Earlier in the semester when I was post-exam slap happy and all jazzed up on Jurassic Park 3D, I allowed each of my students to draw a dinosaur on the back of his or her weekly quiz, in exchange for one point of extra credit.
This was an excellent decision.
The results of this extra credit assignment were varied in skill, enthusiasm, and creativity. And it occurred to me as I was grading the quizzes that I couldn’t just hand these tiny pieces of artwork back to the students without stopping to record them for posterity.
My thinking went something like this:
Wow, I should really keep a record of these somewhere. I could take them in to the department office tomorrow and make copies of them…but I don’t really need more paper in my study. I guess I could take pictures of them? Yeah, I have that kick-ass macro function on my camera that I use for research photography. I’ll do that. Oh man, I should stage these pictures on Aloisius and then post them on my website!
This whole time I’d been holding one of the dinosaur drawings in my hands, staring at it with growing excitement. And I heard/imagined a voice in the back of me head ask me, “What the hell is that? It looks like a naked dog.”
Well it’s not, I countered, it is in fact a dinosaur.
“I don’t care what you say,” said the voice again, which at this point I had pegged as Elliot, “it looks like a naked dog.”
Marc popped up beside him. “More like naked cat,” he added.
At which point it occurred to me, I should not just post these pictures to my website…I should comment on them. And with the added two (or forty) cents of my daydreams, I could do these comments up in full Mystery Science Theater 3000 style.
So, without further ado, and with the permission of my anonymous students, I offer you the first of many “Dino Drops.”
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Me: And so we begin, boys. I don’t know about you two, but this one immediately made me think of an Aztec Bird God or something. All killing his prey with a golden sword.
Elliot: What is that poor creature it’s killed? Look at its frown! Awww, it’s sad…
Marcus: Is die. Thing are usual frown when they are die.
E: I think it’s bleeding…
M: Thing are do that when die, too. Again, usual. Sometime you are use poison though.
Me: Look at the way the Bird God is staring down his prey. Honestly, now that I think about it, that thing is not really much of a dinosaur. I probably shouldn’t have awarded the extra point.
E: Well, it’s creative, though. Morbid and creative.
M: Maybe thing that is die is dinosaur. Maybe Bird God kill all of dinosaur and become next rule of earth.
Me: Like, the dinosaurs died out, not because of a meteor, but because of Aztec Bird Gods with swords?
M: Sic. All sort of Aztec god.
E: Yeah, that makes no sense.
M: Is make perfect sense! All of dinosaur are die, and they are bury underground in tar, and there are no people for like so long, sic?
M: So, what if Aztec Bird God are rule earth until people are arrive. And then people are kill them, but decide that they are god even though they are kill. So then they are put Bird God on plate of gold and shit.
E: Rather than burying them in tar pits under the earth?
Me: Aztec Bird Gods. The missing link.
E: Is it wearing a choker? I think it’s wearing a choker.
E: Alright, fine, it’s plausible.
M: I am tell you. I am tell you is plause, and you are like, oh no, is non plause. But is so plause.
Me: Holy shit, guys, I just noticed it is licking its sword. It is licking the blood off the sword.
M: Duh. Is Bird God. Is what they are do. They are kill and lick blood.
E: Anthropologists everywhere will be stunned by this discovery.
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I’ve decided to post one dinosaur drawing every Wednesday from now until I run out. Because Wednesday is the worst, and dinosaurs make everything better. Come back for the next dinosaur on May 8th!