Never Have I Ever: School Projects Edition

We’d never do our kid’s homework, but papier-mâché and science projects just don’t happen on kitchen tables without some intervention and guidance.

Erin-  Oy, this week may qualify as the Everest for School Projects, but I do believe we have made it to base camp. This week has been non-stop. Ellen and I have both been up to our eyeballs in school projects.

Ellen- Well, if you have been up to your eyeballs, I guess I’ve been up to my armpits. I do only have two kids to your five, after all.

ErinFor the record, when we were planning said family, nobody mentioned school projects times 5. Factor that in, people! It should be right up there with college tuition and the cost of diapers.

And I am not feeling your math on this one. The proportions don’t seem right. I have 5. You have 2. I’m not seeing a 3/5 difference between the armpits and the eyeballs.

Ellen- I was dealing with epidemiology, laminar flow patterns, and Rube Goldberg machines. I think that closes the gap.

Erin- Well, I need a drink to even pretend that I want you to expand on that.

Ellen- Remember the drinking games in college? Ah, those were the days. We had such endless hours of time that we had to create games so that drinking lasted long enough to fill them.

ErinAhh, those WERE the days! Loved the game “Never Have I Ever”! Somebody would start by making a statement that starts with “Never have I ever”. Then anybody who “had ever” had to drink.  I remember this being one of the more structured drinking games with rules and everything. There was even moral high ground: lying was strictly forboten.

Ellen- Holy Preciousness. You all can save your eye muscles the strain of the eye roll. I have you covered. I guess they liked their drinking games with contrived Shakespearean structure at Erin’s liberal arts college.

Erin-I think it had something to do with being run by Jesuits, but I’m just guessing.

Ellen- Anyway, I went to the University of Maryland during the period when they were transitioning from being a contender on Playboy’s Top Party School List to Not-Your-Safety-School.

Our games were not structured, and the only moral high ground was not to target your best friend’s boyfriend as your next hook-up. That being said, we also played ‘Never Have I Ever,” just without the integrity.

 ErinCan you imagine if The Sisterhood crashed the party on those poor 20-somethings?

Ellen – Ooo, I’m envisioning “Never Have I Ever: The School Projects Edition.” We would either make those poor Innocents’ heads explode or exponentially increase their dedication to birth control use.

Clucking Adorable

ErinIt might go something like this:

Innocent 1: Never Have I Ever violated a farm animal.

Erin: (Take a drink) Check. I just shoved a rooster in a can.

Innocent 1: Did you just say you shoved a rooster up your can?

Table shouts: “Spill the story, spill the story.”

Erin: Puh-leez. We had to papier-mâché a rooster for a third grade character in a can project.

Innocent 1: Well, that was a lot more boring than I thought it would be.

(Sideways glances among the Innocents. A few raised eyebrows.)

 Innocent 2: Never Have I Ever dabbled in bondage.

Ellen: (Takes a drink) Well, I may not technically qualify, but seeing as I already took the drink, I’m going to go for it. Yesterday, I had to scour the house for a pulley, steel cable, and duct tape so that Coco (13) could construct her Rube Goldberg machine. But, the rubric did specifically say the machine could not “imply profane, indecent, or lewd expressions,” so I’m going to take a penalty drink for game foul.

NOT Coco’s Rube Goldberg Machine


Innocent 1 whispers to Innocent 2: Wait, what did she say?

Innocent 2: I think she said that Rudy Goldberg, you know, from Econ class, puts roosters in bondage…

Innocent 3: Never Have I Ever worn knock-offs or discount. (Smirks as she pushes perfectly manicured hand through shiny, sleek hair)

Erin: (Takes a drink). Hunger games T-shirt for book report for seventh grader. Biddie(13) had to create original designs based on characters from the book, print her designs onto transfers and iron them on. They were originals, but you can’t get more discount than ink-jet transfers on Wal-Mart t-shirts.

