This blog is now retired. My new site is at: Predictably Irrational.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

The Eyes Have It

Spots is a little Dalmatian webkinz that my daughter owns. My other daughter has Katty-Kat, which is, well, a _cat_ webkinz.

Background Information:
Webkinz are the latest craze. They are stuffed animal toys that have a security code attached to each one. This security code then gets registered at the Webkinz website and voilĂ ! there is now an interactive virtual (aka cartoon) image of the stuffed animal toy that one can interact with online. It can be fed, or one can play games to earn money to buy everyday animal needs such as: a bed, toilet, clothing, hats, shoes, chairs, etc. And, all sorts of food can be purchased to keep your webkinz alive, such as pizza, cake, ice cream sundaes, and similar healthy animal treats.

Nearly every girl on my Girls on the Run (GOTR) team had at least one. These became our mascots during our practices. Some girls brought two of the many they had at home. Cerina (the owner of Spots) often spoke about her friends who had ten of these things. Webkinz are the latest in a crazy fad that I would generally not want to be a part of. I boasted to my daughters about one lone GOTR girl who said she did NOT want one. But alas, after Spring Break, she excitedly told everyone about her newly acquired webkinz. The disease had made its way into the resistance.

My girls were not part of the resistance. I gave in and thus, Spots and Katty-Kat made it into our home. These two things received, and continue to receive, more attention and love than our dog Brenna -- and by all means, Brenna is very loved in our home.

The other day, I noticed a stuffed bunny and Spots on the floor. I didn't think much of it because, well, it's not unusual to see toys and stuff strewn across the floor anywhere in the house. Some days, I walk over it; other days, I yell for clean-up. This day was a good mood day, so I simply let the two toys enjoy each other's company on the floor.

Some time had passed as we (the family) gathered in the dining room, having jovial conversations about our days. Once we were ready to break up the party, I randomly mentioned to Cerina "Hey, you better check on Spots. I saw him lying on the floor upstairs. Better hope Brenna doesn't get to him."

I seriously did not think those words would be a premonition.

Soon, a painful wail came from upstairs. I quickly ran upstairs, knowing exactly what must have happened. There was Cerina, gingerly holding Spots, crying with so much pain.

I looked at Spots and at first, didn't notice anything wrong other than obvious dampness from dog spit. But alas, the poor dog's eye had been viciously removed.

For the next 20 minutes, Cerina cried uncontrollably...a WAILING and PAINFUL cry. I could feel her pain and wanted to cry too -- over a webkinz? But yes, it's daughter was in severe emotional pain and it pained me to see that. Anytime I tried to help her feel better by talking about fixing Spots, or even the word "Spots", her tears would flood even more than they were already flooding.

At one point, she screamed "This is what happened to Max! She ate his eye too!!" Max being the first victim to the eye-eating mongrel.

Then a tender, memorable moment: First, Mia came over to Cerina (who was lying on the couch) and offered a pillow for her head. She asked her to rise a bit so she could place the pillow under her head for comfort.

Cerina was still crying uncontrollably, so Mia said to me "I'm going to play the piano and sing to her to help her feel better." And that she did.

Mia cannot play the piano, but Cerina has been taking lessons. So Mia got right up to playing - banging softly on the keys and making up a song as she played. I can't remember the lyrics, but it didn't really matter. She was in her own world now. The only goal, was to soften the blow of the attack on Spots.

Mia would then stop playing and would read the notes on the music sheets -- mimicking her sister's ability to learn sheet music. It was the most amazing, uplifting thing I've ever seen. It is one of those rare moments in life where one wishes there was an instant rewind to play it over and over again.

At some point, Cerina regained her composure. She never appeared angry at Brenna, who was completely unaware of the cruelty she inflicted on the household.

The next day, Cerina happily shared how one of her friend's webkinz had also been attacked by the family mutt, and it's eye was also the starter course for it's destruction. She seemed content that she was not the only victim of the stuffed animal-eye-eating family beast.

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