Sometimes the best writing prompts are visual. Like the one I saw yesterday in the grocery store checkout line.

I live in a resort town. We also happen to be a college town. Sort of.

Bar Harbor, Maine is home to College of the Atlantic. And a floopier place (the college, not the town) you’d be hard-pressed to find.

It confers one and only one degree: a Bachelor of Arts in Human Ecology, a term so nebulous as to be completely meaningless in the real world. Which its graduates don’t seem too eager to join anyway, so maybe it’s all good.

It is the home of final projects that range from (absolute truth, you can’t make this stuff up) a compilation of recipes from the college’s food service kitchen to a study of the college maintenance man’s job responsibilities, and everything in between. I mean, assuming one could figure out what might lie between those two topics.

It is the only college where I know for certain the actual singing of Kumbaya has been required as part of a classroom exercise…and any number of courses do not even conclude with a grade.

A recent commencement day featured hula hooping and juggling by a group of students – not as a graduation prank but as part of the day’s scheduled activities. And, while unable to confirm it, I have been told this performance actually represented the senior projects of several of the graduates.

But I digress.

Back to the grocery checkout. The college chickies in the lane next to mine had a small stash of grocery items on the belt evidencing their obvious concern for the planet and dedication to healthy living. You know the type. Everything they chose sported the “natural,” “organic,” or “politically correct” label, like this one:







…except the final item, which was this:





Surely there’s a story here somewhere.

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