Do you ever talk to a certain type of people and wonder if they were ever children?
You talk to them and they seem so uninterested with the world and what you’re saying, they look at you and belittle you. Some of them think all the problems in the world are shitting on their shoulders (and who knows maybe they are, but then again maybe they’re not). Their mustache is thick and almost a full shade of white, their eyes tired and teeth very yellow from smoking too much; and you look at their worn out face and try to imagine them as a dumb 7 year old, holding on to their mommy’s hand a little too hard when they’re crossing the road, or as an awkward 14 year old, too embarrassed of their feelings for the pretty girl in class with the long ponytails. You imagine those scenes just to be able to associate something a little human to this human being.
These people are usually frowning, they don’t really say good morning or thank you, and God forbid if they ever smiled. So you look at them and think when did you become so sour and unfriendly, and when did the glimmer in your 6 year old self’s eyes start to fade away? It’s very sad when you see people so drained out of their childhood. When did cartoon TV shows stop being funny? when did you stop getting excited for presents from your parents or sweet treats from your grandma? All valid questions.
I really did wonder what the world and people have done to that man, who once might’ve been the best football player in his class; he could’ve been the only one who can kick a ball hard enough it would travel somewhere too far and too exciting to imagine for all I know. He might’ve been his grandmother’s favorite child, although she’d always tell them how she loved all her grandchildren equally (regardless of the fact that she would slip him one or two extra cookies when no one was looking). All valid imaginations.
Was he ever over the girl who never agreed to go out with him in seventh grade because he always smelled like home cooked tomato soup? But it was his favorite and his mom would always love making it just to see how excited he would get when he came home tired and hungry. And he would get excited, and that was all that mattered at the time. How about when he got his first pair of glasses at fragile age of 15, and he was annoyed that he had to wear the thickest pair of spectacles because the optician said his eyesight was already really bad; and it made his eyes look largely disproportionate to his head and that made him self-conscious, but his mom still thought he looked handsome. As handsome as a 15 year old with heavy presbyopia could ever be.
When did he get over the excitement of buying the shoes he’s been wanting to get for as long as he could remember? He was able to get them with his own hard-earned money, after staying in the garage and helping out for long exhausting hours, he got them and felt like he was on top of the world. He thought he was unstoppable, so did his mother, who was proud, but also a little sick from the horrible weather outside. Nonetheless she was still able to make him his favorite soup.
All those moments only live in his head nowadays. Does he ever recall them? Or has he gotten to that point where the details don’t come to him so quickly anymore?
I only know as much as I can see, and that is very unfortunate for me. I’ve missed many of his moments I was never a part of; but then again, this might never have happened, and maybe he did really forget what being a child was like, and what wishing for something really bad and actually being 154% sure it would come true, felt like. I do hope it’s only one bad day for him. Tonight he might come back to his almost empty home after a long day at work, as his children are long grown and scattered around a few other countries. His wife might’ve decided to start trying out a new tomato soup recipe because she still remembered, even if he never did.