Tuesday 30 Aug 2016

Colouring Off
Jennifer Flaten

I caved in and bought one of those ‘Adult’ colouring books. Okay, is it just me, or does that name make it sound like it should come in a plain brown wrapper? Could we find a slightly more dignified title for them?


An enchanted forest of colouring pages.

I mean you can still be dignified and buying a book of enchanted forest colouring pages, right? Right?

Colouring is not only relaxing, but it makes you feel artistic-even if you’re not. I mean, I can’t even draw a stick figure, but I can sure as heck can fill in a pre-drawn image with colour like nobody’s business.

Of course, getting the colouring book meant I needed a new set of coloured pencils. Naturally, I needed something to store those in and since I am at the craft store why not get some watercolour pencils. How about some manga pens? Sure why not?


Before you knew it I bought $200 of art supplies.

Huh, maybe I should have my husband colour a few pages before he reads the next credit card statement.

The colouring books will come in handy at the next school concert or other event. Usually, I take my knitting along, but after an unfortunate incident involving an escaped ball of yarn it’s been suggested that I bring something else to keep my hands occupied.

I would bring books to these functions, but since I have to give the appearance of listening, the more crafty items work best. I get so lost in a book that I’ve been known to ignore repeated attempts to get me attention. Hell hath no fury like a teenager that has to yell ‘MAAAHM’ 3 times to get your attention.

Plus, one time I was reading in the after school pickup line and was so engrossed in the book I forgot to move forward to pick up my kids.

If you’ve ever attended a school function you understand why you need to bring something to do. They are so, so….okay, I am going to come right out and say it. Boring, they are boring. A school meeting that involved a real live dinosaur would still be as boring as hell.

For an institution that sends a Chromebook home with every kid, and uses YouTube as a teaching tool, their meetings lack a certain je ne sais quoi.

I am not asking for lasers (okay, maybe a laser would liven things up) just that you either project your voice or use a damn mic. I don’t know where they get the impression that their normal speaking voice will reach the nethers of the auditorium. Look you deal with kids-or in this case-teenagers all day, don’t tell me you don’t know how to yell.


I am colouring this stress relieving colouring book

Why? So, I don’t jump up and scream “MIC, MIC”.

Let me hear you roar.

And, for the love of god stop handing out a copy of the powerpoint presentation compressed onto one single 8.5” x 11” sheet of paper. Unless, I am packing an electron microscope in my purse I won’t be able to read it.

One more suggestion, please stop taking audience questions.

Please. I am begging you.

Lord grant me the strength to sit through one more meeting where parents 1, 2, 3 and 4 all ask the SAME flipping question.

Sure, it might be reworded slightly, but it's still the same question. No little Johnny can’t take Physics 3 without Physics 1 & 2 no matter how damn smart you think he is.

Mmm, sorry seems I have a bit of pent up aggression, I think I need to colour a few more pages.

 

Jennifer Flaten lives where the local delicacy is fried cheese, Wisconsin. She writes about family life, its amusing or not so amusing moments. "At least it's not another article on global warming," she says. Jennifer bakes a mean banana bread and admits an unusual attraction to balloon animals and cup cakes. Busy preparing for the zombie apocalypse, she stills finds time to write "As I See It," her witty, too often true column. "My urge to write," says Jennifer, "is driven by my love of cupcakes, with sprinkles on top. Who wouldn't write for cupcakes, with sprinkles," she wonders.

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1 September 2016 through 4 September 2016

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