The Toothpaste Box

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Last night was a big night: We finished off one tube of toothpaste and started on another one. ...which my wife promptly squeezed from the center of the tube.

Not that I'm bitter or anything.

The fact that she clearly refuses to correctly use the toothpaste tube doesn't cause that much marital strife.


Proper Toothpaste Usage

...where was I?

Ah yes.

As I walked to the recycle bin to dispose of the box in an environmentally friendly way, I felt a rather strong desire to keep the box just in case. 'Just think of all the things you could do with that box,' my inner child said to me.

'Like what?' I queried.

My inner child couldn't think of anything precisely, and so the box went into the recycle bin. But as I walked back toward the bathroom--where my wife was mutilating the shiny new tube of paste--I realized that something had just died a little more within me: The belief that raw materials are worth something simply because of the potential they contain; raw materials wait for our creativity to bring them to life and give them purpose.

I still get giddy about a 1'x2' bit of 1/4" flooring rubber, but I no longer keep Mac & Cheese boxes to turn them into burning buildings for a video (unfortunately, my mom caught me heading out the door armed with paper, a box, and matches before I was able to create that scene). I think I've lost something about creative thinking and natural wonder, and I hope I get it back when I'm finally a dad. I remember all the time I had as a homeschooled child that let me create cell phones from plywood and used cap gun caps, rocket ships from bicycle pumps, and castles from toilet paper tubes. A shoe box used to be the perfect foundation for... well... something.

And I've lost much of that, but I think I will need to get it back. For now, I must live vicariously through all of you. What crazy creative things have your children recently done with the "junk"/"treasures" around your house lately?

 ~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Expectant Father

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