Two nights ago Sterling, Rebecca, and I were up to 1:30 in the morning completing a meter-high roller coaster made of wood, rubber tubing, nails, hot glue, and a whole lot of naive hope. We could not, for the life of us, get that darn ball to stay on the track for both a vertical AND a horizontal loop. Also, per the requirements of her physics class, Becca had to build a mechanism to move the ball from the end spot, back up to the top. Every fifteen minutes or so one of us, in absolute frustration, would shout out, "This is a ridiculous assignment for a group of teenagers!" But then we just soldiered on because the project counted for two major grades. At one point I was chanting (mostly to myself), "Joneses don't quit. Joneses don't quit!"
Sure enough, as the new day rolled in, we persuaded that darn 3/4" ball to roll the entire length of the coaster, dizzying swirls and all. All on it's own the ball mounted a large wheel and then vigorously launched itself into a cone . . . starting the loop again. Sweet bliss.
I'm not convinced Becca learned a ton about physics, but hopefully she got the message that family pulls together, that perseverance pays off, and that her momma is quite handy with a glue gun.
Three roller coasters down, one to go. Help me.