Oedipus Wrecks

I’m pretty sure my son could be featured in every chapter of a Psychology 101 textbook.

Oedipus Complex? You bet. Check out how William engraved his name on the wall above his mommy’s side of the bed. Medium: Pencil on Paint.

Psychological Ownership? Yup. See how he carved his name into our desktop monitor. This is two years after the fact. It doesn’t come off. Medium: Etching on Liquid Crystal.

Mob Behavior? Yes. If you’ve read this blog for a while, you know that William (and his twin sister) used gravel to carve their names into the side of our minivan. Medium: Rock on Paint.

Stuff Kids Write

Juvenile Delinquency? Maybe. William wrote his name on my parents’ RV. Medium: Finger on Dust.

I wonder what happened to using tree trunks, the walls of public washrooms, and school desks to make your mark.

Where have you carved (or would like to carve) your name? Medium?

About Leanne Shirtliffe

Leanne Shirtliffe is the author of SLOTH TO THE RESCUE, SAVING THUNDER THE GREAT, THE CHANGE YOUR NAME STORE, and NO MORE BEIGE FOOD (2016). She also wrote humor books DON'T LICK THE MINIVAN: Things I Never Thought I'd Say To My Kids and MOMMYFESTO. She and her family live in Calgary, Alberta because they like complaining about the weather.

Posted on August 16, 2011, in Writing in Weird Places and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 26 Comments.

  1. I remember the gravel on minivan! I had no idea it happened this often!

  2. When I was 13 I used the sharpened end of a pencil to punch a colorful and well-known command into the green vinyl of a bus seat. I really like the gravel on paint, though. That’s creative.

  3. Lawnmower in grass. To impress my girlfriend who lived in the apartment above.

  4. Message: Tory (my nickname as a kid)

    Medium: parent’s oak desk, with the sharp pointy thingey on the other end of an elementary school compass

    Punishment: I don’t recall, all I know is that my parents didn’t spare the rod – so to speak…..

  5. I once wrote my supervisor’s nickname in the snow in 12 foot letters. We don’t get a lot of snow here so when we do, everyone pays attention. I was leaving the semiconductor facility late one evening and noticed a pristine area in an empty dirt lot (on the company’s property). I left the sidewalk and LAUNCHED myself as far into the field as I could. I printed MR. STEVEO by duck stepping in about 2 feet of snow. I would leap to the next spot to begin each letter (in the interest of neatness). The place had cameras everywhere since the facility harbored dangerous chemicals and precious metals. I’m certain the guards must have witnessed the whole thing. It took about thirty minutes and it was a masterpiece. It was the talk of the facility the next day. Mr. Stevo knew my evil ways from previous pranks we had played on each other. He came to my aisle, bowed deeply, and proclaimed me as the foremost prank Goddess.

    • You are so funny. I love work practical jokes. Although…since I work at a school…I’m not a fan of April Fool’s Day (hello, middle school students).

      But Mr. Steveo in snow at a semiconductor facility at night? That is the stuff of books!

  6. This is serious awesomeness.

    Reminds me of the time I yelled until my throat was sore because Karly carved this into our new coffee table:


    The irony was not lost on me. But I couldn’t stop yelling.

    (Who needs therapy? Oedipus AND I do. And maybe William.)

  7. His penmanship is really improving. Soon he’ll be onto cursive. 😉

  8. Maybe he’s working up to a career as a tattoo artist. Although I’m not sure everyone would appreciate having a tattoo that reads “William”…

  9. As a teacher, the thing that always fascinated me was the way that the culprits never think about how easy it is to be caught when you have used your name or initials.
    I scratched my initials into the wooden arm of a chair in my parents’ living room. The idea that it was permanent didn’t occur to me until my mom got mad.

  10. Kirsty Higginson

    Well, it wasn’t engraved, but a few years back, Isabelle wrote I love my mummy all over the television in purple felt tip. Which followed with, a few months later, wiping blood (from a scab) on her wall and then she went through the wiping bogies on wall stage.

    She seems to have outgrown all of these now………

  11. protractor point on the edge of a wooden desk.
    Learned how to fill and refinish said desk in the weeks to follow. Good times.

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