It was a beautiful Sunday morning, with the sun shining early and the temperature an uncharacteristic (for September in Toronto) 28 degrees Celcius. I therefore made an effort to get up early (it is a Sunday after all) and clean the car.
After two hours of washing, waxing and applying all the cleaners in the garage to the car, it looked great. Satisfied with a job well done, I went upstairs and left the car in the sun to dry out the cleaning fluids.
As I watched the neighborhood from the balcony above, with the cat for company, I noticed the Neighborhood Pest (NP) come out. NP is an 8 year old, scrawny, short kid with coarse dark hair and eyes that scream 'I am going to do something irritating and I am a kid so you can't touch me'. Whenever I see him he is upto something ... evil. And his mother would be nearby, pretending to be keeping an eye out on him, but just plain relaxing on her porch.
Upon seeing a newly waxed and shiny car, NP's eyes lit up. Aha! And there was no one around the property to boot! Too bad he did not look up at the balcony.
NP took a few steps back from the car. Then, suddenly, with an energy burst, he ran towards the car and planted his hands splat! on the trunk. He then stepped back to watch the results. A hazy outmark of a couple of hands appeared amidst the shine.
His mother continued to watch NP with an uninterested look. And I was on the balcony, fuming. What sort of a mother was this? Does she not realize this kid will one day get beaten up in high school with this sort of behaviour? And I just fr***ing waxed the car!
NP repeated his act a few times. I decided to put a stop to this. A plan had formed in my mind. I reached for my weapon. The panic button of my keyfob.
The Keyfob with the (Red) Panic Button
Now anyone who owns a 2005 Altima will tell you how LOUD the panic button is. At the exact moment NP hit the car, I hit the button (playing all those Playstation games helped).
Oh. My. God.
The kid (no longer an NP) jumped up, and back, by about six feet. I had stopped the sound in the meanwhile. Tentatively, the kid reached out and touched the car gingerly. And I pressed again.
Oh. My. God.
The kid turned around and disappeared towards his mom.
Meanwhile I was rolling in the floor laughing at my cruelty. He would never touch MY CAR again.
After about 5 minutes, I began to feel a little guilty. NP was just a kid after all. It was his mom I should be angry at. But what could I do? I had to defend my 2 hours of labour.
I decided to go down and have a look at his handprints. I walked towards the car, and crouched down to look at some scratches near the number plate.
Meanwhile, unbeknown to me, my keyfob was still in my jeans pocket, along with some loose change. As I bent down, one of the coins must have jammed against the keyfob, and then against the panic button.
Oh. My. God.