If you have several children. Male children, who do not think ahead or participate in the womanly arts.
If the grandparents of those children insist that they come over, on a Wednesday, and stay from before your oldest child arrives home until the second you need to drive another child to the library.
If you have deadlines out the wazoo.
If your spouse is busy (and legitimately so).
If your doctor has made it clear that regular exercise, rest, and time away from the daily grind are no longer optional for you, but rather crucial to recovering anything like normal health.
If one of your children has braces, and those braces broke this week, requiring an emergency visit to the orthodontist.
If you have a dog whose favorite pastime is peeing under your desk, followed closely by pooping on the rug beneath your bed.
If you regularly wake up at 2am, and find it difficult, if not impossible, to get back to sleep, meaning that you go through your days in a mental fog.
If all these conditions are met, then, and only then, are you allowed, as a teacher, to assign my son the following, on a Wednesday:
Bring in a cake, decorated to represent the 8 places Odysseus visited in his wanderings. Extra credit if you also bring in other food items that fit with the Odyssey theme. Due Friday.
Our cake won the Edible Map competition. By a landslide. Not only was it cool, with a map of ancient Europe made of cocoa and colored sugar as a backdrop for our fondant Olympus, pig, flaming goat, Siren, whirlpool, diamond ring, Trojan horse, and eye, and with lines tracing Odysseus' wanderings...Son #1 was able to tell everyone every little detail about the story, in order, with detail, and special emphasis on the fact that we placed our little figures accurately, based on historic research.
Yay, us! We totally kick butt.