As we plunge deeper into the holiday shopping season, it might be a good idea to remember an axiom posited by school board member Barbara Prescott. While speaking out on one of her pet issues, the summer-school program, Prescott said, "I believe competency is the greatest gift we can give to our children." And all this time we thought the best gift you could give your children was the Screamin' Serpent Roller Coaster because, with that, kids can build this cool six-foot roller coaster that actually works like a real roller coaster, and then they can put all their action figures into the cars, and then they can pretend to be Godzilla and jump up and down on it until nothing is left but a bunch of little tny pieces. But maybe competency is better. Who can say?

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