The Mirror of My Work
Last Wednesday, the hose on my mom and dad's suddenly decided to let go, and the treasurehouse that is our garage got soaked. Of course the water headed straight into the old schoolbooks my mom had saved for her tutoring and home instruction. Of course it headed straight for all the old schoolwork she'd saved for my brothers and I. And of course my mom didn't call me when she needed help. She's very good at giving it, but not at taking it!
But I finally found out what had happened (on Saturday). So last weekend I was going through some old schoolwork at my parents' house, and discovered that in kindergarten I had drawn a picture of "A MARCIAN HOW IS HAF-HUMAN". I guess back then I paid more attention to Dad's Star Trek reruns than I'd remembered. No pointy ears or other discernable alien traits, though; I guess that's why I put a caption on it.
I didn't remember as much of it as I used to. I could look at my own stuff and not be able to tell it apart from my brothers', until I realized that I was the only one who drew such heavy, jagged crayon lines that it looked like an attack. (I do remember my aesthetic objections to crayoning too lightly, because I liked solid color. But clearly my artistic aims did not translate well to paper. No wonder they kept sending me to the counselor.) I still recognized my old teachers' handwriting, though.
I did remember one Thanksgiving project, though. I remembered being upset that I'd accidentally spelled "cornucopia" as "CORNUCORPIA". (The "R" was indignantly scored out.) I didn't remember what I'd shown coming out of the horn of plenty, the things I was thankful for: a very doggy-looking "HORSE" and a pinkly convoluted, but reasonably realistic "BRAIN". Similarly, when they gave my brother Kevin the pencil, he told them all about our visit to an Army museum down South, and how when he grew up he was going to drive "a big Army truck". (He now owns a surplus, camo-colored deuce-and-a-half.) He also made a "SCIENCE MUSEUM" out of construction paper shapes, complete with three "PLANETARIUM" half-circle domes -- which served as a sort of tribute to our brother Sean's obsession with them.