One of my little boy buddies came by last night to get his souvenir from Florida. He picked out three scallop shells I swiped off the beach in St. Petersburg: one for him, one for his mom, and one for his little brother. (I figured his dad could share with his mom--there's a bunch more kids to give shells to as well.)
Then we got talking about his birthday, which is tomorrow, but the party's on Friday. He wants the Incredibles game for his Playstation 2. He heard from a friend that it cost $2.99, but he didn't know whether he could pay for that with a $5. It is Shell Boy's 11th birthday and he is in special ed. I have spent much of this year frog-marching him through addition and subtraction facts, multiplication tables, and long division. We also did addition and subtraction of decimals, if I remember right. Apparently, it either didn't stick or he can't transfer it to money. Yikes.
For once I had a wad of small bills and change at the ready, so we practiced with them. He and I counted out $2.99, then he gave me a five and I made him change. He seemed pretty clear that if he gets five bucks for his birthday and his mom takes him to Kmart, he can get the game. "I'm sad," he said.
"Why?" I asked.
"Because I'm afraid my mom won't take me to Kmart on Friday."
I have no idea whether he'll get there or not, but I think he will. I'm just afraid I'll miss the trip to Chuck E. Cheese afterwards, because it sounds like they're planning to go before I get off work. Friends of mine who are parents advise me to give Chuck E. Cheese a miss, but it sounds like an anthropological adventure to me.
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