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Opinion >  Column

The Slice: Catching up with the speed of summer

Kids don’t realize it, of course.

In their candy-colored dream world, they think summer lasts forever.

But it doesn’t. So don’t we have a responsibility to acquaint them with reality?

Sure. That’s why The Slice suggests targeting some young people in your life with a steady stream of comments about back-to-school shopping and the days getting shorter.

They’ll thank you for it, though perhaps not right away.

Your mother’s greatest fear: “Was a time when I seriously believed that it might be her grandchildren growing up without reading Shakespeare,” wrote Curt Olsen.

A junior high English teacher, she believed that was fundamental to being an educated person.

So did the kids ever read Shakespeare and put her mind at ease?

“No,” said Curt. “But once they started giving her great-grandchildren she seemed to get over it.”

Slice answers: Patty Hostetter recalled a laundry disaster.

“When I was a freshman in college, I washed a wool V-neck sweater in hot water. The sweater shrunk to a size fit for a toddler but was so dense and heavy it would have made it difficult for the child wearing it to move.”

Kathleen Urice remembers being left in charge at home while her parents took a trip back when she was in high school. When she did the laundry, she washed a red sweatshirt with a younger brother’s underwear.

It did not seem amusing back then. But now that they are both in their 80s, they can laugh about the resulting pink underwear.

Georgia Moore was a 16-year-old newlywed when she discovered that the way to wash her husband’s white boxer shorts and T-shirts was not to use a half-bottle of bleach. Her first attempt destroyed his underwear. “I had to call my mom and ask how to wash white clothes. Thankful for my mom. So was my husband.”

Warm-up questions: When a pump-top container of hand sanitizer is provided near a public keypad or touch-screen device (at a post office, pharmacy, et cetera), do you find you are reluctant to handle the container itself? When you declined to lend money to a friend, was that the end of the relationship? How much does your business spend on giveaway pens and key fobs? What goes through the minds of retired bombardiers when they see aerial views of real estate parcels?

Today’s Slice question: What would have been your first words upon setting foot on the moon if you had been in Neil Armstrong’s boots in July of 1969?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email pault@spokesman.com. Try not to surprise any skunks this weekend.

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