Not in the clamor of the crowded street, not in the shouts and plaudits of the throng, but in ourselves, are triumph and defeat.--Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

REDIRECT ALERT! (Scroll down past this mess if you're trying to read an archived post. Thanks. No, really, thanks.)

Due to my inability to control my temper and complacently accept continued silliness with not-quite-as-reliable-as-it-ought-to-be Blogger/Blogspot, your beloved Possumblog will now waddle across the Information Dirt Road and park its prehensile tail at http://possumblog.mu.nu.

This site will remain in place as a backup in case Munuvia gets hit by a bus or something, but I don't think they have as much trouble with this as some places do. ::cough::blogspot::cough:: So click here and adjust your links. I apologize for the inconvenience, but it's one of those things.

Thursday, April 08, 2004

On the Organ Trail

Do you ever wonder if persons unknown have sneaked into your home and replaced one of your children, maybe, ohhhh, let's say, your oldest daughter, with Wayne from The Wonder Years?

Last night, after getting back home from church, AND a last minute trip to Wal-Mart to pick up supplies and provisions for our upcoming convention trip, Rebecca decided she needed to finish the first part of one of her school assignments so she could turn it in today. Now why she waited, I have no clue. But she did.

The assignment was to make a cover sheet out of construction paper for a Social Studies journal about Oregon. On the front, some Conestoga wagon paper cutouts, and the name of the report and her name--just some decorated construction paper, and some blank sheets of notebook paper to write on. That's all it was.

As Ashley took her shower and Cat got her bath, and Mom and Dad busied ourselves upstairs with packing and typing up excuse notes, Rebecca sat downstairs at the kitchen table, happily cutting and gluing. Ashley finished her shower and sauntered out of the room, my words to "get in the bed and go to sleep" passing neatly through one ear and out the other as she stomped past. ::sigh::

I had just finished up my letter writing, when I heard a wail and screech from downstairs. ::sigh again, hard::

Moments later, a red-faced and leaky-eyed daughter showed up at my elbow, "How do you spell 'Oregon'?"

Oh no.

"Why do you ask, Rebecca?"

"BECAUSE I THINK ASHLEY ::sniff:: TOLD ME THE WRONG THINNNNNNNG! I didn't know ::sniffle:: how to spell it ::chuffle:: and I asked her ::snnnxxxt:: and she said it was WRONG! LOOK!"

Red construction paper, little clip-art covered wagons, and neatly lettered:


Well, it didn't really matter whether it was intentional or not, the only thing was to try to fix it. And intention is nearly impossible to pick out of a teenager. The deliberate "dense act" is a fool's game to try to unravel--it's like having to listen to Vinnie Barbarino on Welcome Back, Kotter--"Whuh!? Huh?! I di'n do NUTIN' Mistah Kottah!" Whatever.

Since I was at the computer, I got an idea and Googled on some Oregon images while Rebecca continued to sniffle and snot at my side. Ewww. Found a nice-sized one of the Oregon flag, and told her we could cut it out and paste it over the top of the word and it would look JUST. FINE!

No dice. "But ::sniff:: my teacher says we have to write it." Grr.

Fine. Even in my sleep-deprived state, I was not going to be beaten. I hoisted myself out of my chair and headed downstairs to see what I could do. I had just rounded the corner to our bedroom door and nearly ran into Ashley, who started the excitedly defensive jibber-jabber she starts when she's trying to justify being a turd, and I just held up both hands and said, "Stop...Stop...STOP. Go to bed."

Downstairs, found some blue construction paper, got the scissors, decided I had better use them on the paper instead of myself, and cut out a little wavy rectangle. Rebecca asked if she could just insert an "e" and fix the "o", but I told her not to. So she did-- OregOn. Nope. More sniffles.

I cut my paper. Test fit, trim, fit, trim, perfect. Glue, outline in black to help hide the edge, and neatly wrote "Oregon" across it sorta like it was a flag flapping in the breeze. Done.

Rebecca looked at and gave me a hug that nearly wrung my neck off. "Thank you, sugar. Now then, have you learned anything from this little episode?"

"I shouldn't get so upset."


"I shouldn't wait until the last minute to do things."


"I should ask you when I want an answer instead of asking Ashley."


And now repeat after me--"it'sonlyaphase...it'sonlyaphase...it'sonlyaphase..."

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