Rodger

Rodger

A Story by The smiling girl
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A short story...with words. I'm not sure how to summarize it since it's pretty short to begin with.

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            When I was four, I went to preschool. My parents would drop me off at seven thirty on the dot. What actually went on during preschool I don’t remember too clearly. But I do remember every day at four o’clock Rodger would pick me up in his little red car. It wasn’t a fancy sports car, it was a beat up, dull, clanky mess of machinery that managed to take people from one place to another.

            Rodger was my neighbor. My parents didn’t get off work early enough to pick me up on most days, so they had Rodger do it. He worked from home so he could pick me up whenever he wanted. I think he designed websites, but I’m not sure. He didn’t talk about it much, at least if he did I don’t remember. Mostly I just remember talking about me.

            So at four I would automatically turn towards the wooden gate of the preschool and there Rodger would be. He was short, bony and wore large glasses. He also had this habit of biting his lip, which gave him a very nervous appearance.

            I would always run to him, and smile a very big smile.

            “Hello,” I would say, proudly. At that age, everything I said I said proudly.

            He would pet me on the head, not a ruffle, like most grownups, an actual sort of stroking pet and he’d say, “Hello Scout,” he’d reply.

            I never understood this actually, he knew my name was Gina, but he always called me Scout. It was only when I started reading To Kill a Mockingbird in high school that I realized what he was talking about.

            Rodger would then sign me out and take me too his car.

            “What did you do today?” he’d say.

            “Everything,” was always my nonchalant reply.

            I’d then sit in the booster seat he’d gotten for me and Rodger would buckle me in. On the way home I’d describe to him what exactly “everything” was.

            The drive always took exactly six minutes. Rodger would unbuckle my seat belt and let me out.

            “Can we have milk and chocolate chip cookies today?” I asked this about once a week.

            “How about oatmeal raisin cookies instead?” Rodger was big on health, he thought that if I got used to sweets when I was young I would be too used to them when I was older, and that would be all I ate.

            “Ok, that sounds nice,” I’d tell him, not to make him feel bad about his weird food tastes.

           

            I liked Rodger, I thought he was nice and funny and he never forgot to pick me up from preschool. He was just assumed to me though, a constant, he would never go. He would be there, stroking my hair, asking about my day. But honestly, I never really thought about him.

            My preschool had this thing called parents day, where the parents could come to school with the kids and they’d spend the day together. Everyone was very excited. We even made invitations for our parents and everything. The day I made mine, I proudly handed it to my mom when she picked me up from Rodger’s.

            “Here,” I said, “It’s an invitation,” I enjoyed throwing that big new word into my casual vocabulary.

            My mom made that animated face adults make to show children they are flattered and excited, “Oh wow!”

            She opened it and read it through quickly, her grey eyes darting through the sparse text. She then sighed and knelt down to my level.

            “I’m sorry sweetheart,” she said, her voice was soft and as calm as she could make it, “I can’t make it, I have a lot of boring grown up stuff to do.”

            I pouted, my stomach sticking out and my hands on my hips, “But you have to. I made an invitation and everything. Everyone else’s parents are coming.”

            My mom smiled, “Now I’m sure that’s not true, some people’s parents might not be able to come as well, it’s no big deal, honey. It’ll be alright. It was a very nice invitation.”

            I shook my head, “No. It wasn’t nice. If it was nice you’d have said yes. I knew I should have put the butterfly stickers on.”

            My mom looked concerned and patted my back in comfort. Suddenly the spark of an idea lit her eyes.

            “I know! Let’s walk over to Rodger’s house. Maybe he could take you.”

            I nodded doubtfully, “Alright…”

            She took my chubby hand in her slim one and led me to the door. Together we walked up to Rodger’s house and she knocked purposefully on the door. He soon answered.

            “Good evening, Mrs. Davenport,” he said cheerfully, he then looked down to me, “Good evening, Scout. What can I do for you?”

            My mom turned to me, “Why don’t you ask him, honey?”

            I turned to Rodger, “I would like you to come to parents day with me. Even if you’re not my parent.”

            Rodger nodded, “Well what day is it?”

            “The first one,” I answered importantly.

            “She means next Monday,”  my mom explained, seeing Rodger’s confused face.

            Rodger furrowed his brows and then nodded, “Yes, I could do that, thank you for inviting me, Scout.”

           

            It was Monday and Rodger came that morning at seven twenty to bring me to preschool. My mom thanked him a million times before we went off.

            “Thank you,” I said, not wanting my mom to get all the glory, “It’s nice being your kid for the day.”

            Rodger smiled, “It was very nice of you to invite me.”

            “Hey Rodger?” I asked, suddenly struck by something, “Do you have any kids?”

            Rodger shook his head, “Nope.”

            “Are you ever going to have any?”

            Rodger laughed, “Probably not.”

            I was confused by this, pretty much every grown up I knew either had kids or had plans to have them. And Rodger seemed like just the person who should have at least some offspring.

            “Well why not?”

            Rodger shrugged, “Well I already have you, don’t I?”

             

© 2010 The smiling girl



Author's Note

The smiling girl
This, like everything I'll post on this website is a first draft I will take the criticisms people give and I'll keep them in mind when I revise/edit it.

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Joe
I really like this. It's very cute and sweet. You're details and word choices are great for this story! Great job! Keep it up!

Posted 7 Years Ago


I thought this was a WONDERFUL story!! And what a sweet perspective we get of Rodger from a four year old's POV. I believe even the smallest random act of kindness can have a lasting impact on the life of a child. You confirm those beliefs here. :o)

Posted 7 Years Ago



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Added on February 17, 2010
Last Updated on February 17, 2010
Tags: preschool, friendship, innocence, parents

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The smiling girl
The smiling girl

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Hi person who I probably don't know who is reading this! I am a person too. I like writing. I love reading. My favorite color is purple. more..

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