As a kid, it’s basically your full-time job to want shiny fun things. Your head is constantly filling up with irrational thoughts about how much you’ll use that shiny fun thing and take care of that shiny fun thing, and those unreasonable intentions inevitably breech your head and spill out of your mouth, splashing all over your poor parents.
Every parent remembers being on the child’s side of the proverbial negotiating table — with their brain playing those same tricks — and they remember getting that shiny fun object, only to immediately dump all responsibility for said shiny fun object on their parents. Seeing as how they’re armed with that hindsight, it’s always, always the parent’s job to hold firm and say no.
The below Craiglist ad — posted earlier this week to a Boston area “for sale / wanted” board and preserved here in screenshot form — is the story of one parent who failed to say no.
Here’s a full transcript, for the screenshot-averse:
My Kids Suck: Skywalker Trampoline with Enclosure – 17X15 – $350 (Wellesley)
They begged. Pleaded. Told me how they’d use it EVERY day. How our house would become THE place to hang out. We had a hot tub. And a basketball court. And a fire pit. And a hammock. But if we had THIS, well, we’d be rock stars. Plus since I “messed up their lives” by moving them here in middle school, I owed them at least this much. God, dad.
So I caved. And I bought it. And I built it. And that first night they jumped. Then I watched from my window as the summer turned to fall and the fall turned to winter and the flurries came down and the snowmen went up and the rain came down and the flowers came up and spring turned to summer and I watched even still from the window, waiting, just waiting, for someone, anyone, to use that damn trampoline even once more. Oh please, please, just once.
My kids suck.
So after two years of sitting in my window staring out like a creepy old neighbor, I am selling it to make room for gardenias or tomato plants or a stockade jail to house three grumpy teenagers.
Haven’t decided yet.
H/T Pleated Jeans