Sunday, December 04, 2005

Third grade writings

I was going through a file cabinet tonight and found a file of all of my third grade homework. Dad kept everything I ever did from preschool until I stopped having to have my homework signed. There's a ton of stuff down there. Lots of weird drawings with coloring done outside the lines. And to show you all how far I've come, here are two of my creative writing assignments from third grade.

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Nov. 14, 1990

The best time I had with a friend was when Geoff says what job he wants. I like it when he says he wants to fix heating and cooling systems. I like it when he says he liked duct tape. I like it when he asks me what he likes. He is sometimes funny.

Geoff was my best friend from second to fourth grade, although I knew him through high school. For some reason, he really liked air conditioning systems (particularly Carrier systems...but not Trane because it's a horrible brand), and that is what we talked about at lunch He also had a thing for duct tape, and I also found a "you're my friend" certificate thing they made us give, and his to me had a big piece of duct tape on the back. A present, perhaps. My parents didn't know what to think of Geoff because he also enjoyed calling our house at 6 a.m. and hanging up.

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Nov. 27, 1990

The worst day of my life was July 2, 1990. My neabor was going to get rid of our kitten before we got it. I went in my room and crieded. I cried for a longtime. On July 23, 1990 we got our kitten.

The story behind this is that one of my neighbor's cats had a litter of kittens. We took them all to our house, one-by-one, to see which we liked the best. That turned out to be a calico kitten I called Peaches. I liked her best immediately. Our neighbor's wife decided we could have her, but then said no because she wanted to sell the cat. She thought she could get some money for Peaches because of her coloring. When I was told, I ran into my room and cried for at least two hours. If it wasn't bad enough, it was the day before my ninth birthday. Eventually, my dad convinced the woman to let us have the cat, who only lived eight years. She was sort of a demon cat who would hide in the shadows and run out to chase you and bite your ankles, but I was the only one she liked.

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From my fifth grade file, I found the ultra-secret parent/teacher conference report sheet. Overall, it looks like I did well. In social studies, the teacher wrote that I had "good insight" and that I made "good comments and asks good questions." In English, it was that I had "good use of skills in other areas," whatever that means. The part that I like is:

"Daniel is very intense. I'd like to see him lighten up a little."

My teacher sort of scared me a little that year. She was a large woman with a loud voice who came across pretty gruff. I also spent a little too much of my time that year trading baseball cards under the table during class with a couple kids. Another thing I did was cheat on some of my homework assignments. We would grade our own papers during class, and when she went through the answers on assignments that stumped me, I sometimes had the paper in my lap and would darken the correct circle as she read. To not raise suspicion, I would fill in the wrong answer from time-to-time. I still feel sort of guilty for doing that. It's the only time in my life I've ever cheated on anything.

This was also the year that on my report card, it said I talk too much. After seeing that, I shut up for a couple years. It was probably a good thing because in fifth grade, I was hanging out with the kids at recess who would become the druggies in middle school and high school. My shyness, which in turn made me somewhat of a loner and selective in who I was around, took me away from these people. While the shyness caused other issues, it probably kept me from messing up my life. That's a happy ending.


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