April 12, 2016

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Hugging out the Snow Day Blues

It's good to have writerly friends.

You may have heard about yesterday's winter storm, the one that dumped an inch of snow per hour on Maryland. People FREAK OUT here if snow is mentioned in the forecast. Three inches of white stuff is an emergency. By bedtime, we had at least six.

The children were off school, but they are teenagers. My days of Play-Doh and Lego marathons are, sadly, over.

This is my kind of snow day project.
Stuck at home. What to do? I know...

it's been a while since I challenged Poetry Friday blogger Michelle Heidenrich Barnes to one of our infamous Limerick Challenges.

Michelle has a series on her blog, Today's Little Ditty, called Limerick Alley. I'm not sure how the Limerick Challenges between us began, but it may have begun with the Lime Rickey Limerick Challenge.

Raspberry Lime Rickeys from Tracey's Culinary Adventures.

Then there was the Miniature Golf Limerick Challenge. The frozen grape challenge.

And when I posted the National One Hit Wonder Day Limerick Challenge on Facebook, and more writerly friends joined in. (Those poems were roll on the floor funny. Anyone remember Kajagoogoo?)

Yesterday was notable for more than the weather. It was also National Hugging Day. My Limerick Challenge was clear. I threw down the gauntlet on Twitter. Michelle was quick to respond.

I did a little research on hugs. We are big fans of the "20 second hug" at my house (science geeks -- yes, even hugs have a science). I wrote my limerick and posted it on Facebook, with an invitation for others to join in.

Here are the results, National Hugging Day limericks by me, Michelle, and my poet friend Michael Ratcliffe.

The Science of Hugs
by Laura Shovan

Most hugs last for three seconds, true.
Long embraces are better for you.
Oxytocin starts flowing
if your hug is still going
while you count from one to twenty-two.

Michael Ratcliffe's Hug Day Limerick

While hugs are quite good for most folk,
I happen to be one of those blokes
With a very large bubble
For whom hugs cause trouble
And make me feel like I'm stuck in a yoke.

You Never Know Who You'll Run into on National Hug Day
by Michelle Heidenrich Barnes

Beware the Constrictor's embrace.
His affections are largely misplaced.
He'll give you a snuggle,
But after a struggle
He'll squeeze the last smile off your face.

Read about this squeezy snake at Nat Geo.

As I put this post together, I thought about how hugs separate the Sensory Seekers (me, me, me!) from the Sensory Avoiders.

I hope you got whatever kind of hug makes you smile yesterday, Writerly Friends. Playing limerick challenge with my fellow poets put a huge smile on my face (no boa constrictor necessary).

If you love limericks, visit Michelle's blog to read more.

You might like following @NationalDays on Twitter. If it weren't for them, I wouldn't know today is National Southern Food Day. Time to grab my snow-bound kids and bake some biscuits.

Thanks to Michael and Michelle. Today's limericks were posted with permission from the authors.


Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

Thank you for the huge smile you put on MY face this morning, Laura. :) I sure do have fun with these limerick challenges too-- you're a good kick-limerick-butt friend to have!

Linda B said...

I missed the challenge, but love these Laura. There is someone at school who wants to know all those national holidays-we've been hugging! Thanks for the twitter link too!

Renee LaTulippe said...

Oh, you limerick-huggers! Great fun!

Amy Ratcliffe said...

Fun limericks! I know I'm a day late, but since Michael Ratcliffe (my brother) brought this to my attention, I must add my own limerick:

A hugger I happen to be,
but not indiscriminately.
'Cause folks like my bro
quickly give the heave-ho
to those who hug too frequently.

Author Amok said...

Amy -- Nice to meet you! Thank you SO much for adding your limerick. I love having another POV to go with Michael's poem. (My brother and I sometimes trade silly haiku, and he was a "contestant" in the One Hit Wonder Limerick Challenge.)

Becky Shillington said...

I love the limericks and the hug research link! These are great! I am sharing with my 11-year-old boys in the hopes that they never stop hugging me! = )