Friday, December 15, 2006

A Twisted Tale of Nuts

“There’s a boy at Lindsey’s school who says that Lindsey threatened to kick him in the nuts,” Janet said. I work with Janet. She’s a nice lady, and she’s never threatened to kick me in the nuts.

“The nuts?” I asked. “Boy, that brings back some memories. That I won’t share with you, obviously.”

“His mother called me last night,” she said.

“She called you just to tell you that your daughter threatened to kick her son in the nuts?” I asked. “That was it?”

“That was it,” she said. “She said Lindsey was a menace.”

Lindsay and “a boy”, otherwise known as “Michael”, are both seven, by the way.

"She also said that Michael comes home crying every day because Lindsey ‘covers him in dirt’. I’ve got an appointment with her teacher this afternoon, because I don’t think she knows anything about this. Oh, and get this—she suggested that I hide behind a tree next to the playground so that I can watch them and see what’s going on. She said she’s done it before.”

“I’m sure she has,” I said. “It wouldn’t surprise me if she’d slept in one overnight.”

The next day, I asked Janet about the appointment. “Her teacher hasn’t seen anything,” she said. “And Michael’s mother hasn’t talked to her about it.”

“The rich fantasy life of boys,” I said. “End of story.”

Only it wasn’t. A few days later, Janet walked over to my desk.

“Remember that story I told you last week about Lindsey?”

“Remember it? I was considering paying you by the episode.”

“Well, Lindsey has a school friend named Madison, who I don’t really like, and Madison has apparently been teaching Lindsey to say some, um, things.”

“Oh, no!” I said. “Then it WAS true!”

“I’m not sure,” she said, “but there was some kind of threat and it may have involved nuts.”

“It’s not really a threat if it doesn’t,” I said.

“Lindsey told me that Michael is going around bragging that his mother is sending him to karate classes now,” Janet said.

“Really?” I asked.

“For self-defense,” I said.

“Listen, I’m not a betting man,” I said, “but put me down for fifty bucks on ‘kick in the nuts’. I’m all in on this one.”

Two weeks later.

“So Lindsey brought home the class bear this weekend,” Janet said.

“I’ve learned now to assume nothing when it comes to Lindsey,” I said. “Was this a real bear? Did she kick it in the nuts?”

“It was a little stuffed bear called Smokey,” Janet said. “Each of the kids brings it home for a weekend, and then they write a letter “from” Smokey that tells what they did while they were visting.”

“Okay,” I said.

“The letters are all in the same book, so you can see what the other kids wrote,” Janet said. “Guess who had the bear last weekend?”

Michael, of course, and here’s what his letter said:
I hated it at Michael’s house. Michael locked me in prison the whole time. I was starving. I almost died. I hate Michael.

“Whoa,” I said. “When you can almost starve a stuffed plush toy, you are bad. I didn’t even know they could get hungry.”

“He has some issues,” Janet said.

I didn’t hear anything for a few weeks, at least until last Friday. That’s when Janet walked in and said “There’s an update.”

“Thank goodness,” I said. “Because this is so much better than anything I can make up.”

“Look at the letter that Michael gave Lindsey yesterday,” Janet said. “The teacher apparently made him write it.” She handed the letter to me.

Dear Lindsey,
I am so sorry that I wrote that hate note to you. I wanted to get back at you for hitting and kicking me. However it was wrong of me to write that note to you. I am very guilty for doing that. I don’t really want to kill you. I am very sorry, would you please forgive me?

He’s a charmer. I see a spring wedding.

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