So some of our really cool friends who live in the neighborhood hold this amazing backyard party each year, in which they rent an enormous water slide that’s about as tall as their two story house.
The day after the party, their real friends head back over to help clean up. And that was what we were doing tonight.
As it started to rain outside, we all gathered the external lights, furniture, food, tables, and so forth. I made a run for a huge extension cord, feeling that electricity and water wouldn’t mix.
Their little girl decided to help me. And, while untangling the cord, she engages me in the most adult conversation that I’ve had with her in the past three years.
She begins, “So, how come you didn’t go down the water slide with me?”
“Well, we had some friends come over, and they wanted to talk.”
“I know. That’s all you do guys do is talk. It’s so boring.”
Remembering this feeling exactly while I was a kid, I thought I’d get her perspective. “Yeah, I know – what should we be doing?”
She paused, placing her finger on her chin. “I think you should do video games and play board games more.”
With a look that I had been given total enlightenment, I replied: “Oh my gosh, I feel like I’ve just been wasting my whole life away.”
“I know,” she agreed a little too quickly.
“Where’s you learn all this?”
She puffed out her six year old chest with pride. “I’m in the first grade.” And as I took in her achievement, she added “Yes, it’s true. I graduated from pre-school. I’m very, very smart.”
And together we wrapped up the rest of the cord, she carried it in, and I went down stairs to play video games with the adults. Honest to God, cross my heart, hope to die, stick a needle in my eye.