Sunday, January 31, 2010

I should get a pet or a hobby or something.

On Christmas morning, I found two rather unique gifts with my name on them. The first, in my stocking, was a little joke from my mother. An air freshener. No, I'm not joking. It's a cute little air freshener shaped like a duck, full of innocence and childlike wonder.
The potential ruiner of Christmas.
She's hilarious, no? The best part is the scent. According to his packaging, the little guy smells like "summer linen." As if I haven't already had my fill of "linen" scented things. (I've been fooled by that before!)

I finally worked up the nerve to open my new friend.

1:57pm: Open packaging. Looks harmless enough.

1:58pm: Read directions. "Separate front and rear portions of the character." Ok!

2:04pm: Still struggling to pull apart plastic pieces.

Harder than it looks, ok??

2:05pm: Call in reinforcements. (Read: yell for father.)

2:05pm: Mission accomplished.

2:07pm: Tentatively sniff. Squint and back away quickly, preparing for worst.

2:08pm: Not dead. Positive sign. Breathing normal. Even better.

2:09pm: Still skeptical. Don't let me down, duck.

We'll see about that.
That was a couple days ago. I delayed posting this, in case he came and murdered me in my sleep or something. (I don't trust him being in the same room as My Mortal Enemy. They might talk when I'm not in there. Since I don't exactly hang out in the bathroom for fun, this gives them lots of time to plot my demise.) The good news is that his plastic smile does not seem to be masking any malicious intent. The other good news is that he really doesn't smell like anything unless you hold it up to your face, making it The Best Bathroom Air Freshener Ever. (I really am not a fan of the air being freshened, as it turns out.)

Note: Not trying to kill me.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Twin Powers Activate!

Kids, The Twin is showing some of her artwork in Livonia for another week or so. For anyone sort of near there, you should definitely go check it out, because she's awesome. Her art is awesome, she's awesome, the end.

Oh, and here are the details: Livonia City Hall, from right this second until January 29th. Go go go!

In other Twin News, we decided the other day that the best twin power to have would be the ability to transfer the need to pee to the other twin. Would come in handy in lots of situations. Not very exciting or glamorous, but a very practical twin power. Just FYI.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Notes from work.

Sometimes I forget how much I love teaching. It's easy to get bogged down by everything happening outside your classroom.
And then I have weeks like this past one. I assure you, I can't make up things like this. Some notes from kindergarten:

Noticed a new bulletin board by the gym. "You're not fully educated until you're physically educated." Not a bad sentiment. Get outside! Move around! Let's battle childhood obesity! But you know what? My first thought when I saw it was "Dirty."

I was teaching a lesson about volcanoes on Tuesday. (A huge hit.) N put her hand up and I called on her. "You talk beautiful." I was expecting a question about volcanoes. Or at the very least, some anecdote about N having seen a volcano in a movie and people were scared. Nope. I was way off. I'm not really sure what N meant, though. Do the dulcet tones of my voice agree with her? Or is it the way I construct sentences that she finds so pleasing? Not a very specific compliment. She's 5, guys, give her a break. Way harsh. You shouldn't be so judgemental. I, on the other hand, am duly flattered. I talk beautiful. That's a new one for me.

As the kindergarten students were lining up after lunch, shouting with the usual enthusiasm reserved for those not yet old enough for long division, our principal walked by. He put out his fist for them to bump as we walked by. He showed them how to do it, following up a fist bump with, "Then we're going to do this, and make fireworks." Yeahhh...the principal taught my class to blow it up.

After lunch, we have a little quiet time, sitting at tables. They have small containers of Play-Doh that we pull out some days to play independently. Thursday was just such a day. Some were making animals, some were making cakes, some were making cartoon characters. It was awesome. But one girl, Z, was making something totally different. She'd made two tiny Play-Doh mountains and was holding them up to her chest. I noticed this as I walked by and heard her say, "These are my boobies," giggling madly. Wow. I can't even comment on this, because what is there to say? It was supremely weird. My jaw dropped. Let's move on.

The bathroom is inside the classroom, with two stalls and a sink. The door stays propped open. I looked over on Wednesday to see S crawling out from under the boys' stall. Um...? I walked over. "Hey, S...what did you just do?" He stared at me. "S, did you lock that?" He stared more. I walked over to the door and checked. For some reason, he locked the stall door and left it that way. How helpful.
"We can unlock it," he told me.
"Yeah." I know he didn't do it with any malicious intent, but I could not keep the sarcasm out of my voice. He continued to stare. "Well, I'm not going to do it," I added. "I'm too tall."
"Oh." S crawled back under (On the kindergarten bathroom floor. Gross.) and emerged the proper way. Sometimes...the ideas are not so hot.

We had a guest come in Wednesday afternoon, and she was running a few minutes later. We had just returned from music, so we were discussing our favorite songs from class. J raised his hand and asked if it could be a favorite song from home. "Sure!" I replied enthusiastically, glad to know my class was unaware that I was killing time.
"Ice Ice Baby," J said proudly. He smiled widely at me. I could only laugh.
"Awesome." I replied. What else does one say to that?

It was a great week at work. With my freakshow class. :)

Friday, January 08, 2010


My friends and I occasionally revel in the glory of a Bad Movie. (My personal favorite was Female Popstar Night—it was the Trinity of Awful. Gigli with Jennifer Lopez, Crossroads with Britney, and something or other with Hilary [and Haylie, but…who cares?] Duff. OH MY GOD the Duff movie JUST CAME ON MTV. It’s fate. Also, it’s Material Girls. I’ll give it a miss this time around.) We gathered last week for just such an evening. Sitting in the basement, we heard sporadic hissing.
Yes. Hissing. Not “some kind of animal is trapped in the basement and getting angry” hissing. (If only...) Oh, no. Something much worse. This kind of hissing made me sit rigidly in alarm. This kind of hissing was awfully similar to a certain “clean linen” air freshener we all know and deplore. I started to panic. Was it following me here? Was that even possible? I asked if anyone else heard that noise. I silently hoped they had. I hoped I was not alone. Was this going to haunt me? Was this to be my own personal case of a heart beating under the floorboards, refusing to be forgotten? Will I guiltily hear hissing everywhere I go until it slowly drives me mad? Does—oh. Ok. Everyone else heard it.
“Oh,” said my host casually. “That’s just the air freshener. It’s supposed to be on a 30 minute timer.” She walked over to the wall plug-in unit as if it were no big deal, as if she were confronting a harmless kitten. Thirty seconds later, she returned to restart the movie.
“Is it very angry?” I whispered, afraid to raise my voice. You can’t let it sense your fear, Amanda, I thought to myself.
“What? Oh, I unplugged it. It’s fine now.”

Yes. Yes it IS fine now. You will not follow me around, awful box. You will stay banished to the cabinet under the sink. (Until I can find a more suitable hiding place. I would bury it, but I worry about those toxins getting into the earth. Even if my mother does not worry about them getting into my lungs. It’s fine, Mom. I have two.)