Friday, August 31, 2007

Pennies

. . . from a trailer, actually. And a jar. And not just pennies, but a 2-cent Euro coin. And now it's not just a cute little opening phrase, but an annotated mess. So I'll just tell the dang story.

We brought a piano home on a trailer. (How's that? Three hours of toil and an ulcer all reduced to a single sentence. That's quality writing.) It was my in-laws' piano, and it's my parents' trailer, and they were sitting entwined in my garage.

Sam (4), who had not been able to attend to the loading of the piano, wanted to see inside "Gaga's trailer." So I picked him up and, instead of looking at the piano, his eyes immediately shot to the penny sitting on the ground.

"Ooh! A penny! Can I have it?"

"Sure," said my Dad.

So I picked the penny up and handed it to Sam, who crawled out of my grasp and ran into the house, forgetting the piano and the trailer.

Not less than 5 minutes later, Sam was crying. "I want my special penny!" he wailed as I walked into the house. Jonah (6) was standing there next to him, holding a penny.

And so I asked, "Jonah, where did you get that penny?"

(Sheepishly) "On the ground."

"Sam, did you leave your penny on the ground?"

(Tearfully) "Yes."

"Alright. Jonah, that is Sam's special penny that he just found. Please give it back to him and I'll give you a penny from the Penny Jar."

Jonah hung his head and slumped his shoulders as he handed the penny back to Sam. I took Jonah into the kitchen and pulled down from the shelf a jar, filled with pennies, labeled "Stephen's Savings." Opening the top, I spotted among the normal pennies a 2-cent Euro coin. I explained what it was to Jonah, and gave it to him saying, "There, now you have a special penny too."

Then I looked up and saw Stephen (8), thumb in his mouth, staring at me with the best doe eyes I'd ever seen him do.

I asked, "Do you want a special penny?"

Without taking his thumb from his mouth, he nodded. So I took a regular penny out and handed it to him. He smiled from behind his thumb and walked away.

By now, Jonah was crying. Starting to get a little angry, I asked him what the problem was.

"I wanted to find it on the ground," he cried.

I'd had enough. 70% angry and 30% just wanting to see if it would work, I took the coin out of Jonah's hand and dropped it on the ground.

He looked at me, looked at the coin on floor, looked at me again, and then bent down and picked it up. He stopped crying, said, "Thanks," and walked away.

4 Comments:

At 10:06 AM, Blogger fiorinda said...

If only all problems were solved so easily

 
At 2:55 PM, Blogger Karenee said...

ROFL! Priceless...

 
At 7:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hope that continues to work for you! Trisha

 
At 12:06 PM, Blogger 4BoyDad said...

Thanks all. Yes, it would be nice if all of my problems could be worked out that easily. Somehow, I doubt that they will, but I continue to hope.

I'm also not sure that the Jonah Solution would have worked very well for any of the other boys. Timothy issues generally require persistence and reassurance that he's an okay kid. Stephen issues require quiet, contact, and time. Sam issues require a firm hand. Jonah issues require imagination.

It's a wild, wild life we lead.

 

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