So this encounter occurred at least a month ago and I’ve shirked my duties to the community by waiting so long to share, but better late than never, right? I should also note that because of the elapsed period between the time of the event and the recording of said event, there’s a chance of embellishment in my re-telling. Which would be weird since I’ve never been known to embellish a story.
So here’s the scene: I’m at the park with my two hoodrats. Andy sadly, is not a major player in this story so just imagine him eating wood chips and bantering back and forth between himself and his distorted reflection in one of those wavy mirrors. The first act begins with Robbie scouting out his options on the playground. Robbie has a propensity to gravitate towards older kids, or latino chicks, so I assume whichever he sees first will become his target. He zeros in on two older kids (5 or 6 years old) sitting in the playhouse. Per his typical introduction he starts by telling them his name is “Robbie Annnerson” and inquiring on the level of Decepticon activity in the area. After a weird exchange of toddler niceties, the boys accept Robbie into the playhouse and commence battle plans to destroy something. Probably a lamp or valuable family heirloom.
Enter stage left, the star of the show (we’ll call him Tommy for the purposes of this blog). He’s around 8 or 9, wearing a sullen expression and leaving behind him a trail of wood chips parting like the Red Sea for his Radio Flyer scooter he lifelessly drags. Seeing the reprieve of a spot in the treehouse and the prospect of a few potential friends, he parks his scooter outside and waits for permission from the current inhabitants. Robbie takes the lead (weird) and steps up to the opening. “Hey! I’m Robbie Annnerson and this is my lair. Want to come in and kill some villains?”
Across the playground a group of boys start yelling, “NICE BABY SCOOTER!” “I LIKE YOUR BABY SCOOTER.”
The newcomer pivots on one heel resulting in a wind gust forcing Robbie to the ground. Tommy, reaches into the air on his hind legs, and lets out a shrill cry reaching decibels that only a special breed of albino wolves can detect somewhere in the Arctic. This is a cry not unlike what you might imagine after an evil warlord burns your village to the ground and absconds with your women and riches. Like, this kid is pissed.
Robbie and the other boys wait to let the dust settle before working their way to their feet. But in the distance, the mocking cries begin again. Robbie braces himself against the wooden stove and encourages his comrades to do the same.
At this point, I have this sick feeling in my gut because as I watch the scene unfold, I am confident this is not the first time Tommy has been bullied. He’s just a kid, at a park, trying to get his scoot on but instead, is haunted by the accusations that his scooter is too infantile to hang.
Alas, my brief moment of reflection is interrupted only by a tremor in the ground as Tommy begins to shout, “ITS NOT A BABY SCOOTER! ITS NOT A BABY SCOOTER!”
This goes on for 5 minutes.
You know that scene in Hook, when Captain Hook goes totally nuts and smashes all of the clocks? Then you pan over to Jack and he’s got this big, stupid grin on his face? That’s Robbie. Eyes illuminated with the visage of a kid, much bigger than him, bellowing at the top of his lungs. His mouth agape, he can’t seem to find a proper reaction to fit the scene.
Eventually, the ground settles, I pull a branch from my hair, and I start to stand and consider intervention. After splinting what I suspect is a sprained ankle from the incident, I begin to move towards Ground Zero. And then I hear this little voice and look up. Robbie moves over to the boy and says, “Hey. Its not a baby scooter. Its just red.”
The blood begins to drain from Tommy’s face. He wipes the sweat from his brow. Looks at Robbie and says, “Yeah. It is just red.”
And then I excused myself to go weep in the corner and thanked God that at least this time, Robbie didn’t join in.
And then I also thanked God that I’m not a kid anymore and that if anyone ever told me I rode a baby scooter I could just call them a butt munch and flip them the bird without repercussion or remorse.