Now we’re learning, now, unlearning.

Thursday, October 11th, 2007

It appears my name was not drawn in the Michael’s “Win a Trip to France” Sweepstakes. (Yes, I entered). I really felt like I was destined to win that. I have this entire high school level French education that is quickly receding into inky nothingness. This is what I would say if I were in France: “Bonjour! Je m’appelle Domonique! Ca va bien? J’ai vente cinq ans et je suis une femme Americaine. Je t’aime. Q’est-ce que tus va faire pendant le week-end?”

When we were kids we used to play school. Rather unimaginative, I know. Usually my older sister would be the teacher, and my brother and I would be the students. On one occasion she gave us students the assignment of writing a letter. Wanting so desperately to appear grown up and world-wise, I wrote an imaginary thank-you letter which opened with “Thank you…” and closed with the words, “Thanks again.” I remember really loving that phrase, “Thanks again,” believing it to be my ticket to adulthood. It was casual, compact, flippant even, and it just rolled off of adult tongues like so many cliches in correspondence (that have long since lost any significance). I remember being so proud of myself.

So now I really am a grown-up–no faking it. I don’t play school anymore, and in fact when I step inside a school these days I feel a bit like a Martian wearing electric blue hot pants. I don’t play office anymore (another fond past time), but I do work in an office. And do you want to know how I close just about every email that I send out? “Thanks again.” I noticed that today. And I don’t think it’s always appropriate. “I’m sorry to hear that your Great Dane passed away. I know it is very difficult losing a pet. Your sorrow is my sorrow. Thanks again!” But how do we shed these obnoxious patterns?

Friends, I do not have the answer.

Thanks again.