Friday, January 1, 2010

My Daughter the Anarchist

One afternoon before Christmas I dropped Becky off at a shop and Hope and I waited in the car in a no parking zone. Becky came back out to tell me that the shop owner said that the police often gave tickets to people parking there, even while waiting in the car. I agreed to drive around the block a few times until Becky was finished. This turn of events raised a lot of questions for Hope and here is kind of how it went:

Hope: “Dad, What is a ticket”?

Me: “It’s a piece of paper saying that you have violated the law.”

Hope: “Dad, what does violate mean”?

Me: “It means that you did something wrong, something that was against the rules”.

Hope: “Dad, what happens if you get ticket”?

Me: “Well, you have to go to the city hall and pay a fine, or mail the money for the fine to city hall.”

Hope: “Dad, if the policeman gives us a ticket I will just tear it up and stomp on it, and say we don’t want any tickets”! (She is making fierce faces and motions when she says this.)

Me: “Well Hope, that wouldn’t be a wise thing because the policeman would then probably take me to jail”.

Hope: “Do they take daughters to jail too”? (With some concern)

Me: “No, only dads or moms.”

Hope: “Who would take care of me”? (With real concern)

Me: “First of all Hope, it’s not going to happen, but if it did they would wait until Mom came out to stay with you. They don’t leave little children alone”.

Hope: “Would you have any food in jail, how you eat”? (Always concerned about food)

Me: “Yes, they feed people that are in jail, there is plenty of food”.

Hope: “Dad, if they put you in jail, I get Mama and my sisters and we go bust in the jail and say turn my Daddy loose”! (Again with the fierce faces and swinging her arms and fists)

Me: “Hope, you don’t have to worry, I am not going to jail because I plan on obeying the law. I am not going to tear up a ticket if the policeman gave me one and you are not either).

Hope: “I might.” ( Followed by low key muttering and vague threats)

I swear I don't know why she comes up with stuff like this. It may be that orphanage life made her feel helpless and now she wants to exert strength. A few weeks ago she answered the phone and told a telemarketer to stop calling us and to take us off their calling list. She had heard Becky do that once and repeated it almost verbatim with a little more firmness. She continually amazes and amuses us.


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