Thursday, January 7, 2016

TBT to 1991: Cathy G., Fifth-Grade Social Worker

Tonight I learned that my graduate school entrance essay was secretly composed back in the early '90s, when I was ten and so very worldly and wise. [Sarcasm font, for you in the back.] In other words, I found my fifth-grade school journal. I'm happy to report that although it was available for public consumption by my teacher and therefore not as rife with juicy gossip as my private journal (DO NOT READ!), it's still chock-full of utter shame and embarrassment. 

Let's take, for example, my astute editorials on three pressing global issues: poverty, war, and the environment. I'm telling you, I was clearly a born social worker.

(AKA, please don't judge my privileged tween self for the simplistic, classist, and redonkulous ideas I espoused via my red spiral notebook circa 1991. Also, whatever, it's not like any of you have eradicated homelessness yet, either.)

Cathy G. on: POVERTY

January 8, 1991
     There is a solution to the poverty problem. We - people who have luxuries and don't need them - can give poor people food and even money. Maybe even luxuries!
     All over the world there are people who have luxuries (and don't need them) and people who don't have luxuries or food or money. We might be helping them right now, but we need to help poor people a lot more.
     We should help poor people before people that aren't poor become poor. Because the homeless problem is getting really out of hand. People should help lots of people. Lots!

[Props for my primary-prevention approach to poverty - helping people before they become poor - and my borderline-Communist approach to wealth redistribution.]

Cathy G. on: WAR

January 15, 1991
     I'm scared about war. It affects so many people. I hate it. Saddamm Husane should be named Saddamm Insane.

[Editor's note: Sic on the spelling of Saddam Hussein's name, and please note that the "In" of "Insane" was underlined three times in the original text. For proper emphasis.]

[Editor's other note: Was this entry prior to or following the fifth-grade spelling bee, which I was favored to win, but where I lost in the first round because I failed to clarify whether Mr. Schrote meant affect or effect? Anyway, clearly, I DID know which one to use and when. #TheRealInjustice]


April 22, 1991
EARTH DAY: The Three R's
     Want a landfill in your backyard? If your answer is YES, don't recycle, don't reduce, don't reuse! If your answer is NO, REDUCE, REUSE, and RECYCLE!
     The three R's may someday be the answer to lots of problems. You can recycle paper, cans, and other things. You can reuse almost anything. Reducing is cool. It helps. Cut back on lots, and you can reduce.
     Someday people will want to be packrats...because they'll be reusing things and cutting back on garbage.
     If you get junk mail, DON'T THROW IT AWAY -- you can draw pictures on empty spaces. Then you can hang it up all over. (WARNING - ONLY HANG UP PICTURES WHERE YOUR PARENTS WILL LET YOU!!!)
     Reduce, reuse, and recycle, and you can become part of the coolest club on earth...if there still is an earth by the time you join.

[Strong opening, and even stronger closing line, don't you think? Yeah, that's because I - no joke - used to pretend that I was a celebrity who'd been tapped to do a series of public service announcements about the value of...wait for it...reducing the overusage of liquid hand soap. I'd practice in the bathroom for my promo spots as follows: First, examine my hands and frown at how dirty they were. Second, squirt an infinitesimal drop of soap on said hands. Third, scrub hands under the running faucet. Fourth, glance up and notice the camera in my face. Fifth, smile and say, "Oh, hello! I didn't see you there. Did you know that just a tiny bit of soap can get your hands completely clean, even after playing outside for hours? You don't need four or five pumps of soap to get the job done. So next time you wash your hands, try to use less. Because -" - and here comes my AWESOME AMAZING TAGLINE, which I composed myself - "- a little goes a long way." Then, obviously, my smiling face would fade into a The More You Know shooting star streaking across the viewers' TV screens. In the meantime, the freaking water was running continuously from the faucet. But it's cool, water is an endlessly renewable resource, unlike...hand soap.]

[Also, look at me, always watching out for my peers by sharing lessons I apparently learned the hard way: "ONLY HANG UP PICTURES WHERE YOUR PARENTS WILL LET YOU!!!" Just doin' you a solid, friends.]


Happy Throwback Thursday, and Happy New Year from all the old years that were, thankfully, so meticulously documented in stacks of diaries.

{Don't forget to check out the entire cringe-worthy Throwback to Hell series!}


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