Thursday, February 18, 2016

Reality Check

I just found out why none of the parents of my elementary school book group batted an eyelash over our discussion of constipation. I was at the doctor's office for Claire's appointment this morning. The waiting room had the cable channel Disney XD on. There was a play-doh commercial, with a toy dog that defecates play-doh. We don't have cable. I had no idea South Park's Mr. Hanky (who I thought was the most shocking, disgusting character of all time 17 (has it really been so long?) years ago, had permeated all of pop culture. Or maybe it's not even South Park's fault. I have no idea. After meeting Mr. Hanky, I retreated into a bubble and I'm sorry whenever leave it. Like when I go to a children's waiting room.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Parent Voluteer

The elementary school does this voluntary book club thing where kids are divided into groups of 5, they all read the same book, and then a parent joins them for lunch in the library to discuss the book. It's the one thing I've helped with this year. (I thought I'd done something else, because I remember making the tremendous effort of taking Julia the 2-yr-old to school, but then I remembered that was just going to watch the Halloween parade. Whew. Exhausting. Wish I were kidding.)

Anyway, I baked a Sam's Club cheese pizza (eh, I don't recommend Sam's take and bake pizza's), loaded up Julia, and took it in to the school for our little book club. (The organizer of this thing says you should get there early to set up the library tables beforehand. "The time goes so quickly!" This is a lie. Time with other people's children never goes quickly. Do not show up early.)

To sum up, here's the e-mail I sent to the parents of the children in my group afterwards, just in case they heard strange things from their child and wanted to make a complaint (i.e. ban me from the school, which wouldn't be a big deal, since I'm hardly ever there anyway).

I hope you all find this more amusing than offensive; regardless, honesty is the best policy.

Naturally, during our discussion of 'Mason Dixon: Pet Disasters,' the kids talked about their pets. One child mentioned a dog his family once had that gave birth to pups and then died. Another group member exclaimed, "The dog died of constipation!" I thought that was odd, and said I knew a man who died of constipation. [Note: you might want to reassure your children that almost nobody dies from constipation--the man I mentioned had a cancerous blockage.] This statement caused some confusion as at least one group member thought constipation had something to do with pregnant women only. I then explained that constipation means you can't poop. (My sister was right. I have an annoying compulsion to correct people when they're wrong. I'm sorry I did this in front of your children.) Anyway, after that, I steered our discussion away from the bowels. You can rest easy, knowing I won't be hosting Chat and Chew again for at least 6 years, when my 2-yr-old will be in 3rd grade.

I left out how difficult it was to steer the discussion away from excrement. One kid told us two stories: one about a man who committed suicide by jumping into a pool of manure, and another about a gun that either shoots poop, or shoots out mud that looks like it. And despite all the . . . stimulating. . . conversation, I sent them out to recess 5 minutes early because the time refused to go quickly. The End.