Sunday, May 20, 2012

A partial eclipse of the heart

Happy Solar Eclipse Day!  Did you look directly into the sun?  I sure did.  Because I live on the edge, people.

The first solar eclipse I remember was in the 2nd or 3rd grade. We were supposed to go on a field trip that day.  No doubt somewhere incredibly cool and exciting and adventurous.  Some place that would make us the envy of the whole school.  But it was cancelled.  Ugh.  Is there anything worse?  You can't imagine the disappointment.  So instead of going to this incredibly cool place we had to go out to the park next to the school and eat our sack lunches*. My teacher explained the eclipse and then told us to not look directly into the sun.  Now, I'm sure I loved my teacher.  She was no doubt a brilliant educator. But I thought she was kind of dumb for thinking that she needed to tell us to not look into the sun.  Of course I'm not going to look into the sun!  You could go blind doing that!  When we got to the field there were several upper grade classes viewing the eclipse through special glasses.  I wanted to yell at them, "Do your really think those glasses are going to save your eye sight, you lunatics!?  What kind of fool teacher do you people have?"  I was, above all else, a rules follower.  Plus, I was already suffering from the huge blow of not going on the field trip, I certainly did not want to add to that by losing my vision.  So while the other kids in my class were roaming around the park, trying to wiggle their way in with the big kids to look through their glasses, I sat quietly in the grass, drinking my root beer and putting a pox on whatever it was that cancelled our trip.

Which is why this evening, as I stood outside in the shadowy light, I felt a slight pang of disappointment and a craving for root beer.

*Did your mom pack you a special lunch for field trips?  Mine did.  I had the same sack lunch every single day - peanut butter and jelly sandwhich, a juice box, and two of Mom's chocolate chip cookies (which were nothing to shrug your shoulders at.)  But for field trips she would swap out the juice box for a can of A&W root beer wrapped in foil to keep it cool, and a bag of chips, usually Funyuns, because those were really exotic.

7 comments:

Andrea said...

Yesterday I was with my brother and sister's families for dinner. The kids were outside and came running in because the neighbors had let them look at the eclipse through their welders masks. So of course we went outside to catch a glimpse. I'll have you know I sang Total Eclipse of the Heart the whole time we were out there and annoyed my whole family and probably all the neighbors too. You would have been so proud!

Camille said...

Now I'm craving funyons like crazy.

Gina said...

Wait...are you dissing the chocolate chip cookies. Nothing to shrug your shoulders at? Those are the best cookies ever!

Valerie said...

Of course we got a special field trip lunch. My mom wasn't a monster. We didn't get a drink as a regular rule--we bought milk for a quarter (i still can't believe I got chocolate milk for a quarter--I didn't even know how lucky I was), so field trip lunch included a drink (usually a Squeeze-it) and a "fun-sized" bag of chips. The great part about it was that you didn't even have to be the one taking the field trip. The drink and chips were bought specifically for the field trip, so all other lunches that day benefited as well. Such was the generosity of our kingdom.

I think Silvia is also afraid of solar eclipses. Maybe we were warned against them, like kidnappers in conversion vans with those teardrop windows.

And Gina's right, those are the best chocolate chip cookies on the planet.

(Also, have you noticed my comments keep getting longer and longer? I think it might be time to just break down and write an email)

Stephanie said...

I try to make Annie's field trip lunches special. It is the only time I will splurge for lunchables - and I usually get the ones that have oreos and caprisuns. I'm glad to know that you still remember having a special lunch for your field trips - it makes me want to make her special lunches even more special.

Rach said...

My kid's school doesn't let them bring home lunches on field trips. They have to have the school one, which is usually a dry turkey sub and a cookie that tastes like play-doh. My mom would pack special field trip lunches, too. I like the idea of a can of A&W wrapped in foil. Now I want root beer. I remember watching an eclipse with my family and thinking it was SO BORING because my idea was that the moon would just scoot right across the sun in about 30 seconds, and we could look up and watch. Instead we stared at little dots on the ground for an hour. This time those dots were much more interesting, but I still did other stuff while it was happening, and I also looked at the sun for a second when the eclipse was at its peak.

Empress of Venus said...

Every time someone mentioned the eclipse I would burst out with the Chorus's line from "Little Shop Of Horrors" - TO-TAL-E-CLIPSE-OF-THE-SUN!!!

Da-doop...