And now, a story that will motivate you to make a donation to Imagination Stage on behalf of my nephew, Scotty:
When I was just a young idealistic college student who still thought anything was possible, I used to periodically volunteer to pick up my sister’s 3 children and take them on an adventure. That usually involved rounding up those monkeys, all under the age of 6, and packing them into the family minivan. At which point 2 hours would have gone by and I would be ready for a cocktail and permanent birth control.
But I always persevered, and we would make the drive into the city, listening to nothing but Paul Simon on repeat. “Mamma Pajama!” they’d shout from the back. I was happy to oblige as long as no one was crying/peeing their pants/pestering the sibling next to them.
Most adventures included a visit to the zoo or maybe a movie, and concluded with Happy Meals at Old Mac Donalds (I was going for coolness points, not health points). And it was on one such occasion, after a particularly long cold day doing something I can’t remember because everyone was screaming/crying/trying to run away the whole time, that we unsurprisingly found ourselves parked in a MacDo booth.
I was trying to get the girls to eat something. Scotty was trying to eat everyone else’s food and getting 95% of the ketchup on his clothes. This made the girls very unhappy. But Scotty? Scotty was in heaven. He could have stayed there all day.
In fact, when it was finally time to leave, Scotty made it clear that he did not want to go. He was intent on finding some more french fries or perhaps a few more cheeseburgers. So as I made a human chain with his two sisters on one hand and instructed them NOT TO MOVE, I attempted to wrestle Scotty from the booth.
He didn’t really make too much noise, but he did proceed to grip on to any grippable surface with a superhuman strength I have yet to ever encounter again in a 4 year old. I had to let go of the girls, telling them DO NOT LET GO OF EACH OTHER and PLEASE DO NOT RUN AWAY, so I could grab Scotty by the legs and drag him through the crowded restaurant.
We made it all the way to the door when he caught hold of the door handle and refused to let go. So there I was, yanking on his stout little legs with all of my might, his entire body outstretched like Super Man as he clung to his last hopes of a second Happy Meal.
As I grunted and pulled and started to sweat, and the girls began to whimper, and Scotty just hung on to that door handle for dear life, an elderly woman breezed by and said to me, “God bless you child. It will get easier.”
And you know what? It did! Because very shortly thereafter I managed to pry Scotty’s hands off the door and get everyone into the car. And then pushed them out onto the front lawn as I sped past their house.
I kid! I kid! I totally slowed down before I pushed them out.
The point is, Scotty has always had a flair for serving up dramatic scenes and entertaining the masses. Even at fast food restaurants. I’m just happy he’s now redirecting all that energy to Imagination Stage and not his dear old Aunt J.
* * *
Imagination Stage Fundraising Update:
Off to a good start, still a long way to go. So get clicking people!
(That button up there? It lets you donate securely through PayPal. No PayPal account? That’s ok! Click through and look at the bottom left corner for instructions on how to make a secure credit card donation. Merci!)