Array: (n) an impressive display or range of a particular type of thing.
He was my first child, which obviously made me a new dad.
I wanted to do everything right, but I wanted to go just a little beyond that so I could be considered by my son to be tremendous, but also noticed by the surrounding audience of humanity–that I was “Dad of the Year.”
So when he was about three years old I took him to the grocery store with me, toting him around, answering all of his little broken-English questions and finally arriving at the checkout counter, where much to my tickled soul, there was a huge array of candy bars.
Wanting to be the great benefactor and a father to be heralded for all time, I turned to my offspring son and said, “Take your time, but you can pick one of these to eat on the way home.”
It was so pleasing to my soul that I still tear up today as I remember his wide-eyed expression, gasp and reaching up with his little arms to hug my neck. Upon releasing his embrace, he turned to the candy–and a sick feeling sunk into the pit of my stomach as I realized, almost intuitively, that I had made a horrible decision.
First of all, the array of treats was much too large for his tiny mind to comprehend. Added to the dilemma was the fact that I had restricted him to one. So while the lady behind me in the checkout line tried to patiently wait, my three-year-old picked one candy bar after another and then changed his mind. Finally he came down to the five that he preferred.
Having the logic of a newly born human, he assumed I would revise my offer to include the entire array of his choices. In other words, Daddy, we’re gonna get all five, right??
I explained that he must narrow it down to one, but he did not understand the concept of “narrowing it down” nor the idea of “one.”
In a fit of despair, I grabbed one of his five choices and gave it to the checkout lady as he began to cry and whine for the four which had been abandoned.
Instead of being a blessing to my little kid, we spent the entire ride home with him screaming in tears, eating his chocolate bar as it melted on his face, which was hot with anger.
I don’t believe he ever remembered eating the sweet … and he certainly wasn’t very sweet in eating it.
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