The SCN Encourager – Friday, January 25, 2013

Hemingway’s best story – and its connection to what we do

He said it. I didn’t. So please don’t “sic” your AP American Lit. teachers on me. But Ernest Hemingway called this story his best work. Here tis’ –

“For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”

That’s it. Six words.

And the rest of his story simply flows into a mystery; a mystery that can take off in any number of directions, given our own imaginations and experiences.

A story directly connected to what we do (administrators, teachers, secretaries, principals…yes, all of us) could also be written a la Hemingway.

And naturally, I’m foolish enough to give it a go. (Who else?)

“School. Young child enters. Leaves as . . . ”  

Hemingway got me thinking. It’s pretty amazing that we, too, are part of stories that never end. Everyday. As the future ever rolls forward into becoming the present, we are blessed to be in uniquely special places to see countless mysteries and mini-miracle moments play out before our eyes. (And the vast majority of them are good!)

What a challenge it is for us to try and describe in the public arena all that really happens in and out of our schools . . . especially when tapping into any air of mystery or sense of wonder isn’t even on our task driven “to do” list. (At least not on mine.) 

In 2013 we’d probably call Hemingway’s story the “perfect tweet” and then let it idly scroll down as new blurbs arrive at the top.

But his 6 word story is so much more.  And . . . so is yours.

Tom Page, SCN managing editor
01:25:13 2903



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