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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Ode to School Supplies

When I was growing up, I loved school and the very, very best part about the end of summer was shopping for new school supplies! Oh yes, I loved new school supplies! About three weeks before school would start, I would shop for just the right spiral notebook (probably with kittens on the front), new pencils with the perfect amount of cute/cool design, new notebooks and binders, new colored pencils and markers! I get giddy just thinking about it! I would bring them all home, take them to my room, spread it all out and then . . .organize it all! Oh, the sheer excitement! The joy! Inevitably, I would not be able to resist the perfection of a brand new package of markers combined with a beautiful new notebook--I couldn't resist the temptation--I'd open them all and get to work creating my masterpieces! It was pure bliss. In fact, I loved my new school supplies so much that I would almost always use them all up before school even started and I'd have to buy new school supplies to actually use at school!
Now that I have children, one who is actually attending school, it is officially school supply season! At Kindergarten round-up last year, they told us that all of the parents order the school supplies from the PTA. Against my better judgment, I succumbed and ordered school supplies through the school. Easy? Yes. Disappointing? Most definitely.
So this year, I thought things were going to be different. This year I did not order school supplies for Matthew from the school. This year, I was going School Supply Shopping!!! I got excited as I walked through the aisles in Target last night, so this morning, I decided that today was THE day! I printed off the list and headed to Target bright and early. I could barely contain myself as I walked past Health and Beauty, turned left at Electronics, steered past the summer clearance items and into the School Supply section! Angels were singing, birds were chirping, and I had visions of grandeur as I pulled out Matthew's supply list! That is when it happened. All of my school supply dreams, my visions of spiral notebooks with sports cars, race car pencils, maybe even (dare I say it?) a Scooby Doo 3 ring binder, were dashed in one reading of the school supply list. My head started spinning as I read such items as:
3 spiral notebooks (one each of red, blue, yellow, wide rule, single subject, 70 pages)
1 orange cardboard folder, with brads
1 red plastic folder with pockets, no brads
1 blue plastic folder, no pockets, with brads
5" sharp fiskars scissors, orange (I don't think they even make these in "sharp")
1 ream copy paper
24 no. 2 pencils, yellow
Nooooooooooooooo! Noooooooooooo! This is wrong! This is very, very wrong! And oh, I know what you're thinking. Yesiree. I see why they have done this. So that everyone has the very same (boring, dull, without personality) things. So that the teacher can say "Boys and Girls, please get out your blue spirals, it's time for Math." So that everyone will indeed have a blue math spiral. And so that no one's feelings will be hurt when Billy takes out his super-cool hologram Corvette spiral and writes in it with an awesome Toy Story 3 pencil. Oh yes, I see. Is this really what it's come to now? Can't it even be an option for one spiral to have a little personality? Can't we just use color coded labels on cute spirals? Evidently not. Evidently. Not.

I got what was on the list. The exactly right things. But I also got some super cool things to keep at home. Who knows? Tomorrow afternoon we might just get a little crazy and draw in our awesome new spirals that are brimming with personality! And you can rest assured that I'll be at school handing out holiday themed pencils at each party. But watch out, oh ye who say we must all be alike, I might actually sneak in some pencils that have different colors and patterns. Maybe the girls will get pink and purple with sparkles and the boys will get black with flames or lightening bolts. Maybe I'll really go crazy in December and hand out pencils with Christmas trees on them. Don't tell anyone.

5 people had nice things to say:

Judith said...

Little Boxes, Little Boxes, all in a row! Yuke, Puke, FMR (fu.k me running) what happened to "no child left behind?" Did this school district vote to make "little boxes all in a row" out of our children. You go Girl, - go crazy with mixed up colors for pencils, pens and I say give the boys hair bows and the girls pocket rockets - Do something crazy and keep those individual personalities ALIVE!

I love this post, I love your literary skills and most of all I love you! You know we've all said you came out of the womb asking for magic markers so you could capture the moment in "living color!"

Happy School Year

Lucy said...

I love this post. I don't love the conformity of the school supply list, but I love how you are rebelling against it! You go, girl!

Leslie said...

I, too, am obsessed with school supply shopping. It was my favorite part of school starting all the way through when I quit teaching. :) (And I still have the urge to buy now when I see the ads and aisles of stuff.)

How sad that you can't buy personality. blah. Who wants THAT?!?

FIGHT THE SYSTEM!!! (tee-hee)

Hilary said...

I think you should make it your mission as soon as the crappy orange no brad folder falls apart to go find the most badass hologram orange folder. and maybe even some toy story or spiderman stickers or paper tattoos to jazz up the other supplies.

Plus cool mom points for giving M some quarters to buy the awesome school supplies at the school store. Everyone knows the lame yellow pencils are for the kids who lose them by september. Rock him out with the fancy ones with cool eraser toppers and grips!

Anonymous said...

Outstanding story there. What happened after? Take

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