It was Picture Day at the O.K. Corral today. You know, that day when every man, woman, and child in the school submits to the *”Cheese Man” who tells them, “Sit here, put your feet there, hold your hands like this, sit up straight, turn your head, cough.” Okay, I made up that last one.
Picture Day is always special because it’s one of the only days when it’s acceptable for our students to wear something other than a school uniform. Yes, our public school required uniforms. In fact, all of the public elementary schools in the district require uniforms, as do most of the middle and high schools. Don’t get me started.
The uniforms are typically non-logo polo-style shirts tucked into khaki, navy, or black slacks/shorts/skirts. But I’d rather see kids dressed like kids. Which is why I love Picture Day, if only because it relieves the monotony of seeing wall-to-wall primary-colored little preps.
Everyone came in this morning looking so beautiful and handsome. There were fancy church dresses with shiny little patent leather shoes. There were tiny clip-on ties matched with miniature suits and vests. They looked so cute.
Precious Precocious arrived all ready for her close-up. One of my young gentlemen stared at her for a moment, completely flummoxed.
“Are you wearing a shirt or a jacket?” he asked.
“It’s a sweater dress.” She looked up at me, exasperated.
“He’s a boy,” I commiserated, returning her eyeroll. “They don’t get fashion. Get used to it.”
*”Cheese Man” courtesy of Junie B. Jones Has a Monster Under Her Bed by Barbara Park