Three years ago my oldest daughter, McDaniel, did a 5th grade project on the solar system. They got to pick a planet to study, write a report and craft a visual.
Of course, she did.
She asked me why everyone laughed when she picked Uranus as her project.
I may or may not have patted her on the head and said something dismissive like,
"Don't you worry about them."
"I have no idea."
I am all about denial
when it comes to Uranus.
McDaniel truly did not know about the potential tee-hee of Uranus.
It gets worse.
Pour more coffee if you must.
McDaniel researched and wrote an impressive report on the planet Uranus.
She was on the computer in the den trying to come up with a "snazzy" title for her project.
Ellie and I were in the living room reading those crazy instructional 1st grade books about owls and a boy named Peter going to get eggs at the store.
Every now and then, McDaniel would holler out an idea for a title for her report.
You know, to get my feedback.
But she didn't realize what she was saying.
I wasn't supposed to laugh at
while I was listening to Ellie read about
and Peter going to get eggs at the store.
McDaniel: "Uranus and You"
Me: "No! Not that. But keep trying, Honey."
McDaniel: "All About Uranus"
Me: "Good gravy no!"
McDaniel: "Let's Learn About Uranus"
Me: Long. Pause.
McDaniel: "That Big Blue Ball? It's Uranus!"
Me: Help. Me. Now.
McDaniel: "The Wonderful World of Uranus"
I couldn't take it.
I am not that mature.
I ran upstairs and called Monte.
I cried in laughter with him so I could face McDaniel.
That night at dinner, Monte explained what caused people to snicker when they heard the word
We watched the light bulb go off in McDaniel's head.
Then Monte proceeded to list a few titles of his own for her project
ones he undoubtedly worked out on the drive home from work.
Now Ellie is in the 5th grade
and they are studying the solar system
(see where this is going?)
Ellie chose to study Uranus.
Sorry. Sounds a bit invasive.
Ellie informed me that her teacher AND Bill Nye the Science Guy announced that
Uranus is no longer Uranus.
It is now pronounced Yur-i-nus.
Can they just do that?!
Hey, I grew up with a family with the last name of Butt.
The dad's nickname was Red.
And his father was Harry.
They didn't go changing their name to Boot or anything!
They forged on and became a pharmacist and still own the prettiest house in town.
One family did succumb, however.
The Swine family.
Maybe it was because she was a teacher and had to be around children so much.
(They can be cruel little creatures.)
One fall she came back to school and all of a sudden was Mrs. Schwinn.
But I digress,
Back to Yur-i-nus.
Remembering the big laughs of years before,
Ellie was somewhat disappointed in Yur-i-nus vs. Uranus.
But she forged on and put together a good first draft of a report.
She read it out loud.
Somewhere in the report was a mention of a gassy atmosphere.
I couldn't resist.
"So Uranus is gassy?"