Every single thing I produced in art class at school, bar one, ended up in the bin because they were rubbish.
I was so bad at art the one time I received a near perfect score for an art project at high school the student who was the top of the year made a formal protest on the grounds the rest of my portfolio was rubbish so I’d clearly fluked this and art was supposed to be deliberate.
So genetics being what it is, I wasn’t really surprised when Tracey told me Master7 was the laughing stock of his art class today.
“He’s really upset,” she told me. “You better talk to him.”
I called my little man into the room.
“Your mum says you had some trouble in art class today,” I prompted him.
Suddenly he was really animated: his head was nodding and his arms were flung out. “I had to wear a garbage bag at school!”
Is this some arty way of saying his paintings are rubbish? I always felt the D’s and E’s on my report card spelt that out satisfactorily enough. So did my parents.
“Why? You’re not that ugly,” I told him reassuringly. He didn’t laugh.
“Because I didn’t have an art shirt for painting!”
“Well you won’t forget that again,” I tut-tutted. “You should have put it in your bag this morning when you packed your lunch.”
“I don’t have one!”
I looked at Tracey. She gave me a look which said ‘we forgot to buy one’. I responded with a look which said ‘what’s this we stuff? You bought the school supplies.’
“Everyone laughed at me!’ continued Master7. He was really cut up.
“I’d have laughed at you,” I admitted to him. “In fact, I’m a little upset I didn’t get to see it.” I went to the cupboard and pulled out a whole roll of garbage bags. “I’ve only got black, but blacks the new black this year.” I pealed one off, cut the bottom off with scissores and, grinning, held it out to him. “What do you say? Want to show me?”
And as he rustled around the kitchen, Tracey chasing him with the iPhone trying to get a photo, he cheered up and started to see the funny side. So much so he soon had a fantastic suggestion.
“Don’t worry about buying me an art shirt,” he said. “I’ll just wear garbage bags!”
There’s my boy! And I might just let him.
After all, if he’s going to rise above the lofty standards his father set he has to suffer for his art.
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