I hate that trust game, the one where you stand in front of someone, close your eyes, and fall back as stiff as the dead. I think it’s stupid. It’s not even that I was dropped a time or two, so I can’t blame a bad experience. It’s the having-to-prove that I trust them that bugged me. What do we hope to achieve by falling intentionally, demonstrating and testing our trust in such a way? When we’re older and have bigger problems, we’re not going to trip on purpose to see if our friends will catch us, at least not on a daily basis, everyday at recess. Who’s really being tested? Do you actually trust all those friends, or are you showing the bravado that comes with not caring what happens to yourself, your body, or your well-being time and time again? Then maybe it’s just the thrill of falling. I can get behind that. I get that. These are, of course, not the things I actually articulated as I performed the premature death drop with my eyes squeezed shut, the look of terror on my face one of the more hilarious things to be seen.
No, I do trust you!, I’d assure my fourth grade friends, none of whom believed me. I just don’t want to give you all my weight. I just don’t want to lean on you entirely. I just… don’t… trust you… with it. OOPS WHAT’S TRUST. But no one took either side of the argument seriously, so it’s fine. We did laugh, but playfully at other people’s expense, those who were shrieking and squirming in a discomfort that proved counterproductive, their flailing leading to a downfall that was their own fault rather than the friends’ behind them.