Friday, February 28, 2014

The Baby Show: Defending His Turf.

Players: Brad, Gus
Location: The hallway outside of Ruby's Gymnastics classroom.

After getting Ruby into her gymnastics class, Brad and Gus walk out into the long hallway.
Brad: "Gus, would you like to go into the waiting room or play in the hall.”
Gus barrels down the hallway at full toddler speed, “HALLWAY!”
Brad trails behind slowly as Gus sway-runs down the rather long hall to the emergency exit door on the far end. Gus looks out the door for a few minutes.
While Gus is considering making a break for it, another parent comes out into the hall to let her son, Morris, play.
Brad smiles at Morris’s mom, “Hi.”
She smiles back, “Hi.”
Having fulfilled their parent-social duties, both parents go back to watching their kids play.
Morris sees Gus at the end of the hall and toddles precariously in that direction.
Gus turns and, recognizing Morris from previous hall play, moves to intercept. Gus hugs Morris. Morris’s forehead bashes into Gus’s nose, cutting off the hug abruptly.
Gus: “Whet’s wun.”
Gus starts off. Morris picks this up quickly and starts after, although more slowly. Gus slows down to wait. Morris is at his full speed when he gets to Gus, and Gus can’t get back up to speed fast enough. Morris takes the lead.
Gus bounds after him with a grunt: {See here, lad. Do not mistake kindness for weakness. Having traversed the breadth of this aisle, I am the master of this domain. I lead.} Gus grabs the hood hanging from the back of Morris’s sweatshirt and pulls Morris back.
Morris rebounds as if he suddenly came to the end of his tether and plops suddenly back onto the floor.
Brad: “GUS! No. That’s not nice.” Brad grabs Gus and brings Gus face-to-face. “You could have hurt him. Be kind.” Brad looks up at Morris’s mom. “I’m so sorry.”
Morris’s mom says: “That’s okay.”
Brad hears “That’s 1.”
Brad: “Gus, say you’re sorry to Morris.”
Gus goes over to Morris and gives him an awkward toddler hug: “Saw-we, Moe-wis.” {My apologies, chap. I should have informed you of my dominance of this arena, given our previously established friendship. No hard feeling, eh?}
Morris bats impossibly long eyelashes at Gus and runs down the hall toward the entrance.
Gus follows.
As they get to the beginning of the hallway, a mother comes in with her two boys and stops to talk to another mother who has just finished dropping her daughter off at gymnastics.
Gus’s run turns into a domineering strut. He approaches the two boys, coming up to only their chins.
Gus: {KNAVES! You think you can saunter in out of cold and lay claim to my dominion?} “NO!” Gus slaps the first boy on the chest with all his toddler might. The majority of the impact is diffused by the boys bulbous winter coat – the modern equivalent of child armor.
Without a moment to spare, Gus turns to the other boy: {Don’t think I am afraid of you either, sirrah. I may be outnumbered, but I am a man of will and passion!} Gus slaps the other boy on the chest as well.
Brad grabs Gus by the armpit and drags him over to the side: “What are you doing? You do NOT hit. Do you understand me?”
Gus: “Yeah.”
Meanwhile, the first boy comes calmly over to Gus: “I didn’t like that you did that.”
Brad: “Gus, say you’re sorry.”
Gus: “I’m saw-we.”
Brad, to the boys’ mother, “I’m sorry about that.”
She smiles, “They’re boys. It happens.
Brad smiles back and refrains from mentioning that Gus probably learned this from his sister.


  1. I love your creative work! Smiles, tempered by well wishes for your tough job. Job 1: them, Job 2: others!

  2. Happy HAPPY surprise surprise. Thanks, Brad, for your good work!