found drama

get oblique

dream.20070502: shattered

by Rob Friesel

We’re out front of a hotel, waiting for a cab when we see him. He’s just a little kid — he’s maybe six years old. But there he is, breaking glass bottles on the street. At first it’s a little funny. “Ha! Look at that kid smash those bottles!” But it isn’t long before smashing “a couple” bottles has soared into well over 20 bottles. Glass shards are everywhere. “Hey!” I yell over to him. “Cut that out! You ought to clean that up!” He makes a defiant face and goes to run off. I spring after him and quick catch up, tackling him in a spread of grass. He tries to wriggle free but someone helps me to pin him down and we take a whack at him, trying to knock some discipline into this miniature ruffian. Where is this kid’s mom? I think. “You are going to need to clean that I up,” I indicate with my finger. But I’m overwhelmed immediately with guilt and with second thoughts. He’s only six, right? Maybe he doesn’t know any better? And anyway… Should I really be making a six year old clean up broken glass? That doesn’t seem right… But maybe if I supervise? And demonstrate? While this other person has him pinned down to the grass, I show him how to carefully scoop up the glass (so as not to cut himself on it) and then how to shovel it into the nearby trash can. But I also can’t shake the feeling that his mom will appear at any moment and throw a fit that I’ve put her little boy’s life in danger. (Or at least the security of his little hands…)

About Rob Friesel

Software engineer by day, science fiction writer by night. Author of The PhantomJS Cookbook and a short story in Please Do Not Remove. View all posts by Rob Friesel →

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