And technically, I should not be blogging. But the kids are long gone (half-day for them), I'm all packed up, the paperwork is completed and turned in, but the geniuses that run things are forcing me to stick around for another forty-five minutes. Consider this my rebellion. Granted, it's pretty weak for a rebellion, but right now, it's all I got. (For what it's worth, Bacon's Rebellion is my favorite. Sounds like some sort of porcine uprising. Plus, you can add bacon to anything and it's automatically three times better. At least.)
I thought about writing how the last day of school is a lot like finishing a book. You want to hang out with your book a little longer because you've gotten to know it pretty good, but you also know that there are other books to write and you really should stick that thing in a drawer or send it off to get rejected or find some other way to avoid going back and rereading it because what you need to do is start another one.
But that seemed a little too serious for Murphblog. If I wasn't careful, I could have approached poignant. And poignant is a place I really try to avoid. People like Alice McDermott and John Irving hang out there. I'm more of a Ben Esch kind of guy.
So instead I'm going to tell you a story about the gift I put together for one of my retiring colleagues. We selected months with the idea that our gifts would in some way relate to each month. I signed up for November because I planned on doing a theme gift. The theme was "Movie Night."
I bought a bunch of theater-like candy and some microwave popcorn. Then I went to the video store and picked up three discount movies. The piece de resistance was going to be a gift card to the local theater and it was all going to be placed in one of those gargantuan popcorn buckets because I wanted that touch of authenticity. That's just how I am.
So I go to the cineplex and tell the ticket-taker guy that I'm not going to a movie, I just want an empty popcorn bucket for this gift I'm putting together. "Will they sell me one?" I ask.
"Yeah, sure. Just tell 'em what it's for," he says. I head to the counter, wait in line, and when I get up there, I explain the whole thing.
The kid's like seventeen and he doesn't appear to be listening at all. "Six-fifty," he mumbles.
"No, I don't want any popcorn. I just want the bucket."
"Six-fifty," he says again.
"For the bucket?"
Well what was I supposed to do? My options were as follows:
1. I could leave and sacrifice the authenticity of the gift and just wrap it conventionally.
2. I could pay six-fifty for a flipping empty tub.
3. I could throw a fit and talk to a manager and be one of Those People whose own petty problem becomes the problem of every person waiting in line behind him.
4. Or I could say, "Well, you might as well fill it up then," eat the popcorn, and then use the butter-stained tub to hold the gift.
Didn't seem like much of a choice to me. Not only did the butter smears add just the right amount of additional authenticity, butter makes everything at least three times better. If I ever start a rebellion, I'm calling it the Bacon-Butter Rebellion.
And instead of guns, I'll arm myself with awesome.