I sat across the table from little Tommy, the neighbor’s six year old son. “What do you think of other people?”
Tommy pressed his hands against the sides of his head, which he did every time he started thinking. “Ummm…” his voice trailed off, as he struggled to put his thoughts into words. He gritted his teeth, scrunched his eyes, then rubbed his temples. “Okay.”
Little Tommy looked right past me, which was Okay. I knew he didn’t like to look at people, and he really didn’t like to look them in the eyes. “People are too alphabetical.”
“Alphabetical?” I’d expected a lot of different answers, but certainly not that one.
“What’s that mean?”
He giggled, then rubbed his hands together before spreading his fingers, and putting his hands, palms down, on the table. “They do things like the alphabet.”
I must have looked pretty stupid to him, because he instantly started to struggle with words to explain what he meant.
“The do things like the alphabet! One letter at a time! In order!”
It was clear to him I didn’t understand what he meant.
“Think about it. A. Get up in the morning. B. Go to the potty. C. Get a shower. D. Get dressed. E. Eat breakfast.”
“Oh! You mean they do things in lists. Or in procedures.”
“Yeah! Lists!” He looked so proud, like he’d taught me something. “You got it, now.”
“Are they always alphabetical?”
He nodded rapidly, “Yeah. Always.”
“But, what happens if something changes. Say, they’re on their way somewhere, and get stuck in traffic. What happens then. Do they stay alphabetical?”
He kept nodding. “Yeah. They hate it when things don’t go in order. Like when they’re at C. Get a shower, and the water’s cold.” He grinned. “It messes them up.” He nodded some more. “And they get really mad.”
Tommy and I talked about how people were alphabetical for a while. I was very surprised at how observant he was, for a six year old.
It’s April 1st, the first day of the A to Z Challenge for 2016. Only 25 more letters to write stories for this month.
Please, go explore the A to Z Challenge, and the sites of others who are participating in this adventure.