Z is for… zapple

Breakfast duty at school… I see raised hands.

I go over.

I am expecting one of the following:

I can’t open my milk.
I can’t open this [bag of apple slices].
Can I have a paper towel? I spilled my ____.
Can I have a cup of water/a spoon/a fork/ another biscuit?

I have my responses ready:

Have you tried?
Have you tried?
How did this happen?

Put on your mask and go get it (x3)… and sorry, you only get one.

This is what happens, however, when I get to the little girl sitting with her sister and cousin:

Child: Look, my apple has a z on it.

Me: A z?

[Child holds up apple slice. Peel has been nibbled so that, yes, a sort of letter z remains]

Me: Wow, that IS a z. I guess you could say z is for apple. No—zapple!

[Child giggles]

Child: Yeah, I can eat it and have magic powers. [waggles fingers in air like a magician. Of sorts]

Older Sister [in spite of herself]: Yeah, you can go ZAP! [performs a ZAP with an air wand]

Even Older Cousin [even more in spite of herself]: Or, you could ZOOM.

Me: Ooo, yes! After eating the zapple, you could zap and zoom down the hall to discover a zebra peeking out of a room…

[offstage light shines on the faces of all three children]

Me [seizing the moment]: That would make a great story, wouldn’t it?

Even Older Cousin [with a determined nod]: I’m gonna start typing it on my Chromebook as soon as I get to class…

I leave them talking excitedly about What Happens Next.

Zapples clearly are magical.


with thanks to Two Writing Teachers for the Slice of Zapple… er, Slice of LIFE Story Challenge every day in the month of March. This is my sixth year participating.

9 thoughts on “Z is for… zapple

  1. Fran, what a great way to start the day. Expecting a spill and tumbling into a zapple adventure means you are living right! I would love to see the zany story they write, and I’m thinking about all I would do with my own magical bag of zapples and yapples and wapples and rapples and sapples and bapples and how they might pair/pear with bears and gears and dears and fears and bananas and pananas and frannannas 🙂 Oh, how we are smitten with words. And I’m always amazed at how you find them in just the right places, waiting to be discovered, waiting to inspire with giggles to start children on their way with just the right…..magic!

    Liked by 1 person

    • -Surely the most enchanting response I’ve ever received! The sheer JOY of words and wordplay – you are so much fun. Frannannas-! Wait ’til I tell my granddaughter Scout (aka Scoutaroni, Scoutaronius, Scoutaroo) about that! It’s up there with the names we have for her baby sister (Micahroni and Micahroon). Words…infinite magic, oh yes.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hmm I wonder if they would name the zebra in their story. If I had to pick I would choose Zach the Zebra. I definitely love how breakfast duty took a complete 180 and led to not only their appetite being fed but their imagination too.

    Liked by 1 person

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