Words of wisdom

Thursday, December 31, 2009

The other left thumb

Evidently left thumbs are in constant peril in my household.  First I managed to cut mine just a short time ago.  Not to worry though --- he is healing just fine.

Now, just the other night, my son managed to almost become permanently attached to my Mom's stool.

At around 5 p.m. I got a slightly-frantic-but-managing-to-keep-everything-calm-sounding phone call from my Mom.  Turns out that Li'l D, her visitor for the day, had been sitting at her computer on her stool, a very old stool, one that we had when I was just a small kid, one that no doubt would not make it past today's Federal Trade Commission child safety standards (I'll get to that shortly), one that was evidently designed to capture kids.  Said stool consists of a seat (duh) and some tube legs.  The upper ends of the tubes stop short of the underside of the seat, and are not capped.  As it turns out, and unbeknownst to any of us, a 5 year old can easily slip his left thumb into the top of this tube and, uh, get it stuck there.

I made my way over to her house, but in the meantime she ended up calling 911 and three very friendly firepeople came into her house and extricated said left thumb from the stool, keeping it well-connected to my son, gave him a sticker, and left.

And then I took him home, getting him to stop crying by simple distractions within just about one minute.

As for the whole FTC thing, which is my rant here, and mine alone ... I am positive that had this happened to some other kid in someone else's family, the lawsuits would have begun immediately, and Da Gubment would have stepped in to suddenly determine that this stool is not, indeed, safe for kids and therefore must be immediately taken off the market (though it hasn't been sold for decades), modified and changed in accordance with some genius's impression of what is truly safe for kids, and spent millions of dollars to alert any and all owners of this particular 40+-year-old stool that it is ... DANGEROUS!!!

Me?  Naah ... so long as I see no blood or really bad pain or broken limbs or anything like that, I actually like it when these sorts of episodes happen.  Why?  Am I a cruel parent?  No.  It's called a learning experience.  Let's repeat that together:
A  l-e-a-r-n-i-n-g  e-x-p-e-r-i-e-n-c-e
When my kids do this sort of dumb thing, they tend to learn to not do it again.  Very simple.  Not cruel, but natural.  Keep an eye out for them doing the really bad things and keep those in check.  But the little stuff?  Naah ... no big deal.

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