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Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Liziko, the badass 4 year-old

Our friend Khatuna's daughter, Liziko (the diminuitive of "Liza"), is this tiny creature who tiptoes around the apartment, peering around corners, then shrieks when spotted and scampers away.

But like a true young Georgian woman, she loves to vamp it up, putting on her mother's makeup and dressing up, though she is only 4 years old. This is just one of many ways she completely mystifies her grandparents and punkish mother, who have no idea where she gets her proclivity for showing off.

Nana, our friend and Khatuna's, took Liziko one day to the cafeteria of her graduate institute. The students there are very considerate and ignored her, so as not to make her feel out of place among the teenagers and twenty-somethings. Of course this wouldn't do for Liziko, who marched up to a cluster of people and said "Well, why are you ignoring me? I'm wonderful, my name is Liziko, pay attention to me!"

Everyone quickly got drawn into the show. One group of guys started to tease Nana and Liziko, saying that Liziko is wonderful, but Nana is a very bad, wicked, sinful girl. Liziko leaned over to Nana and said, "I think that these guys like you, but I'm not sure. Wait here and I'll find out."

Then she went over and demanded, "So do you guys like Nana, or what? She's too good for you, she is wonderful, you're just some regular guys."

They asked her, "Who is Nana to you, anyway? Not your mother, right?" And she said casually, "Oh, Nana's one of my friends, we hang out a lot."

Giorgi Margvelashvili, the director of the institute and a well-known figure in Georgian politics and education, came into the cafeteria, and seeing Liziko, he said "Well, Nana, I see you have a young girl, but of course this isn't your daughter?"

Nana replied "No, she's a friend's daughter." But Liziko looked up at her with crocodile tears and cried, "Mommy, why are you telling this man I'm not your daughter? Who is this man, who does he think he is?"

Then she got into the idea of being Nana's daughter and declared, "It's amazing, a mother with her daughter, and both so beautiful!"

At this point the entire school was standing around in the cafeteria watching her, laughing hysterically.

"Well," she said, "are you the teachers or what?"

Several teachers said, "We are teachers." Liziko said "Well, you must agree with me that Nana is the best, the most beautiful and the number one student!"

They all laughed and nodded and repeated obediently, "Nana is the best," etc.

When it was time to leave everyone called for Liziko to come back as soon as possible. Nana and Liziko walked out the door, but Liziko turned at the threshold and sternly commanded all assembled to declare, one last time, that Nana is the best, with which they hastened to agree.

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