My daughter Natalie ran to the Del Amo Mall’s fountains, leaned on the marble partition and dipped her hands into the water when a stout security guard, a woman, kindly approached me and whispered into my ear: “Don’t let her touch the water. Birds bathe in it and produce deadly bacteria.”
I get it. If Natalie paddles the water one more second she’ll catch avian bird flu and die in my arms while pedestrians eat their Wetzel pretzels. The stout guard’s shift ended and she was replaced by another guard, a man. He did not enforce the no-touch-water policy evidenced by dozens of kids splashing the fountain water. I guess he didn’t get the memo.
Le'ts get real: There was no memo. The first security guard got bored and what does she do when she gets bored, standing around looking at mall rats? She devises crazy stories to scare the crap out of people. On her next shift she'll warn people about radiation levels in the water. Arsenic. Piranhas. Half-decayed corpses underneath the tossed pennies.