Adorable Misconception

There was a little four-year-old girl named Esther in my office today. I suppose all four-year-old girls are little, but I remember that as a distinguishing characteristic of hers.

Another was politeness. She'd brought with her a zip-loc baggie of orange goldfish crackers, and she kindly offered one to me, which I accepted. It was especially generous of Esther, since goldfish are on her list of favorites.

In fact, goldfish could be number one on that list, as evidenced by the following: after accidentally dropping the bag on the floor, she carefully picked up each one that had fallen onto the carpet and dutifully threw it away.

"You have to go in the trash can, Mr. Goldfish," she would say, remembering the hygiene lessons her parents had taught her. "I know that."

Then, on her way to the wastebasket, Esther would kiss each goldfish several times, assuring him that even though he had to be thrown away, she still loved him very much.

I would have interceded in adultlike fashion, explaining all about germs and their transmission, but I was collapsed on my desk, overcome by the cuteness.

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