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Mixed Signals

“La la la la la”

The pint-sized passenger in the backseat caught my eye in the rear-view mirror and, detecting a hint of smile, decided that at least one more chorus was in order.

It didn’t take too many refrains, however, before the La-La’s turned to LA-LA’s, and I knew the less eye contact made, the sooner he would grow bored with this tune.  I tried focusing on the road and the farms we were passing, but what he lacked in pitch, he made up for in volume, and  my head was beginning to spin.

So when we rounded a curve and I noticed a sign on the left.  I began to wonder if I had left my sanity by the road a few miles back.  Balanced on the rusting seat of an ancient horse-powered plow was a sign that said ‘Kids for Sale’.  My foot left the accelerator, and the caterwauling behind me diminished slightly.  I scratched my head.  All I could think of was that scene in  Oliver Twist with the guy singing, “Boy for sale!”  A laugh stuck in my throat as I pondered who had put up the sign.  Suddenly I remembered we had passed this farm on the way to the market, and I recalled seeing the livestock in the pasture behind the house.

“Oh,” I exclaimed, “They’re selling baby goats!”

The singing in the back was singing again, and my five-year-old didn’t miss a beat as he belted out a new song: “Let’s get a kid.  Let’s get a kid.”

I stifled a smile and, hoping my sanity had caught up to us, stomped on the accelerator.