Uhhh, yeah there’re sharks in that
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Kids. They say the funniest things sometimes. Just when you think you have them figured out, one will say something out of left field.
Through a good part of middle and high school, I watched the neighbors’ three boys one day per week.
Over the summer, I would sometimes load the kids into a stroller, and walk them down to my parents’ house for an hour or two. The change of scenery was good for the little ones and gave them motivation to listen a little better, because we could only go visit if they were good.
Throughout the years I watched them, I got more than a few laughs out of the kids’ little quips. I enjoyed laughing as the one boy asked his dad if they could grow chicken nuggets in the garden. Or, the time one proclaimed it was going to be a bad day, because his dad had to change the lightbulb.
Yeah, being able to see when it’s dark out is horrible. Or the time one whispered to me very loudly, asking what was on my dad’s face (a beard) and why he had a beard (because he wanted to grow one), while my dad listened to the conversation and tried not to laugh.
The absolute best laugh I ever got, though, was when I had the kids at my parents’ house. I was behind the house, looking at the large goldfish (think over six inches long) we keep in the water garden during the warmer months, with the oldest boy. He was about four or five years old at the time.
My mom said he could feed the fish, but we agreed he had to lay on his stomach so he wouldn’t fall in. Four feet of water is pretty deep for those little ones.
Then, he started asking questions. Like, a lot of them. At first, I was answering them, but at some point, I just started mumbling in agreement. The questions started out fairly normal, with stuff like, do you have to feed the fish every day? And, is the water deep?
I’m not sure if he started telling a story or if he continued to ask questions, but at some point, I gave up listening and just made sure he didn’t fall into the water garden. Either way, we ended up back on yes or no questions. All of a sudden, I realized the question I just answered yes to, was something about sharks.
Did you just ask me if there are sharks in the water garden? He confirmed he did. At that point, I could have admitted I wasn’t listening and risk hearing all the questions all over again, or I could roll with it. I just went with it, because, yes, I would totally let a child near shark-infested waters. Not.
So, yes, I nonchalantly confirmed to the poor kid that the water he was dangling his fingers in, contained sharks. Then looked at him like he was strange for asking, before telling him the sharks are small and stay at the bottom of the pond. He didn’t seem phased by the news, so I guess I didn’t scar him too badly.
I don’t know what made him think of sharks, but I also wasn’t concerned enough to ask. Kids will be kids. Besides, he already spent his standard five minutes looking at the fish and had moved on to the next activity. I did work harder at listening to him for the rest of the day, though.
I’m not sure if the young boy’s question came before or after the running joke that the goldfish are sharks. The fish are a smidge aggressive when they eat and my parents often comment we could make an action movie of them, complete with a small doll or action figure floating on the turbulent waters. The camera angle would make or break the drama.
Either way, every once in a while I look at the water garden and laugh. Yep, there are sharks in there.