Saturday, July 14, 2012

Family Government

Recently, my fourteen year old daughter took part in a civics class called TeenPact.  It ended with a weeklong trip to Baton Rouge, where she got to spend the week learning all about how to draft bills and turn them into laws.  Her father and I are so very proud that she is now showing interest in something (anything!) besides dancing, horses, and Luke Bryan, but take last night as an example of what we have to put up with...

Scotlyn has always liked a calm atmosphere, which must really suck if you live in our family.  So, after listening to X-Men on surround sound while trying to do her math (yes, I make her do math in the summer) and breaking three pencils in frustration and stabbing herself in the knee twice, she asked to be excused to work on a project.  Sensing I was the next to be stabbed, I agreed.  She came back with:

A Bill to End Useless Noise

Purpose: To make a quiet environment for easier learning.
To do away with loud distractions during times of learning.


Section 1.
It shall be unlawful for any loud, distracting noises to be going on during any time of schooling, unless it is a part of the learning process of the curriculum.

Section 2.
Any of these loud distracting noises include the following: movies, music, talk radio, football games, screaming at football games, singing, whistling, television shows, clapping, talk radio, talking to self, slamming doors, mumbling under breath (I had her add that - pet peeve), and TALK RADIO

Section 3.
Violating this act will be punishable by the following: having to listen to Justin Bieber's music for one entire week, being doused completely with elephant urine, spending a year in prison, being restrained from the jacuzzi tub, fine of $100 (payable to Rep. Skeeter Whitten), having all of your flashlights taken away, and being thrown to the alligators at Insta-Gator.

She lined us up on the couch upstairs, called us to order (which means we aren't supposed to speak), and named me speaker of the house.  I like to talk, so that's cool. She proceeded to the read the bill to us.

She didn't even get all the way through when Peter looked at me.  "You put her up to this.  I know you did."

"What's the deal with elephant urine?" Pierson jumped off the couch and yelled.

"You, sir, are out of order!" Scotlyn glared at him with Slitty Eyes of Death. 

Peter tried to explain what "doused with elephant urine" meant.  Ainsley jumped up.  "I don't want to get pee'd on by an elephant!  It's bad enough when Scooby does it!"

"People!  Sit down!  You're all out of order!"  Scotlyn/Skeeter points at me.  "You're supposed to be the Speaker.  You give them permission to speak." 

"They don't seem to need it," I point out.

Peter raises his hand.  I gave him permission to speak, and he addresses the Lady At the Well.  "Do you have a problem with talk radio, young lady?" 

"I'm not 'young lady'.  You must address me as Rep. Skeeter Whitten."

"I see.  Well, Rep. Skeeter Whitten, can I ask another question?"

"You may, Rep. Daddy Whitten." She regally nods her head while adjusting the ragged legs of her cut-off jammie pants.

"Thank you, Rep. Skeeter Whitten.  Can amendments be made to this bill?"

"They may be addressed, yes."

"Wonderful.  In that case, I say this whole family government be amended to a dictatorship until such time as you pay the bills."

Case closed.

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