At the start of the first X-Men movie, Nazi guards ruthlessly separated a young Magneto from his parents, paying no heed to their cries and emotional trauma, which incidentally helped the future super-villain manifest his latent mutant powers.
Today, I did the same thing. With that same Nazi coldness and professionalism, I too separated a young child from his mother.
It happened some time toward the end of my shift. Many mall employees were punching out and exiting via the staff entrance, and it was my pleasure to impede their progress with frivolous security checks. My suspicion was first aroused when I noticed one of the ’employees’ was a great deal shorter than most. Perhaps because he was only 3, I reflected.
Apparently, it was Daddy who brought Junior to the mall for a treat. And to see Mommy at work of course. The plan was to have Daddy escort Junior out via the main entrance while Mommy fulfilled protocols by going through the security checks at the staff entrance. Unfortunately, Junior had other ideas, and despite parental objections, ran after Mommy to the staff entrance where he wasn’t supposed to be. Meanwhile, Daddy loitered just outside the door separating the public from the private domain of mall employees. He looked like he was having a quiet laugh at his wife’s expense, who was being stalked by the persistent 3-year-old.
With nominal power, we mall cops still have great responsibility unfortunately. Thus, it was up to me to remove the little one from his mother. And while the assembled company of mall employees looked on, Junior put on a performance loaded with much screaming, tugging and kicking.
Even as I gently but firmly led Junior toward his still laughing father, the increasingly violent brat kicked me in the shin. But for some inexplicable reason, even when it was obvious that I was the victim, the crowd sided with the delinquent who just assaulted a mall cop. Reproachful stares fixed on me like so many laser dots* and their cries of ‘Awww’ encouraged the boy to continue his rowdy performance.
When finally I delivered the boy to his father, our aspiring actor delivered his coup de grace. Dropping on both knees, he extended his tiny hands skyward as if begging for divine intervention and cried out plaintively for his Mommy. Fortunately, his hitherto ineffectual father had the good sense to pick up the wailing ‘bundle of joy’ and leave before the spectacle could go on further. Much to my relief and the disappointment of the gathered gawkers.
That boy could not obey orders but he could certainly work a crowd.
By: A Mall Cop
* The sort that comes from the laser sights mounted on rifles.