Apr 27, 2011
My Little Apprentices
So I saw this speaker at our local TEDx conference, Jeff Sandefer, give a great talk about education revolution and how our kids are not widgets and so on. One thing he said that really stuck with me, was that before the Industrial Revolution, where everything was assembly-lined, including our schools, that parents used to "apprentice" their kids in their own trade.
I thought "you know, I can draw, Chris can draw," I am going to teach Charlie our "trade." On a side note, I've also been trying to teach Charlie to "use his powers for good and not evil." (No, not because of this devil drawing.)
So a couple weeks ago I really started working with Charlie. Showing him how I "broke through" to the next level of drawing when I was his age. And, get this, it really worked! His pictures are looking sooo good. I picked him up the other day from after care, saw an amazing Finn drawing stuffed in his backpack (Adventure Time With Finn & Jake anyone?) that he had done from memory and was like "that's awesome!" Then this too-cool-for-school eight year old girl with crimped hair and about a billion arm wrap bracelet thingies who was standing there, gravely said "he's a true artist." Yes. Affirmation of your peers. I lived for that kind of stuff back then ("back then," heh... who am I fooling?)
But last week this apprenticeship took a commercial turn, let's say. Ironic since my actual trade is advertising agency creative director. We were all hanging around on the back steps and Charlie found a stick in the backyard.
Inspired Charlie: "You know what I'm going to do with this stick?"
Inspired Charlie: "I'm going to make a flag..."
Inspired Charlie: "A flag for Sprite!"
And that's what he did. He is obsessed with Sprite. To him it's like it's the nectar of the gods. It's the only soda he ever gets to drink, and he's only allowed to have a cup when he's not using his powers for evil. Then he always takes this huge swig and swishes it around in his cheeks before he swallows. It's the American Dental Association Approved technique.
So he deadly seriously draws this flag on white paper. (With Sharpie, no wimpy pencil lines underneath... grasshopper is learning quickly). He has me help him tape it to a stick, and then, well...
...flies his freak flag.
But here comes Sam. He must have the flag.
And he's pissed.
So he gets the flag. We may have to apprentice Sam in hostile takeovers some day.
Then everyone gets snarly.
Then Mommy saves the day.
Sam doesn't fly anyone's freak flag but his own.