Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Savoir Unfaire

Well, I hope you all enjoyed your holiday yesterday. I certainly did, even though I spent much of the morning (and most of the time opening gifts) with a cold washcloth held to my left eye. No, MG didn't punch me for not getting her gifts in the right size (though that's the story I'll tell at work tomorrow just for fun). No, I got smacked in the eye by one of my dogs when I was playing with them yesterday morning. Alice rolled over on her back and flailed her rear feet about at random, and before I even knew about it I had a paw rake me across the lip, nose, and eye. I think the cold washcloth applied quickly by MG helped me not to have a real shiner, but I do have a nice scratch on my face. Merry Christmas, eh?

Well, I still enjoyed opening gifts, so I won't sulk about it. MG and I were also both off work today, so we went out to run several errands, including trading in her old mobile phone for a new one. She walked in talking about the "no-frills" little blue basic phone, and walked out with one that has a camera, MP3 player, web-access, and a kitchen sink. I was also going to get a phone, but I walked empty-handed since none of the phones meet what I think the allowable criteria for having them at work would be. I'll have to check tomorrow at work, but I think I will likely get stuck having to have one of the three lowest models that they carry at the phone store. Oh well.

So, on to the real point of this post's title, my visit to the auto-parts store. I went there looking for touch-up paint for my truck. I pulled into the more-empty-than-full parking lot and got out of my truck just in time to watch a guy in a flame-red older model Pontiac (a really nice-looking one) pull in to one of the handicap parking spots. He hopped out, along with his two young kids and started for the door. At this point I faced a dilemma.

There was no blue tag hanging from his rear-view mirror. There was no special plate on the car. The occupants of the car were clearly able-bodied. I knew my duty was to say something to the guy, but I don't really want to have to make somebody look like a bad guy in front of his children. Besides he might get defensive about it, which is another good reason not to say something in front of his kids. Hmmm. What to do, I considered. Turns out, nothing (in this case). Just as I was trying to figure out just how to discretely and tactfully say something to this guy, his daughter, who looked to be about five-years-old, turned to him...

Little Girl: "Daddy, that's a handicap space."
Father: "Yeah, well, we'll just be a minute..."
Little Girl: "But Daddy, you're not supposed to park there."
Father: "It'll be OK, we won't be here long."
Little Girl: "Daddy, it's not right."
Little Boy (seven, I'd guess): "Yeah, we learned that in school. And the sign says $160 fine."
Father: Okay, you're right. I'll move the car. Stay right there on the sidewalk where I can see you. [turns, sees me watching the scene play out, shrugs, moves car over about three spaces to an empty one]

I breathed a sigh of relief and hope. Perhaps today's kids are learning something in schools these days after all.

No comments: