I became a mean, ornery adult.
On Sunday, I drove to my parents' home for Sunday dinner and game-playing. When I pulled into their circle there were a bunch of kids playing baseball. At first it seemed that they weren't hitting the ball hard, bunting it really. So, I walked inside without much thought. Then, I checked on them, and they had started to hit the ball with some actual force. I decided to move my car, just to be safe.
Just as I walked outside with my keys a pop fly came down on the side of my car. The kids froze. They waited for my response. I said flatly, "That's why I came out to move my car." Fair enough, right? Then, without even realizing it, I proceeded to say, "You kids shouldn't be playing baseball around cars." I think I even repeated myself--for effect. I got in my car and moved it--running over the third base frisbee (on accident--I promise) in the process. By the time I moved my car the 20 feet to the main street and walked back the kids had dispersed. I had heard them mumbling and placing blame, but they didn't stick around for me to walk back.
Two thoughts came to me as I saw them walk off:
1. I've turned into that mean adult who just doesn't get the point of having a little fun--when did that happen?
2. I was intimidating--I can't believe they actually took me seriously! That is pretty cool.
Of course when I was their age, I'm pretty sure we played baseball in the same place with plenty of cars to hit ... but it didn't seem to quite sink in then. On Sunday, it seemed so logical to me that you don't play baseball with cars so close--I guess that is the point of growing up though ... you get a little better at recognizing the obvious. And, I always find it comforting to have experiences when I actually feel like an adult.