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a quote from my favorite author

“The most solid advice, though, for a writer is this, I think: Try to learn to breathe deeply, really to taste food when you eat, and when you sleep, really to sleep. Try as much as possible to be wholly alive, with all your might, and when you laugh, laugh like hell, and when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.”

-William Saroyan, The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze

Friday, March 18, 2011

You See: An Unexpected Memory


Donalyn Miller, Carol Jago, Jeff Anderson, John Rocco, Dr. Frank Serafini, to name a few. 

You see, these are the people who have filled my head, over the past two days, with ideas that will not rest.  However, in the midst of intense learning and focusing on my innermost passions as an educator, a woman two rows in front of me dropped her IRC Conference “Literacy: Out of the Box” bag and transported me to mid-summer at Toyota Park. 

You see, the seats in this particular session were very old, vinyl cushioned, folding chairs.  When she set her bag too far back, it caused the seat to flip up and the bag to slide to the floor behind the chair.  This simple oops in her day was a breath of fresh air in mine. 

You see, my husband and I are avid soccer fans.  We have season tickets to the Chicago Fire Major League Soccer games.  Being that we are both educators, and even work in the same building, soccer games are the ultimate escape for us.

And you see, the chair flipping two rows in front of me reminded me of the way the chairs at the stadium flip up every time I stand to cheer.  It reminded me of the way the chair of the child who sits in front of us always flips up when he stands.  But mostly, it reminded me of the way the child who sits in front of us always forgets that the chairs do that flipping thing and, without fail—at least once every other game—sets his hot dog or pizza or dippin’ dots on the chair as he stands.

But, you see, the best part of this memory isn’t even the innocent charm of the child’s surprise and disappointment over the lost treat.  The best part of this memory is that the child who sits in front of us always brings his younger cousin to the game, and his younger cousin, without fail—at least once every other game—immediately upon the demise of the fallen treat, offers up his own treat until the father of the child who sits in front of us is able to purchase a replacement.

So, you see, in the midst of intense learning and focusing on my innermost passions as an educator, a woman two rows in front of me dropped her IRC Conference “Reading Out of the Box” bag and I smiled.

2 comments:

  1. I like you started with "you see" in each paragraph! It sounds like it must have been a great conference. I like how you made the connection with your memory of being at the stadium. Btw, I LOVE your blog background of books! --jee young

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  2. It's a wonderful slice of life from you today. Those memories that 'pop' into our brains are amazing to me, & you told it very well, the repetition, the leading us right down the path to enlightenment! Thanks!

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