"You'll Shoot Your Eye Out Kid..." ~ A Christmas Story
On a recent visit to Walmart (I love Walmart. Where else can you get a new car battery, razors for the swimmer, bananas, toilet paper and craft supplies all in the same store?) I discovered my Christmas Wish:
A pink Daisy Red Ryder BB Gun. Anything pink generally catches my eye, but a pink Daisy Red Ryder? Oh man, that stopped me in my tracks. At first, I thought about it for 8 year old Sparkles, but quickly realized putting a weapon, even a BB gun, into Sparkle's hands was a recipe for disaster, exceeded only by the idea of putting weapons into Sparkle's, Buttercup's AND TBone's hands - we'd have an all out war in our backyard where someone would have their eye shot out in about 30 seconds. But, to pass on such a glorious item as a PINK(!) Daisy Red Ryder seemed almost as crazy as giving it to one of my wild monster children.
I stood in the middle of the aisle, gazing longingly at the powder pink gun, imagining myself ripping into the present (wrapped lovingly by me in the wee hours of Christmas Eve), finally revealing the BEST. CHRISTMAS. GIFT. EVER. My revere went something like this:
Kids: What'd Santa bring you mom? Let us see!
Me: It's a PINK Daisy Red Ryder BB Gun! I'm so excited!
Kids: Wow! You are so lucky! Better watch out: You'll shoot your eye out, kid! (A Christmas Story is a family favorite any time of the year.)
Me: I'm going to take it outside RIGHT NOW! Maybe there's a squirrel that needs shooting? (PETA: don't come after me, I'm not that good of a shot, and those squirrels are fast. Just ask the hyper Huxley and geriatric Bella dogs.)
Donning my Grandpa's old down-filled coat (a puffy jacket he owned before they were even cool!), my old Ugg boots over my hot-pink camo fleece pajama bottoms and tossing my pink plaid "Elmer Fudd" hat on my head, I troop out the door, my pink Daisy Red Ryder in my hand. Plopping down on the bench on our front step, I lovingly caress it's pretty pinkness as the next-door neighbor steps outside to fix a dangling Christmas light. I smile and wave the pretty pink gun at her.
Me: Look what Santa brought me for Christmas! Isn't it lovely! What, wait, where are you going?
My neighbor dashes back into the house.
Me: It's not that cold out here. I wonder what's wrong with her? Her California blood must still be too thin for 25 degree temps.
I happily sit for a few more minutes, my unloaded gun in my lap, enjoying the early Christmas morning, when suddenly, a city police car slowly drives past my house and then backs up and pulls into my driveway.
Me (Grinning like a fool): I wonder if it's one of our cop friends, stopping by to wish me a Merry Christmas and admire my new pink Daisy Red Ryder?
Police Officer: Morning, Ma'am.
Me: Merry Christmas, Officer! (Fortunately, I hadn't delved into my Christmas morning bloody Mary causing me to call him "Occifer" instead...)
Police Officer: What's that in your hand? We had a report of someone brandishing a firearm in this neighborhood. Is it loaded?
Me (holding up my new pink Daisy Red Ryder BB gun, causing the officer to duck): This is my Christmas present. Isn't it lovely?
Police Officer: Yes ma'am, it's nice. You didn't happen to wave it at anyone this morning, did you? Such as a neighbor? (Nods his head in the direction of my neighbor's house where a slight movement of their drapes reveals that they're intently watching the exchange.)
Me: Oh no sir. I wouldn't brandish my new BB GUN at anyone. I was simply enjoying the morning. It's not even loaded.
Police Officer: We were told that there was a person brandishing a large gun in this neighborhood, making threats to her neighbors. Are you sure that wasn't you? I might have to charge you with "terroristic threats."
Me (snorting back a laugh): Sir, you do realize that the people in that house who are currently cowering behind their curtains while watching you and I chat are the same people who were afraid that birdshot would suddenly be able to travel over a mile and go through their 6 foot wooden privacy fence and kill them, right? I assure you, I have not brandished my "weapon" at them in any way. The wife came outside as I was sitting here with my Christmas present, that isn't even loaded with the BBs it requires, at which point, I waved "Hello" and wished her a Merry Christmas. I can only assume that she dashed back into her house and called you with the speed of Santa's seven reindeer.
Police Officer (smiling): Ok, I just had to check. Be careful with that thing: You'll shoot your eye out...
(The only thing better than my neighbor freaking out over an unloaded BB gun would be reading about it in my local paper's "Police Report" section the next week.)
Update: Hubby heard me talking about the PINK Daisy Red Ryder and took it upon himself to buy FIVE of them for Christmas. Not five pink guns, 3 pink and 2 regular brown fake wood. His idea was that three kids, himself & I all needed these cool guns for when we go up north to our friends' cabin. I convinced him that 5 of these guns were not necessary and took them, the BBs and targets he also purchased back to Walmart yesterday. My fear of the neighbors calling the police when Sparkles is spotted wielding a pink BB gun over-rode the entertainment caused by the looks on their faces when they realized we had given her and Buttercup each weapons. (Even though Hubby said he'd hide the guns except for when we went up north, knowing that these are the same children who kept disappearing to friends' homes 6-7 blocks away no matter what the consequences - until Hubby took the front wheels off all the bikes - gives me faith that they'd probably find the guns' hidey-spot and if they didn't succeed in shooting out their own eyes I doubt the neighbors' kid would be safe.)