But does it hold water?
I can't remember the name or subject of the class, but when I was in high school, one of our assignments was to give a demonstration speech.
One boy brought in a hockey stick and explained how to put a curve to the blade. It was a hat-trick* presentation ... 1) he was prepared, 2) he delivered his presentation with enthusiasm, and 3) with before and after hockey sticks on hand, he had relevant, engaging props. Even though I've never played hockey, I enjoyed the presentation.
When it was my turn, I initiated a hands-on origami exercise. The class followed along and we all folded a square sheet of paper into a cup. I recall some murmuring and a few moans and groans when I passed out the paper, but I won them over when I poured water from a pitcher into my cup and demonstrated that it would in fact, hold water.
It was the start of an origami obsession.
My next goal was to fold an origami crane and when I had that figured out, I challenged myself to fold one without looking at the directions. Still can.
Today is World Origami Day. If you want to ease into the art of origami, learn how to fold a cup that holds water, click here.
*In hockey, a hat-trick is when one player scores three goals in a single game. That kid put it in the net.
Are you a collector? There are a few things I collect and a couple of things I've learned about collecting from the collections I have.
That's how many I collected before had to stop. When I started my typewriter collection it never occurred to me how much space they occupy.
Let's just say nine is enough ... and it's a rotating collection. Most are stored away and I display one at a time.
What's it worth?
My collection isn't worth a lot ... and that's the second thing I've learned. Most of us collect what we collect because we like whatever it is we collect.
Sure, some collections are an investment, but for most of us, our collections are valuable for different reasons. I've seen collections of torn ticket stubs from live concerts (proof they were there), heart-shaped rocks (memories of beach walks), baseball cards (childhood dreams), and cranberry glass (handed down through the family).
October is National Stamp Collecting Month
At first I wondered, "Do people still collect stamps?" Yes, they do. And it's a popular hobby.
And, no wonder.
Miniature works of art. From landmarks to monuments, animals, politicians, celebrities, sports, culture, and history, each stamp tells a story.
What do you collect?
And what's the story behind it? Share the story and your collection becomes more valuable because it provides provenance ... the history behind the collection. Who owned it before you? Where it was made? Receipt of ownership (yours and previous owners) and any other documentation you might have adds value.
When I first saw The Little Water Girl statue, she was tucked in a corner of a gated entry to the library, most often littered with leaves and bits of trash that spun around her on windy days.
She's now located inside, in a prominent position, fully restored to be the water fountain she was designed to be.
But what does she stand for?
I was curious.
This is one of a handful of statues I researched in Portland ... because I was curious. It became a hobby and with each statue, I created a poster and wrote a short essay.
This is what I found:
Barefoot with outstretched arms, The Little Water Girl is a fitting tribute to the legacy of Lillian Stevens, a dedicated advocate for women and children and third president of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU).
Founded in 1874, to “combat the destructive powers of alcohol and the problems it was causing their families and society,” the WCTU banded together in prayer, protest, and pledge—a pledge of total abstinence from alcohol.
Battling saloon owners and eager to curb temptation facing their husbands, fathers, sons, and brothers, the organization encouraged members to install public drinking fountains in their communities.
Drinking fountains where “men could get a drink of water without entering saloons and staying for stronger drinks.”
A committed and independent Stevens traveled by carriage (along with her horse Madge) some 50,000 miles lobbying for the WCTU and Prohibition.
Ratified five years after Stevens’s death Prohibition was not to last.
But still, 100 years after Prohibition was enacted, the WCTU continues to advocate for total abstinence of alcohol, illegal drugs, pornography, and gambling.
The Little Water Girl by British sculptor George E. Wade was commissioned by the WCTU for display at the World’s Fair in Chicago in 1893.
More than 70 fountains inspired by the WCTU initiative remain standing across the United States, Canada, England, and Australia.
Copies of The Little Water Girl can be found in Chicago, Detroit, and London.
People want to know.
Like The Little Water Girl, people are interested in your story.
But if you don't tell them, how will they know how you did it, why it matters, or how it happened?
Not sure where to start? I can help.
Write today or call (207-252-9757) and let's talk about your story.
After all, people love stories and you've got a good one.
Start writing your story with the Short Story Inventory.
The Story Line blog is where we share short story memoirs, writing tips, and more.