|Watch out – Little Son might come after YOUR tent next.|
Little Son was outside playing in the yard. I caught sight of him chatting with his friend over the back fence. And then, Little Son threw a decidedly shifty look over his shoulder back at the house and then he took his conversation to the side of the house. Out of my view. What’s he up to?
I leapt up from my seat and bolted from the living room, headed for the bedrooms on that side of the house. The Hot Man was startled, “What’s happening? Where are you going?” I shushed him and crept into the bedroom that overlooks the side fence. I stood on the bed, eased the window open and put my very bestest listening ears on. Quietly. Quietly. Big Daughter went past the doorway, stopped. Demanded. “What are you doing?”
“Shhhh! Your brother is talking to his friend Trevor over the fence. I’m trying to listen to their conversation.”
She looked disgusted. “You mean you’re spying on him?!”
“It’s called being a mother. Now be quiet.”
Big Daughter was oblivious to the vibes in the air that shouted at her: YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT WHAT MOTHERS HAVE TO DO TO IN THE NAME OF EFFICIENT PARENTING. GET OUT RIGHT NOW OR ELSE…
She said, “You shouldn’t spy on your children. There needs to be trust and mutual respect in a family blah blah blah…” Self-righteousness.
I ignored her. Because there was something much more interesting to listen to from outside. Little Son was attempting to conduct a business transaction with Trevor. One that involved his big sister’s iPod, his little sister’s army toys and a Barbie foldup tent thrown in for good measure.
Little Son – “You got any Spiderman toys? I’ll give you the iPod for that toy.”
Trevor mumbles something illegible.
Little Son – “I’ll let you have the iPod AND the army trucks AND the Barbie tent for that spider man.”
The negotiating continued. Trevor was driving a hard bargain for his mangled old SpiderMan from last Christmas. Little Son was adding more treasures to sweeten the deal. His big brother’s broken cellphone, “You can try to fix it.” His sister’s art set, “Only the yellow marker is missing from it.”
I listened and I was triumphant. I shut Big Daughter up with a gesture, “If I didn’t spy on your little brother, I wouldn’t have known that he is at this very minute, giving away YOUR iPod in exchange for a crappy Spiderman toy.”
Outside a deal had been struck and Little Son dashed inside to collect the merchandise. I was waiting for him, ready to unleash wrath and destruction. Big Daughter was pretty upset too.
I am not advanced enough NOT to gloat. I told Big Daughter, “You see? This is exactly why parents need to spy on their children. Ha. But don’t worry, I agree that trust and respect are very important in a family. You can trust me to always spy on you respectfully.”
Side note – Little Son really needs to up his game. If he’s going to be a savvy businessman (aka – crook) then he needs to learn that trading an iPod, army set, Barbie Tent AND a faulty cellphone for one measly old spiderman toy is NOT a good deal.