Innocent 3: O. Kay. (looks at Innocents 1 and 2 with scarcely concealed horror)

Innocent 4: Never Have I Ever seen a musical. (Clearly lying or overcompensating for something.)

Ellen: Just hand me the bottle. I’m living in High School Musical, and Coco is only in 8th grade. Last year, Leader of the Pack: 5 times. This year, Bye Bye Birdie: 5 times. I love you, Drama, oh yes I do.

Wait, I’ll take another party foul drink, because I actually do love it.

Innocent 5: Never Have I Ever abused any balls.

Ellen: Oh Sweetie. Party foul for wince-producing flirting and/or poor attempt at double entendre. On second thought, I’ll take the drink for my snarkalicious judgment. You’re young and perky; you can totally pull off a line like that.

Erin-whispers to Ellen: But only for about 5 more years. Snicker, snicker.

Innocent 2: Slow down on the party foul drinks, Lady. After this tequila, all we have is a garbage can full of grain and Kool-Aid.

Fraternity House Punch Bowl

Erin: (Takes a drink) Hey, back off. Do you want her to start talking about the Rube Goldberg thing again? Oh, and back to the balls,  fill me up, because I helped Charlie(11) cut an old foam ball in half to create a model of the animal cell.

Innocent 1: I don’t think that is what she meant…

Erin: It’s a DRINKING game (speaking slowly just in case she’s a little slow). Now pass the bottle.

Innocent 6 (clearly here only because her roommates think she spends too many Saturday nights at the library or babysitting): Never Will I Ever Force My Child to Pursue Something She is Not Passionate About.

The Sisterhood: GROAN!

Ellen and Erin: PARTY FOUL! No future tense. You don’t KNOW what you’ll do.

Ellen: Going to take two drinks for this one. Just to numb the pain. I forced Jellybean (11) to join Science Olympiad; to push her beyond her desires for perfection. I thought it was an activity where she could learn and create without worrying about the grade on the report card.  But I am paying for it. I am now teaching fifth graders epidemiology.

The Sisterhood: By unanimous vote, we vetoed the idea of hitting up Red Box and just having them watch Contagion.

Innocents: Next!

Erin: Never Have I Ever built a salinometer.

All of the Innocents in unison: WHO let all of these chicks in here!?!

Ellen (Takes a drink): Score a third drink for Science Olympiad. We constructed one out of drinking straws and modeling clay. It took two hours. I could have gotten one on Amazon for $15.95 in 15 seconds. AND it was eligible for Free Super Saving Shipping. I could have added that callous buffer I’ve had my eye on to the cart and been good to go.

We love you Amazon, oh yes we do!

I have advanced science degrees and six summers working in a marine biology lab on my resume and I’m having a hard time finding the worth in this. I have to avoid eye contact with the girls when I proclaim, “This is a great learning experience.”

Innocent 4: Maybe you should say it with jazz hands. Jazz hands make everything more convincing.

Innocent 2: Yeah,  you’ve never seen a musical! But more importantly, DON’T ENCOURAGE THEM!

Erin: At this point, we have finished off the bottle of tequila and have moved onto slurping up the garbage can of grain with the leftover drinking straws from the salinometer project.

The Sisterhood: Um, I think we’re about to get bounced from this shindig.

Ellen: You can throw us out, but if you procreate, we are your future.

Innocents run screaming from the room with hands over ears.

 Erin: Pipe down! We’re leaving. But just be grateful we didn’t bring the “Never Have I Ever: The Midnight Feedings/Mastitis/Explosive Poops Edition.”




