Saturday, November 26, 2016

Mr Bunches And The Mean Kid

So we were at the park this one Saturday, and as I was sitting by Mr F on the spinner, I heard Mr Bunches saying:

"Stop looking at me."

I focused in on where he was, and saw Mr Bunches at the top of the play structure, with a kid who was a bit smaller than him. The kid was standing in Mr Bunches way, and quite obviously staring at him.

I waited to see what would happen, and Mr Bunches said again: "Stop looking at me."

I figured Mr Bunches might have caught the kid's attention because he had been playing and scripting, muttering to himself all the lines in the movie Tangled, which he'd watched before we'd walked to the park.

The kid stepped aside, and Mr Bunches went down the slide. He came over to me and said "That kid is staring at me." I said "Just ignore him. You mind your own business and he'll go away."

So Mr Bunches went back up and the kid was staring at him the whole way, and standing in front of him as Mr Bunches went to the slide. The kid stood there blocking him a second before looking down at me, and then stepping out of the way.

Mr Bunches stepped past him and said: "You're such a loser."

I started smiling. Mr Bunches went down the slide. When Mr Bunches went back up, the kid said something I couldn't hear, and Mr Bunches said (very calmly) "Please leave me alone. I cannot play with you."

"Why not?" I heard the kid ask.

"Because I don't like you," Mr Bunches told him, and then went down the slide again.

This time the kid slid down after him, and at the bottom followed him as Mr Bunches started to climb up again. The kid said something and Mr Bunches finished climbing, and turned to the kid. Very calmly he said:

"I'm taller than you."

And he slid down the slide. I don't know what it was about that comment but the kid went nuts. He slid down as fast as he could, following Mr Bunches and hollering the names of all the people the kid was taller than. He was saying "I'm taller than my grandma and I'm taller than a lot of my friends" and trying to get Mr Bunches to acknowledge him.  Mr Bunches just climbed back up the ladder and went down the slide again. Then, the next time up, the kid tried to climb on the outside of the slide like he was going to jump in the way of Mr Bunches as he slid down.

Mr Bunches saw him, and said "I'm not talking to you. You're not my best friend."

This made the kid stop and say "I don't want to be your best friend."

To which Mr Bunches said:  "You're crazy."

Again, this drove the kid bonkers: he started saying how he wasn't crazy, and Mr Bunches just kept saying "I'm not talking to you, you're not my best friend," and the kid went back to saying who he was taller than (I think Mr Bunches must have hit a nerve), and then as Mr Bunches started down the slide again, the kid jumped on and tried to go right after him...

... so Mr Bunches stopped himself, and the kid slammed into Mr Bunches back, and Mr Bunches very slowly slid down so that the kid the entire time was trapped behind him.  When they got near the bottom the kid jumped off and ran away saying "I'm leaving."

Mr Bunches shouted after him: "You're crazy!"

I bet it'll be a long time before that kid tries picking on someone again.

1 comment:

Andrew Leon said...

Short kids always have a chip on their shoulders about being short. You don't have to say anything to them about it, but anything you say about height can set them off.
I had a friend in college who was only about 5' tall (about the height of Wolverine (in the comics (unless that has changed in the Jackman era of Wolverine) and my mom), and he was always on about how he wasn't through growing, sometimes yelling it -- I'm not through growing! -- even though no one had said anything to him about being short. He just had to think you might have implied it.