• Amber Chandler

Six Word Memoir: Sometimes I wish I was basic.


My son Oliver, 9, likes to call my daughter, Zoey, 12, "basic." I didn't know what he meant until he spelled it out to me, "Mom, like, when she goes and shops at the mall and drinks lattes while looking for hot guys." Though this is the little brother version of "stereotypically predictable," I liked the word used this way. I'm kind of a word lover. She is not looking at hot guys, btw.

Today when I was introducing six word memoirs to my students with this great video, I absentmindedly started writing down a few examples:

It seems I'm never, ever finished.

Wish my aspirations were way lower.

But finally, as thoughts of Thanksgiving start to penetrate my relaxed brain, I write:

Sometimes, I wish I was basic.

What I mean by that is that I wish I were more like my demographic. 44 year old with graduate level education, two children, three pets, and 1 husband. I wish that I was figuring out which Thanksgiving decorations to put out this year (we only have some really funky turkeys traced from our hands), or contemplating the best way to iron linens. Domestic Goddess, I am not. Somehow though, because I've owned it in this little memoir, and subsequently this post, I'm feeling better about it. A little. Generalizing about what is "basic" though also seems so, basic. I love words.

Kiddos had the same reaction--they wrote things down and sort of sighed a breathe of relief. I've heard of teachers who do this exercise everyday. Maybe I'll try that next year? A six word memoir every day. Imagine how cool that would be to "check in" with yourself every day. Those social and emotional revelations would be such a good touchstone to come back to as we journey the school year together.

Go ahead, and give it a try. Here are a last few thoughts:

Pine needles never seem to disappear.

PF Changs Lettuce Wraps are amazing. It snowed. Didn't wear socks. Oops.

I'd love to hear some of yours in the comments!


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