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By Ellen Williams Erin Dymowski



48 Responses to “Never Have I Ever: School Projects Edition”

  1. Kimberly at Rubber Chicken Madness
    March 1, 2012 at 7:29 am #

    As a former Jesuit college attendee, who knows the drinking games of which you speak…and realizes with my *ahem* 42 years of alleged wisdom that the Never Have I Ever game would be SO much more fun with some life experience, I adored this post!
    Kimberly at Rubber Chicken Madness recently posted..Hen Picked 2.29.12My Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 1, 2012 at 7:53 am #

      Thanks! Are you a Loyola grad too??? It was *ahem* way too easy to write this post. With one just a hop skip, and a jump from college, I find myself walking down memory lane quite a bit. -Erin

  2. Kimberly at Rubber Chicken Madness
    March 1, 2012 at 8:29 am #

    Not a Loyola grad…Rockhurst (KCMO) – but those KC Jesuits molded my brain quite nicely inbetween all the drinking games I participated in…

  3. Mary
    March 1, 2012 at 10:10 am #

    Between this article and Bye Bye Birdie – I am so living my college days!

    Sounds like a fun game for our next Mom’s out – except I’m more familiar with U of MD version – and maybe an edition of “I can’t believe I said that…”

    • The Sisterhood
      March 1, 2012 at 2:01 pm #

      Mary, I can’t believe you left a comment without mentioning your daughter’s Machu Picchu papier mache. The Peru thing was an impressive school project. Worthy of a drinking game even.

  4. Stasha
    March 3, 2012 at 3:59 am #

    I love the way you too write. I have never been involved in this kinda shannanigans… But I believe it is never too late :)

  5. Poppy
    March 3, 2012 at 12:02 pm #

    Never have I ever intentionally made plans two nights in a row before a science project is due so my husband gets stuck with “helping.”

    P.S. You totally need to post the instructions for fermenting the grain and Kool Aid under your recipes tab.
    Poppy recently posted..How To Make Yogurt: A TutorialMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 3, 2012 at 1:24 pm #

      That’s great! You’re right, we really should have added the recipe. Smack on forehead. That’s not very sensible at all. ; ) Erin

  6. Kerstin
    March 6, 2012 at 10:25 am #

    This is awesome! And I realized that I was WAY to good when I went to college. My college (University of Colorado in Boulder) was a party place and I wish I would have known of this game back then :)
    Kerstin recently posted..10 things I am bad at – as in totally suckMy Profile

  7. Ado
    March 6, 2012 at 1:30 pm #

    Oh, the Jesuits.
    My husband was educated by them in Ireland. I was educated by them in grad school. I don’t think either of us had quite as much fun as you all did though. (-:
    Ado recently posted..My Parents FriendsMy Profile

  8. Katie @ Chicken Noodle Gravy
    March 6, 2012 at 5:48 pm #

    HA! I love it. And I totally want to live in High School Musical with you guys. When I was in high school, I was OBSESSED with musicals. I would dance and sing around the house like a madwoman.

    Good ol’ college memories.

    My husband and I made up a drinking game last night for the new show Smash. We’re calling it Smashed. Pretty original, if I do say so myself.
    Katie @ Chicken Noodle Gravy recently posted..But, Now I SeeMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 6, 2012 at 6:06 pm #

      I bet you could get invited to a kegger if you dangled that carrot of a new drinking game in front of their noses. Either that or the offer to buy them beer.

      I have to say, I am curious about the rules of ‘Smashed.’ Care to share? Ellen

  9. Kristin
    March 6, 2012 at 6:28 pm #

    I remember making an eyeball with saran-wrap as the cornea. I always rejected my parents’ help. My sister always accepted. She got great grades.

    That’s all.
    Kristin recently posted..No Socks, but Full ServiceMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 6, 2012 at 7:06 pm #

      Oh, I, too, made an eyeball. What are the chances? School projects always seem so original and fresh.
      And if only my kids would reject my help. :) They do most of this shizzle on their own, but I still have to supervise, help gather supplies, and provide motivating kicks to the rear. Ellen

  10. jenn @ so this is love
    March 6, 2012 at 8:10 pm #

    LOL. You guys are so funny.
    jenn @ so this is love recently posted..The Burn on my WallMy Profile

  11. Alison@Mama Wants This
    March 6, 2012 at 8:13 pm #

    Hahahaha!! Hilarious. Note to self: Do not attempt complicated science projects for children. Ever.

