Friday, July 17, 2009

Respect my authority!

The breeze was oddly cool tonight as I stepped out of our Honda Pilot on my way out to the play ground, at our subdivison, where my two-year old niece, Annagrace, was frolicking joyfully amongst the swings, sand and other children.

"Comon! Lets go slide" said Annagrace ever-so enthusiastically. "What's Mauldin doing?"

Annagrace is at the age where she has to ask a question about almost anything. Everything around her she is curious about...

"what is that?"

"It's a napkin.."

"What are you doing?"
"I'm drinking my drink."

"Where is Lala?"

"Who is that?"




"He is enjoying his hands." I replied.

My son, Mauldin, or MJ as I like to call him, has started teething and really enjoys sucking on not just his thumb, as most 3-month olds like to do, but he hastens to put his whole fist in his mouth as if he were trying to imitate Karen from the movie Mean Girls.

While I was having a discussion ,with my niece, I could see my wife, out of the corner of my eye, pointing in the distance at something and mouthing "OMG."

"What are you and Paul talking about over there?" I asked.

"There is a little boy over there" replied Paul, "and he is about to break his neck"

"or another important body part" said Laura, chiming into the discussion.

"Where?" I said.

"He is on the other side of the slide," exclaimed Jenn. "you can't see him from here."

Jenn was being pulled to the slide on the other side of the sandy playground. Annagrace really likes it when her mommy plays with her.

Sure enough, as we rounded the corner of all the playground equipment I spotted a young boy, not much older than six or seven years old, on top of the part of the top slide, but what is so bad about this you ask? He was on the outside of the slide, about three stories up!

"Should we do something?" I asked.

"I dunno..." said Paul.

"Laura, say something, you are a teacher," I started at her. "use your authoritative voice."

"You do it!" Laura replied.
I looked around and saw no parents, I didn't want his mom to be just walking by and I start getting onto her son. He had brown hair, and looked as if he had been playing for atleast a couple of hours. I assume this because he probably got bored sliding over and over while his parents played in a volleyball tournament across from said playground. I found that out while talking to this little boy... named Darren. The conversation went like this...

"Hey!" I hollared up at the little kid, "what are you doing up there?"

"Just hanging out!" said Darren.
"Well, we can see that!" I said. "It really isn't safe for you to be up there... where are your parents?"

"They are playing volleyball!" said Darren.
"Well, I think you need to get down from there..." I said sternly, "you are going to fall and hurt yourself."
"Yes, and you shouldn't be climbing on the outside of the slide like that with socks on!" Laura said in accordance of my request.
I figured the little boy would shrug me off and continue on as he was before I came along to interrupt his playtime. However, to my immense surprise the little guy started to climb down... I thought to myself, "please, please don't fall now!"

Darren thankfully made his way back inside the playground platform and was safe now that he was not three stories high on the outside of a plastic blue slide.

So, wow, it made me think... maybe I can do this dad thing! Maybe I can sound like an authority figure and have a kid mind me.

As we were all about to head home, and Paul and I were standing around waiting for the girls to put their shoes back on, I noticed the little boy, Darren, sitting a-top of another slide, this one was a bit lower, but yet still dangerous if he were to fall off of it.

I simply looked in his direction, raised both my arms up in the air and shouted...
"Darren! What did we JUST talk about?"
I said this as a joke and assumed the little boy would not hear me, and if he did he would pay me no mind. However, to shock me yet again, he began his decent and had his feet firmly on the ground before we were off the sand.

So, somone respects my authority... there is hope for me after all!


Laura said...

I'm glad he listened to you. I think the best part was when he got down, you told him, "Now you may live to see another day." :)

Mom said...

I am SO GLAD that you and Laura made a wise choice to get that child into a safe area. I wonder sometimes what parents think when they deposit a child and then go do their "thing".

Nicole said...

Dont you just love it when parents dont watch their kids?!!! That is my biggest pet peeve. I really dont enjoy having to discipline strange chilren who's parents are too involved with themselves to care. Good job, and yes in due time this whole dad thing will be a piece of cake! Have a wonderful weekend.

PJ Mullen said...

Parenting win for you, parenting fail for Darren's parents. Its one thing to not hover over your kid, but to be playing volleyball without having your kid in your line of sight. That is just scary. Nicely done.

James (SeattleDad) said...

You have it down man. Good job.

Anonymous said...

I agree with James! Now I hope you're not going to let it go to your head and be authoritative at all the kids! ;0)

Anonymous said...

Stupid parents. And we got mad at michael jackson for dangling his over the balcony.
You should grow a beard. Kids fear the beard!