I recently blogged about a Chinese dad who makes his 4 year old walk in the snow in his undies to “toughen” him up.
Seeing the boy run through the snow jarred a memory. It brought me back to a time when I found myself locked outside with nothing on but my underoos. My situation was self inflicted. My mom is way too kind and loving to ever take any of her kids through such a harsh regimen. Even if it was “for our own good.”
This was way back when a mom could leave a capable child in the house for a few minutes without fear of the feds arresting her or the child drinking paint thinner. By age 4 don’t most kids know that food resides in the fridge or high high above? My mom knew I wouldn’t eat anything not fortified with sugar. Taking heed to her explicit instructions not to open the door was another thing altogether.
If I can connect with the 5 year old Dwayne for a minute I think he, me, we wanted a little bit of fresh air. The plan was to open the door fill our lungs with fine Brooklyn sky then go back inside and maybe surf the pre-internet, children encyclopedias. Perhaps I became drunk off my whiff of Brownsville zephyr because I forgot to block the door and it closed behind me. My foray into disobedience was a smashing failure.
I think a neighbor blanketed me until my mom returned. No one thought ill of my mom. And I think a 5 year old boy in Superman underwear is more cute and precocious than anything else.
And that was the day I learned how slam locks really work.