The other evening while the girls were getting ready for bed, Grace paused, looked at me, and said clearly:
Do or do not; there is no try.
Grace has seen The Empire Strikes Back and has probably heard me on some occasion recite this line from Yoda; and she definitely knows that I hold the tradition of the original Star Wars trilogy in certain esteem. While my spouse has seen all these movies from our childhood, she can’t tell you which ones are Tie Fighters, that the droid sellers are known as Jawas, or distinguish between Tatooine and Dagobah. Grace knows this about her mother, and she knows how this contrasts with her dad. It’s still interesting and surprising that this just came out of her mouth spontaneously as she was putting on her pajamas. Not quite as difficult as raising an X-wing fighter out of a swamp, but still good advice.
But I think that Grace wasn’t so much reciting this piece of wisdom for herself as she was for me. She looked up at me with a big grin, widening as she witnessed my surprised and delighted reaction. Whether she was trying to simply impress me or she was summarizing a pep talk for my professional endeavors, I’m not sure.
Tomorrow I’m getting on a bus with a group of teachers, off to destinations such as a particle accelerator, rocket science facility, various field sites, and observatory. These are spread out across three states with travel across the desert in the most blistering part of the summer. We don’t know really what we’re doing, only what we’ve sketched out in some lesson plans and who we’ll be meeting and where we’ll be staying. So, yes, it’s planned. Just like they planned the assault on the Death Star. Do or do not; there is not try. Red 5 standing by . . .