You Put The Proton In, You Take The Proton Out, You Do The Hokey Pokey, And You Turn Yourself About…

I’m tired of the 6th grade already, because JUST KILL ME DEAD, HOMEWORK.  The sad thing about that is I’m not even the one bent over the kitchen counter, rocking the bar stool back and forth, back and forth, until a parent snaps and yells, “FOUR ON THE FLOOR, DUDE,” and trying to solve an advanced math class problem that makes balancing the American budget look like an episode of Sesame Street.

We seem to have a lot of the homework this quarter, which is keeping us up until 10:00 PM, and I’m going to tell you now that MeMaw hasn’t seen 10:00 of the nighttime variety in a good many months.

And also?  The boy asked me last night, “Do you know how to make copper, Mom?”  I wanted to say, “Honey, I barely know how to make chicken and dumplings; copper is not in the red-checkered, Betty Crocker cookbook that every new bride in America is required to have.”  Instead, I said, “I have no idea.  Go ask your dad.”

If anyone in this house knows how to make copper, or explode a plastic bag with baking soda and vinegar, or weld a ball bearing into the end of a pipe to make a cannon, it would be Hubs.

And then the boy said, “I already know how to make copper.  I was asking if YOU knew.  I can tell you.  I could actually make it, if I had some blah-blah-blah-bluh-bluh-bluh.”

(There at the end of his sentence, I thought I heard Charlie Brown’s teacher talking.)

Suffice it to say, the ingredients for making copper cannot be found in the baking aisle at Walmart.  I’m pretty sure we’d need to go underground for that… start knocking on back alley doors with secret passwords… with our lunchbox full of unmarked cash… and our 1972 Ford Fairlane getaway car parked down the block.

Of course OUR BOY would know how to make copper.  Of course he was listening during science class.  Of course he even understood what the science teacher was talking about.  Of course he filed all of that information away in the section of his brain where nothing is ever lost.  (Which, sadly, is NOT the section of his brain where he files things like REMEMBER TO TAKE OUT THE TRASH and DON’T FORGET TO TURN YOUR HOMEWORK IN and HAVE YOU BRUSHED YOUR TEETH THIS MORNING?)

He is also growing strep bacteria for his science fair project this year.  All I can think is BLECH!  Are you even supposed to handle a ball of slime that was swabbed out of a sick person’s throat?

I was a straight-A student in school.

I studied.  I memorized.  I knew that sometimes staying in on a Friday night and reviewing history notes was going to pay off more in the end than putting on a pair of acid-washed jeans and an over-sized Shaker sweater to head to a party where a Whitesnake cassette was playing loudly on the boombox.

(Yes.  I said the word CASSETTE.)

(I just give thanks that I didn’t have to say 8 TRACK.)

And still, science classes almost killed me.  The only B’s that I ever saw on my report card were in biology and chemistry, and that was because I worked my hind end off to get a grade higher than an 87%, and then I quit taking science courses altogether when my core requirements were done.  I wasn’t going to ruin my GPA any more than what I’d already managed to achieve.

I think I’m cursed with a learning disability in the sciences.  My brain shuts down when it sees things like CELLULAR OXIDATION OF GLUCOSE and BIOGEOCHEMICAL CYCLES and GOLGI COMPLEX and CELL VOLTAGE and SOLUBILITY RULES FOR IONIC COMPOUNDS.

Punch my card.  Check me out.  I’m done.

Had it not been for Theresa our freshman year in college, who held my hand and pulled me through the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences building, I’d still be there.

Yes.  I would still be in that building, trying to pass chemistry on my own, as a nontraditional student who was taking the course for the twenty-third time.

In return, I let Theresa borrow my white leather boots with all the fringe down the backs, because those boots spelled out AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL.

I don’t even know where I’m going with this blog post, other than to say that I’ve finally realized the boy is probably far, FAR smarter than I am in sciences.  I think I first realized that when we’d do the 101 FUN SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS TO DO AT HOME WITH YOUR PRESCHOOLER together, and he’d explain to me WHY we got the reactions we did.

But dadgumit!  Can the boy diagram a sentence and find the prepositional phrases and the modifiers and the articles?

Well, actually… he probably can, if he was shown.

Can Hubs?  I doubt it.  And Hubs will say, “When have I ever needed to diagram a sentence beyond 8th grade English class?”  To that, I just say, “When have I ever needed to know how a cell is charged, beyond 8th grade science?”

Oh.  That’s right.  I had to know that stuff in ALL of those ridiculous science courses.

I’m telling y’all… sentence diagramming is a lost art… sort of like cave painting.  But I WAS GOOD at sentence diagramming.

Very good.

And now, since I’m doing nothing but rambling like a retired man in a Winnebago motor home at the Grand Canyon, I’ll wrap things up.

(I blame Thing 2 for all the rambling.  The poor pumpkin has a volume of snot that’s higher than the output at an Elmer’s Glue Factory, and he couldn’t sleep last night.)


That’s a science term.

I have to quit typing now.

Y’all have a very merry weekend.

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