The other day I was in Rite-Aid, just waiting on line to buy my stuff. Normal, ordinary thing. Behind me was a woman and child. The kid was small, stroller size, and looked happy. Gnawing on a toy or some such.
The line takes a while and from behind me I start to hear this happy babbling. The thing of it is that at first it sounded like it might be English. That close, almost word forming thing kids do right before they really start to nail language down. So, at first, I tried to make the rambling make sense.
Of course it didn’t make sense, it wouldn’t make sense and except to the little kiddo spewing it at high speeds it didn’t make sense to start with.
Which is when my brain decided it was Pentecostal. Yeah, a switch flipped in my head and suddenly I tagged the speechbabble as speaking in tongues. Now that made the entire setting a bit creepy. Suddenly I’m in line listening to this small child sound possessed by some higher force. Not cool. Not cool at all.
I turned to look at the kid and the child’s mother smiled at me, a bit nervously. I don’t know if it was a “Is this guy annoyed that my child makes noise” or “Shit, this guy is onto us, I should run out of here with demon child!” but it was one or the other.
I turned away quickly, flashing a tiny smile as I did. Never let them see you freak out about their possessed child. Never. That’s when the hell hounds come and shit starts falling out of the sky, like goats and stuff, not rain.
But the line still wasn’t moving, the child was still babbling and I was still standing there. I tried to ignore it, I generally have no problem with children being children. I don’t expect your child to never utter a sound in public – it’s a kid. I looked back again. The child looked to be, and I know this can’t be true, but the kid looked to be going on and chittering away with half-words without moving her mouth.
I gave the mother a smile as calmly as I could and turned away again, trying to will the line to move faster. Man, that was creepy. Just creepy. Demon children, my neighborhood has at least one.
And there’s a chance, of course, that the mother of that child is reading this. And hey, if that bearded guy looked nervous in front of you at Rite-Aid the other day – nothing personal I’m sure you’re awesome and your child is amazing. Don’t possess my and rend my soul or anything, ok? Thanks.