Maisie Luddite mooned over Elwood Klinkerhoffer, but she had as much chance drawing his attention as her little brother had diverting their mother from her purpose by holding his breath until he turned blue.
Mother’s purpose was to keep her children focused on the important things in life: cleared tables, completed homework and clean rooms. Maltbie might whine and cry for a play date, but the answer was always the same: Clear your soup bowl from the table, finish your Ds in your workbook and go clean your room.
Maisie was not allowed to stay after school with the other girls.
“There’s no reason for you to hang around football practice,” her mother would say. “You can see the game with your father and me on Friday night.”
Maisie was not allowed to take phone calls from boys.
“Anything you have to say to a boy can be said in the classroom.”
And why would Elwood call her anyway? She looked like she was 12-years-old. She wasn’t allowed to shave her legs or wear make-up. She wasn’t allowed to Google, text, post or tweet either.
Mrs. Luddite made a special arrangement with Maisie’s teacher to accept her hand written homework, as computers were not allowed in the Luddite household. So, while Maisie’s classmates were out in the afternoons getting all manner of their appendages pierced and tattoed, Maisie was at home patiently penciling essays with the aid of a large, red dictionary. It was depressing.
Several months into the school year though, Maisie had cause to be grateful to her mother when Mrs. Luddite handed her a newspaper clipping:
Boy “Freezes His Tail Off”
Elwood Klinkerhoffer didn’t count on the unseasonable cold snap that hit the valley last night. Elwood and his football team buddies were cruising main street when they spotted members of the rival team that had just outscored them in last night’s game. The young man rolled down the car window, dropped his pants and stuck his rear end out into the elements. A window malfunction left him hanging out the window until he got frostbite.
“Frost bit him good,” said a hospital spokesperson. “You might say that last night we had a blue moon!”
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