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Tuesday, March 25, 2003

Call the Patent Office. Or the Hospital.

The professor of my wife's graduate school class is doing a lesson on fostering ingenuity in the classroom. She assigned her students (all of whom are public school teachers) the task of making a prototype of an "invention" and presenting it in class this Wednesday.

I'm guessing the idea is to encourage teachers to have their own students think beyond the usual classroom assignments of essays, quizzes and math problems. You know, like that Junkyard Wars television show where teams of kids take piles of junk and have to fashion them into things like pontoon boats.

My wife decided to make a writing device that was a ball point pen on one end and a correction fluid pen on the other. I have to admit I very much liked the idea, seeing as just last week I had to fill out a form in pen, made a mistake and had to scratch it out. Some correction fluid would have been nice, but I didn't have any immediately available.

Mary went to the kitchen and began using a knife to hack away at a pen to get to its innards. I checked on the progress after a few minutes, and she had correction fluid AND ink all over her hands.

Then I noticed her stabbing at the pen, much like Norman Bates in the Psycho shower scene.

I muttered something about seeing a trip to the hospital or dry cleaners in the future and walked away to the leave the inventor to her work.

Note: the prototype came out fine, and no trips to the hospital were needed. Dry cleaner? Maybe.

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