November 28, 2015

Haggling for Pie


The following is a Thanksgiving Day conversation between myself and my five year old grandson, Thomas (with an occasional comment from mom):

Thomas: Can we have pie now?

Me: You want pie?

Thomas: Yeah

Me: Okay, we can barter for pie. (Note: My daughter made all of the pies herself by hand. I made none).

Thomas: (Puzzled look, probably over the word barter.)

Me: I’ll get Mom to give you pie if you trade me something good.

Thomas: You want a cookie? (Eagerly indicating a lone cookie in a clear jar nearby).

Me: No, it has to be something good. Do you have any stuffed toys? I’ll barter you one piece of pie for your favorite stuffed toy.

Thomas: (Face lights up) “Yeah!” (He runs upstairs and reappears with a stuffed parrot.)

One Stuffed parrot

Me: That’s really nice. That one is your favorite?

Thomas: Yeah!

Me: Okay, thanks.

Thomas: Can we have pie now?”

Mom: Wait until Dad finishes putting away the food.

Me: This is a really nice parrot. I can wear it on my shoulder. Very pretty.

Thomas: You can keep it forever if you want.

Me: That’s really nice, Thomas. But I’m not going to keep it, I’m just going to play with it for a while. You can have it back later.

Thomas: That’s okay, Grandma. You can keep it forever. I don’t like it very much anyway.

Me: Don’t like it? I thought it was your favorite.

Thomas: Not really.

Me: Which one is your favorite?

Thomas: (Runs upstairs and returns with a large Spongebob Squarepants toy.) This is my favorite.

Me: Wait a minute! I was bartering with you for your favorite stuffed toy. Now you’re telling me that this parrot isn’t your favorite?

The beloved Spongebob

Thomas: (Contemplates situation.) You can keep the parrot.

Me: But the parrot is not your favorite and we are trading for your favorite. So if you want pie you’re going to give me the Spongebob, right?”

Thomas: (sighs deeply in realization). Oh, yeah. (He looks back and forth at the parrot and Spongebob. Clearly he does not want to part with Spongebob.) I guess.

I think Thomas will barter more thoughtfully in the future. He also had lots of pie and continues to have possession of a stuffed parrot and he and his beloved Spongebob are still together. Thomas is a bit wiser, at least about Grandma.

One of the many pies

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