Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Two very different kinds of filth

Well, it must not have been that big a bug in my craw because here we are 4 weeks later and I'm getting to my first post about our school year.  But look!  Baby ducks!

Fuzzy and Fluffy
Three weeks ago my parents found Fuzzy and Fluffy swimming in their pool but their mother was nowhere to be found.  It didn't take a lot of arm twisting to convince me that they needed to come home with us because, well, they're baby ducks and they're so cute.

Um, baby ducks grow up and become disgusting.  

Really, they are filthy little things so it's a good thing they're cute.  I'm sure that it will be a sweet memory for the kids and it's been fun to watch them grow, but have I mentioned that they're messy?

Fuzzy and Fluffy will stay with us until they are big enough to hold their own at our neighborhood pond and then bye-bye.

Because they're gross.

But cute.

Hey, you know what's always a great field trip?  A science museum.  We love science museums and we try to hit one every time we go on vacation because we're geeks.  Woops, I mean because they're fun and educational and they've got lots of hands on exhibits... perfect, right?

Um, no.  Apparently not always.

I'm totally dating myself here, but does anybody remember the Terminator video game?  It was awesome, you just grabbed the gun and shot everything in sight.  No, there wasn't any gunfire at the museum, but it did have the distinct feeling of the post-Apocalyptic world portrayed in the game.

We went specifically to see a traveling mummy exhibit because we had just finished a unit on ancient Egypt.  The exhibit was pretty cool and it was great that Doc and Obi Wanda could see things they had read about manifest before their eyes.  Honestly the only downers about that portion of our day were having to steer Obi Wanda past the mummy with the extraordinarily well preserved anatomy and the fact that it was a bit depressing because, well, we were surrounded by dead people.  Go figure.

After checking the mummies off our list we were free to roam around the museum.

Ah, how I longed for the days of science museums filled with evolutionary propaganda to be freely debunked.  What we got was so, so much more.

In Disasterville we learned about what happens when your house burns down and just how high your house can flood during a hundred year flood.  Do you know the 100 year part has nothing to do with their frequency?  Oh look, we did learn something!  We also learned how to search for people in the rubble of a house that's been destroyed by an earthquake.  Having fun yet, kids?

The Amazing You exhibit was a special treat.  To be fair, they covered the basics and some of it would've been pretty interesting had we not been dodging sections about fetal alcohol syndrome and STDs.  Yep, STDs.

In fairness, this was a science museum and not a children's museum.  But honestly, I've never been to a science museum so focused on some of the darkest and most depressing parts of our world.

Like the drug trade.

This was on the entrance to the building that housed Kids in Charge.  And in full disclosure, we were the idiots who missed the purple arrow pointing us to an alternate route to the most kid friendly portion of the museum.  So we high tailed it through the exhibit as fast as we could but I doubled back to take a few pictures:

Hey kids, it's a replica of a crack den!

It was just depressing and I honestly don't know what the point was.  I'm guessing it was a "Scared Straight" kind of thing, but it just added to the overall gloom and doom approach the museum was taking.  Honestly, the whole day just felt like an assault of sadness.

I get that disaster and sickness and drugs are a reality.  I get it, my family gets it and my friends get it because we've all lived through it in one form or another.  It just made me sad because it was all so resigned and hopeless and depressing.

As for Doc and Obi Wanda, they were good sports all day even when some of the hands on exhibits were broken and a little bit lame.  On the way home, Obi Wanda said the museum was very different from its web site because on the web site everyone was smiling and stuff worked.  False advertising!  Just another topic covered on our educational field trip about all the worst stuff that can happen to you.

The upshot for PB and I was that it reminded us that we are not resigned or hopeless or depressed because we have the hope of Jesus and we've got to shine His light in the darkness that has a deathgrip on so many.  And we are so blessed that all we had to do that day was shield our children's eyes from a few exhibits and remind them that even if our house is hit by a flood or fire or hail, Jesus holds us firmly in His loving hand.

So I left that day thankful.  Disgusted, challenged and thankful.

But seriously, next time we'll just stay home and play with the ducks.


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