Kimmy Sophia Brown

Ranin and the Red Thumb

(A True Story)

Jan 8, 1996

Ranin was four years old.

Ranin Brown was a cowboy,
He was a true love cowboy,
with warm love eyes.
He liked to fight the outlaws
and he saved the women and children.

These are the words to a song his daddy made up for him. Ranin Brown was a handsome boy. Most of the time he was a boy of true love. But sometimes he got angry.

When he got angry, his face screwed up into a mean, twisted-up pickle face. It was hard to see where the handsome went when he got mad.

When he got angry, sometimes he threw things.

Sometimes he yelled things.

Sometimes he stomped his feet and banged his fists.

Sometimes he called people a "pig face!"

One day Ranin and his mom were sitting on the couch. They were watching Ranin's favorite movie, "The Black Stallion". They were sitting close together and they smiled at each other.

"Ranin, you're so sweet today. How come sometimes you get so mad?" his mom said.

Ranin smiled at his mom and held up one hand. "This much of me is good," he said wiggling five fingers. "And this much of me is mean," he said wiggling the other five.

Then his mom took the fingers he said were mean. "No, this one is good, and this one is good, and this one is good, and this one is good and just this thumb is a little bit mean," she said, kissing them one by one.

The next day they told his dad about his thumb. His dad said, "Ranin, would you like to know a secret?"

Ranin nodded yes.

"If you keep kissing your mean thumb when you feel mean, pretty soon it won't be mean anymore. Pretty soon it will be a true love thumb!"

Then his daddy kissed Ranin's thumb, and said, "See? It's better already!"

And Ranin smiled.

The next time Ranin got really mad he started yelling and stomping and slamming the doors.

"Hey Ranin, you better kiss your thumb," his mom said.

Ranin looked at his thumb and forgot about being mad for a minute. He smiled and showed his mother. "Look, it's red. That's how you can tell I'm still mad."

His mother laughed and kissed his thumb. "I'm still mad," he said, trying to look angry.

"We better work on it some more," his mother said. Then she kissed his thumb and tickled his tummy until he wasn't mad any more. They laughed and tickled and hooted and squealed. Then they smiled at each other.

"I think it worked." said his mom, pointing to his thumb.

"Look!" said Ranin. "It's not red anymore!"

And from then on, whenever Ranin had a mean thumb, he kissed it, and smiled a special cowboy smile.

Kim lives in Maine, which is lovely, and where she continues her enthusiastic relationship with Art, Music, Nature, Books, Animals, Humor and Trees.