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Appraisal Theory

My son’s in his Watch This years. “Watch this!” He throws
open the screen door, races through the kitchen,
returns in a pant. “See that?” Although I’m watching,
I don’t. “I’m back before the screen door closed.”
It proves something: how fast he is, how slow
the screen door, how proportionate the rate
of shutdown to round trip, like squaring a circle.
I’m never sure what “Watch this!” means to show.
The house, bought just before the bubble burst,
loses value by the hour, the big hand
sweeping away liquidity, that stuff
the big boys brag about, while here my rough
son tests the tensile strength of rubber bands
which pop—“Watch this!”—like the metal clasps of purses.