This store requires javascript to be enabled for some features to work correctly.

How to Make Friends and Influence People

Adult: Take almost 2 year old to well-known bookstore chain that has a permanent display of wooden railways that children can play with.

Almost 2 year Old: Start yelling "Choo Choo," the minute you see the storefront.

Adult:  Run through the store grabbing magazines and books of marginal interest to read whilst almost 2 year old is playing, attempting to get a stack before meltdown occurs.

Almost 2 year old: Increase the volume of "Choo Choo" until it reaches ear-splitting levels and people turn and stare.

Adult: Place Almost 2 Year Old in front of the train table.  Sit down and start leafing through Mason-Dixon Knitting: Outside the Lines

Almost 2 Year Old: Play happily for about 3 minutes, until another child is spotted making his way towards the train table.  Emit blood curdling yell and throw a train at the boy.

Adult: Sigh with small relief that Almost 2 Year Old can not throw very well and walk over to explain that other children can play with the trains as well. 

Almost 2 year Old: Agree to play nicely. 

Adult: Notice that new child's father has sat down.  New child runs over and tells his dad that, "He's pushing me" and points to Almost 2 Year Old. Apologise profusely and tell new child that Almost 2 Year Old  is a bit of a thug.  New child's father says something to the effect of, "Oh he can't be, what is he, just past one years old?".  Reply that he is actually 2 in April.  New child's father replies, " Oh my God, he's tiny. He's almost 2 and doesn't talk.  You should really see your peadiatrician!"

Adult: Resist the urge to say, "Gee you are nearly 40 and you don't have any manners.  Maybe YOU should see someone."  Smile noncommittally.

Adult: After about half an hour and at least a dozen minro scurmishes, realise its time to go and give Almost 2 Year Old fair warning.

Almost 2 Year Old: When the time does come to go, start screaming and throwing self down.  Ensure that you do one or more of the following:

- Throw trains

- Bang Head

- Hit and Kick

Adult: Pick up Almost 2 Year Old and move out of harm's way.

Almost 2 Year Old: Go into full-blown "don't touch me, look at me or speak to me" rage.

Adult: Remain calm and collected as small boy yells and thrashes on the floor.  Realise you have parked in the craft section and pick up a book to leaf through whilst intermittently offering consolation and distractions to Almost 2 Year Old.

Almost 2 Year Old: Respond "No." to all of the following requests:

- Do you want to go see your Aunt J?

- Do you want to get some lunch?

- Do you want to help Mama pay?

- Do you want your train?

Continue to yell at the top of your voice.  Ensure that you reach almost out of human range high-pitched screams when people walk by and look.

Adult:  Look up to see your very tall teenage nephew walking over.  "Hey, aunt Kate.  I thought that might be you two."

Adult: Try to remain cool calm and collected and not melt on the spot from embarrassment.  Tell nephew you will see him in a bit. Get out sling and coax Almost 2 Year Old onto your back with wrestling moves you learned in PE class in junior high.

Almost 2 Year Old: After a few moments thrashing, decide that actually mama is very fun and lovely and start telling her a story in Ellis-speak. At the end of a beautiful rendition of "Row Row Row Your Boat" ask, "Choo Choo?"

Leave a comment