K-Man’s first best friend is a boy named (let’s call him) Chuck. Chuck and K-Man were inseparable and each constantly asked if the other were available for play dates. As they got older, however, their relationship took some uncomfortable twists and turns. Despite the fact that they were best friends, they both went through the usual hitting stage at the same time. And, since they spent so much time with each other…it meant that they were constantly hitting each other. Not a good way to build a friendship. (At least not until elementary school, when hitting means you like someone.) As a result, the play dates became less frequent.
Because K-Man and Chuck were thrust together as the result of a Southern Marin Mom’s Club Mother’s Group, however, they still saw each other a few times a month. So, while their relationship may have morphed from the best of friends to just friends, there were still hints of the special bond that they once shared. And this afternoon, that bond was never stronger.
K-Man and Chuck were playing together at a park in Corte Madera during the annual “Mother’s Group Family Picnic,” when a slightly-older, slightly-bigger boy approached Chuck. This kid was clearly a bully and somewhat used to pushing other kids around. Chuck, despite the fact that he’s not slightly-bigger, is not one for backing down from any kind of challenge and possesses a vocabulary that most college literary professors would die for. While the details of what happened next remain fuzzy (the bully reports that Chuck threatened to “kick his butt), the result was that the bully punched Chuck in the mouth and gave him a bloody lip.
Like any best friend, though, K-Man did not stand idly by. I watched as he grabbed the bully by the shirt and told him “don’t do that.” Of course, K-Man then also ended up with a bloody lip. Bully 2 Friends 0. After some tears, ice and hugs from mom, both boys were soon climbing trees again, thick as thieves.
The bully’s mom approached us and apologized, “I don’t know what go into him,” she said. “He’s never done this before.” Riiiiiiggggghhhhtttt. We’re perfectly sure that from out of nowhere, your bigger, older son, randomly, just today for the first time, took not one, but two swings at younger, smaller kids in the park. I’m sorry, but I’m going to have to call “bullsh-t.” Later in the afternoon, the very same kid found his way into the jumpy house that WE had all paid for. Surprisingly, there he was pushing all the smaller kids – causing a couple to cry. And, there was mom, “I’m so surprised. I don’t know what’s gotten into him today.” Yeah, I called bullsh-t before. Now, I’m just going to have to tell you to shut the eff up. Your kid is a nightmare. Move along.
The party wore on. K-Man and Chuck kept playing. Kept laughing. They may not be the best of buds anymore, but they remember where they came from. I dig that.