*DEAR Announcement

All were not happy when I announced to Z that I had been aroused from my slumber at the wheel .

He looked at me as if to say, “Ah, go back to sleep, lady.” But instead just waited for me to proceed with whatever knew parental strategy I’d come up with to make him read. I don’t think he had much hope for any of my strategies once bribery fell, but I’d rather die than admit defeat so I continue to trudge on.

K: I have noticed a drop in reading. (I announce this as if it’s some royal decree being read from a scroll. I don’t mean to, it just comes out that way.)

Z: SILENCE. (The proverbial royal subject caught off guard looks up from the computer where he is on Facebook , downloading I-tunes, and preparing for a session on oovoo.)

K: We will now reinstate the thirty minutes of reading time each day whether you have homework or not.

Z: ROLLS EYES AND EXHALES (The expression on his face says, “Uh-oh, the jig is up”.)

I continue.

K: I don’t care what you read: magazine, newspaper, books, cereal box, but you will read for thirty minutes. (My confidence and determination is soaring high as if I’ve suddenly realized my purpose in life.)

Z: But mom?

K: If the Woodson book isn’t doing it for you, choose something else. I remind him about the stack of books I drug home from the library.

I have his attention. But then I make one mistake. I think out loud.

K: Now, if I can only remember to remind you to read each day we’ll be set.

That does it. He goes back to multitasking confident that this is the last he’ll hear about the thirty minute reading time until next school year when academics will be fresh on my mind and I will be drunk with efforts to turn him into a miniature Michael Eric Dyson.

* DEAR=Drop Everything and READ