Thursday, April 3, 2008

Scared to Death

My youngest went to get his backpack out of the car yesterday. I lay in wait for him. When he walked into the kitchen, I jumped out and scared him. He yelled. I was going to laugh with him then but Julia went and spoiled it all.

From the back of the house, Julia started consoling the poor boy. He responded by tearing up and running to her. With some indulgement, he was weeping in no time.

I said, "Hon, if you just laugh with him he's fine. If you coddle him he'll respond in the way you ask prompt him to respond."

Julia said, "I don't know why men do things like that. Don't you know you can literally scare someone to death."

Julia's response was good in two ways. First, I got a huge laugh from her saying that I could have literally scared the boy to death. Second, I said, "O. K. I'm going to have to write a scene in which someone literally scares someone else to death."

I can't wait.

1 comment:

rasa said...

This is DEFINITELY a boy thing. My brother, who is about 2.5 years younger than me, tortured me this way for years when we were kids. It got so bad that my parents stopped disciplining him for it and would instead tell me, "Why don't you just *assume* he's hiding around every corner, waiting to scare you?"

Of course, since I was older and "knew better", if I "accidentally" flung my fists out in "self defense", I got in trouble. (It was still worth it to give him a bloody nose or two...)

...and they wonder why I grew into a panic and anxiety disorder.

We later had a cat that did the same to him so I think it all evened out. She used to lay in wait under his bed and dive out and tear his ankles up.