This evening, walking the dog at dusk.
Kids up the street: (in chorus) Can we pet your dog?
Me: His name is Bruiser.
One kid (while petting Bruiser): We know. (pause:) I'm a monster. (one arm inside his shirt)
Another kid (also petting Bruiser): I'm a monster too.
Me: Very scary.
Yet another kid (petting Bruiser): I'm not a monster.
Me: So, the monsters are trying to catch you?
Yet another kid: (nods)
More petting. Then:
Me: (brisk as all hell) Okay!
The historian: So you think it's time to get going?
Kids: (in chorus) Bye Bruiser!
The historian: (contemplatively) When that kid said I'm a monster, at first I thought he said, I'm a Marxist.