I always like to do something a little something special for the boys on the last day of school. This year, to celebrate how much their brains had grown, I bought them a real human brain from the cadaver lab at the U of I!
Did you fall for my story? I bet not. But the boys sure did.
Okay, so here’s the story: The last few weeks of school were really dragging. I mean REALLY DRAGGING. The boys needed something to look forward to, so I told them on the last day of school I was giving them a big surprise. Every day they asked about it and I told them things like “It will be the coolest thing I have ever done for you,” and occasionally I gave them a little one word clue like “smarts.” I had them so primed for this joke it was not even funny. (Except that it WAS FUNNY… because it was a JOKE… Get it? Get it? Is this thing on?)
So when we got home from picking them up on the last day of school I stood them in front of our fridge and told them my tale…
“I know how much you want to be a brain surgeon Jack and how jealous of Daddy you were when he got to go to the cadaver lab with the Young Men that one time. And so I thought to myself… hey… what better way to celebrate how much your brains have grown during the school year than to actually BUY YOU A BRAIN?!? So today while you were at school I drove to the cadaver lab in Champaign and bought one for you. I took one of our trays to put it on and I had them cut the bottom off so it would lay flat. I didn’t want that thing rolling around in the trunk while I was driving! Heh heh! The color is a little different than I expected it would be. Weird. Maybe it changes color as it ages? I’m not really sure. Anyhow, it’s here in our fridge just waiting for you. Let’s take a look and then Jack can go get his microscope and we’ll disect it!”
At first they were simply stunned… jaws dropped, eyes popped. Then questions started flying… “Did you SERIOUSLY buy us a brain?” “How much did it cost?” And then the general freaking-out-ness ensued.
I got it out of the fridge, still covered. Poor Aly couldn’t take it and left the room screaming. Jack stayed but he was close to losing it too. I told him he had to be the one to uncover it:
I’m sorry, but is he not the cutest? You should have heard his initial assessments of the brain and seen his face! He tried so hard to keep his cool and make authoritative observations, but it was really grossing him out. Alaster came back into the room for about .5 seconds when it was uncovered to take a peek before he ran out again.
Then I told Jack he should TOUCH IT.
“I can’t mom! I just can’t!”
“Don’t you want to be a surgeon son? How can you ever be a surgeon if you can’t even touch a silly little brain?”
“Well… don’t I need gloves?”
“Nah. It’ll be fine. Brains are tough, you can’t hurt it, and we’ll just wash your hands after.”
“I don’t think I can do it!”
As this conversation is happening imagine a frantic Truman next to Jack saying “Don’t do it Jack! It’s sooooo gross! It’s sooooo gross!” and Alaster shouting in his similar opinion from the living room.
When Truman started to cry though I knew we needed to wrap this little joke up so I told him “JUST DO IT!” and Aly came back in to watch:
“What did it feel like Jack?”
“Pretty cold, and slimier than I thought it would.”
“Did it feel like…. JELLO?!? Because THAT’S WHAT IT IS!!!! Hahahaha!!!”
At first they didn’t believe me that it was a joke. It wasn’t until I fed a bit to Dorothy that they finally understood. Jack took one bite too but then was far, far too grossed out to take another. Aly and Truman wouldn’t even consider it.
Before you think me too mean, you should know that Jack regularly plays tricks on me. He loves to sneak up and scare me out of my wits. Also… they sure did a LOT of complaining about homework this year. And if you think my trick was bad… you should hear what my Stake President (whom I borrowed the jello mold and recipe from) does to his students every year with HIS jello brains. He’s had people pass out it in class it’s so bad!
Anyway, It was a lot of fun. For a few days afterwards Jack would randomly say “I still can’t believe you did that. You got me so good!” then he’d nod his head and look at me with eyes of impressed admiration.
Bonding over Jello Brains. Who knew?!