Thursday, October 29, 2009

Child, please

How does one interact with little children?

I'm at Starbucks today and a little girl waddled over to my table and just stared at me, wide-eyed while holding a small stuffed animal. She looked neither fearful or happy. I didn't know what to do so I settled on the following ...
"So, what do you think of the House version of the health care bill? Looks the Blue Dogs watered it down a bit. Still waiting for the CBO to score it. Hopefully, the Senate can get their bill to the floor and they can strengthen this thing conference. Meanwhile, Harry Reid really has to whip his caucus to make sure they vote for cloture, thus avoiding a messy Republican filibuster."

The kid didn't know what I was talking about. No one follows the real news anymore. They're concerned with Dora the Explorer or Jon Gosselin.

Then the kid's mother comes rushing over and yanks the child away from the crazy man.

Or maybe I just said, "Hey." And the little girl said nothing. And her mother rescued her.
I confess. I don't know how to talk to kids. I rarely deal with them and I can't do the "coochie-coo" thing. What am I supposed to do? I'm hesitant to just start interacting with a stranger's child. With my baggy pants, scruffy 5 o'clock shadow and Red Sox cap, I might arouse suspicion.
But I don't want to be a jerk, either. What if my lame reaction to this little girl turns her off men forever and she becomes a lesbian. A LESBIAN!?!? This wouldn't be the first time, but still.

Perhaps I should read up on this. How to deal with little children you don't know but who stare at you for an uncomfortably long amount of time. I've spent all night googling "cute little children" and I'm even talking to a few online. Just for tips.

I think I should walk around with candy, because kids love candy. I could offer some to all the little children I see so they'd like me. Maybe I'd even invite them into my car. I should also start hanging around elementary schools and playgrounds just to watch and observe.

That way, next time I will be prepared. Say good-bye to awkward silences, young boys and girls. I will be most charming stranger in an over-sized t-shirt and Seinfeld jeans you'll ever stare at.

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