How can you be at the zoo and not see your kid climbing over the enclosure into the gorilla habitat? Seriously.

How does it happen that you don’t have eyes on them — especially when they’ve told you they want to go inside the cage already — and keep them safe?



I consistently almost  close RJ up in the closet, because he likes to hang out there while I am in the shower. He’s weird. But I know he’s weird, and so he’s the first thing I look for when I get out of the shower to make sure he’s coming back to the bedroom to go hide under the bed while I dress. And then, once done, I clap for him to come out and we get the day started. Easy! I know my pet squad and I watch out for them.

I scan for escape opprtunities on every walk with Russell Jenkins (the plastic-bag-killer), Peanutbutter (the faking-you-out-with-unexpected-three-legged speed dog), Kingston (the anything-that-moves-chaser-so-he-can -hump-it opportunist — he’s done it to a goose), Brooklyn (the car-hater) … All the dogs are watched and they’re not all even mine. And they’re dogs, not kids. It’s not that hard to be thoughtful and vigilant.

Before the Harambe story becomes one that the  family shares and laughs over at holiday gatherings (‘Haha! Remember the time we had to kill a member of an endangered species because you were so precocious?’) it seems to me they should be on the hook for something — the cost of breeding opportunity lost with Harambe’s death, the cost of mandatory kid-leashes at the zoo, or some other thing that results in a monthly bill so they remember the gift of still having their child, and the societal, cultural and environmental cost of that gift. Because, really? That whole thing was wrong.


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