Monday, October 11, 2010

Kids these days

Yesterday afternoon I was out in the front yard, putting up my "fall" display, which consists of some Halloween pumpkin buckets strewn in the grass.

A bunch of kids were riding their bikes in the street, swerving to cut through a neighbor's leaf pile, when I heard a little girl yell, "Hey! Get back here! I'm hurt!"

I looked up to see a little girl who had evidently fallen off her bike and was lying in the street. I really didn't think too much about it - I mean, no cars had gone by in a long time, so I knew she hadn't gotten hit, and she wasn't screaming bloody murder, so I figured she couldn't have been hurt too bad. The other kids circled back to her, and a neighbor came out of her house and helped the girl to her feet, and that was that.

Until a little while later, when her brothers came back to see if they could find her teeth.

That poor little girl had evidently faceplanted into the street so hard that she knocked herself silly, losing several teeth in the process.

Man, it makes my teeth hurt just thinking about it. Poor kid.

Oh, and then! And then!

A few hours after that excitement, I was inside puttering around when I glanced out the front window and noticed a couple of little boys, maybe six and eight, riding their bikes up onto my lawn. They hopped off their bikes and were looking at my craptacular pumpkin display when the older boy grabbed one of the pumpkins, hopped on his bike, and went tearing up the street.



I went flying out of my house in my sock feet and tore across the lawn, yelling, "Hey! HEY! GET BACK HERE WITH THAT PUMPKIN!"

Oh my lord I wish you could've seen the look on those kids' faces. The one with the pumpkin turned his bike around and sheepishly pedaled back down the street to me, bless him, while the little one just stared up at me, open-mouthed, like he could not believe what had just happened. "It was his idea!," he lisped, pointing to the older boy. "It was his idea!"

Pumpkin-boy hopped off his bike and, head down, put the pumpkin back on the lawn.

"Dude!", I said, and I couldn't help but smile a little. "Dude, that's not cool! You don't take stuff off of people's lawns! Those pumpkins are for everybody to look at! You don't take stuff that doesn't belong to you!"

"Okay," he said, dejectedly. I predict a life of crime.

The little one, who by this time had decided that I wasn't going to eat him for lunch after all, regained his composure and started to tell me about "the lady in the green house on the next street up who has a GUN in her house and will SHOOT you if you step on her lawn!"

"That's good to know", I said as they hopped back on their bikes. "I'll make sure not to walk on her lawn."

I foresee a massive invasion of toilet paper and eggs this Halloween. I'll try to remember to park the car in the garage that night. 'Cause, you know, they start off swiping pumpkins, and next thing you know they're hot-wiring cars ...



Badass Nature Girl said...

Ok, although I do not agree with them taking the pumpkin, I think that's totally cool that they came back! Kids around here would scream "F- you!" flick us off and keep riding.....and I'd probably have a vandalized yard time and time again. You go, girl! Hope to see some pics of that craptacular pumpkin display.

Rob said...

"Hey you kids ... get off my lawn!"

You have officially arrived :)

Domestic Kate said...

I am also surprised that they came back, but maybe they thought you might have a gun too.

I know that I wasn't a saint as a child, but there's no way in hell I would take something from someone else's lawn. In fact, I wouldn't even step foot on someone else's property unless I was there visiting another kid.

What kills me is that in my neighborhood kids leave their bikes and scooters all over the place. As in, not in the garage or the front porch, but on the sidewalk or maybe in front of the soccer field or even in the street. I'm not upset because it's in my way; I'm just thinking that if I had done that with my stuff as a kid, I would have quickly found myself without a bike or scooter.

rockygrace said...

Oh, I definitely give the kid props for coming back - then again, it's a small neighborhood, and he probably figured that I knew where he lived.

I was all over my neighborhood when I was a kid, too (although I wasn't STEALING shit), but if I remember correctly, I was ten or eleven before I could cruise the neighborhood on my own. I'm seeing a lot of really LITTLE kids out on their own here, some as young as four or five, and that worries me. Safe as this neighborhood is, I don't think they've developed enough critical thinking skills to be wandering around on their own, you know?

Heather said...

I can just imagine the fear that boy had when he realised you was hoy on his tail. You are right though they do start off small and then jump to bigger things unless they are scared out of doing it at a young age. I just can't see how parents are letting their very young kids roam free, not in any "safe" neighborhood.

Exador said...

So the moral of the story is to buy a gun, and make sure the neighborhood kids KNOW you have a gun.


My neighborhood growing up was over run by kids. There was one old guy, Mr Fatourni I think, that yelled at us if we cut through his yard. We thought he was a FREAK for being so mean.
Then as an adult, I see kids cutting through my yard, and my first thought is "WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY DOING!!!!??????"