sycamore-football-helmetDear Kid,

High school Football Practice Season is in full swing with doubles and singles and staying-after-practice-to-work-some-more. The Green and Gold scrimmage is this weekend and it is not at all clear who will be kicking. All we can say for sure at the moment is that you are related to the only football player with a hot red streak in her hair.

We also know that the scrimmage and the BBQ (which I’m guessing means “food” but not “bar-be-que”) will be at the high school now that the new field is ready. says there will be scattered showers on Saturday which I interpret to mean there will be a monsoon that will last just as long as we want to be outside. Yipee.

Dad is talking about watching the Persied meteor showers this weekend. I believe they peak early next week but since the best time for watching is some crazy hour of the middle of the night (an hour suitable for college kids and newborns, but not for me) I’m not sure what we’ll actually see. I can guarantee that if there are monsoons I will be snug in a dry bed not lounging on the driveway hoping to see pieces of burning comet debris.

Persied refers to the Sons of Perseus. You may recall that Perseus was the son of Zeus and Danae. (Not recalling? Read on.) Perseus grew into a strong young man and an excellent warrior (which happened a lot in those days). He was a Good Kid who protected his mom (you see why this is an important story?) and the king sent him off to kill Medusa hoping that while Perseus was away and mom had no one to protect her he (the king) would get friendly with mama. (For the record, while Perseus was gone Danae—the mom—did quite a credible job of taking care of herself.)

Medusa was a Gorgon in a perpetual state of Bad Hair Days (her hair was snakes), and she was so, um, attractive that everyone who saw her turned instantly to stone. You would think this would make her an excellent curator for a statue museum, but apparently Gorgons don’t think that way.

Skipping over some of the good parts of the story (involving sharing eyeballs and dental implants and which you may research from the comfort of your own room if you like), Perseus got some help from Athena and Hermes (it just all ties together, doesn’t it? I love mythology.). He avoided becoming a pile of rubble by looking at Medusa only in the reflection of his shield, lopping off her head with utmost efficiency, and stuffing it into a handy trash bag.

He sped off home to check on his mom, who was handling herself but getting a little tired of the king’s nonsense, so Perseus used the head as a Weapon of Mass Destruction and turned a bunch of royalty and courtiers into stone. After a while he gave the head to Athena as a decoration for her aegis (a fancy word for shield or breastplate). Which all goes to show that Goddesses are not like the rest of us, because I can guarantee that most girls would not be impressed with a rotting, snake-haired head as a gift.

Perseus married Andromeda who he had rescued on the way back from Medusa killing (but that’s another story for another day). They had a bunch of sons with impossible to pronounce names who are now immortalized as flaming bits of comet dust.

Hope you have an easy to pronounce, dust-free day.

Love, Mom