When left alone with my nephew (he’s presently 13 years of age) for long periods of time, I try to entertain him with wild stories and daydreams. The last time I had one of these “daydreams” we were walking to Day Pond (a six mile trek from our apt). I tell my nephew of a story I concoct for my brother to explain why my nephew is missing, and you have to picture me telling this to my younger relative while acting like I’m in hysterics, loud sobbing, overcome with guilt, inconsolable and distraught:
It was terrible. There he was, swimming in the pond, when suddenly he was surrounded by a school of sharks (or piranha depending on which version I’m telling him). Swim for the shore, I yell to him. Swim!!! His advances are halted by the school of ravenous, fat loving fish, and he screams for my help. At first, I can think of no way to help him, and surely my entering the water will only put me in harm’s way, too, so I dare not do that. Then, out of the corner of my eye, I see a stick (picture something about a foot long with the weight, strength and thickness of a piece of straw) and toss it to him to help him fend off the fish advances. Unfortunately, it’s too little, too late, and he fades, sinks, slides under the water with glug, glug, glug.