NintenHo Ho Ho!
Guest Post (Thank you, J!)
My parents had cultivated the idea that my sister and I were hopelessly over-indulged…
… and they firmly believed that Christmas presents should be educational or functional… like…
When I was 12, I decided to lobby heavily for a Nintendo.
My parents, however, were having none of it… until …they realized they could turn my Christmas wish into a valuable life lesson in fiscal responsibility.
So they agreed…. to buy me half of a Nintendo.
They would pay for one half and I would have to pay for the other half.
I wanted it badly enough that I agreed and immediately began saving all of my pennies.
Christmas morning, I saw a package in the back that was the correct size and shape for a Nintendo!
What could this be? My eyes were wide with innocent delight.
I shook it — the weight was right too!
But as I unwrapped it, I realized something was a bit… off. It was a just regular cardboard box.
And inside there was no Nintendo… just blocks of wood (roughly the same weight of a Nintendo) with crumpled up dollars.
I looked up, confused.
I uncrumpled all the bills. “$60.”
“Yes!” she said brightly, really warming to the game.
I nodded and returned with my savings.
“See?” she crowed triumphantly, “now you have enough money to buy your Nintendo!”
“Yeah,” I said dully, not able to mask my crippling disappointment,
“I know one store that might be open!” she said, with a wink.
“The Mom store?” I was incredulous.
She dug through the back of her closet….
…and returned with the Nintendo.
“Now give me the money.” She had me count out the $120 (to be sure it was all there) and hand it over.
“And here you go!” She handed over the box.
I was numb. I finally had my Nintendo, but at the cost of a valuable lesson — my parents
can make anything educational can suck the fun out of anything.