Literary mayhem hits first grade

Photo by Vicki Harris

Photo by Vicki Harris

The little 8-year-old princess was discussing with me the story of Adam and Eve. She opined that if we come from Adam and Eve it must mean that all people are kin. This delighted the love-everybody, save-everything, do-no-harm little girl.

She asked, “Doesn’t that mean we are kin to everybody in the world daddy?” I didn’t bother to tell her that I don’t want about half the people I know that are kin to me and I sure as heck don’t wish to add 6 billion more to the family reunion list. I’ve got enough problems without adding foreign languages, and strange religions, to the Christmas dinner.

The little girl was especially delighted with this revelation because of her 6-year-old hurricane brother. His middle name should be Mayhem, and he delights in blowing things up, watching calamities, destruction and nuclear explosions. When grown, he will probably volunteer to witness executions. He pronounces he wishes to be an army man when he gets grown. This greatly disturbs the little princess, who regularly explains to him this means he will have to kill people.

He responds by making machine gun noises.

She pranced into his room and told him that he was now kin to everyone in the world, since we all come from Adam and Eve, and he could not be in the army because it would require him to kill his relatives.

The little boy replied, “Na ah, those relatives live in a foreign country and it is OK to kill relatives in a foreign country.”

Hmm ... if only we could extend this philosophy to foreign counties, I might be able to alleviate most of my kinfolk problems.

This wrecking crew of a little boy has now begun to play tackle football in the recreation league. He is playing on the 7- and 8-year-old team, even though he is only 6. When you weigh 82 pounds in first grade, football coaches will let some things slide. It also doesn’t hurt that he’s strong as an ox and almost as smart. Well, in fairness to the little boy, he has so far made straight A’s in the rigorous tutelage of Mrs. Garland’s first-grade class.

His problem in life is not his IQ, but rather his judgment. Most children who do something wrong will blame it on someone else and the parent will normally reply, “If Johnny jumped off a bridge, would you jump off, too?” In the little boy’s case, the answer is, “Yes, I would.”

He recently had, I guess, what one could describe as his first creative in class writing assignment. He was asked to write a story on a humorous topic. The title of his story was “The Farting Monster.” Unfortunately, I have not read the original version of this masterpiece, I only received the edited version, which occurred after Mrs. Garland made certain attitude adjustments to the little hurricane. We had a little talk about this incident, and he protested that “but, daddy, it was funny.”

Alas, it probably was, but probably not very much to a first-grade teacher.

I think this football thing may be right up his alley. He doesn’t have a clue where to be, who to get, or what to do. He does, however, understand that something needs to be hit. Once of age, he’s the perfect candidate to storm the machine gun nest.

“We’re pinned down by the enemy machine gun fire sergeant.”

“Where’s Gamble? Send him in.”

I guess in reality it may be a little early to declare for the NFL. If he doesn’t make it in football, however, he’s got a bright future in the literary world.

Contact columnist T. Gamble at t@colliergamble.com.