My grandson Christian, who is six, came over to spend the night last Saturday. I like to have the grandkids over individually now and then in order to study them more closely. So far I’ve learned that I have next to no control over my own actions let alone theirs. There appears to be some force within them that saps my will. I think it’s situated behind their eyes somewhere, as that is usually what does me in.
It is not my intention to spoil the grandkids. It just works out that way. Thinking frugally, I took Christian to the cheap-seat theater, where two tickets to Despicable Me cost just $5. Then I paid $18.50 for two small popcorn, two small drinks and a box of Dots. He didn’t touch the popcorn and ate about three Dots, although when we were standing at the concession stand, Dots had been indispensable to his happiness. We now know he doesn’t like Dots. Then you can’t escape the theater without passing the videogames in the lobby, where weak people will pay $3 in quarters for two rubber bands shaped like familiar household objects.
Nevertheless, I was grateful Christian didn’t suggest going to Chuck E Cheese, because I would have had to take him. Chuck E Cheese should be avoided at all times but especially on Saturday afternoons, when the children run free like animals on the Serengeti. You lose track of what you’re spending at Chuck E’s, because you have to change your cash dollars into Chucky coinage, which is all the arcade games will eat and faster than you can say Vegas slot machine.
The next morning I had to drop Christian off at church, so on the way we stopped at Target to buy a toy. Because that is what we do. I was thinking something from the $1 Spot. Christian was thinking giant LEGO Star Wars set for $99.99. Negotiations ensued, as they always do, and we settled on one “big” toy for $19.99 and one “small” toy for $9.99. Also four toys from the $1 Spot, two for each sister. Can’t forget them.
Got lost on the way to church, which happens sometimes when you drive to St. Paul. People from Minneapolis can wander for days over there searching for a freeway entrance. So we were at least a half-hour late for church, where my son-in-law Lynn was waiting unruffled on the steps. He’s pretty easy-going about things like that. Also, he likes me.
Christian and I had a good time. He was happy, I was happy, money is replaceable. Next up, Maria. She doesn’t come cheap.