    I would totally win at the Never Have I Ever version of Midnight Feedings/ Mastitis/ Explosive Poops.

    Wait, can you WIN at this?
    Alison@Mama Wants This recently posted..One World for AnotherMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 6, 2012 at 9:53 pm #

      Yeah, I don’t think there is a winner for that one. LOL Ellen

  12. Shannon Pruitt from 'Mynewfavoriteday'
    March 7, 2012 at 1:09 am #

    I LOVE I never, ahem, I mean LOVED! So much fun and thanks for letting me play along with your crafty selves. Very fun and who knew you could violate a rooster with a can?:)
    Shannon Pruitt from ‘Mynewfavoriteday’ recently posted..The sounds of letting go.My Profile

  13. Kim@Mamamzungu
    March 7, 2012 at 7:14 am #

    This is simply awesome! Oh, this post takes me back! I remember the not so creative drinking game of watcing some quitiesentially 90s show and drinking whenever someone did something predicable – like Homer said “doh.” There could probably be an updated version like whenever the Jersey Shore folk slap someone or a Housewife from somewhere gossips.

    • The Sisterhood
      March 7, 2012 at 8:00 am #

      Reality TV drinking games would be the best! Doubleshot when you betray your best friend or say something that would make your mother cringe.

    • The Sisterhood
      March 7, 2012 at 9:06 am #

      My husband and I feel like doing that every time they say “journey” on the Biggest Loser :) Ellen

  14. Miranda
    March 7, 2012 at 10:22 am #

    The comment about the party foul for the poor double entendre made me laugh out loud. This was a really fun post to read….but it almost makes me worry about becoming a parent. Seems like school projects have gotten much more complex since I was a student!

    • The Sisterhood
      March 7, 2012 at 11:07 am #

      We had a very silly time writing this post. We were pretty slap-happy from it all. And we didn’t even include ALL of the projects going on. Be grateful we edited for comedic value and length.
      No joke about the complexity! I want to write to the school and beg them to stop trying to impress us! Ellen

  15. Jennifer
    March 7, 2012 at 11:29 am #

    Okay, so I propose that once a week the Sisterhood gathers and plays said drinking game while watching the children duct taping their chicken butts together. I’m in! I love abusing balls.

    • The Sisterhood
      March 7, 2012 at 11:04 pm #

      You are a woman with THE plan and you are in!! Bring your own duct tape, though, we’re running low over here. Ellen

  16. Stacey
    March 7, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

    Ahhh, “I Never”! What great memories! But I am soooo not looking forward to school projects. I didn’t like them as a kid, so I’m guessing I’ll dislike them even more as a mom!

    • The Sisterhood
      March 7, 2012 at 11:06 pm #

      Yeah, I’m doubting their appeal will increase for you. You know what one of the best parts is? Once they come back home, you have to figure out something to do with them! Ellen

  17. stephanie
    March 7, 2012 at 8:19 pm #

    You are hilarious! Laughing out loud is a good thing, so thanks for accommodating me. If I ever got dragged to a musical I’d need that bottle of tequila myself. Or to sit through Glee. Oh, boy, I wonder how many of your readers I just alienated… oh well, I’ll have a drink to take the sting out of it. Great post. I loved it!

    • The Sisterhood
      March 7, 2012 at 11:07 pm #

      Glad we could provide a chuckle for you. Bottoms up!

  18. heidi
    March 8, 2012 at 12:33 pm #

    Ooohhh, I know this game. It can be a dangerous one.
    First, I love that rooster. Second, everything is better with jazz hands.
    Funny, funny post!!
    heidi recently posted..surrenderMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 8, 2012 at 3:48 pm #

      We love Cocky-Locky as he is lovingly referred to in this house too. The cute 8 year old who made him kind of blew me away with his crafting skills. And, we are with you on the jazz hands. ; ) Erin

