Friday, October 4, 2013

A Plausible Lie

"What does this look like?"

It was 6th period in a 9th grade English class. They were doing "Vocabulary Pictures". The assignment was to take four of their vocabulary words and draw them.

The boy was illustrating "vow". I overheard the conversation he had with his tablemates. He decided to draw a ring on a finger, as in the vow one takes when getting married. A decent interpretation, I thought.

The other boys at his table didn't think his picture was very good.

(I am terrible at drawing. I avoid it as much as I possibly can. So, when a student asks if a picture is good, I never tell them that it's not. Most of the time, it's better than I could do. If it's not, then that student doesn't need my criticism. That student needs my support. And I am always nice to them about it.)

The boy then asked me what I thought of his drawing. He held it up for me.

I knew what he was going for. And if I looked very closely, I could see it. The ring was large and prominent as was the finger it was on. He had drawn the other fingers very small and close to the palm.

Perspective-wise, it was well done. Execution-wise...

He asked me what I thought it was. I swallowed my answer. I couldn't tell him.

I can't even tell you what I thought it looked like. I made a promise when I started this blog that there would be nothing objectionable on this blog. I checked a little box. That's why there's no content warning when you try to access the blog.

Before I can tell you what it looked like to me, I would need that content warning.

Of course, what I saw did not even occur to them. If it had...

I frantically searched for a lie. A plausible lie. What did it look like? Other than that. What could I say?

In the end I said I didn't know. The boy went on to his next panel. And I didn't laugh.

I really should worry about my mind.


  1. Please, EVERYONE'S mind goes there. When someone denies it, it means it definitely happened. I'm just surprised none of the kids noticed.

  2. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

    I, too, am surprise that the kids didn't notice it. Nice self-control.

    1. I think they were young enough that their minds didn't go there. And I wasn't about to give them any ideas.


I appreciate your comments.

I respond to comments* via email, unless your profile email is not enabled. Then, I'll reply in the comment thread. Eventually. Probably.

*Exception: I do not respond to "what if?" comments, but I do read them all. Those questions are open to your interpretation, and I don't wish to limit your imagination by what I thought the question was supposed to be.