Friday, October 28, 2005
Into the Pumpkin Gulag
Dear Kindergarten Families,
Attached you will find a permission slip for our field trip to The Pumpkin Farm. The admission is $7, which all of you will just ignore anyways, seeing as how I teach in Povertyville, IL; and don't worry about remembering to sign the permission slip, as I will be mailing a letter home every day until the day before, at which time I will become frantic and teach your progeny to chant "Sign my slip...sign my slip..." until you do the best you can. So, por favor, make this underpaid pseudoparent happy and just send back something, anything, with your name on it.
Love, Mrs. C.
Well, we had our first field trip on Wednesday to the Pumpkin Farm. And when I say "pumpkin farm," I mean militant hippy commune, where kindergarten teachers are ripped off the buses by rangy women without makeup sporting long gray braids, as they tell us, "Stand over there, we'll unload the children." This made my clingers panic, and my manipulative schemers instantly going into "Plan B" mode-"Try to Take Over the World." I nervously paced around several million pumpkins until my kiddos were returned to me. Still no idea why we all had to be separated.
We were met at the gate by another militant, gray braided woman, this one a bit plumper. She apparently would be our "guide," which meant she escorted the kindergarteners and I, and my seven trusty chaperone moms, over to a train. This train was driven by a really freaky mannequin, (dressed in a prisoner's uniform? WTF?) which for some reason really scared the shit out of my Mexican kids. Around and around they went until the man at the controls woke up and realized where he was. Our next stop was an inflated pumpkin, where kids could jump around without my direct interference, as I was too big to get in there. They used their time wisely, enacting Darwinian "survival of the fittest" maneuvers, clobbering one another until I dragged them out.
The other highlight of the day was feeding creatures at the "petting zoo," which consisted of a million starving goats crammed into a cage. My kids were all excited about this until go-time, when I found myself surrounded by paper cups of goat feed, and little voices telling me that they were scared. So, while some of my kids conquered their fear by chucking the whole cup of feed at the goats (who amazingly, caught and ate it in mid air), I was helping about three-quarters of my kids feed goats, which left me soaking in goat mucus from my elbow to my hand. The next time someone tells me teachers are overpaid, I am going to soak them in goat mucus, and then stick them on a pumpkin commune with twenty-four kids who have to pee.
Several other elementary classes from other schools were there, and I kept finding extra kids in my group from a nearby new elementary school. We just kept chucking them at the Pumpkin Gestapo, and moving on. I congratulated myself on not losing any of my kids the whole day, when at the end of the day, the apparent head SS officer came over and barked, "Excuse me! You lost four of your kids today!"
Beg your ever-focking pardon? "Who do you think you're talking to?" I asked, trying to remind myself that 48 eager little ears were pointed in my direction. "Who are you?" Head SS asked me. I told her, and she froze, said "Oh, ok, never mind," and then walked away. All of my kids, however, were very excited over this, and asked me the whole ride home, "Who was lost? Were we lost? Am I lost? Teesher, what lost means?" and so forth.
I will seek revenge, so help me God. At least mi ninos had a good time.