Wednesday, July 11, 2012

That Old Crayon Smell

It’s the second week of July and most people are still deep in the throes of summer and the entrenching heat that it has ushered in.  But I work for the board of education so we are in full new school year swing.  Teacher’s want new desks, new chairs.  Schools are ordering page after page of stuff.  Boxes out, boxes in.  Seventeen pallets of Smart Boards are coming in tomorrow.  One hundred boxes of student desks are en route as we speak.  To me, this is just work.  Nothing new.  It’s happened this time every year that I’ve been year.  I’m just glad no one has ordered new textbooks this year. This year, however, there is a slight difference in my outlook.  I have two kids starting school next month.  That means two out of three kids will be gone from the house all day.  More importantly, in my mind school equals school supplies.  The good kind.  Not stupid notebook paper and blue stick pens.  Ugh.  There’s no fun in that. I want to buy crayons and markers and colored pencils.  Pencil boxes and little scissors!  Glue sticks!  Oh, the wonder of it all!  When I was in school I always wanted to have a veritable buffet of artistic implements, though I didn’t always get them.  I can remember, though, going to Kindergarten with my standard Crayola crayons and being told that I needed the big kind.  You know, the ones that make it seem like you’re writing with a stubby kielbasa?  I guess it didn’t matter that I could already utilize a normal size crayon efficiently.  No, no, take out your green sausage links and draw some grass. I remember the first day of school when, on the way to your new class, you could stop at a table and buy a big paper grocery bag filled with all your supplies.  It was almost like getting a present.  There’s no telling what the pencils are going to look like!  It was one stop shopping, but I don’t remember how much those bags cost.  Even more interesting is that you can’t even find those brown shopping bags anymore.  So much for homemade book covers, too. So I was all excited about buying…well, crayons really.  Then I looked at the supply list and was hit with a bomb.  Our pre-k is state funded and supplies all necessary school stuff, completely rendering school shopping redundant.  Nooooo!  But…but…colored pencils!  Those big stupid, oddly shaped pink erasers!  All gone.  Man!  Stupid school. While the parent in me is relieved that I won’t have to spend what could have been an obscene amount of money on school supplies, the overgrown kid is ill at not getting to buy crayons.  Buying crayons just because isn’t the same.  It’s needing them that’s the fun part.  Knowing that there are numerous art projects that may already be planned and waiting, that’s what makes it fun.  It’s the adult equivalent of finding out that your new job requires the use of Angry Birds. So I guess school shopping will consist of haircuts, new shoes, maybe lunchboxes, and backpacks.  Connor has already informed me that he wants a purple Transformers backpack.  Uh…huh.  Which Transformer was the gay one?   Note: Crayola is not in any way greasing my palm to name-drop for them.   But I will highlight the fact that they’re products are non-toxic.  Eating their green paint will not kill you.  Live and learn.

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