Back-to-school blues


“Summer will end soon enough, and childhood as well.”

-- George R.R. Martin, "A Game of Thrones"


Summer is winding down, and so back-to-school nerves are spinning out of control in our house.

This is a big year for us; my youngest begins kindergarten and my 9-year-old moves into the bigger intermediate school.

While my son is sure all he needs is a Star Wars backpack and a T-shirt, the essentials for my daughter are growing. After our big shopping spree for clothes, notebooks and pencils, all that was left to tackle were nerves.

"You'll be fine," I told her. "Nothing bad will happen."

She looked me square in the eyes and said, "You say that, and I know you think it makes me feel better. But I can't help but hear it the way I would if I were reading it in a book. And it would mean that something bad will happen."

Another hazard of raising a writer, I suppose!

So let's share: What's your worst back-to-school memory?

For me (don't tell my girl this), it was fourth grade. Actually, it was mid-year, when I decided I needed a makeover. I had my waist-length hair cut to my ears, a spiral perm, and new Sally Jesse Rapheal-style enormo glasses. I thought I looked amazing. The rest of the world ... not so much. And thus ushered in a year in the Land of Dorkdom. (Which, actually, ended up being the best thing ever.)