Not vampire worthy.
Things are biting in Texas.
Not just the mosquitoes, rattlesnakes, and the heat.
Many in Texas grew up hearing “only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun”, (Like it’s really any cooler after 2 pm – but that’s when we were released into the free range neighborhood.)
Repeat that now and people just stare.
Especially when English is a second language.
Regional idioms and rural phrases make life more difficult for newcomers.
TV shows really help with that: fluency and cultural information.
That’s the reason.
He must have watched True Blood and Twilight over and over again.
To gain language skills.
Just trying to assimilate
Becoming part of the crowd.
Or was that having a fit?
Maybe the kid on his little motorized cart was loud and annoying.
(It’s summer. He’s a kid. Annoying is their job. It’s developmental.)
The 11-year-old boy saw a man flagging him down, so he stopped.
Well, the first mistake was that it was daylight.
Don’t the TV shows show the importance of darkness for vampires?
Oh, well, there’s a lot to absorb.
The bearded man grabbed the kid by the shoulders, and while kissing him on the check, he bit him.
Then he repeated the smoochy bite on the boy’s other cheek.
Then he grabbed the kid’s shirt.
The boy struggled free and hit the road for home.
His parents saw the quarter-sized marks and called the cops.
Police responded, examined the marks, concluded these were obviously bite marks, and went over to talk with the man.
He’s 70, Abdus Sattar.
He explained to police that he was Muslim and this was a cultural misunderstanding incident.
The police left.
Had to think about that. Maybe consult policy?
Cultural differences. (Gotta be careful with that. Sensitivity training and all.)
But they came back and arrested him for injury of a child.
Abdus Sattar posted bond.
People aren’t really sure what to make of it all.
Houston is home to many Muslims.
Mosques, Islamic Centers, and schools are fairly common.
About 80 or so in the metro area.
Muslims comprise about 1.2 % of the Houston population – about double the national average for cities.
So that’s the confusion.
No biting traditions emerged before this one.
The man is elderly – and has moved to a new country.
Hard to get with the program.
But he’s got that play the “cultural differences” card down.
Probably learned that on TV, too.
The Houston neighborhoods are pretty easy-going about diversity.
But generally, biting is discouraged and disciplined from around age 2.
It’s tradition for this area: no biting allowed. (Even dogs and cats are put on notice.)
Maybe that was left out of the “Welcome to Houston” information?
It’s that over-abundance of TV?
How is anyone supposed to know what is real and what is scripted?
Might be time to unplug?
At least clarify Twilight and True Blood would never sanction daylight cheeky bites!
Watching the sunset,
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.
- VIDEO / news story: “Spring Man accused of biting boy, 11.”
- Houston Chronicle article: “Houston among the top 10 Muslim cities in the U.S.” (Dallas is #22)