Tuesday, May 12, 2009


"It wasn't my kid, was it?" I asked, searching the faces of my fellow Cub Committee members. A few cast sidelong glances at each other.

"Do you really want to know?" Kristy could look me in the eye, her kid stories could top mine any day.

We were discussing the Spaceship Derby a couple of weeks before. It was a loud, overstimulating affair. There were so many little children running around screaming, it was the perfect birth control ad. I'd spent a few precious minutes of quiet helping in the kitchen. Apparently, I'd missed out on some action. Some punk kid (cough) called 911 and hung up. Of course the police came. They always come. The Bishop rounded up all the kids and tried to discover the culprit. No one came forward. He didn't want to humiliate anyone, so he asked that whoever did it come to him privately.

As I heard what had happened, my heart clenched. My pupils dilated. My nostrils flared. I expect all kinds of hi jinx from my boys, but some things cross the line. Mouthing off, being disrespectful, or lying to an adult that is not your parent carries a heavy punishment. I had a vague memory of some kid coming to me to tattle that Dainon was the one on the phone. He's almost 14, so the idea of him being on the phone wasn't particularly disturbing. I asked him about it, and he gave me an explanation so mundane that I completely forgot about it. Until that moment at the table.

I stewed.

Was my child on a path riddled with crime and disrespect to elders?

Could he, in fact, withstand the "please just confess in secret" line from a loving Bishop?

Hell in a hand basket, my friends. In a hand basket.

I stewed some more.

The more I thought about it, the less it sounded like him. It would have been pure idiocy to involve the police in your doings with your father in the next room.

As soon as he breezed in from school, we had a little chat.

"Um, Dain, I was at a meeting today, talking about the space derby. They said someone called 911 and the police came. Did you call 911?"

"Sure." He said, "But don't worry. I dialed it, but I didn't press send."

"Babe, it's not a cell phone. All you have to do is press the numbers. You did dial the police. They came."

"They came?" He asked in surprise. "I never saw them, I was outside." He missed the whole thing with the Bishop too, and was only too happy to explain to him how it had all gone down.

Not so shameful after all. It was actually pretty funny.


Michelle said...

Oh, that is great-- "I didn't press send." Who'd have thought our kids wouldn't know how to use a regular phone? So glad he turned out to be more honest than you stewed about. :)

Home of the Muddy Kids said...

You have such good kids. I just love them to pieces! I can't wait to be closer so they can come stay at my house and call 9-1-1 from there! (o: (I really do want them to come stay!)

Home of the Muddy Kids said...

You know...uh, one at a time, that is...


Jana said...

Ignorance is bliss.