Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Public transit story #1: Kids say the darndest things

My mother says that, when I was a wee little thing, I went very quickly from single words to paragraphs. (If you are surprised by this, you should check your pulse, because you might be, um, vitally challenged.) I didn't say too many embarrassing things, but I sure did have an opinion, and often a dissertation, on what was around me.

So I am always amused by, and occasionally protective of, little kids' public soapboxes. Once when we were in Target, we came upon this little boy in the women's underwear department. He looked all of six years old. Right at his eye level was a full-figure bra. He took the bra in his hands and exclaimed, "That is just INAPPROPRIATE!"

Shhh, said the adults with him.

We booked it out of Target, lest we pee ourselves with laughter in the middle of the store.

Last Thursday on my way to work, the train suddenly came to a halt. The driver got on the intercom and announced that there were some switching problems up ahead. She said we'd be sitting on the track for a few minutes, and then we'd turn around and go back to the station we'd just left. Our (formerly northbound) train would then become a southbound train, and another one would be along in a few minutes to take us the rest of the way north. It was still pretty early in the morning and there weren't a lot of people on the train, so there wasn't any collective groaning or anything like that.

There was, however, a small child in the back of the car, maybe five or six years old. After the driver's announcement, she regaled the car with a burning question:

"I know what is an egg, but what is a nog? What is an eggnog?"

Shhh, said the adult with her.

Then the driver made a second announcement: "We just have to sit here a few minutes longer, and then we'll go back to Orinda and the other train will come to get you."

Said the little girl, "We're going to be here A LONG TIME! I will read this book. Once upon a time, blah blah blah, the end, I love you, I'm going to bed."

Shhh, said her adult.

At that point, the train started moving. I was disappointed. I mean, I wanted to go to work and all--I love my job, and it pays by the hour--but I still don't know what a nog is either.

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