Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Clowny Puke Incident

I remember the Clowny Puke Incident like it was yesterday. I was only 6 years old and had just started a new kindergarten after my parents divorced. It was my first show-and-tell since my sixth birthday and I knew immediately what I would bring. My Clowny.

My Clowny was wonderful!! He had bright red hair and wore a blue jumpsuit that included an assortment of fasteners: ties, buttons, zippers, snaps and velcro on his suit and shoes.

The day came and I was nervous. There would be a roomful of other kindergarteners staring back at me and they would expect me to talk about my beloved toy. First was Andrew with his favorite picture that he drew of a rainbow. Oh, how I hated Andrew with his perfect, thin-lined rainbows. The only rainbows I could draw had large, clunky lines with too-dark crayon. Diplomatic as I was, however, I smiled and ooohed and ahhed appropriately with the other children. Next, it was my turn.

As I stood up in front of the 25 5-year-olds, Mrs. Wilson smiled at me and my new toy. I explained in a quiet voice that my Uncle Mike got him for me and I named him Clowny. The children were impressed as I snapped every snap and buttoned every button. Then, it happened.

With just one question from my unsuspecting teacher did this memory stick in my mind for more than 20 years. She asked, simply enough, where do you keep Clowny? Proudly, I answered, on the floor in my closet. The children laughed. Mrs. Wilson roared. They were laughing at me. So I threw up. I couldn’t help it and didn’t even see it coming. If I had, I probably would have averted my mouth away from my poor Clowny.

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