This week I awoke one morning to find a pig in my kitchen. Grace, wanting some extra credit points in English, created an essay-eating animal to present her writing project. Weighted with washers, funneled by tubes, and transported via ribbons, 20 essays (each independently attached) were drawn through the pig’s mouth into the abdominal cavity where they hung, available to be read and appreciated.
Wikipedia says “An engineer is a....practitioner of engineering, concerned with applying scientific knowledge, mathematics, and ingenuity to develop solutions for technical, societal and commercial problems.”
This is certainly Grace. But not just Grace….. The person who sent Grace a box FULL of yellow goodies and a note that said “A little box of SUNSHINE to brighten your day” applied social science knowledge and ingenuity to develop a solution. Engineering is all about building and you, whoever you are, built up my sweet Grace. Thank you!
One of the reasons Grace needed a sunshine package is that she is on the injured (but not reserve) list. Several weeks ago she was “hangin’” with some friends at a local fun center. The guys were punching a bag, hitting it hard and competing to see who could record the highest score. When the girls joined the fray, the competition was over; their scores did not even approach the boys’ scores. Enter Grace. She would show those boys that girls can hit hard, which she did. Her score was competitive. And her hand was broken.
Though her right hand is casted, Grace scored high enough on the evaluation rubric to make a spring league AAU basketball team. At the end of a very difficult school basketball season Grace swore that she would never touch a basketball again……which made her acceptance of Bev Rose’s invitation to try out for the AAU team very surprising. [After try-outs she said, “That was FUN!” Thank you Bev!!!] I guess she should not swear……
Miles believes that Mormons do not swear. (He has never heard me milk cows….). In a family game of “Catch Phrase” ( a game where one tries to get one’s teammates to guess a word) Miles’s clue for the word “donkey” was “Mormon ass”. In his mind, a Mormon would substitute the word “donkey” rather than say the word “ass”. The logic was somewhat twisted but his intent was pure….so was our amusement. It’s a story we’ll be telling for a long time.
Speaking of twisted logic and pure intent……… As a family we are reading selected stories in the Old Testament (pure intent) and last Sunday’s chapter was Jonah 3, which has only ten verses. Tanah, who wanted to go to bed, asked “Can we read only half the chapter?”
“Really??” was my thought.
“NO,” was Lance’s response. “It is only 10 verses. You can survive 10 verses.”
“Then let me read all ten,” Tanah begged. “Please. I bet I can read the whole thing in 20 seconds.”
Game on!! Grace manned her stop watch and Tanah powered through the chapter. 42 seconds.
“Let me try it,” said Grace. Grace read the chapter; her time was over 42 seconds. Tanah got cocky so I had to try it. 38 seconds. Tanah could not be outdone so she read it again. 42 seconds. And again. 41 seconds. Grace tried it once more as well. All told, we read the chapter six times. Sixty verses….instead of five. Something got twisted!
Lance asked his boss for a letter of recommendation so that he could apply for other jobs. She wrote him a nice letter…. and posted his job as open. So, there is an opening for a geography/keyboarding/computer teacher at SAA. Should he apply? Or would that be twisted?
Perhaps not twisted but definitely not normal, I spent a day observing my boss this week. [Usually it is the principal who observes the teacher….] Amie, who is a chemistry-teacher-turned-administrator, taught my classes Wednesday. She was awesome—rainbow glasses, green fire, flaming hands—it was science at its best. The kids loved it—what’s not to love about fire!, she loved it—“oooh’s” and “ahhh’s” are intoxicating, and I loved it—it was great to watch a master teacher, to watch enchanted students, and to just watch, rather than perform.
I am really enjoying watching our eldest son grow. In a letter he said that patience was Christ’s characteristic that he best emulated last week. When I asked for more details he wrote that “nothing in particular” had caused him to exercise patience but that he simply feels “less likely to push and resist” and more likely “to trust through trials.” Sounds like a definition of faith to me. Beautiful.
Somehow the theme of this letter has twisted; we started with engineering, right? But that is okay, engineers deal with twists and I can turn it back.
We are all engineers, are we not? We certainly can be. By applying knowledge, be it science or social, we can use ingenuity to develop solutions. Engineering is all about building and we can build. Be it essay-eating pigs or struggling teen’s self-esteem, family memories or professional opportunities, personal patience or faith in Christ, we can build.
What does an engineer look like? An engineer looks like Grace…and like me….and like you. Be an engineer today!
P.S. How fast you can read Jonah 3?