Way, way back in kindergarten – somewhere around 1992, if my memory doth serve – I distinctly remember a journal entry I was asked to write. (Go ahead, try and remember what you were writing about in kindergarten. I’ll wait.) The topic was “What games do you like to play at recess?” In these journals, our teacher was looking for a minimum of one (1) word, which could be accompanied by pictures to better illustrate the nature of the physical activities we were getting up to for fifteen minutes a day five times a week. Many of my colleagues wrote simple entries about the joys of playing kickball, tag, or the legendary game of “slide”, which involved a stick figure standing halfway down a right angle triangle that would have given Pythagoras nightmares for millennia. My teacher, poor Mrs. Richards, went around the class, reading them out loud for everyone to share. Naturally, a fair shake of trouble-makers had not participated, which led to much laughter and consternation amongst the class.
Finally, she arrived at my desk. I proudly/simply handed over my journals – I had been unable to decide upon a single game that would accurately define how I spent my time at recess, and so I had provided not one, not two, but three journal entries. (This indecisiveness would become greatly reflected in my extracurriculars and career choices for years to come.) Mrs. Richards took them up, cleared her throat, and prepared to read them out loud.
Then she stopped.
“Yes, Mrs. Richards?”
“What’s this?” She showed me the second – already out of order! – of my highly detailed journal entries, utterly baffled by what I had created.