Welcome to Talk Quirky to Me!
In the fifth grade, my teacher read a nature poem to the class that included the phrase “an egg yolk sun.” This is the only line in the poem I remember, because after the teacher read it, we were tasked with drawing a picture to illustrate it and I had only one image in my head.
I drew a frying pan on a stove, sizzling with bacon and eggs, sunny-side up. I penciled in some blue and white kitchen tile in the background because I thought it would look pretty.
The kid next to me glanced over at my drawing and said, “What is THAT? That’s not what the poem is about!”
The kid on the other side of me leaned over and hissed, ‘That’s not right! You’re doing it wrong!”
When I looked at their drawings, I was surprised to see they had both drawn green trees and purple, snow-capped mountains. Yellow suns bulged from the top corners of their papers. A furtive glance at other drawings revealed similar mountain landscapes.
A third kid leaned over and sneered at my paper, “Why did you draw breakfast?”
I panicked. My picture was not representative of the class’s illustrative consensus. Hastily, I crayoned in a kitchen window with a view: pointy mountains, shaggy tree, a speck of sun in the northwest corner.
“You’re going to get in trouble,” said the first kid. “That doesn’t look right.”
My picture had drawn a crowd now and my teacher came over. “What’s this?” he said, plucking my picture off the table.
“Marissa did it wrong. She didn’t draw what was in the poem!” squealed one of the kids.
My teacher scrutinized my work, then me. I still recall his face—bristly blonde brows furrowed over pale blue eyes, his mustache twitching over down-pressed lips. This was his expression whenever he scolded me for daydreaming or goofing off when I was supposed to be paying attention. Hot with embarrassment, I slid down in my chair. Could I get away with hiding under the table?
Finally, my teacher’s face relaxed. He took a step backward, lifted my drawing high, and said, “This is a very interesting take on this poem. I’ve never seen anything like this before.” He smiled at me and handed my paper back. “Good work.”
This was the first time I realized I take the world at a bit of a slant. Over time, I learned to trust my creative intuition and it’s led me in all kinds of crazy directions and off-center adventures. I created Talk Quirky to Me to share my oddball outlook. I hope my stories make you laugh, make you think, and inspire you to look at the world in a different way.
Love and breakfast,