Damn Kids

Every day, Lonny sat at the crosswalk, waiting. Every day, some child would come speeding by on a bike, or a skateboard, or just running, and fly across the street before Lonny could even get all the way out of his chair. He stopped trying when he saw them coming.

The kids were going far too fast. Every year, they seemed to be moving faster and faster. Lonny remembered his childhood, where his parents couldn’t afford a bicycle for him. They managed to get him one anyway, though couldn’t really teach him to ride it – those had been a trying, and bloody-kneed, couple of weeks – but still, Lonny hadn’t ever gone as fast as these kids. Not even when he would coast down Mulberry Hill.

They come and they go, he thought to himself, faster than I can think it. They have no respect for the slower things in life. Walking. Talking to the crosswalk guard, who’s just there to protect them. Damn children.

A young girl appeared out of the mist, a few metres away. Lonny pushed himself out of his chair, a bit at a time, trying to stave off the pain in his back. He squinted at the child; it was the sweet little MacDonald girl.

“Hello Lonny,” she said as she got close.

“Hello, young Ms. MacDonald. How are you today?”

“Running late. The principal’s probably going to eat me.”

“Well, you just tell them the traffic was terrible today,” Lonny gestured at the nearly empty road and smiled.

The girl grinned back, and Lonny pressed the button for the crosswalk light, then stepped out onto the road, holding out his stop sign. The girl walked across, called out a, “See you later!”, and hurried away into the blur.

Lonny shuffled his way back to the curb. Just as he did, a bicycle rode past, barely a streak of red to Lonny, followed by a gust of wind. He stumbled, but managed to grab the traffic light pole to stop himself from falling. A moment later, he heard a car horn blare. Serves you right to get hit, Lonny thought.

Lonny made his way back to his chair and eased himself down, thinking to himself, Damn kids.


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