Saturday, September 23, 2006

Reader's Digest Material

Some literature is frowned upon by persnikety snobs, and Reader's Digest is a likely candidate for criticism. However, it was in a Reader's Digest that I read the short story, "The Year the Yankees Won the Pennant" which was the inspiration for the Broadway musical and the movie "Damn Yankees." To a nine year old boy, that short story was a revelation, and I was captivated by it and exposed as a shameful Yankee fan. As my Boston Red Sox brother Jack once said, "Rooting for the Yankees is like hoping that Bill Gates wins the lottery." But I digress.

Lately I have been writing cute comments that belong in Reader's Digest. Just remember....I am a Reader's Digest fan. Here is the latest entry:

Today during spelling in my fifth grade class, I asked the kids to put one of the spelling words in a sentence. "Who can put magnifying in a sentence? Yes, Tanner."

Tanner seemed sure of himself but he said, "I magnified an ant in the sun."

I was skeptical that he knew the correct usage of the word. "Tanner, what do you mean by the word magnify?"

"Well, it's when you burn up ants." (Appropriately, the class laughs.)

"No, I don't think so, Tanner. Magnifying means making something appear larger in size. A magnifying glass makes things appear bigger than they really are. You were using a magnifying glass to fry the ants. Magnifying does not mean frying."

Akira politely and helpfully pipes up, "Well, Mr. R., maybe Tanner was magnifrying the ants!"

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