Feb 19, 2009

dear lulu

dear lulu,

i know you really really really want the teacher game for your nintendo. i know you love me. with shugar on top. just in case i didn’t know how badly you wanted the game or how much of a “dream come true” it would be for you to own it - it was the “persuade book” that you brought home the other day; complete with the clever section and what i can only guess to be some sort of ‘frequently asked questions’ about how you might go about getting the money to buy the game yourself that really drove the point home.

and that illustration of me with the speech bubble coming out of my mouth about how i have decided to give you the game because you’ve been writing so many letters was wonderfully detailed. i loved the bows on our shoes and the money in your hand and the game with price sticker in my hand. i appreciate the height-of-marathon-training stick figure rendition you gave me and would give my right arm for eyelashes that long, not to mention that stick figure. thank you.

this isn’t going to be some letter about how i walked to school in the snow, barefoot, uphill both ways sort of story – although you know that snazzy dollhouse in your room? yeah. your auntie cynthia and i used to make dollhouses out of cardboard boxes. anyhow. this isn’t one of those letters. but i am gonna tell you about how you don’t need a nintendo game to teach you how to be a teacher.

it’s true, i did go to college to learn how to be a teacher. a fine college indeed. and i have a fancy degree to prove it. right now that very degree is all rolled up in its’ red tube serving as support inside a killer pair of calvin klein suede boots i bought at tj maxx last year that i haven’t even worn yet; but when i do break them out and wear them and your dad says “nice boots, i guess there’s no recession in the webster house”, and i say i bought them a year ago and he won’t believe me – let the records show – i have had those boots for a while. long before the recession hit. anyhow. that’s where that fancy degree is. in those boots.

so until i enter a raffle to win you three kids a college education, there are some things you can do in the meantime to learn how to be a teacher. no nintendo game needed. gasp.

first off – you know all those webkinz that are ‘dead’, that you insist you can no longer play with, cause you’ve lost their passwords? here’s the thing. they are not really dead. they are all right there, waiting to be played with – all stuffed, fluffy and tangible. you do not need to adopt any more webkinz and build any more online virtual worlds for them, nor do you have to remember any passwords. just line them all up on your bed and play school. you’d be amazed at how obedient they are. in fact, your mommy used to do this very thing: line up all your stuffed animals on the bed, put them into reading groups and ask them to read a paragraph from ‘little house on the prairie’. then, make up a worksheet with questions about the chapter and fill in all the answers yourself. you could even take them all on a field trip to the park in the backyard and send them all down the slide. mommy didn’t even have a park in her backyard. just a creepy empty lot halfway down the block.

anyhow. after a while, all the blank stares of the stuffed animals will start to grate on your nerves and you’ll want to take it up a notch. you’ll want to have ‘students’ that actually talk. and fill out their own damn worksheets. this is a tough one seeing as you’re the youngest in the family. see, your mom was the oldest in her family and could subject her little sister to all kinds of “let’s play school” torture.

if you were the older child, (and didn’t live halfway across the country from any semblance of family) you and your cousin could have a dedicated ‘classroom’ on the third floor of their house, or in the basement of your own house, and every single weekend could be dedicated to torturing your younger siblings with “school”. you could dress up in nightgowns and put a belt on, cause you know – it makes you look like a teacher. and you could put pepsi in a mug and totally pretend it’s coffee. you could make up 200 word spelling tests and have a self defense class and punch your cousin square in the nose during a “demonstration”. you could blatantly hand out demerits for such indiscretions as being “overly dramatic” when your younger cousin starts an uproar about the 200 word spelling test and the fact that you’ve kept her holed up in the attic (um, “classroom”) for 4 hours.

all of this will be excellent preparation for your future role as the ‘fantastic’ as you say, ms. webster. no nintendo training needed.

i won’t even begin to tell you about scavenging your second grade classroom garbage cans for those awesome pens that were blue on one side and red on the other, cause i’m sure with all the budget cuts, teachers don’t throw away their pens so willy nilly.

anyhow. claudia, lulu … my little schmoofie – what i am trying to say is this: keep writing your letters. all of them. i wish i wrote as prolifically as you do when i was seven. you can be whatever you want to be. but whatever it is in life that you choose, i have no doubts you will be a happy girl. i bet if you can find some sort of job that requires using copious amounts of scotch tape, you’d be over the moon happy.

love, mom.

ps: your imagination is so much better than any nintendo game.


Cynthia said...

p.s. I stole those double sided pens since you put the fear of God into me and I wanted you to be a happy teacher.

Anonymous said...

very persuasive........ !!!


Gotta Run..... said...

Again... I totally miss being 7 years old...again.

Love the lesson. brings me back to my days of teaching all sorts of things to the stuffed bears and dressed up dolls.

Can't wait to see what her next letter holds. :)

Cindy said...

brilliant letter :) i saw a display of webkinz in the hospital gift shop the other day. that's a sure sign that they are no longer 'cool'.

Anonymous said...

I think you made me cry. In a good way.

She'll thank you. :)

I didn't know you were a teacher!

house on hill road said...

did i tell you that the playroom is being changed into a craft/school room? uh huh.
kate is younger than claudia. just saying....

Anonymous said...

HA! That's one way to say "No."

Very funny!

Anonymous said...

And for the record, POOR Cynthia.

We know, Cynthia, WE. KNOW.