Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored" and our recurring feature, "White Magic Friday!" We are seeking to prove that magic need not be feared, that it can lighten everyone's burden or whatnot.
There's a park near where we live that is dedicated to a dinosaur. When my daughter The Heir was a tot, I took her there, telling her we were going to the "Dinosaur Park." And when we got there, all we saw was a plaque with a picture on it. The Heir said, "Mommy, where are the dinosaurs?"
A few years later the subject came up of the boring dino park. Heir, daugther Spare and I decided to use magic to make the park better.
We combed flea markets and thrift stores for cheap plastic dinosaurs. We made sure we didn't buy any that a kid could choke on. And then, under cover of darkness, we took them to the dinosaur park and put them all around.
About a week later The Heir was out riding her bike. She went past the dino park and saw a mom with two little kids. The kids were playing happily with the dinosaurs. One of the kids asked if they could keep them, and the mother said, "No, they belong here, so that next time you come you can play with them again."
Over the years we've replenished the supply of dinosaurs when it runs low. But here's the magic part of it. Since we started dino-stocking, other people have been doing it too. We always find dinosaurs we didn't buy ourselves. And one time, when some bad demon took each and every dinosaur away, we found that we weren't the only ones re-stocking the site.
So here's our white magic tip for today: If you see a park where you know that kids play, make it more fun for them. Quietly leave some sandbox toys, or plastic dinosaurs. This is a cheap proposition, and it heightens happiness in the world. And even if it's only a little bit of happiness in a small park, it's adding to the conglomerate of worldwide happiness.
Pick a spot. Make it weirdly kid-friendly. Remember to use stuff that kids won't be tempted to put in their mouths. And don't take credit for it. That's the magic part.
THE MERLIN OF BERKELEY SPRINGS