Very Young Kids Understand Shakespeare

I read Shakespeare plays, King Arthur by Sir Thomas Malory and other classics to my two children starting when they were six and three. No they did not sit still mesmerized into silence. I read to them while they were eating.
One story told of a knight who approached a bridge guarded by, if I remember correctly, monsters. A shield used as a sign explained to prevent monsters from attacking as you crossed the bridge a person was to strike the shield which would call a knight. If the knight who owned the bridge was beaten in battle the bridge could safely be used.

This was a lunch story and as the day continued I noticed my son and our dog, Cardinal Wolsey, were glued to the couch and constantly staring out our picture window. As time passed and my son was still stationed at the window, I asked him about this. He pointed to the back of a board outside and in front of our house. I went outside and found it was a large sign hand printed in a child’s hand but clear to be read. It was prominently placed, and pointing at anyone passing by. It read, “Whoever hiteth this shield will getteth what he deserveth” My son waited all day but no one hiteth his sign.

Get Well Amys

Get well Amys. No that is not a spelling error; Two of my Amys need get well prayers right now.
A couple of years ago my sewing group contained five ladies named Amy, and five Annettes and few others. One evening we were all chattering away but mostly focusing on our sewing projects when someone opened the door and called, “Amy?” Without looking up about half the group answered, “Yes?” Then we all looked up startled…and laughed.

I’m Very Important; I’m a Victim!

I’m feeling insignificant and without purpose. This used to happen to people of middle age; the solution was to buy a sports car.
We’re taught in school to evaluate ourselves as discontent; the solution is two fold.
To cure discontent we need to discover to what extent and to the greatest extent possible how much a victim we are. I, myself, am somewhat important because I’m a female, I’m a victim because I’ve been abussed in my family and by men in the work place, and one of my foremothers was a native American. Also, I’m an artist. I spend all day every day making things to look at that no one wants to see. There should be a law! My neighbors spend a great deal of money on music but none on art. A lack of cultural appreciation makes me a victim. People should be forced to by my art!
There are many in my communitee that can count up so many more points of victimhood; they are so much more important than I!
I also need a purpose in life! The solution is to complain and be offended! I’ll make a long list of offences in every direction, and to really find satisfaction I’ll go on a protest march and distroy something! Ah, I feel so much better!

Oderous Devastating Bread

It smelled more like beer mixed with dead dog than bread! After a wonderfully fun and long phone call I walked into my kitchen and found disaster. My bread dough had risen out of its bowl, onto the counter, dripped off the counter, and grew across the floor! It was odorizing half my house with a pungent, awful mix of smells.
I was raised not to waste anything, especially food, if in this case you could label it as such. Twice on similar occasions I’d baked the “bread” anyway but baking hadn’t improved it one wit! I couldn’t eat it, so this time I scooped the nasty stuff up, hauled it to the backyard and buried it as fertilizer.
I was satisfied that in the spring my garden would thrive with so much soil conditioner. Spring came and I put on my rock hounding boots, took up my shovel, and headed for the backyard to turn over the soil.
I was delighted! I was thrilled! My backyard was full of mole mounds. I still love those mounds of fluffy dirt!
I jumped in the air high as I could and landed, not in a glory of soft soil but in odorous goo! Yes, the dough I’d buried in many places had continued to RISE and mix with mud and had grown four fold! I pulled myself out and beat the stuff down with my shovel. It exhaled giant, terrible poofs of stink!
My neighbors complained about the mysterious smell and so did the garbage men the next year. For that full year I reasoned that the “dough” surely must have run out of sugars to eat and would surely DIE but it never did! My yard got bigger and higher all that year as I refused to waste “food?” I never could plant a garden.

When a garbage dump is full people flatten it and plant a housing tract on top. To this day, I watch the news in dread hoping not to see ‘An Odorous Mystery; why did this neighborhood rise up ten feet and put off a terrible smell?’

Race Differences- Attacked With Understanding!

My neighbor is suspicious and some what frightened because most of his neighbors are white and when they’re at home they spend ALL their time QUIETLY INDOORS. This seems sneaky to him and he’s positive they are PLANNING something!

I laughed at myself and told him my black neighbors put their lawn chairs on the sidewalk and talked and laughed so loud I was sure they WERE PLANNING SOMETHING!

In the sixties I attended a black high school where in a large art class the only ones of us that weren’t dark skinned were myself and a guy from Japan. Well, actually he was darker than me too, so I was the only pasty one there.

At the end of our first assignment we all waited in anticipation for a Japanese masterpiece, but we were disappointed. I thought, “Well, maybe he needs time to warm up.” By the time we’d finished our third assignment the entire class exploded in a ruckus of disappointment.

For some reason we all thought EVERONE from Japan could draw, paint, and landscape to an inspired perfection! The poor guy said that wasn’t true, but we argued back, “Yes it is! We know these things!” We told him he was wrong! We insisted he did have EVERY art talent! It was INBORN! He was baffled and insisted he was a beginner as were we. “NO!” we insisted. We almost attacked him with our understanding; he just didn’t know he was a superior artist, so get on with it and preform- now!

I love differences! Preconceived ideas surprise me and make me laugh at myself!

His Beard Was a Listening Device!

I said, “I’ll be thinking out loud about my painting; you don’t need to listen.” My husband’s answer, “Nancy, I never listen.”
How’d he know to answer? Sometimes when I asked a queastion he’d answer with a prfound statement pertaining to the thing on HIS mind. I’d respond to his subject and ask my queastion again at a deeper level.
He’d repond to my question and add a statement that dug deeper into his subject. I’d challenge his answer and make a statement off to the side but pertaining to his response and add a further thought to mine.
We could go on a long time and maybe add two more subjects before we ended by laughing at the exercise.
Occasionally a thing would be very important to me; so I took hold of both sides of his beard, just below his ears; I got close, almost nose to nose; and quietly I’d say, “This is important…” He knew to listen well, otherwise listening was play. I miss John.