Pay particular attention to the relationship of parent and child. Who's running the show? You almost always want the parent to be in charge. Make an exception for the child who demonstrates maturity. He may say, "This cat seems very smart and alert." This is obviously an intelligent observation.
He may sidestep his parents' attempts to choose a cat for him and follow his intuition, which is very catlike and promising. You will find such a child easy to train.
As you carefully study the relationship between parent and child, listen for these fatal words: "If we get you this cat, you're going to have to take care of it." Some children do indeed take responsibility for feeding and other necessities, and if you hear cheerful agreement, consider this promising.
However, if children must be threatened into cat care, two words: Never happen. After prolonged periods of hunger and poor sanitation, you will be returned to the shelter (or worse), having wasted time that could have been spent in training more suitable humans.
See earlier posts for suggestions about making sure you don't get adopted by a reluctant juvenile caretaker.
If the child picks you up, you will have an excellent opportunity for evaluation. Does she hold you just right, or does she let most of you dangle precariously? Do you sense affection and warmth? If your overall impression is positive, consider adoption.
This brings me to a very difficult and subjective issue. Having listed the many pros and cons of various human types, I must confess that sometimes good judgment flies out the window. Despite our best intentions to remain objective, we may sometimes feel so attracted to a particular human that we can't imagine life without him or her.
Humans call this love. I call it delusion, but, since I vowed at the beginning that this blog would be totally honest, I admit that I have fallen under its spell. If you like living on the edge and possibly risking your life, go for it. And don't say I didn't tell you so.
You must always remember, by the way, that humans are usually looking for kittens. Shelter management sometimes takes advantage of that urge by insisting that single kittens get lonely during the day and that an adult cat must be part of the deal. This gets more of you adults out of cages. The downside is that you will have to deal with a kitten, a topic I will go into in the future. For now, I will note that any cat worth the name can handle the juveniles of her species.