Our son, Frank, is a pre-med student. He’s known since high school that he wants to be a doctor.
One day, he brought home two large Styrofoam containers of dry ice. He had fun doing experiments with his little brothers, who are homeschooled. That was all well and good until I noticed the big, red label on the containers. They’d been used to transport human organs. And, they were sitting in my kitchen.
Frank has also brought home critters he’s collected from surrounding bays for certain classes.
Last night, I walked into Frank’s room and he showed me his latest homework project. He had four small, plastic cylinders with labels. They each just had a small piece of foam on top, pushed into each container. They didn’t look very secure, to me at least. And, inside were about a zillion fruit flies.
Now, if you’ve ever left a piece of fruit a little too long in the fruit bowl in your kitchen, you know what a nuisance these little monsters can be. They don’t stick around the fruit all the time, either. Oh, no! They will fly all over the house, and buzz your face while you’re sitting with your laptop, minding your own business, writing your novel. You can reach out to swat them, or try to clap them between your hands but, 9 times out of 10, you’ll miss. The more they buzz your face, the more frustrated you get and, pretty soon, your muse is replaced by a swatting, cursing fiend. (And what is it with fruit flies crawling on mirrors, staring at themselves all day long?)
Frank and his fellow students had to anesthetize the fruit flies, then sort the male and females for storage in the containers. Then, the fruit flies woke up. He said something else about there being ethanol in there, and watching the fruit flies get drunk and sober. He kind of lost me when he got into those specifics.
I no longer cared about the experiment. I was just staring at those jars containing countless very happy and busy fruit flies (they didn’t look drunk to me!), and picturing them all buzzing my face tomorrow while I’m trying to write!
I can’t WAIT to see what Frank brings home next…
THIS WEEK’S MASONISM
Mason (age 9), who is homeschooled, was researching medical marijuana. He wasn’t getting satisfactory results using Google so I said, “You need to search for a different phrase.”
With his head still buried in the laptop, he replied, “Like weed?”
Angela Hoy lives on a mountain in North Georgia. She is the publisher of WritersWeekly.com, the President and CEO of BookLocker.com and AbuzzPress, and the author of 24 books.
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