When I was in second grade and was asked to write a story, I pretty much just copied the entirety of “The Princess Bride,” skipping all of the kissing parts because those were gross. Then I spent the rest of the time badly drawing and expertly coloring the shrieking eels, because as a kid, that is one of the most horrifying and awesome mashups of all time.
Deep water + nasty fish + nasty fish that shrieks + fish that is actually an eel = core memory.
So now my son’s in second grade, and he actually wrote an original story about our favorite place to visit in the fall: Remlinger Farms in Washington State. A place that I feel is FAR superior to the Washington State Fair in Puyallup. Yes, I am excited to argue you on that one. Like in the street. But safely.
Remlinger is THAT cool.
Don’t believe me? Last year we discovered our entire family had contracted lice like five minutes before we were supposed to leave for our yearly trip out there, and there was a genuine moment where my wife and I locked eyes and said out loud, “Should we just ignore the lice for the day? It’s not like it’ll kill us…” And you have to know that my wife’s hatred for lice rolls deep. Like an Adele song about an ex. And she was willing, for a split-second, to put up with it for 12 hours…just for Remingler. (You can read about the lice incident here if you want.)
Anyhow Remlinger Farms > WA State Fair. Yeah, deal with it.
Let me wax eloquent for a moment about this fabulous fall family activity to help convince you:
You can get a family of four in for under $80 bucks…and all the rides are free. There’s a hayride, pumpkin patch, corn maze, small roller coaster that is actually terrifying because of it’s smallness, hay-covered giant trampoline, bounce houses, a real steam train, homemade donut holes…and I could go on an on. But seriously, besides the cost of my Sudafed, Allegra, and Nasonex to not die from all of the hay, it’s a great deal. Plus you can bring your own lunch (as long as you eat it in the parking lot #maxizer). Do all those rides at the fair and you’re out like nine thousand dollars and you have an ulcer from trying to park.
So I may have built up his story too much, but I love my son, so I love it. Here’s it is, with all the original punctuation and spacing:
“One Halloween day with Mom and Dad and my brother Mack were in the car going to Remlinger Farms. We arrived at 10 AM. We went to the corn maze. We got a map.I was excited!!! And First, I took the map. I used the map to get in. Then, I screamed “MOM DO YOU HEAR ME!!!” And I got stumped.I said”Do you hear me”? I sad that again and again and again. A few minutes later I was still stumped. But then I went through the bamboo but I still was lost. Later and again I went in the bamboo. But I was still lost. Finally I found Mom and Dad and Mack. I am merry.”
In closing, a few observations :
- We asked. The three exclamation points are legit. He was yelling that loud in his imagination.
- The corn apparently morphed into bamboo. But it’s fiction, so maybe it’s alien corn. I don’t know.
- I like that we get there at 10 am. Not too early. Means we had a nice leisurely morning, which usually includes homemade breakfast sandwiches by yours truly (sandwiches so good, my son thinks I should work at McDonald’s).
- Good that he knows how to use a map. Thanks Minecraft.
- Most great works of literature are known for their intro line. But for most of us, we never read more than the first line because those books are boring. What counts is the ending! “I am merry.” How many Halloween stories end like this!?! The actual “Halloween”? Nope. “Scream”? Nope. “Ernest Scared Stupid”? Maybe. I can’t remember. Anyway. Great line. Throwing some Christmas shade at that Halloween story. Well played. Family quote forever now, just behind his calling sweatpants “housepants” and crocs “tripping shoes.”
- And no, Remlinger did not seek our endorsement here, but if they want to throw some free family tix and donut holes our way, I ain’t complainin’.