Skip to main content

To Be Plunked Down

I mentioned earlier that I have been plunked down in the book of James - the Bible. I wanted to define 'plunked down', with a little story.

The six year old girl wore an old fashioned, knit dress, all baggy and plain. She had on knee socks and tennis shoes. The only item of clothing that gave her security about the rest, was her favorite orangey, brown, button down cardigan with the tie belt. Her round face beamed with the wonder of school while her chunky braids pinched tight and uncomfortable against her ears. 

She sat in the front row of chairs in the damp, gloomy basement. The whole school was in the basement this morning for what was called "joint devotions". It was fun when they all got together like this. They had a special bible story usually and special singing. 

There was a new principal this year, a young man that looked old, being shiny bald and wearing big glasses. The six year old didn't really care one way or other about him. She had overheard the adults talking about him and had gathered that he was a little over zealous in his discipline approach, although she didn't really know any one thing he had done to earn that name.

She was especially enjoying this morning's time together. There was sunshine pouring into one of the window wells of the basement and the singing was clear and blended with all the young voices keeping the notes strong and true. She couldn't help from swinging her legs in response to the sway she felt in her body. What she wanted to do was twirl and hold both hands high in the air. Instead she concentrated at holding still.

One minute, she was singing and worshiping in her six year old way, the next minute, the shiny bald headed principal had her by the arm and was pulling her to her feet and dragging her a row ahead to the seat beside him where he deposited her with a plunk.

She was in shock. What had she done? Her head hung in shame as she tried to figure out what happened. Two crocodile tears fell into her lap but she kept her face down, hoping no one had seen the 'plunking down.' To swing from carefree and happy to plunked and shamed was more than her little heart could bear.

The rest of the school year, she kept on the look out for that principal. When ever she was in the hallway, her eyes were peeled on her two fast getaways. One, the girls bathroom, and two, the side exit door. She had plans to run to one of the neighbors, if need be, to escape the principal that ruled so impulsively. Either that, or she could run to the family Suburban that sat in the parking lot all day. She could hide in there. It was big enough to contain the family of nine.

She never did find out what had caused the plunking down. She learned that life was full of plunking down though, and that it didn't matter how right and good you felt about things, you could always be taken out in a flash. She learned to watch out and be aware of the lesson in the carefree moments as well as the plunking down times. She learned about forgiveness and moving on when living treats you unjustly, and that to live in fear of the principal isn't conducive to living and learning. 

Have you ever been plunked down? And, did you find out why?  And, I just had the most awful case of deja vue and wonder, have I written this before?