I must admit, I love the Bass Pro Shop’s towering aquarium. I’ve contemplated jumping in that marvelous tank on numerous occasions, ever since I watched a five-year-old do it, and then get a free T-shirt after he was rescued.

I spotted a toddler wandering near the aquarium, he was clearly lost. His face was riddled with fear.

“I’m looking for my grampa,” the little boy told me.

“Well, where’d you last see him, son?”

“I dunno.”

“What’s he look like?”

“He’s a retard.”

“Oh buddy, we don’t say that word, it’s not nice. What about his hair? What color is his hair?”

“I dunno, he’s just a big old retard guy.”

So, I walked him through the store, looking for God-knows who. I was worried that the little boy’s plight was going to be a bad one. More importantly, I was worried that if his grandfather was indeed mentally unstable, he might be swimming his way to a free T-shirt.

When I found the boy’s grandfather, he sprinted to him.  The man scooped the boy up like a capable adult in complete control of his mental facilities.

“Oh, boy,” he said, in a strong voice. “Your mother would’ve gutted me if I’d lost you. You can’t run off like that again.” He turned to shake my hand. “Thank you sir, I can’t thank you enough. See, I’m new to the babysitting gig – now that I’m retired.”

2 comments

  1. Colin - April 9, 2015 5:41 pm

    Ha haa! Thanks for the story. Cheers.

  2. Samuel P. - April 10, 2015 9:40 am

    It’s true, I’ve seen someone fall in that tank too. They said it’s a real problem at BPS, because it happens so much.