May 31, 2011 by rebelwithalabelmaker
Hummingbirdbrained tendency 112: Inappropriate humour…
Okay, in my defence, you have to understand about my niece Wendy (not her real name of course).
When not-Wendy was three or four, her mother, also not named Wendy–let’s call her Leigh–took left her and her sister in a locked car for a moment, to zip into the store. If you’re clenching up your shoulders to prepare for a horrible story of abduction, relax. And stop reading so much news–it’s making you paranoid.
While in the store, Leigh runs into an old friend that her children have never met. Curious, she asks said friend to go see if he can get the kids to unlock the car. As anyone who knows little Wendy could predict, the friend was not successful. Not only did little Wendy refuse to unlock the car, she moved all car seats to dead centre of the vehicle, yelled “Alert! Alert!” at the top of her lungs, and began honking the horn. Nobody’s abducting that kid.
I don’t like to teach my kids that the world is full of mean people wanting to abduct them, because 1) it isn’t, 2) what a sad way to live, and 3) research shows it doesn’t work. Kids expecting mean strangers are notorious for happily trotting off with nice-seeming ones.
So I tell them instead that I plan on sending a friend they’ve never met to pick them up for a “very good reason”, as a test–and I’ll give them 20.00 if they don’t get in the car. I’ve never been successful at finding someone to do this for me… …perhaps because I keep telling the alert story. In any case, my kids believe the world is a good place, and are ever happily watchful for strangers trying to take them home. Does this protect them? Who knows. Probably not in any major way, since they are statistically more likely to die of a Canada Goose attack than being abducted. (“Which statistics?” ask the Garoos. “Statistics I made up” answers me. Of course, one has to take into account the amount of time that we spend chasing Canada Geese. Which, turns out, is not such a safe thing to do).
Anyway, now little Wendy is 13 or 14, old enough to log onto this blog, tell me her correct age, and also remind me that I am months late on the promised birthday sleepover outing booked when she turned whatever age she currently is. In my defence, I tried to iron out details for said sleepover today. I called the landline, nobody was home, so I had the bright idea to use that “texting” thing to my brother in law’s cell phone.
Me: Hey, call me when you have a chance? Hoping to solidify plans with girls for a birthday sleepover.