The scene: Maya, Teresa, and Daddy are taking a walk. The sun has just set, and it is getting dark. Daddy pushes the two girls in a double stroller, with Teresa in front and Maya in back.

The sound of firecrackers in the distance has made Maya nervous, and she has been worried that the firecrackers are at the playground that the trio is walking towards. Daddy has done his best to assure her that they are in the other direction, and their sound seems to confirm this.

Firecrackers: pop   …     pop pop poppoppoppoppoppoppoppoppop poppop       poppop     pop

Maya: Can fireworks kill people?

Daddy: These firecrackers? No, no, they—they aren’t very dangerous. They’re very small, this big (holds fingers close together). They could go off in your hand, and they wouldn’t hurt you. Well, they wouldn’t hurt very much anyway.

Maya: Oh.

(Maya thinks about it for a little while.)

Maya: Can fireworks kill food?

I’m not sure whether she wanted to know:

  • How dangerous are they? On a scale of killing people to killing chickens.
  • Can they be useful? Can I hunt with them?
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