|Is the pipe big or is he small?|
I have a close friend, Nina, from Germany. Yesterday, she told me a story about her cousin that had me in tears. Nina lives in the states and occasionally talks with her Aunt Agnes on Skype. Agnes cares for her mentally-disabled adult son, Christian.
Christian sounds like a nice enough man, in his mid-20's, and in love with Lord of the Rings. With the recent release of The Hobbit in theaters, Agnes reports that Christian is in full LOR mode.
Last week, during her lunch break, Agnes called her son to check on him. He was at home, as usual, and terribly excited.
"Are you having a good day?" she asked him.
"Yes," he nearly shouted. "I've my own hobbit!"
"Hobbit? Yes, we're going to see the hobbit this week."
"No, mama," the young man replied. "I've got my own hobbit!"
The conversation was not entirely unusual. The young man had a hobbit costume, even LOR toys; making his statement about the hobbit somewhat run-of-the-mill. Yet, something about his excitement was unsettling. Concerned for her son's safety, and after over 20 years of constant care for him, Agnes decided to go home and check on her son. She left work shortly after, and drove home.
When she arrived, Agnes discovered Christian in full Hobbit garb, brandishing his plastic sword and toys. "I've my own hobbit now, mama!"
Agnes made a quick walk through the house, stopping in the kitchen when she heard a faint tapping coming from inside the broom closet. When she pulled open the door, she was shocked to see a little person inside. Thankfully, he wasn't hurt, but apparently, he'd been locked inside the closet for most of the day.
What she could decipher, between Christian's ecstatic shouts and clapping, was an interesting story. This little person was part of a traveling circus. In an attempt to drum up business, the circus manager had sent several performers (to include numerous little people) through the local neighborhoods to hand out flyers. When this poor soul arrived, Christian scooped him off the porch, certain his prayers for a real-life hobbit had been answered, and stored him away in the broom closet.
Fortunately, the poor soul hadn't been harmed, only man handled by an excited Christian. Agnes offered him something to drink, a ride, or even some money for his troubles. The man only calmly asked if he could leave. Agnes escorted him to the door, holding back a now devastated Christian. When the little person reached the porch, he ran across their yard and disappeared down the street.
This story terrified me a little bit. As Nina told it, I couldn't help but think several things:
Was it a child? A little person?
Were they hurt? What did Christian do?
Once I learned the truth, and discovered that the poor man wasn't hurt, I couldn't help but laugh. Maybe I'm evil, but I just kept thinking, what in the world happened for those few hours? Did Christian slip him a sandwich under the door? Did he tell the man about all their planned adventures? Did the man try to comply? Escape?
But what made me laugh the hardest was the thought of that poor man returning to his employer. "Please, Mr. White, you don't understand. I would have been working the whole time, but I was kidnapped and forced to play as a hobbit."
At the least, Agnes could have written him a note or something. "Please excuse this man, he was mistaken for a mythical creature by my son and held captive in our kitchen. Regards, Agnes!"