Category: Family & Kids

Driving Himself Into A New Job

| East Haven, CT, USA | Employees, Family & Kids, Ignoring/Inattentive, Transportation

(My sisters and I are in elementary school, between the ages of five and nine.  We live about a mile away from school in a house plopped in the middle of two major roadways, which means that we are the first stop on our route before the bus we take heads to the opposite side of town for the other kids’ houses. One day my mother has somewhere to be and asks her eighty year old grandmother to babysit for the afternoon, expecting us to be off the bus at 3:15 pm on the dot. When our bus approaches the intersection for our street, she slows at the turn, cranes her neck, looks at the house, changes lanes, and drives on forward instead without even stopping.)

Older Sister: “Our house!”

Bus Driver: “Nobody is home. I can’t leave you without your parents.”

Older Sister: “No, our great-grandma is home! She’s babysitting today.”

Bus Driver: “Nobody’s home. Now sit down and be quiet. You’re not going home to an empty house.”

Older Sister: “But grandma’s–”

Bus Driver: “I SAID, NOBODY IS HOME. There’s no car in the driveway!”

Me: “Nona is old. She doesn’t drive.”

Bus Driver: “I SAID SIT DOWN. YOU’RE NOT GOING HOME!”

Little Sister: *sobbing* “I WANT MY NONAAAAAAAAAAAA!”

(My older sister and I spend the rest of the route calming down a hysterical kindergartner while the bus driver yells at us every time we ask when we can go home. After the last house on the route she drives back toward our house, but again doesn’t drive down the road — just past it. She cranes her neck again to look for a car and drives straight instead of stopping or turning.)

Bus Driver: “UNBELIEVABLE. I can’t believe your parents would expect you to go home to an empty house–”

Me: “NONA! I can see her in the doorway—”

Bus Driver: “SIT DOWN! There’s no cars in the driveway.”

Older Sister: “Our grandmother doesn’t drive!”

Little Sister: *pressing her face against the window* “I WANT MY NONA!”

Bus Driver: “NONA’S NOT IN YOUR HOUSE! STOP CRYING! YOU’RE NOT GOING HOME!”

(The bus driver takes us back to our elementary school. By now it is after four pm.)

Bus Driver: “Go back inside and tell the principal what happened so they can look for your parents! I have a schedule to keep. I can’t be babysitting until your parents come home!”

(Apparently my great-grandmother panicked after not seeing our bus come when it was scheduled to, and had to track down my mother to tell her we didn’t come home. My mother then had to track down the bus company, and the bus company tracked down the bus driver, and the bus driver informed everybody that she refused to drop us off at an empty house and instead chose to drop us off outside of the elementary school where we would be safe. The elementary school that had locked its doors at three pm when all of the students had left for home. So THEN the bus company called the school in a panic asking if they had seen us, and all of the teachers who had stayed late that evening for prep work bolted out of the building to search for us. We were wandering the parking lot. A nine-year-old, a seven-year-old, and a snot-covered, red-in-the-face, hysterical five-year-old, wandering the parking lot, wondering why we weren’t allowed to play with our Nona. The bus driver continued to insist that she knew for a fact that no one was home for us because there were no cars in the driveway, and we were misbehaving and refusing to sit while the bus was in motion. We got a new bus driver on Monday.)

Compounding The Problem

| MA, USA | Family & Kids, Language & Words

(I have two children: a seven-year-old boy and a nine-year-old girl. I am helping my son with his homework. He is learning compound words in school, such as thunderstorm, softball, firefly. I want to know if he understands the concept.)

Me: “How do you make a compound word?”

Son: “You put two ordinary words together.” *makes two fists, fist-bumps himself*

Me: *thinking, okay, his teacher must have taught this visual to the kids to get them to understand* “Okay, give me an example of a compound word.”

Son: “Umm… buttcheek.”

(I didn’t know if I should laugh or say that’s not appropriate, but at least he got the concept. I took a picture and sent it to my husband. It was too funny not to share!)

Phoning In Your Day’s Work

| USA | Family & Kids, Politics

(I work for a small daycare. Because I don’t wear a watch, I tend to carry my phone around in my back pocket to keep track of the time, as we have to sign the kids in and out on a clipboard. My phone is smaller than the more popular phones that are owned by others. The four-year-olds are fascinated by it, especially by the fact that it has physical buttons and no touch screen. The weather has been hot this week, and my warm-weather clothing tends to have no pockets, so I set the phone down next to the clipboard when we go outside. I am watching a pair of troublemakers across the playground when I hear the faint ringing of an outgoing call. Looking to my right, I see a child with a guilty look on his face and my active phone in his hand. He had hit the right combination of buttons to not only access my contact list, but to call them on speaker-phone!)

Me: *grabbing phone* “[Child #1]! Who did you call?”

(I panic briefly, wondering who on my contact list would not find it funny to get a phone call from a naughty four-year-old. But then I hear a familiar voice.)

Coworker: “[Daycare]. This is [Coworker] speaking.”

Me: “Hey, [Coworker]. This is [My Name] out on the playground. [Child #1] is messing with my phone.”

Coworker: *laughing* “Okay.” *hangs up*

(Today is more of the same: out on the playground, phone on the bench, no pockets. [Child #2] picks up my phone.)

Child #2: “Is this your phone? It’s small.”

Me: “Yes. Please don’t call the front desk, like [Child #1] did yesterday.”

(Child #2 gives me a mischievous, toothless grin.)

Child #2: “I AM gonna call someone! I’m gonna call Donald Trump!”

Me: “Don’t call Donald Trump; that sounds expensive!”

(Little bugger took off across the playground with my phone. When I got it back, there were several random photos in the camera section. I am sewing pockets into every article of clothing that I own.)

Your Father Was Lost In Translation

| CA, USA | Crazy Requests, Family & Kids, Teachers

(We’re in Spanish class, taught by a teacher who generally isn’t very competent. The classmate in this story is often harassed by the teacher for goofing off, but is honest in this story.)

Teacher: “[Classmate], ¿Cómo esta tu padre?” *How is your father?*

Classmate: “[Teacher], I don’t have a dad.”

Teacher: *looks at classmate skeptically* “Yes, you do.”

Classmate: “No, I don’t.”

Teacher: “Who do you live with, then?”

Classmate: “My mom.”

Teacher: “Are you sure?”

Classmate: “Yes, [Teacher].”

Teacher: “Make something up, then; pretend you have a dad.”

Royal Colors

| USA | Family & Kids, Movies & TV

(My aunt is teaching a group of small children, talking to them about Disney princesses.)

Aunt: “I rather like Belle. Which one is your favorite?”

Little Girl: “I like Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella. I don’t like Tiana.”

Aunt: “Why not?”

Little Girl: “I just don’t like her color.”

Aunt: *feeling uncomfortable* “Um, why not? I think she is very pretty.”

Little Girl: “Yes, but I really don’t like green. I like blue and pink.”

Aunt: “Oh. Well, that’s fine, then!”