My Childhood Was Net Better
The Tooth Fairy (or Easter Bunny, or Santa Claus . . .): a fun and harmless fiction, or a pointless justification for lying to children? – Daily Prompt
These sort of made up magical characters are not much lies anymore; they’re more the traditions created by the efforts of many generations, and I think that these “fictions” have done nothing but benefit my childhood. So, YES YES YES, fun and harmless, but really, so much more.
I’m 16. I’m pretty sure that at 12, I had gotten a clue that there was something fishy about the whole Santa deal. I’d never been exposed to many stories about the Easter Bunny, and someone had ruined the Tooth Fairy when I was very young. Therefore, I am writing this post with relatively little experience, but I have the advantage of recency. Most other adults have probably forgotten the emotions sequestered to a myth like Santa Claus, and are basically writing from a purely hypothetical point of view. Some other bloggers might have children, in which case they are seeing the effects of such a myth right here, right now.
The sort of folktale legend concept was an essential component of my childhood, a crucial point in the development of my imagination. Believing in Santa meant I became extra obedient around December. I really got into Christmas music and Christmas movies. It was a joyful, magical time for me.
But then I got older, and so did my peers. Doubt and skepticism seemed to increase exponentially with each coming year, so I gradually became more doubtful and skeptical myself. Some people might have been hurt, but for a greedy child like me, my only reaction was trying to fake it so that my parents would continue buying me childish presents. I’d also never told them that I didn’t believe in the Tooth Fairy, so dolla dolla bill y’all.
Then, I was ambivalent about whether or not I should ruin the experience for my little sister, who was 3 years behind on this gradual realization. I think I might have exposed the lies at some point. :(
Even though I eventually learned that the whole thing was a lie, I’m glad Santa was a part of my childhood.
I’m sure that as a parent, I’ll try my best to maintain the whole story. I’ll make holidays as realistic as possible, but I’ll also have to balance the greediness in my children.
So perhaps these characters are harmless, but only to a point. Be sure to never let the greed overwhelm you or your children.
Sometimes I listen to music – raging and energetic
The lyrics sound like they’re sprinting in whatever path they see
Sometimes when I write
I think about myself – commonly perceived as 100% committed and ready to go
I think about the kids in high school – moving so fast yet they don’t know where they’re going
And I wonder:
Do people actually stop and think
And maybe turn around and chase the polar opposite
Or is that just an urban myth?
Somedays I listen to music – nostalgic and lonely
The lyrics – they sound like they were written just for me
So sometimes when I write
I think about myself – so often left alone in a sea of my own thoughts
I think about the kids in high school – our perspectives so easily distorted, and by no means permanent
And I wonder:
Do people actually exist that actually know what they want
And what the future holds
Or is that just an urban myth?
On special days I’ll listen to music – rebellious and insightful
The lyrics are a call to action, illuminating the daily injustices
But sometimes when I write
I think about myself – a young person with the innocence and motivation to spark change
And I think about high schoolers – writing songs, directing plays
And I wonder:
Do we actually understand what we rant about
And do people ever actually form masses
And does social change ever really happen
Or is that just an urban myth?
Lacking the letter Z – Daily Prompt
The Lady at the Hotel Counter
We’re back! Sorry for the silence!
Happy 50th post!
I am the lady that you first see when you walk in. I stand here for hours a day when there is absolutely no activity going on in the hotel. The hotel bar is directly in my line of sight, and the bartender is lucky. He only has to work for a couple hours a night, and there’s almost always people wanting drinks. Out of the corner of my eye I can see the guy who runs the food counter. It’s open from 7-9 AM and then he’s done for the day.
The pizza guy comes back every couple of hours and now we are on a first name basis. I have almost memorized his phone number because our guests ask for it so often.
My legs are tired because I’ve been standing for over an hour now. My mouth is even more tired because I’ve been holding a smile for who knows how long. I’ve said the same thing 7 times already in the hour: “Welcome to the Courtyard Marriott! How may I assist you?”
Tonight, I see a group of kids walk in around 10 PM. They are tired like I am; yet, they still have energy. They are young and have a lot of time. They sit in the lobby from 10 to 2 AM. Some come and go and every 20 minutes, saying goodnight to the rest of the group and heading towards the elevator. Every once in a while, one of them stands up to grab something from the refrigerator. They walk up to the counter and hand me cash and I smile and ask if they would like a receipt. They never do.
The way that they talk allows me to overhear their conversation. It’s as if I’m a part of the group, and I contribute my own opinion, but no one hears, so no one responds.
I take calls from guests and potential guests and miss parts of the conversation, but I can catch up quite easily. The kids are peers, but not all in the same grade. There are varying levels of experience and lessons learned, and many stories shared.
Out of the six kids, there seems to be a leader who guides the discussion. He shares the most stories and the other kids look to him with admiration. His words are the ones that they will remember because they are meaningful; they represent much more than just a personal anecdote.
Late in the night, just at the end of my shift, they crawl back to their rooms, exhausted. The table that they occupied for four hours is littered with bottles and napkins and empty candy bags, for which I am responsible to clean.
I walk around, picking up their trash slowly.
After my routine check around the lobby is done, I grab my few belongings and head out, as the guy from the next shift walks in. The whole process is about to repeat itself.
Admiring Strangers: Youngsters
I sit alone at Panera Bread on a windy Saturday afternoon. I look up and notice a family of 3 sitting close to me, consisting of a mother and her two young boys. My headphones are in and I’m blasting music but the littlest boy looks over at me every ten seconds and mouths something. I just smile back. He is just so cute. I absolutely love young people.
They’re ignorant and innocent; they know relatively little but are entirely content as long as they have something yummy to eat and a toy to love.
I pull out an earbud and listen to the boy’s voice. The spontaneity astounds me; his voice could be extremely shy at some times, and loud and booming the next. His voice is too underdeveloped and high-pitched to be taken seriously.
I fall in love with kids so easily. It seems like their lives are a million times easier than mine, and that my life is a million times easier than an adult’s. I love thinking back to when I was as young as this boy, and about the things I could easily get upset about…
Kids can get upset about the smallest things, and are concerned with the strangest things.
I love how they look up to their parents as if they were Superman and Wonder Woman.
Their bodies are so small, and I love the way it takes five of their fingers to wrap around one of mine, and the way it takes them ten bites to finish what it could take me three.
I love the wide-eyed look that glazes over their eyes when they look around and try to take in a new environment. I love that the bright-eyed expression doesn’t need to be artificially created through makeup.
It’s sad that the possibility of them never being able to do anything bad eventually fades as they get less innocent and more experienced.
I love the way it’s utterly acceptable and totally adorable when they have food on their faces. I love looking at little kids in their puffy jackets in the winter, with their little feet and little hands.
I love how they start off with a clean slate, soft skin, and perfect vision. Their sense have not yet been impaired by late nights, loud music, and their posture hasn’t been destroyed by slouching in front of a computer screen.
I love the way they don’t really care what they wear, and ask questions in all seriousness that can bring tears of laughter to someone else’s eyes.
I love the way they aren’t ashamed of referring to their parents as “mommy” and “daddy”.
I love the way they stutter and repeat what they say and pronounce words wrong.
I love that they are too short to reach door handles and too young to get samples alone in Costco.
I love how they don’t have a reason to worry about what they eat.
I love little kids. They are so full of hope and possibilities.
At least, that’s the way I think kids should be.
I wish they were all like that.