That's because I have in my file three essays by boys who will not give Shakespeare much trouble.
The first is a city boy who describes a cow thusly:
"A cow is an automatic milk machine. It is covered with leather like my baseball glove and has four vertical, moveable supports, one on each corner.
"The front end contains the cutting and grinding mechanism, as well as the headlights, air inlet and exhaust, a bumper and foghorn. At the rear is an automatic fly swatter. The waste disposal apparatus is also located there.
There is a similar machine known as a bull, which shouldn't be confused with a cow. It produces no milk, but has other interesting uses."
The second is another lad who wrote about trousers.
"Pants were made for men and not for women. Another definition is a woman pants for a man, and a man pants for a woman. This is known as a pair of pants. Pants are like molasses. They are thinner in hot weather, and thicker in winter. You don't go to a pantry for pants. They are also known as breaches. Men get charged for breach of promise when they have no pants.
"There is much discussion as to whether pants is singular or plural. I think that when men wears pants, they are plural. When they don't wear any, a pant is singular.
The third is an essay on the human body.
"Your head is kind of round and hard. Your brains are in it, and your hair is on it.
"Your face is on the outside where you eat, smell, see and hear. Your neck is what keeps your head from sliding down in your collar. It's also hard to keep clean, and your mother is always telling you to wash it.
"Your stummick is something that hurts if you don't eat enough, and spinnage don't help it none.
"Your spine is the bone in your back which keeps you from folding up. Your back is always behind you no matter how quick you turn around.
"Your arms you've got to have so you can pitch a ball and also to reach the butter. Your fingers stick out of your hand so you can throw a curve and hold a pencil to write an essay like this.
"Your legs is what, if you don't have two of, you can't get to first base or go on a hike.
"And that is all there is of you, except what's inside – but I never saw that."
All three of them got an A for their efforts, but i doubt if they'll be much competition.
However, the boy who started his story with "It was the tenth of Nov and skies were cluddey and gloom"* is doing all right.
*Provided by Anita Nielsen for a college paper she was grading.
© 2007 Robert F. Karolevitz