  19. Louise Ducote
    March 8, 2012 at 12:55 pm #

    Funny post, but it also offers great perspective on past and present. Amazing to think of hours-long drinking games when I can barely fit in a drink before I fall asleep. Try as I might, if I pass out it’s from fatigue, not buzz. Love the rooster!
    Louise Ducote recently posted..One More BiteMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 8, 2012 at 3:46 pm #

      I feel the same way!! I do miss the endless expanse of unstructured time. Pure heaven. Erin

  20. Lenore Diane
    March 8, 2012 at 2:03 pm #

    More often than not I remained sober during those games. It was rare that I had done anything mentioned. However, if I were to play the game with you gals – well, I might actually get a buzz! I’m so thirsty…
    (Good stuff, Gals. You crack me up!)
    Lenore Diane recently posted..Project 366: Day 68My Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 8, 2012 at 10:58 pm #

      At least we play fast and loose with the party foul drinks. :) Ellen

  21. Kim Pugliano
    March 8, 2012 at 2:18 pm #

    Never have I ever played a college drinking game. While in college. However, the past 5 years I learned quite a few of them (when Noah was at Gramma’s and we were away for the weekend, geesh).

    Great post!
    Kim Pugliano recently posted..Comment on Core Values by Kimberly PuglianoMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 8, 2012 at 3:49 pm #

      OOh, take us with you next time! Ellen and I keep bringing our kids! ; ) Erin

  22. Jamie
    March 8, 2012 at 5:00 pm #

    You guys should Vlog these conversations!!
    Jamie recently posted..why does that happen?My Profile

  23. Kimberly S. (Sperk*)
    March 8, 2012 at 7:43 pm #

    I have always loved that OK Go video but never knew that it was a (hold on while I scroll up for reference) Rube Goldberg machine. How lame am I for not knowing? I am unfortunately familiar with drinking game participation in college and tequila. Lost my brand new spring flats after such an occasion.

    I can’t begin to imagine the stress of five school projects at once, or even two. I gave up helping with such things after adopting the Montessori mantra ““Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed.” That is, of course, unless it’s a project that involves jazz hands. Love Fosse.

    Great post. Hope there are more school projects to come to inspire such fun writing (and reading for me!). Good luck, I hope all turns out to be successful.
    Kimberly S. (Sperk*) recently posted..Wednesday’s Woman: The Power of ForgivenessMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 8, 2012 at 11:14 pm #

      Jazz hands! Rest assured the projects were done by the children, but the gathering of the materials and the orchestration of meeting with partners is exhausting in itself. And the Rube Goldberg is still not completed. Ah!

      Jellybean and her partner did win a gold medal for their salinometer. :)

      You want to know the best part of all of this? We didn’t even include all of the projects going on. :) You’re welcome for the editing. And thank you for your comment! Ellen

  24. Susan
    March 8, 2012 at 8:39 pm #

    I’m not sure if I most love the drinking game memories, the tequila, or the use of jazz hands in this story. Because putting all three of those together creates a TRIANGLE OF AWESOMENESS. Thank you. Deeply.
    Susan recently posted..Today in the Mommyhood, Day 508My Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 8, 2012 at 10:51 pm #

      Success! Our ultimate goal was to create a triangle of awesomeness. Bows, jazz hands, curtains close.

  25. hollow tree ventures
    March 10, 2012 at 10:27 am #

    All the drinking games we played in college had really elaborate rules – for about 10 minutes. That was how long it took to get sloppy drunk in those days, because we were AMATEURS. Now I just stay drunk all the time, because I’m a mature grown up now.
    *jazz hands*
    hollow tree ventures recently posted..March Photo Challenge 8: WindowMy Profile

  26. thepsychobabble
    March 10, 2012 at 10:46 am #

    The prospect of school projects terrifies me. We haven’t got there yet, but every year is another step towards the mandatory science fair.
    thepsychobabble recently posted..30 Days: Day 10 Fall asleep to itMy Profile

    • The Sisterhood
      March 10, 2012 at 12:34 pm #

      My continuing advice is that you’ll be ready when you get there. It comes in baby steps :) Ellen


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