What would you do if a 9-year-old kid stopped to ask you for a light on the street? You'd say no, right?
In a recent video experiment, created by the folks behind the YouTube channel Whatever, one bold little kid actor named Jensen heads out on the street to do just that. The responses he gets from strangers range from shocking to poignant, but all are an absolute must-see.
"Can I get a light?" Jensen asks over and over to countless strangers.
"Um, no, because you're way too young to be smoking," one woman tells him. "You're growing and smoking is horrible," she adds, holding her own cigarette in one hand.
"Then why do you do it?" Jensen innocently says back.
"Because I'm stupid," she says.
Others, like a group of older boys, take the time to remind Jensen of just how young he is. "You're like my brother," says one of the boys. "I can't take my brother a light [sic]."
Some even get offended by the boy's advances, like a man on a park bench who asks him, "Where are your parents? You're assaulting a man; you're not supposed to be talking to strangers." (We'd hardly say Jensen was "assaulting" anybody, but he's right about talking to strangers.)
But the most honest words came from a man who leveled with little Jensen about his own regrets. "I started when I was 7 years old," he says, "and I wish I had never started this, man, because I can't quit."