Posting on the wall old school style

My Dad wrote me a touching limerick when I was 16-years old. I came home from school one day and found it, sketched onto the back of a large piece of wrapping paper and hanging from the doorway of my bedroom.”

There once was a girl named Lar

Who was the sloppiest girl by far

She had a room

But lacked a broom

Now she sleeps in a place with a car.

So proud was he of this little tribute to my high school housekeeping skills, that he popped it up repeatedly throughout that year. Eventually it found a permanent home on the basement walls of our house.

Graffiti fills the walls leading to the basement of our house, which we purchased from my mom in 1995.

It all began with my own surprise 16th birthday party back in 1980. My mom had been planning to paint the basement walls anyway, so she told my friends they could write on them to decorate for the party.

The walls still haven’t been painted and, in the 30 years since, the graffiti has spread beautifully. It marks the heights of our children, and the wit of their friends. Foreign exchange students have signed the walls, as have all our young friends.

The wall marks special occasions like prom and 16th birthdays, and ordinary ones like the day cousin Erin came to play.

One day I came home from picking up our babysitter. In a hurry to get to a meeting, I hustled her and the children into the house. A policeman greeted us as we approached the door.

“There’s been a report of an intruder,” he said.

“Seriously?” I asked. I’m ashamed to say I wasn’t even concerned, just focused on making it to my meeting on time.

I opened the front door and began to walk in.

“Ma’am, I really think I should check it out,” said the policeman.

“Oh, of course,” I said.

We waited on the porch while he looked around.

“Oh ma’am,” he said. “Someone has written all over your walls.”

I’m sure he was startled when I laughed.

Turns out someone had taken a break on a front porch and rested on one of the chairs sitting there.

No harm done.

But I really should have asked that police officer to sign our wall!

Because my dad liked to be the guy behind the camera, we don’t have as many pictures of him as I would have liked. But his words are immortalized forever (or as long as we continue to live in the house) on our wall.
Here’s the poem. which he graciously waited until after my surprise 16th birthday party to post.
We hosted prom pictures in 2007, as indicated by the Wall.
Five-year old Cousin Erin signed the wall.
Some of the original birthday artwork.
Two more 16th birthdays.
A view of part of the wall from the basement.

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