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I was writing this morning. It was quite early. The sun had yet to rise. Words were flowing. Paragraphs were forming. Things were good. 

Then my daughter, Clara, age 8, appeared at the table. Early. The sun still wasn’t up. 

Her very first words of the day to me were these:

Clara: “I know Hawaii became a state in 1959. Right?”

Me: “I guess so?”

I had no idea. Maybe? Why are we talking about this at 5:42 AM?

Clara: “And before that, Hawaii was a United States territory. Right?”

Me: “Yes. Definitely.”

I knew that one. 

Clara: “But my American Girl book says that Hawaii was the only state in America to enforce laws about people staying in the state, on the island, during World War II. And they were the only state had blackouts from 6:00 PM until 6:00 AM, too. So the Japanese couldn’t see them.” 

Me: “Okay…”

Clara (rolling her eyes): “But World War II happened in the 1940’s, Dad. If Hawaii wasn’t a state until 1959, why does the book say that Hawaii was the only state doing those things during World War II? It wasn’t a state during World War II.”

My response was perhaps a little less than what she hoped,  

Me: “It’s not even six o’clock yet, Clara.”

Not great. I know. Her response was better. 

Clara: “That’s not an answer, Daddy.”

And there you have it. The end to the writing that morning.