Karen was the one who discovered the star in question. Beautifully drawn. In ink. On the arm of the sofa. “Who did this?!” Like deer in the woods quickly lifting their heads after a far off gunshot, the four kids in the living room looked up, looked at Karen, then at each other. Faces betraying nothing, the three older ones advanced slowly to look at the star. They examined it like a piece of radioactive waste. No denials yet. Yaniv, the 6 year old, lagged behind, then cautiously advanced towards the couch, mouth slightly agape, feigning nonchalance.
Nobody said a word.
Karen again: “WHO did this??” Turning to Yaniv, “Was it you?”. A millimeter head motion to the left, then nothing. The prosecutor, sensing a crack in the facade, pushed forward: “Was it you? did you do this? did you draw this?”. Big eyes stared back. Nothing. Which from a 6 year old is the equivalent of a sobbing confession from an adult.
I was watching with particular interest since before leaving for work that morning I had set Yaniv up to do two birthday cards for his school friends. I put him at the desk with a sheet of plastic underneath the paper so he wouldn’t miss the paper and ruin the wood. So now I’m getting angry.
Me this time: “Yaniv, did you do this?” Cautious nod of the head. Karen and I in unison: “Why?? why would you do that??”
Defense number 1: “I wanted to see it every day”. Every day. He wanted to see it. So he drew it on the arm of the couch. Who ARE these people?
I bent down. “I TOLD you THIS MORNING not to draw anywhere but on the paper!! LOOK at what you did!!” I took him by the arm to whack him on the rear. As he squirmed away he fired off his second attempt: “IT WASN’T THIS MORNING! NOT EVEN TODAY! It was ANOTHER day.”
Ah. Well. I see. Full reprieve for Mr. Yaniv because he drew the star on the couch ANOTHER DAY. I guess you could say it did sort of help him because I was working so hard to suppress a laugh, that his whack was not what it otherwise would have been. CASE CLOSED.