More than a place to keep my pencils

I’ve had writer’s block. Awhile ago, I found a list of “80 Journal Writing Prompts,” I, somehow, had to foresight to tuck it away. Miraculously, I REMEMBERED where I tucked it, got it out and re-read it, and today I have a topic.

I have a prized possession. Actually, I have several prized possessions, but I’m going to tell you about one. But I’ll need to backtrack.

I, often, use an invented word: Wooled. It means, to be “mad.” Used, often in a whispered tone, somewhat in code, describing the demeanor of one’s boss, for example, “The Schizophrenic is WOOLED, today.” I started to use it some time ago, and I, daresay, it’s sweeping the nation. Friends and family use it, as if it’s an actual word.

I have this friend, Rin. She’s been my friend for about 12 years- she’s a good friend, my best friend, in fact. She would be the one who would help me hide the body, if necessary. Rin has 2 kids, I call them both “Hooter.” But in this case, I am referring to Hooter 2- aka Julian. He is now, 18 years old, but I’ve known him since he was a little kid.

Julian was a funny little kid. Ridiculously smart and mature. He had long hair- that was, kind of, a cross between a Shag and a Mullet. We called it “The Shullet.” He wasn’t a regular kid. He never, like, had meltdowns or anything and when we were in public, he actually behaved like a human being, not like an animal, as most kids do. In fact, we used to go out for pizza sometimes, Rin, the Hooter and me. And the hostess would size us up- see The Hooter and stick us in the “family section.”
Ugh. “The Family Section,” also known as the 10th Circle of Hell, especially if you don’t have kids, like me. So there we sat, the 3 of us, a lone island of civility in a sea of pepperoni-spewing-mayhem. Crying beasts. Temper tantrums. Glass-shattering squeals. Tears, tears, so many tears. Flying food. Spilled sippy cups. Spit balls. Haggered parents guzzling White Zinfindel. We would look at The Hooter and say “This is YOUR fault, you know. YOU are the reason we are in this section!” And Hooter would say, apologetically, “I know. I’m sorry!!!”

The Hooter could crack me up, like nobody’s business. He would eat a greasy slice of pizza, and, literally have grease all over his face, a fact to which, he was completely oblivious, and I would say “Hooter, wipe your face.” He would take the napkin, wrap it around his index finger and daintily dab one corner of his mouth, and say “Better?” A brillo pad would have been more appropriate.

Anyway, back to my prized possession. When Hooter was about 8 yrs old, he made me a Christmas gift. It was a little plastic pencil holder to keep on my desk at work. The pencil holder had 2 “sides” to it. He explained to me that, depending on my mood, I would turn the holder outward, so that people coming into my office would be able to tell what kind of MOOD I’m in. (As if I have another mood besides: BAD)
One side has a pretty little scene of a Snowman, standing in the snow, with a black top hat on- and it’s labeled “Happy.” This is the side I should turn outward when I am happy.

The other side. Oooooh, the other side is a picture of Satan, with a pitch-fork, surrounded by lightning bolts, fire and brimstone- and it is labeled : WOOLED.

This is the side I turn outward when I am in a Bad mood. For the record, I have NEVER displayed the Happy side. It’s not because I’m never Happy- I am, it’s just that the WOOLED side is so classic. I asked Hooter “What’s happening on The Devil’s stomach?” Hooter replied, with a quizzical face “It’s his six-pack, so he can PUNCH PEOPLE!!!” Duh.

I love this silly little pencil holder and this memory of The Hooter. I cherish it. He’s a young man now, in college, with big ideas about the world, politics, and religion. I know this is the natural order of things, but I miss that little rugrat with the greasy face and the Shullet. He doesn’t even remember making it for me. But I do. And I keep this little pencil holder as a reminder of that funny little kid, it’s my favorite thing on my desk.

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2 Responses to “More than a place to keep my pencils”

  1. Beth Forbush Says:

    I love it Kristin…made me sentimental about my own greasy faced spawn. Forced me to think how they were before they turned on me. I found, during our Christmas garage cleaning a picture Colby drew during his “be sure to show all the people anatomically correct, even though they have clothes drawn on them” phase. Hopefully another decade goes by and I will remember with the same fondness the now, so seemingly unbearable three snarky teenager phase. Love you and love your blog. Keep writing! ❤

  2. Your BFF Says:

    I should write a blog about the anatomically-correct things Julian did with his “guys” (action figures)… good times, good times!

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