On March Saturday 12 I will be starting a Kung Fu class at Quincy (school) Community Center. It's called Quincy community center but this is in Chinatown, (for those of you who did not grow up in Chinatown.) So today I went over there to fill out some paperwork and lo and behold I was introduced to someone who.. yeah we've met. How did we meet? Here let's tell the story. I won't use his name though until I get permission from him. Maybe he is a private type of person, but we will be working together.
It was the Oak Street fair. Jonah was about 2 or so. They had pony rides on the roof, which my kids freaked out about and did not end up doing despite waiting in line. On the way up this kid, like maybe a 10-12 year old, almost runs over my kids on the steps, and he almost pushes over some old ladies too. "Excuse me pardon me coming though!"
Then we do the whole waiting in line for the pony thing, which was a failure and head back downstairs.
Same kid almost runs my kids over again. And this time some teenage girls.
"Yo what the hell?" sai dthe teenage girls.
Whatever. He's not my kid.
But then.. .inside
In the crowd he runs back out and accidentally knees Jonah in the head lifting him off the ground and my baby son went kerplop on the cafeteria floor.
"Yau moh gau cha ah!" I yell. Everyone looks at me like I'm crazy. I run over to Jonah because that's my first concern. He is crying, which is a good thing. No serious damage... because with a hit like that to a kid that small there could have been serious damage. A young volunteer comes over to me.
"I'm so sorry that happened to you." I get the feeling like she's thinking, "Oh crap look at this white guy that just got his kid injured at our event, I hope he doesn't sue."
The kid runs back, "Errr sorry." and then dashes off again.
But actually i went to this school and have been going to this event since I was very young. Maybe as young as Jonah.
My preschool teachers went to my dad's funeral which happened when I was four. I'm not going to sue. But as I realized that Jonah wouldn't be going to the hospital or anything, now I had time to become pissed. I grabbed Noah's hand and start looking for that kid. Yeah he said sorry, but was that enough? He needs a scolding from his parents.
I looked for him and found him. "stop right there!"
I went over to him rather slowly because I was holding my two kids.
"Where are your parents?"
Shoot. Well I was going to chew him out then and I did.
"Hey hey hey.." comes over a guy. Let us call him New coworker, because this is the guy that I just got reintroduced to today. "You need to calm down. He said it was an accident okay."
To tell teh truth I had not finished chewing the kid out yet. It was cut short. But I just left it at that. This guys is just doing his job. He didn't see what happened I can't blame him.
Me and the kids go about our business. Then somebody who I know comes over to me.
"Err Adam. Is there an issue?" I explain.
"Oh, I understand that. The way I heard it was that you were yelling at little kids." We laughed about it.
"But everything is okay now?'
So that's how I met new co-worker, so when we shook hands today he was like, "Yeah we've met."
Should I have yelled at that kid? On the one hand it made me look bad. On the other hand, how can i look at my son in the face when something like that happens to him and I do nothing. I owed it to my 2 year ols not to just "Shuun so" and if you think about it. And I believe some high powered new comers to the community, would have gone further and taken action against the event. They wouldn't have yelled at the child, they would have just sued. Is that right? I would say no. But the kid needed to be talk to to make him understand that just because he did something by accident, given the totality of the circumstances, his quick apology was not enough. As someone who is not his parent, the only thing I can do is imprint something into his mind with a terrifying experience. Can't touch him. But I can chew him out, so I did.
And if you think that I wasn't helping that kid or society, consider this. My mom chewed out this kid for picking on me in the projects. But because of how society is and how community had become, he just got off because he is faster and the blacks and whites and Chinese in the same housing projects did not really work together. So what became of him? He's in jail for murder.
Yeah, Daniel Liang said it was an accident too. Maybe if someone had chewed him out for an accident as a child he might have thought more about what's right instead of what would or would not get him fired after he accidentally shot someone dead.
But whatever, my kids are older now, and I just avoid crowds like that for good measure.
And again, from that guy's perspective and the part that he saw, he did right.
But if I work with him, at some point we will have to talk about this if only to acknowledge that it happened.