Friday, May 25, 2012

An Evening with Jacob and Bigfoot

Jacob is with me from the time I picked him up at school until toorrow morning--always an event I look forward to. But tonight he came screaming for me and insisted I come back where he was watching TV because it was about Bigfoot and "it's about to get really scary." So I sat on the bed, and he clutched my arm. Mostly it was people talking about hunting for Bigfoot, with occasional brief footage of sightings. I would ask, "Is this scary?" "No, but it's about to be. Don't leave." My pleas that I was hungry and wanted to fix supper, that I had to check the computer list I'm monitoring today, all fell on deaf ears. Finally, I began to sneak away with a promise I'd be right back. I'd get a little done and then go back, only to have him clutch my arm again. And we watched endless discussions about hunting for Bigfoot. Fortunately, he's trained to keep the volume low, and I didn't have my hearing aids in, so I didn't actually have to listen. Last I knew, it's still on.
But he decided he wanted to play in the front yard, so I obligingly took a glass of wine and a book and went to sit on the front porch Then he wanted to go see the tarantula house at Jay and Susan's, which is out of sight. We had a discussion about what he'd do if someone came up to him while I couldn't see him, and he gave all the right answers, but I ended up walking over there with him. I think if there ever was a tarantula there, it's been scared to a new home by all the activity. It became apparent that Jacob's idea of playing in the yard involved showing me endless insects, etc., and I wasn't quite up to a tour. Then we sat on the porch and had a long discussion about hunting and how it's all right to shoot a deer if you plan to eat it, but not if you shoot it just to be shooting it. Jacob seemed to think you coiuld shoot it and whisk it right home to cook, so I tried to explain about dressing and butchering and all that. Not sure I made my point--nor do I think he would eat deer meat. The child doesn't like beef, for goodness sake!
When he was out in the yard tonight, I got little reading done because I was always raising my eyes to make sure I could see him. I live on a busy street, with lots of traffic, and Jacob is never allowed in the front without an adult--nor are the other grandchildren when they visit. Thank goodness for a red shirt that I could see even through the thick green of the youpon tree. But I think tonight a lot of us may be more on edge all over again because of the news in the Etan Platz disappearance. I don't like it when I can't see him. And yet I don't want him to grow up scared. I did that on the South Side of Chicago. There's a fine balance there, but sometimes it's hard to find it.
Bigfoot is over, but there's another "really weird" program on Animal Planet. I said he'd either have to watch it in my office or change channels. I'm a hard-hearted grandma.

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