Tuesday, September 09, 2008

The Perks

I volunteered to be co-chair of the board of directors for Quinn's preschool for this and next year. I'm not much of a volunteer, you might say. I mean, I'll do it, but everyone better sit up and take notice and give me cool stuff. Yes, I'm an asshole in that way. Last year a group of parents bought me a nice hanging plant for coaching Madeleine's soccer team. That's what I'm talking about.

This preschool thing sucks though. No gifts, the other parents don't care, no free cookies at our monthly meetings. Why do people do this? The teachers see us as a necessary evil, but balk at any changes we propose, such as the suggestion that we offer an after-school Spanish class - Oh MY WORD NO! they say. That will surely make all the kids retarded! I mean DELAYED - what the hell do we say now? I forget - is it delayed? That can't be right, because sometimes they don't catch up. Anyway, the Spanish thing wasn't well-received.

So we meet once a month and discuss what color the t-shirts should be, what date we should take class pictures, what color play-do is the best, whether we should purchase a Swiffer for the 3/4 classroom. Oh my goddamn hell. It blows.

But yesterday, I finally got my gift. One of the teachers called and left me a message that in her 3/4 class, a pair of twins were having difficulties adjusting to school. Specifically, they both shit their pants. She was pretty reasonable, and thought it had to do with the excitement of their first day, lack of familiarity with the bathroom facilities, um, some other excuse that I ignored. But she did point out that both kids crapped in a strangely deliberate and defiant manner. Aggressive shitters! Anyway, my response?

"Well [teacher's name], since I'm the official Voice of the Board, I say two craps and your out."

I got to be The Voice of the Board! I got to be the person that says, "Sorry, as much as we enjoy your children when they don't smell, their behavior is detracting from the abilities of the teacher to teach, and the rest of the class to learn." So I'm still the asshole, but I'm also the asshole that gets to tell a parent (this parent in particular, who noted on her registration that they have a 'very unstructured' household to allow their children to be free-thinkers), that her method of parenting sucks. In not so many words, I get to say, "Remember when [teacher's name] asked us as a group if we were okay with the fact that she will keep our kids inside during recess if they repeatedly exhibit disruptive behavior in class and you were the lone parents to say, 'No, that won't work for our twins. They need to express themselves physically or they get stifled creatively.' Well that line of thinking, interestingly enough, will require you to keep your free spirited shitters at home for a few more years so that the rest of our children don't get Rotovirus." I get to be that person. I am so very down with that. If only I could volunteer to be the Co-Chair of The World.


Blogger Mamalujo said...

You should really go read some Rachel Lucas; granted, you have to ignore her politics, but if you can she's really funny and takes no shit.

9/09/2008 12:25 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

jeez - and I thought I had it bad when I was on the local boy scout council. I never had to deal with passive/aggressive shitters. you win.

9/09/2008 12:50 PM  
Blogger meno said...

Holy shit!

I'd vote for you for Co-Chair of the World in a heartbeat.

9/09/2008 4:21 PM  
Blogger Orange said...

"Both kids crapped in a strangely deliberate and defiant manner"?

Damn! That's something I never learned to do. Is it too late for me? Because I want to try.

9/09/2008 4:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love your writing. I love as much, your posts about your take on your daily life. Your humor is wicked clever. I will totally vote you co-chair of the world, if your co-co-chair is Tom Hanks. He can follow you around, doing this,,,,,,,,


I love that it's dubbed in German. And they say
Germans have no sense of humor.

9/09/2008 5:54 PM  
Blogger PEACE said...

You've got my vote! Beware that in a few years you will be president of the PTA and the State President and then on to National PTA, I know it's a vicious circle! But, in the end your kids will know that education must be really important because mom was always there!

Good job!

9/09/2008 11:26 PM  
Blogger Imez said...

Why would those parents want their children in such an un-cool preschool anyway? I mean, if you think about it, preschool exists to provide structure to little kids.
I wonder if the teachers, with all the their training and experience, resent having a "board" of parents that they have to answer with. I bet they seldom encounter a parent who is helpful.

But they're on the Mignon party-train now. Whoo Whoo!

9/13/2008 7:25 AM  
Anonymous V-Grrrl said...

LMAO. ha, ha, ha, ha {wheezes, attempts to catch breath}

9/14/2008 7:13 PM  
Anonymous apathy lounge said...

Dear Mignon,

I am on your side. Can I be your lieutenant? When I was head of SAFETY for our school I had to report on and personally reprimand all of the idiot parents who continually tried to drop off their children in the handicapped spot...because it was easier and the line was shorter.

Ohmyfuckingshit how tongues wagged and there were suggestions about getting me a pointy helmet like Goebbels (worked for Hitler) and all that.

And yes...it was satisfying to stand there in the street (with my baby in a Snugli) and FORBID those same trolls to occupy a space that was meant for those poor little kids who actually did ride the short bus or wheel themselves up the concrete ramp into the school.

You and I? We'd be a good team.

9/16/2008 10:24 PM  
Anonymous em said...

Oh wow, I have stars in my eyes! I am so very jealous of you! That is actually my dream job - one where you are actually APPOINTED as the person who gets to tell the other parents about themselves! Oops, my intolerance is showing....

9/22/2008 8:25 AM  

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