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Suburban Island

Exam Time
Thursday, Jun. 19, 2003, 12:25 p.m.

QUESTION: Why do I feel like I'm still going to high school?

WHAT I LEARNED: Exams always stink.

This is the end of the school year for the kids. It is stressful because they are going/have recently gone through finals and there is still a lot of last minute studying happening. To benefit this cause, I have thought of a few changes around the house that would support this academic effort:

  • Deactivate all media in the house including TVs, VCR/DVD players, Playstations and all variations thereof, and those little Game Boys too
  • Destroy all water balloons (especially those with pinprick holes that get squirted at me and other household members as a hilarious prank by a certain soon-to-be-14-year old kid, who can’t be sent home because he lives here
  • Unplug the phones, confiscate cell phones, and take the batteries out of those walkie-talkies
  • Uninstall AOL, IM, and all games on home computers until successful completion of exams has been demonstrated
  • Shut lights off by 11 and no exceptions (and no flashlights)
  • Stash all forms of transportation in an offsite garage including: cars, skate boards, scooters, and bikes
  • Throw away all broken pencils, dry pens, and empty wide-lined (not college-lined) notebook paper wrappers
  • find all missing-in-action study guides, text books, and notebooks necessary to actually study

During exams I would like to see a different house emerge – a more exam-friendly, student-supportive, academically-inclined homestead. Here’s my finals week perfect home:

  • Mozart and other calming music or environmental sounds wafting through the house
  • Water only used for showers, dishes, laundry, and not for tossing at other people
  • All phones free so I can finally call my friends back without interruption while diligent studying is occurring all around me
  • No game noises of any kind permeating the atmosphere
  • Supplies and materials like pencils, paper, notes, and books, actually available at the point studying begins
  • Rested kids, rested self
  • Successful test-taking that is not reported back with sentences that start with phrases like – Everybody did bad so actually or The teacher refused to grade on a curve or else I would have had or I knew everything so I don’t know how I got

And at the end of this dream – tolerable report cards for all parties and summer in all its glory spread out before us.

DETAILS: Coffee: just tea today + Listening to: kids banging around in the kitchen Observing: perpetual sleep-over guests + Thinking: Should I adopt these kids? + Weather: rain and sun taking turns

Today’s Suburban Strategy: Hate your yearbook picture?

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