In 1988 I was teaching and tutoring, while also picking up the odd engineering consulting jobs and helping men die. One of my students was Ikaika, a boy who had difficulty writing. In my diary for March 11 1988, I found a scrap of paper with an Assignment that I gave Ikaika in which he was to write for 5 minutes:
Describe what items would fall out of a hole in the Galaxy it it appeared in YOUR ROOM! [ First imagine it happening, write cue words, then rewrite the paragraph].
I saw a bunch of stuffed animals fall out. then inflated globe beach balls come out, next Garfield, Odie and Jon came out and the the Garfield gang came out and the hole sheeted up and then we party!!!
Not to be outdone by the youngster I took the opportunity to write at the same time. In Ed’s 5 minute writing:
Well, it’s another 5 minute writing spell…. it’s 1556 on a Friday afternoon, and i have just talked to Bill about my hearing aids; his experiences with hearing loss due to 30 years of flying B-25’s and the like, and had an enjoyable time listening to Ikaika talk about his most recent launching of a rocket.
What an odd experience to exhume this piece of writing, completely unexpectedly. It’s silly scribbling, of course, but for a moment the reading took me back to a time of great turmoil during which I shared a few minutes of quiet time with a little boy in love with Garfield.