Sunday, September 13, 2009

"Sometimes there just aren't enough rocks"*

(Pre-Script: This post rocks when read as the song, "Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)," #41 on the playlist, plays in the background. Go down to the playlist, click on that song, then come back and resume reading. I'll wait...) (...still waiting...)

If I ever decide to become a Teacher Of Geology, (an urge I have somehow squelched this far in in my life) I would teach thusly: I would take the children to a river of some sort and let them collect whatever rocks appealed to them. Then we would bring the rocks back to the classroom and research them...however you research rocks. I mean, I don't really know what you need to know about rocks, besides what kind they are, so that you can call them by name, ("Come here, Obsidian! I was not quite through talking with you, Slate Gray!") especially if it has potential of becoming a Pet Rock. Or maybe you'd want to know how common your particular favorite rock is, if the rock you found is indigenous to the area where you found it, or if it just fell out of some guy's pocket when he was here visiting from New Zealand one day. It will also be useful to know how precious this rock is, and if it is worth any money. Imagine getting rich off of a rock you found on a riverbed that you picked up because you thought it was pretty. Cue the next Gold Rush type of phenomenon, such as has never been seen in California or elsewhere since 1849. I'm not sure if California is still set up for the arrival and temporary housing of that many horses and ghost towns.
But I digress.
So there I was this afternoon, picking awesome fantastic rocks out of the riverbed, imagining the ranger coming by to rain on my parade thusly:" Excuse me, Miss, there is a law against removing rocks from the rivers in this state. Tell those children that the fun they have been having collecting pretty rocks for the past 30-45 minutes was in vain. Go on, dash their little hopes on their very own rocks."
Since the ranger did not appear, I just kept right on collecting rocks, and I told the children, "you can take home any you want, but you have to carry your own back to the car yourself." Good deal, right? I thought so, as I continued to pick up the smooth round ones that fit perfectly into my hand, and the gorgeous green ones that looked like jade, especially when they were still wet from the river. I thought "I wonder if jade is from this area? What a pleasant surprise to have discovered my own jade supply..."
Blink Blink
"...and I will hire a fine worker of precious stones to carve and create gorgeous jade jewelry, which I will wear, and eventually pass down to my children, and children's children, for generations to come."
-such was the nature of my delusions of rock grandeur, you see.
Oh, what a fun Geologist I would be, if I ever decided to become one, and take the time to study all those rocks, just so many different varieties, who knows, really, not just to know, but to understand rocks, rocks, rocks, like the back of my hand, so much comprehension that it would overflow, and I would have no choice but to teach it to the children, to impart my great wisdom onto their waiting minds, soft as clay, as they blink up at me in expectation.
A child can quite possibly become interested in any subject, even one as seemingly boring as ROCKS, for crying out loud(!!), if it is taught to them well**... Not like when I was in school, and Geology was taught as a rote thing, like "blah blah blah, there is this kind of rock and this kind of rock." Then one morning we took a quiz I had forgotten to study for, so I crammed for 5 minutes before the quiz and got a 97%. after which the teacher pulled me aside to let me know that she could tell that I had studied hard for this quiz.
I have retained none of the information of which I was an expert for 30 minutes.
Yet in my mind, I'd be an rockin' Geologist.
In the end, none of my own children took home any rocks. I alone brought home my precious handful. Did I look them up online? Nah. Who does that kind of thing, anyway, I mean really!? Gosh. I prefer to imagine that the green ones are jade, and to just feel the perfectly round brown and white ones as I hold them in my hand.


*Forrest Gump
**And this, my friends, is tricky, and may vary from case to case.

1 comment:

Derek said...

When I was sorting the rocks for the skipping variety I found a couple really light ones - like volcanic light. It was weird. Turns out they didn't float, but skipped pretty far. :)