Monday, November 13, 2006

how it begins?

Sunday morning as Mary opened the blinds to get a sense of the day, she noticed a mess of orange on the driveway. Dismayed, she looked closer, and realized that the mess was the smashed remains of one of the pumpkins from the seasonal decoration of corn stalks, baskets and pumpkins she had placed on the front porch.

It seemed odd that the vandalism occurred now, since halloween is long past and the pumpkins had remained untouched then, when you would normally expect such a petty act of destruction to happen. There was no apparent reason or justification for the action. The randomness of it all made me wonder if that kind of impulsive act, most likely by a teenage punk and his buddies, is where a singleminded disregard for property and consequences begins.

The kid sees a target of opportunity--pumpkins unguarded on a front porch-- and without thinking it through, decides to grab one of them. Now he has it in his hands, but what does he do with it? He figures as long as I've got it, maybe I'll just destroy it to see what it feels like. So he smashes it on the driveway, unheedful of the mess he's made and disdainful of the cleanup chore that will result for the owner of the pumpkin, and unmindful of the anguish that such a violation of property and privacy his act has produced.

Forty years later he becomes President. I wonder how many pumpkins George Bush smashed as a punk teenager?

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