Army of Mom

So this is how liberty dies ... with thunderous applause.


Career Day

I went to the boys' school this morning to talk about being a writer. Although it was pretty cute when I asked each boy if he knew what my job was. Both of them had the same answer: being a mom. I guess, to them, that is what I do and I think it is sort of flattering that they don't think I do other things first. So, they're right. My main job is to be a mom. My secondary job is to be a writer.

I took in the "tools" of my craft - a dictionary, notebooks and pens, my cell phone, business cards, a tape recorder and some books on writing like my AP Stylebook, the Elements of Style ... stuff like that. We talked a bit about the importance of deadlines and how turning in your work on time (even in school) prepares them for a lifetime of success. Deadlines are applicable throughout our lives. I talked to them about the importance of grammar and good spelling and then gave them some newsy lingo like bylines, headlines, interviews and stories.

Then, we talked about some of the perks of the job: concert tickets, free passes to cool places like Universal Studios and Disney World as well as the cool behind the scenes type things at a wildlife refuge and Discovery Cove. I showed them pictures of me swimming with a dolphin, pictures of the boys feeding and petting giraffes and reindeer as well as my cool shots of Brad Paisley and Ringo Starr. Of course, these were sort of lost on the kids, but the teachers thought it was cool. :) The children were impressed that I've interviewed sports legends - like Roger Staubach, Bert Blyleven, Byron Nelson and Mario Mendoza (famous for what? Anyone? Anyone. The Mendoza Line). They thought it was cool that I've interviewed astronauts and the past three Texas governors. The little kids didn't get as impressed as the older kids, though, when I told them about interviewing the President and First Lady. Now, of course, both were not in those positions when I talked to them. Laura Bush was the First Lady of Texas when I interviewed her both times. President Bush was a gubernatorial-want-to-be when I hijacked him coming out of the Petroleum Club in Midland. I was immediately smitten with this man. Very cordial and polite, down to earth and accommodating. I got his autograph because he was the owner of the Rangers at the time. He EVEN spelled my name right and most people don't do that. He listened to me and heard what I had to say. I loved it. But, I digress. I also spoke with the children in both classes about how my experiences covering bad things that happened to children shaped who I am and also influenced me to get out of daily reporting. I couldn't cover the murders of children when my own were at home sleeping safe and sound or at daycare or wherever. It just wore me down. I got too involved in these crimes and it was eating me up. So, I cautioned them to follow the rules the grown-ups in their lives put into place for their safety. Make sure your mom or dad or teacher or whoever knows where you are. Don't tell them you'll be somewhere and then go somewhere else. I don't know if they listened or not, but maybe a little of it soaked in. Regardless, they seemed to have a good time and I enjoy talking about it.

Here is me in Hot Rod's class with his teacher.

Here is me in Pickle's class:


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