? She looked at me with her big, baby-blue eyes and said; “Let’s go look it up on your computer!”  Oh boy, what did I get myself into?

Reluctantly, I agreed and when the first picture came up on the screen she put both hands to her face and yelled; “Holy-moly Papa!” There it was, a giant skeleton being unearthed from the ground. “Is that thing real?” she asked with a nervous laugh. It was at that moment when I realized I really didn’t know much about this subject, but if you believe in the teachings of the Bible and also believe that genuine skeletons have been unearthed and documented, then I would have to say . . . yes, Giants” did walk the Earth a very long time ago. Here are a couple of the videos we quickly scanned through until she got bored and said “Let’s go play your piano!”  Together we sat down at my piano and . . . made up songs about “giants” of course. Researching  giants hadn’t phased her in the least. Later that evening my daughter called me to tell me that she had just received a twenty minute lecture about, you guessed it . . . “Giants!” Thank God we didn’t research Quantum or Theoretical Physics,  she’d probably be able to explain “Dark Matter!

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