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It's still dark outside!

I really like little kids. Mostly, I like the funny things they say, the things that betray both innocence and openness to rejecting assumptions and learning new things. It can be very funny to witness.

I went to see the fireworks on the East River on July 4, along with many families. As I was trudging up the stairs out of the 96th St. subway station, glad to be near home after a very long wait at 34th St., I saw a little girl, probably in the 2-3 year old range, ensconced in her mother's arms. When we reached the top of the stairs, she exclaimed, "Mommy, it's still dark outside!" It had been dark when they went underground somewhere in midtown, and, lo and behold! Fifty or sixty streets north and half an hour later--it was still dark outside! These things amuse me... I can't even imagine a world in which going into the subway and coming out again might cause the sun to shine at night--can you?

Lest you think I have an unrealistic idea about the innocence and sweetness of kids, there are times when I don't like them. One such time might be during rush hour, after a long and exhausting day, when a harried mother gets into an overcrowded car with her five kids. I am sitting down, but the kids look like they need a seat more than I do, so I get up, leaving room for at least two little ones. They sit down, and four of the five kids commence pushing, shoving, not holding on, and purposely falling onto me. Also, generally mewling and whining. Then I wonder why anyone bothers having 'em in the first place.


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