Monday, June 17, 2013

Walking to the Red Sea & Alexander’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

 “I went to sleep with gum in my mouth and now there’s gum in my hair and when I got out of bed this morning I tripped on the skateboard and by mistake I dropped my sweater in the sink while the water was running and I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.”  -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


Mad Dog said he was lucky living in Jizan.  He didn’t need hot water.  “I always start the day with a cold shower,” he said.  “Nothing in the day can hurt you when you start icy cold.”
 “At breakfast Anthony found a Corvette Sting Ray car kit in his breakfast cereal box and Nick found a Junior Undercover Agent code ring in his breakfast cereal box but in my breakfast cereal box all I found was breakfast cereal.”  -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


Bangkok Phil was a grumbler.  “This new dress code wasn’t in the contract.  Why I gotta wear long sleeve shirts in 115 degree heat.  Everything I got is short sleeved.”   (He wore the same white shirt every day for a month).
 “I think I’ll move to Australia.”    -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


Scoopes stopped shaving after being called a kaffir.  “I’m looking more and more like a jihadist every day.”
 “At school Mrs. Dickens liked Paul’s picture of the sailboat better than my picture of the invisible castle.”  -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


Wee Scott Bob was into alienation, subversively leaving suggested lesson plans photocopied on every teacher’s desk.  He’d casually say, “As a master of classroom management I…” or “You’re welcome to observe my classroom if you want to see how it’s done.”  It was merely a matter of time before somebody took a poke at him.
 “There were two cupcakes in Philip Parker’s lunch bag and Albert got a Hershey bar with almonds and Paul’s mother gave him a piece of jelly roll that had little coconut sprinkles on the top.  Guess whose mother forgot to put in dessert?”   -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


Flintstone was always the booming bus ride philosopher.   No one could hide from his voice.  Through headphones or sitting in the front seats, even in your sleep, Flintstone baritone was in your ears.  “The first person you think about when you wake up,” he was always fond of saying, “that person is either the reason for your happiness or the absolute source of your life’s misery.”  (Oh Flintstone… don’t you know how many mornings you were we all groaned to see?)
 “There were lima beans for dinner and I hate limas.  There was kissing on TV and I hate kissing.”   -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


When the weekend would come, I would leave all these men behind.
 “My bath was too hot, I got soap in my eyes, my marble went down the drain, and I had to wear my railroad-train pajamas.  I hate my railroad-train pajamas.”   -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


The groaning and the sob stories.  The tales of Sri Lankan hookers and Indian kush.  I left them on that bus and headed out into the evening dusk toward the Red Sea.
 “When I went to bed Nick took back the pillow he said I could keep and the Mickey Mouse night light burned out and I bit my tongue.”   -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


I know not every day was going to be perfect.   Good cannot exist with bad.  
 “The cat wants to sleep with Anthony, not with me.  It has been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.”  -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


But standing on the shores of the Red Sea, it was easy to forget the work and the co-workers…
“My mom says some days are like that.  Even in Australia.”   -Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst


Even the ever encroaching sands.

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