He’s my baby. He’s a good boy! He’d never do nothin’ like what the police are sayin’!”
Every time I saw an interview like this with a suspected something-or-other’s poor, sobbing mother defending her “baby’s” honor and sense of morality, I could just feel my eyes rolling into the back of my head because it was almost always a case with like 35 witnesses positively identifying the poor schmuck as the one who “done it”. It was kind of a hard habit to break when it came time for me to the be one standing face to face with Baby’s mama. It wouldn’t have been all that professional for Objective Reporter to be all eye-rolling and pointing out why Baby was about as innocent as I was stupid and that I was only here to get the quote everyone expected, now would it?
The running joke when I was working in newspapers was that if anyone I knew was doing anything illegal, it was probably best if I didn’t know about it. The better to be believable if it ever came time for me to be the one being asked what Best Childhood Friend or Baby Sister had been like as a child. Did she kick puppies for fun? Had she ever kept track of the number of fish flies (It’s a metro Detroit thing, y’all) she had ripped the wings off of as a child and buried in her backyard fish fly cemetery with each little burial site marked with a twig headstone?
Wait, that last one was me.
The point is that I’m officially screwed if Buttercup ever decides to become a criminal mastermind after certain behaviors witnessed during her last Skype conversation with Nana and her cousin. I set up my MacBook on the carpet next to her dollhouse in the playroom and walked away. When I came back I’m pretty sure the laughter I heard coming from over 2,000 miles away had more to do with the WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING, CHILD that I couldn’t help but scream than the fact that Buttercup had a tiny little plastic doll tied by her feet and hanging upside down from the second floor balcony of the dollhouse.
What made matters worse is that my child had taken the time to strip Dolly nekkid, save for her painted on unders, before stringing her up like a trailer trash Christmas light display.
The Prosecution won’t be able to call me as a witness in her defense. That was my first thought.
“Well, this one time she stripped her dolly, hung her by her feet with a pretend garden hose, and laughed like she had a few too many screws loose,” is probably not the response the reporter will be expecting.