June 11, 2008 by Marj Hatzell
Look, the thing is, I’m not one for imaginary beings. I don’t do Santa, I don’t do Easter Bunny and I certainly do not want to get involved with the tooth fairy. I think they are sort of ridiculous (yeah, Bah Humbug) and I believe that CERTAIN holidays are important for CERTAIN other reasons, reasons which I will not get to at this time. And the whole tooth thing drives me nuts. I mean, money for losing teeth? Who the heck started that whole scam? TEETH FALL OUT, people. It’s almost guaranteeing that you’ll go into debt by the time they are twelve, what with today’s inflation and crappy economy.
Ahem. A bit of a soapbox there.
Of course, other family members totally do Santa and Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy and I had to explain to Bug Boy that we don’t do Santa and Easter Bunny but they are fun for other people and we read stories and he totally got it. In fact, since he is afraid of people in costumes and large stuffed animals? It was a no-brainer. He seemed relieved. In fact, he was happy that it was just a story. Then all the other kids in his class started losing teeth. And he didn’t. They came to school with wild tales of money left under the pillow in the dark of night. Some strange person was entering their rooms while the slept and violating their personal space and sanctity of their slumber and TAKING THEIR TEETH. He freaked out thinking that this person was sneaking in and taking the teeth right out of their mouths. He didn’t want any parts of it. And I didn’t either. It IS KINDA FREAKY when you think of it from his perspective, no? Strange people breaking in and entering your safe haven? Leaving weird gifts?
Fast forward to this year. He still didn’t lose any. The rest of the class was almost done losing their six-to-seven-year-old set. Lo and behold he lost one just shy of his seventh birthday. And there was much rejoicing (yea). Bug Boy approached us with the tooth (the one that hung by a thread for months on end so that no stranger would take it) and announced that he was writing a letter to the tooth fairy and that he couldn’t wait to find out what happened. We looked at each other completely shocked. Where was this coming from? I took the husband aside and told him I wanted no parts of it. I’ve explained and explained that no tooth fairy was going to visit. Something told me that Bug Boy caught on to the whole money aspect (the kid is a little Mister Moneybags) and was taking us for a ride. Peer pressure is an amazing thing. The kids probably told him he was daft if he didn’t pretend that he thought there was a tooth fairy, after all, smart kids have had this figured out for years and were pretended for their parents’ sake. I refused to get involved but Darling insisted we carry it out. So I handed the reigns over and told him to have fun. This Grinch wasn’t gonna feed into it.
The tooth fairy has left Bug Boy Pokemon cards and Matchbox cars and books and two dollar bills over the past few months. The tooth fairy’s wife was not amused and accused him of spoiling the kid and encouraging a sense of entitlement and receiving stuff for doing nothing. One night the tooth fell out around ten and the tooth fairy had to run out in his pajamas and get something small to stick under the pillow, since he’s the smarty pants that started it all. The tooth fairy’s wife sat at home and gloated and smirked. Then this week things took a turn for the worse. The tooth fairy went away on business for the week. Bug Boy pulled a tooth out the other night and triumphantly announced that he KNEW JUST WHAT TO ASK FOR. And I was all, “DOOD! It ain’t like Santa! You can’t ask for stuff and think you are gonna get it. I am pretty darn sure the tooth fairy doesn’t operate that way. And besides, don’t you want to wait for Daddy to come home to help you write it?” I really and truly believed I could buy a few more days that way. Uh-uh. Not gonna do it. He was heck-bent on writing that letter TONIGHT. I was gonna have to either tell him once and for all that the tooth fairy was a big, fact lie and that his parents were dishonest and manipulative and total losers or I was gonna have to be the freaking, *%&(* tooth fairy. SIGH.
And you know which one I picked. The one where I don’t have to be the meany-head and stomp on my little boy’s heart. Here’s his love letter to the tooth fairy:
DearToothFairymayIhavea Pokemon tinlistinsteadofapacket (at least he’s polite. Notice the accent over the appropriate letter in Pokemon).
To which the tooth fairy’s substitute gallantly replied:
I’m mean that way. Get your own freaking tin, kid. I mean, THE NERVE! I ain’t running out to buy a freaking tin! Save your money up. Sheesh.
I’m such a meanie-head.