4/25/2007

A Fun Quip


Back in the 80's (I like saying that) when I was a new teacher, I had this really cool class of kids. They LOVED writing stories! I can actually remember details of many of them. One of my favorites came from a child who now, as an adult, is confined to a mental institution, after he attempted to murder another person in Eugene (the other person was also one of my students!)
Anyway, the prompt I gave the class was, "Tell a story about a time you made some money."
This kid wrote about a business he and another neighbor kid started when they were 7 years old. See, up in the Skyline area of Corvallis, many folks had wood-burning stoves. This boy and his friends started hiking up into MacDonald Forest, collecting "firewood" to sell. The would drag small logs and broken branches down into his family's backyard, chop it up, load it into a wheelbarrow, and go door-to-door selling it.
They did this for months and months. Of course, they would usually collect more wood than they could sell, so they would store the left-overs behind the family home, against the back wall.
A couple of years passed and he and his buddies lost interest in their little business. The wood just sat out back. The dad, who happens to be a Cardiovascular Surgeon here, decided to have the house painted in about 1983. As the painters prepared the house, they moved the wood that was piled in back. Behind it, they discovered extensive damage to the home, due to the fact that the wood was infested with termites and carpenter ants. So, the dad had to hire someone to come in, pull out all of the rot, exterminate the colonies of bugs, rebuild, and repair the home. The cost? In his story, the student said, "Dad asked me how much money I made selling wood. I told him, 'About $65.' He then told me that I only needed to make about $11,000 more in order to break even."
I laughed so hard and carried that story around with me for years...

4 comments:

The Carnivorous Hippy said...

Ima quote Vita now...
"har har har"
ch

Vita said...

All together, your story was very sad. I'm gonna hafta cheer up.

BoggyWoggy said...

Sad! Sad! Are you insane!

Vita said...

Hey. I tried to call Mr. Stainthorpe, but he's closed today and tomorrow for surgery, and said to call back Monday. What a nice voice I heard on his recording. Must be his.