Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Something "Special"

I know I've been discussing my childhood with you guys a lot lately, but I promise you will be happy you read this one.

A week ago, my parents brought me a little present. It was a "book" I wrote in the 1st grade for school. And as you'll see, it's Something Special.

Ahem ahem ahem...

The front and back cover, a portrait of our family with our house in the background. There's Dad, Mom, Hannah (age 1), Katie (age 10), Emily (age 7), and John (age 4)

1) I would like to apologize to Katie for giving her such girth, although the side pony tail might have been accurate for 1991, apologize to Hannah for my crayon ineptitude which resulted in her turtleneck onesie and lack of nose, and to John for forgetting to give him pants. Although, again, that might have been accurate for 1991.
2) I'm also concerned that this happened:
Teacher: "Now, kids, this is an important book you're writing. So make sure you title it something special."
Emily: "Got it. *writing* Somethiiiiing....speciallll..."

This is a bird's eye "vew" of me, as a baby, standing on the scale in my parent's bedroom and weighing the feather-light baby weight of 20 pounds. I assume, as a baby, I would need help standing by myself, so my mother is helping me. To the side, you can see the top of the light, which I had clearly asked how to spell, considering my random stab at "drassor."

"If I could... a baby I wood be light."

I don't really know what to tell you on this one. I clearly phoned it in. That, or I had spent all my time getting a mental grasp of my parent's bedroom from a bird's eye view that I didn't have time to properly explain my reasoning behind dedicating an entire page to such thoughts.

I am standing in a single file line outside before school. Jon O. is patting my then spiked hair and calling me "Spike." (Pure genius that one.) I am giving the kind of snappy comeback that truly comes after days of consideration, "Jon put a sok in it I meen you all redy got your underwer! not!"

"When I grow up I get funnyer and funnyer. I love being lughed at! I'm grat at being funny and I bet you now how funny I am!"

1) I remember being acutely aware that my example joke was not very funny, but I couldn't figure out how to MAKE it funny. Let's review the facts:

a) "Put a sock in it": Modern idiom I had recently learned. Always funny.
b) Reference to underwear in someone's mouth: I mean, how can you go wrong with that?
c) "Not!": Hi. My name is Emily, and my sense of humor spawns directly from Pee Wee Herman. It's nice to meet you.
I mean, based on that evidence alone, this joke just hit a home run--NAY, a grand slam. I don't know what I was so worried about.

2) My blatant disregard toward instruction.
Teacher: "Now this page will start with 'When I grow up...' and you'll write about what you'll be when you grow up!"
Me: "Yeah, eff that. I'm going to need an entire page dedicated to an underwear joke."
3) I clearly set this page up to draw myself in a long line of students, each with their own totally accurate caricatures. But once I had myself in there, I got through one more skirt before saying "Ehh, screw it. They get the point."

This is Easter morning in our living room, as evidenced by the creepy painting of a marble splashing in oil we used to have. Katie is discovering the traditional egg-on-the-clock egg, and John has found one of the "easy" (read, BABY) eggs under the couch.

Ester is my vavrit thig. man I bet you don't know how special Ester is to me. espashle that Jesus rows.

1) Okay, I'm going to be straight up honest with you here. Ester had VERY little to do with Jesus rowing. And it had very MUCH to do with Cadbury creme eggs. But I knew, even then, that if you want to get in good with The Big Guy, you have to do all the right stuff. You can't call your brother "stupid," you have to pray before dinner and occasionally other meals, and you HAVE to appreciate religious holidays for religious reasons. Otherwise, as a 7 year-old who can think of nothing more wonderful in the world than finding various types of marshmallows in a colorful basket, you are going straight to hell.
2) Every time I read the word "espashle," I want to take little 1st grade Emily and squeeze her so hard, her eyes pop out of her little spiked head a little.
3) I must have just learned the phrase "I bet" from Katie or something. Clearly I was into it. I also like how I kind of sound like an old black man sitting on a bench telling my life story. "Man, I tell you what. You don't even KNOW."
4) Next to the marble picture is a little brown rectangle. I believe it is our doorbell, but to be honest with you, I STILL don't know what that brown box does. But isn't that a strangely specific thing to remember about my living room, considering I drew this at school? And how have I been so perplexed by something for almost 20 years without bothering to ask anyone about it?

My father and mother are playing a board game (My mom is cross-legged and in a dress. Scandal!) and Katie and I are playing cards on our living room floor.

It's fun to play at or house but, we never have time! You know, mom gos to work dad to School we go to School and the little ones go to the baby sittirs.

1. I have to say, for someone who clearly didn't understand the concept that CRAYONS CAN'T BE ERASED JUST BECAUSE YOU MADE YOUR OWN HEAD ENORMOUS, it was a good effort for the commas on this page. I mean, 1 out of 2 ain't bad.
2. I 100% blame my father for the fact that I referred to someone 3 years younger than me as "the little ones."
3. That blue couch, man. I remember the day we got that couch. And I have to say--my rendition of it? Spot on. Spot. On. The thing is, though, that nothing else in that house even exists. We had no family portrait in which Hannah is falling into a small pit (I WISH) and we had no small windows with red curtains. So I ask you, tiny Emily: why the random attention to detail? Hmm?
4. Note that Hannah and John are no where to be found. That's because this picture embodies a happy place full of happy people, playing games and laughing into all hours of the night, as all the useless family members sleep.
5. I like that spelling and grammar were still just a shot in the dark at this point. I imagine myself like Pollock, just filling in blank space with splotches, hoping to appease the masses. "Capitalize here, lower case here...let's add some punctuation over here...that'll do, pig. That'll do."

This is a white stretch limo with a red top pulling up to the red carpet, where throngs of smiling photographers await my appearance.

When I get older I hope too be the prasadint!

1. GOD I hope that's how Bush spells "president."
2. Okay clearly I never wanted to be president. Honestly, I think I saw someone else write that and just wrote it, too. At this point, I had no idea that I wanted to be a Muppeteer. I really just wanted to be important and famous. And who doesn't want that, ever? Can you blame me?
3. Also, can you blame me for being an annoying show-off who knows what the Big Dipper looks like?

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Liketohike said...

I love the pointing at the Ester egg and the Big Dipper. Lovely attention to detail.

Kristin said...

thanks for about 10 minutes worth of hearty laugh time here, emily. this one's a keeper!

mom said...

You still knew, even at a tender age, that "It's" required an apostrophe!

Emily said...

No problem, Kristin! I knew you'd like it.

I was a genius child, Mom. College level, perhaps.