Tuesday, January 20, 2009

No sense of irony

So my son and I are at the organic grocery store yesterday. I've got my reusable shopping bag in hand, and my locally produced organic food on the register conveyor belt. My cashier seems like a nice young girl, with her dreadlocked hair shoved inside a huge knitted cap atop her head. My son, who's four, grabs one of those wooden dividers that you can use on the conveyor belt, so your stuff won't get mixed up with the customer's stuff behind you. He starts playing air guitar with it. He looks pretty funny, and the cashier and I share a laugh. Then, surprisingly, he turns the stick into a gun and aims it at the cashier. My wife and I, being the pacifists that we are, don't have any toy guns at home, and we don't exactly play shooting games. I'm not sure where he learned to turn a wooden divider into an M-16, but there you have it. The cashier is totally appalled, and gives me this look that says, "I can't believe you teach your son stuff like that!"

So I turn to him and say, "No, we ever don't do that. That's not nice at all. Say you're sorry to the nice woman."

The cashier says, "No worries, it's all good." But clearly, she's really bummed out. A little more than she should be, frankly, given that my son's only four years old. (Did I mention that already?)

Then I say to my boy. "We never, ever aim guns at anyone. You got me? Unless they're Islamic terorrists of course, or communists, or immigrant thieves who have come to steal our jobs."

He doesn't know what the hell I'm talking about. But the cashier--with no sense of irony--starts not-so quietly freaking out. She can't get us out of her sight fast enough. Ah well...