Wednesday, June 25, 2008

another hard lesson at PetSmart

got a call from nina yesterday afternoon.

- finn, i've got petey tonight and he wants to go to PetSmart. i need reinforcements.

last time nina took her nephew to the pet store, he decided all the animals wanted to be free. that day petey learned that setting a hamster free isn't necessarily irrevocable whereas “freeing” a fish kinda is. he also learned that "oh, bitch" may be an acceptable expression of regret at home but not with strangers. i met petey and neens at her house.

- hey petey - i said as we climbed into nina's mustang – what animals do you want to see today?
- fish! he shouted gleefully. from the driver's seat neens raised an eyebrow at me.

when we got to petsmart, petey made a beeline for the fishtanks at the back of the store but i was right on his tail. i haven't lost much in the way of racing fitness, see: i can still lay the smack on senior citizens and 4-year-olds. when nina arrived petey was knocking off fish by color.

- blue blue yellow blue ORANGE! orange like nemo!

petey's attention shifted to a school of fish in a tank further down the wall. a man elegantly dressed in traditional african garb watched the same darkly shifting shapes with a little boy in a donovan mcnabb jersey. i wondered which was more proud of his sartorial heritage.

- look aunt neeny! - bursting with triumph, petey's voice seemed to carry across the entire store – BLACKS!

i cringed and made myself eminently useful by trying to shrink into a purina display. Doc Kenya turned away from the tank and scowled at us. little donovan looked at petey with frank curiosity.

- yes petey – nina's calm voice smoothed over the charged silence – those are black angelfish. aren't they pretty.
- want to be FREE - petey stated. the man glowered.
- sweetie, they're just fine the way they are.
petey sighed deeply and served up his newest expression d'jour:
- jesus christ.

Doc grabbed the boy's hand and hustled him away. neither of us had the will to remonstrate with petey.

when we left the store 20min later Doc and wee donovan were standing in checkout.

- he was talking about the FISH – nina hissed as we swept by but the man turned away.

1 comment:

Mayrasmom said...

sound like a pretty normal kid to me...