By Ross Brenneman
“When the star-bellied children went out to play ball, could a plain-bellied get in the game? Not at all. You could only play if your bellies had stars, and the plain-bellied children had none upon thar’s.”
—Dr. Seuss, “The Sneetches” (1961)
“And when I’m old and I’ve had my fun, I’ll sell my invention so that everyone can be superheroes. Everyone can be super! And when everyone’s super … no one will be.”
—Syndrome, “The Incredibles” (2004)
Virtue is its own reward, but stuff is a nice reward, too.
At Mulberry Elementary School in Houma, La., the children with the best state assessment performances from the year before can wear whatever clothes they like in the first month of school, in place of standard uniforms.