October 7, 2001
I sat at work today, observing people as they walked by the prepaid cellphone
shop that I had been recruited to watch over. I paid the most attention to how parents interacted
with their young kids. I watched a kid whine about how he wanted a gumball
, and I watched as his mother hesitantly gave him a quarter
to go buy one. Things like that.
What stuck out in my mind most, though, was this young kid (he must have been ten or so) and his thirtysomething
mother. He eyeballed
a game --the one where you guide The Claw
to grab a stuffed animal
-- and said excitedly to his mom, "Hey, mom, let's split
and play this game!" She mumbled
something about those kinds
of games being impossible
and walked on.
It occurred to me at that moment
that that kid was probably never
going to ask his mom to play that game with him again. In fact, it was only a matter of a few years before that kid wanted nothing to do with his parents. And it probably wouldn't be until he was almost twenty before he re-realized
that desire to hang out
with his mom.
It didn't matter that the game was impossible. She passed up
on being able to have fun
with her child.
That makes me kind of sad