Friday, August 19, 2011


There is a slight possibility that I am nosier than the average bear.  I can't help but listen when people are not talking to me.  I have mostly learned to pretend I am not listening, although every once in a while I forget and jump into a conversation between two strangers.  This is always embarrassing.  When I keep quiet, I hear lots of funny things.  I have noticed that lots of little eaves drops can make fabulous story starters.

Recently overheard at the library:

A ten year old boy called out to a friend, "Hey, you gotta doller?"
The second boy shook his head and shuffled off quickly, "Naah."
A third friend shook his head.  He punched the first boy in the shoulder and said, "Man, don't ask him, he wouldn't give a dollar to his own Mama!"  The words came out of the side of his mouth and looked very out of place somehow under his 4th grader flattop.

Don't you wonder about a ten-year-old who "...wouldn't give a dollar to his mama?" 
Is he the Alex P. Keaton of the 21st century? 
Or does he have a Pokemon habit that must be supported with all his loose change and lawn-mower money?
Does he run a ring of suburban pick-pockets, and store the money he pilfers in a secret shoebox vault buried in the backyard? 
I am curious.

I also wonder about his Mama, and what she would think of this comment.  I picture, based on absolutely nothing, a well-put-together black lady who would roll her eyes and laugh at the comment.  She might say, "If my boy has a dollar, he's gonna put it where I tell him to put it, Honey!"  She would shake her head with a good-natured kids-these-days look, her right hip stuck out, while she checked out a big stack of books for her first grade classroom.  I picture her little boy coming up with a couple movies to check out, and she shakes a head and a finger at him and sends him back to get books, Transformer movies set aside. 

Of course, this picture really contradicts the originally overheard comment.  This child clearly would give anything he had to to his Mama, with little or no lip about it. (School-teacher induced fantasies probably have more to do with this character than the overheard comment does.  Oh how we love those reasonable, strict parents!) 

It could be that he just put on a tough face at school.  That's why his friends chortled and shoved at each other when he trudged back to the book section without a peep after his movies were confiscated.  Maybe at school he is the tough guy who can't nobody tell what to do...just up to the point of actually causing trouble, because he would be shuddering to think what would happen if his mama was called into the office.

Do you have any ideas about this little snippet?  Fell free to post your own story-let about the dollar hoarder that wasn't...or was.

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