My daughters go to pre-school. I find this amazing because I never went to pre-school. Neither did any of the other kids in my kindergarten class. Well, maybe not all of them. There were always one or two outliers who had some kind of pre-school experience before entering the Ivy League-like educational institution that was Wildwood Park Elementary in Puyallup, Wash., back in 1973.
But back then, pre-school was little more than a glorified babysitting service. And then sometime in, oh, the last 40 years, it was Constitutionally decreed that every American child MUST go to pre-school if their parents ever had any hope for their kids to get an even halfway decent education and avoid a career on the night shift mopping the floor at the local Subway.
So, we send our daughters to pre-school. And our bank account feels it every month. But the kids enjoy it, have made a good amount of friends, and really, I have to admit, our kids verbal, mental and social skills have improved greatly by hanging out with 20-some other kids their age all day. Probably much more than they would by hanging out with my wife and I all day, every day, listening to us lamenting out loud why the kids feel the need to destroy our living room worse than what the Allies did when they firebombed Dresden back in WW II.
My wife drops off and picks up our daughters every day. And when she brings them home, she inevitably arrives with a ream’s-worth of “art” that the kids made during the school day. If you have kids, you know exactly what I mean.
There are gigantic Easter Eggs with random stickers all over. St. Patrick’s Day brought so many shades of green stuff that I thought the Lucky Charms leprechaun was going to move in with us. Last week, for no known reason, one of the kids came home with a paper crown. And the papers themselves. So many “pictures” of “houses”, “trees” and sometimes, just a line or two that the girls “made”. We usually also end up with few sheets which show the girls have been practicing writing their names, too. But, I often can’t tell if the teachers were teaching the kids to write with their feet or work on insane ransom notes.
Then, every once in a while, there emerges something truly unique. And by unique, I mean “good”. Like what our five-year-old, Maddo brought home last night.
You can see it here. A woman with long locks and a man with medium-length hair standing side by side. Like many kids, our daughter doesn’t quite have perception down to a “T”, which I like to think explains why the couple’’ legs, if they were in the real world, would make each of them about 15 feet tall.
Take a good look at that picture…But don’t scroll down, yet. You see, I have trimmed off the very bottom of it for a reason I will soon explain.
I said to my daughter, “Wow, honey. That’s really good. Is that mommy and daddy?”
To my surprise, it wasn’t us.
“No, daddy…It’s Sonny and Cher.”
And that’s when I looked at the bottom of the picture, which you can see here.
Yep, that’s right. Sonny and Cher. THE Sonny and Cher, and apparently in all their “I-Got-You-Babe”-1970s-Variety-Show-Glory. Sonny Bono and Cher Bono. The late Republican Congressman and the 1987 Best Actress Oscar winner. Sonny and Cher.
Needless to say, I scratched my head at my daughter’s art work. I mean, Sonny and Cher were “Sonny and Cher” back when I was a kid and an as-big-a-screen-as-you-could-get 25-inch Zenith cost about $1,500 and potentially came in a wooden console that weight 1,500 pounds. How in the hell could she know about Sonny and Cher?
“How do you know who Sonny and Cher are?” I asked her.
“Teacher Kathy told me!”
At least now I know the kid has learned something in that pre-school. Maybe all that dough we’re shelling out every month to keep her from working the mop at that Subway is paying off after all?