February 28, 2006

mean jolene

i had a really bad day

i don't believe in bad day blodging, i'm opposed to it, but i'm so far behind here, and maybe you can help.

went to mentoring with katie. on my way, i stopped by true's classroom (it's directly across the hall from the mentor reading room.)

i could see that miss fin was deep into a lecture. true's class is learning about texas this week. armadillos, the alamo, davey crockett...you name it. it was an imaginative little lesson going on and i didn't want to disrupt it.

so i stepped up behind the door and leaned against it and listened. and you know what i heard? i heard my true talking non stop, just like he does at home. i gained so much respect for miss fin at that moment. it was like she kept talking and controlling the lesson even as true fought to get some attention out of the class. all the kids were yelling out and having a good time. what an artist, that teacher, she really has a great way with kids.

anyway, i'm standing there, listening at the door when mean jolene happens by. she says, "can i help you?"

i recognize her as the reading specialist that gave the mentors a cram course on helping kids with their reading, however i couldn't remember her name. i said, "oh hi, i'm true's mom. i didn't want to disrupt his class by poking my head in, so i thought i'd just listen to their lesson; they are really having a great time."

she just walked away with a student in tow, then stopped, turned around mid-step and declared she had a message to deliver to the office and then headed that way.

i went on listening. shortly thereafter, katie walked up with miss r, the mentor coordinator, and we all walked into the reading room and got busy reading.

not more than five minutes later, the school secretary walks thru the door and says, "i don't want to have to say this to you, miss chou, but they've sent me here to tell you that we can't have you hovering out in the hallways. when you mentor you have to come directly to the reading room and then leave the campus. if you want to see your son, then you need to go to the office and get a pass."

1) my knee jerk reaction is to cool down and then let them know i don't need to volunteer my time or skills to such an ungrateful organization, but i know that would really only hurt katie. she didn't do anything wrong.

2) i realize as a parent, it's good that they have rules to prevent adults from lurking in the hallways. BUT i'm there every week, they all know me. miss r was visibly offended as she witnessed the whole 'fuck off, chou' delivery speech. they know my son is in that class, and when he was in kindergarden, his teacher had me read to his class all the time. it was like we were expected to care enough to come and participate then, but now, a year later, it's all voodoo and shit. wtf?? anyone?

3) i also realize that women who work in mass estrogen outlets such as malls, schools and hospitals (god bless you ladies, i would start killin' eventually) are prone to drive high drama out of didley squat. it's how they show their prowess. if that's all this really amounts to, i guess i'm going to just have to suck it up and move on. drama begets drama and the only way to win is not to play. or so they tell me, i'm walking pms, who am i to say?

4) i almost cried. it made me feel like a child molestor, a criminal. i have no idea why no one thought it would sound offensive, but i have some serious concerns about how they view me at the school. fucking bitches, why you gotta hate?? if katie had parents that gave a crap about her, they wouldn't need me to read to her, no? are they not serving up a beat down on the few of us left that give a shit? cause i sorely feel like giving up.

so great blodging public...what would you do? where is the high road? i'm looking to get on it.

Posted by shoe at February 28, 2006 09:44 PM | TrackBack

Honey, you earned the Golden A for the day in RESTRAINT.

You certainly did.

That was a pissant bitchy thing for that wart on a hog's butt to do and you know it; however, you have the good grace to have taken the high road and here you have called a spade a spade.


She was merely flexing her bitchiness, after all, she lacks any redeeming qualities.

You know what's right.

I'm very sorry you were subjected to that and had a bad day.

I'll see you on Friday and I have a hug and a drink for you.

Love ya, girlie.

Posted by: Christina at February 28, 2006 09:54 PM

I'll second that hug, darlin. Will that be a Shiner or a Margarita when I see you?

Posted by: Dash at February 28, 2006 10:47 PM

Never doubt yourself, Shoe. You rock. Keep doing what you know is the right thing to do. Don't play the bitch's game but don't bail on Katie, either. Hang in there. Wait a few days and then have a private chat with the spineless "they" that sent the school secretary down to deliver their message. Be cool, Shoe.

Posted by: zonker at February 28, 2006 10:49 PM

What a bitch! I admire your restraint.

Posted by: Denny at February 28, 2006 11:03 PM

I agree with Zonk, except I would have that chat (making the same points you made here) with the principal.

Posted by: Jim - PRS at March 1, 2006 03:00 AM

I agree with Jim et al. Call the pricipal today. Tell him what you think. Unfortunately our schools are stocked with the mediocre and those who cannot do anything else (Not all, but many). I say this when my wife works in a school and my daughter wants to be a teacher. They get off on all of the little power trips.

Posted by: hoosierboy at March 1, 2006 08:33 AM

You took the high road precious! Way to go. Sweet little Katie needs you desperately - someone needs to care about her and her future. You are truly doing a great thing by sacrificing your time and your business to try and make a difference in one little girl's life. I agree with Jim & hoosierboy - go to the top, but wait until you aren't so angry. Love you!

Posted by: Zapatamama at March 1, 2006 08:55 AM

Bureaucrats -- soulless creeps on a jihad to suck all the joy out of being a real person. Hang in there, don't let the kids face these zombies alone.

Posted by: Bob at March 1, 2006 10:09 AM

.. wow... good responses, all.. and you did the right thing... when people start playing games, it's best to just let it go... don't stoop to their level... so to speak...

Posted by: Eric at March 1, 2006 02:10 PM

Now that everyone has patted you on the back for showing so much restraint, etc, etc. I am going to kick you in the butt for violating the rules that you knew about. Those rules are for everyone, they are in place to try to protect your kids from wackos, molestors, and the rest of the wacko world. Where do they draw the line ? Your not a school employee, you do not have the right to just wander the halls at your leisure and pop in on your kids teachers without letting the school know that you are there. I am glad you are a mentor, good on you, but that doesn't give you any more rights than any other parent. Your feelings got hurt, sorry, at least somone is paying attention to the halls. I for one am not going to pat you on the back.

Posted by: james old guy at March 2, 2006 11:01 AM

The fact that they knew who you were and why you were there made the way they handled the situation inappropriate. They could have taken you aside and explained the issue to you politly, out of earshot of anyone else: "these are the rules, etc., etc., and it's not meant to be a slap at you." But instead they chose the obnoxious "in yer face" power-trip route. Unnecessary.

Don't take it personally, Shoe. You're doing good work there, and our schools need all the help they can get.

Oh, if you could hear some of the stories SWMBO has about idiots who work in our public schools.

Posted by: Elisson at March 2, 2006 12:59 PM

Old guy, she wasn't "wandering the halls". Her boy's classroom is DIRECTLY ACROSS THE HALL from the mentor reading room. Did you not read that part? It would be one thing if she'd circumvented security, snuck onto the campus, tiptoed down to her student's room, etc...but she was there in an official capacity, the whole nine yards. She wasn't even trying to *see* her son, she was waiting for her mentoree. Big difference.

I agree with Elisson. The fact that she WAS there to mentor, that they know her, knew why she was there, etc., makes Mean Jolene's bitchy comment just that - a bitchy comment. No actual rules were violated, and the chick was just being snotty because she *can* be.

And, FWIW, I don't think Shoe's pining away for either your back-pat or your butt-kick...She was soliciting advice for how to handle the situation and nothing more.

Posted by: Kelley at March 2, 2006 04:45 PM

I used to voluteer at my kids' elementary school. One day I peaked my head inside my child's empty classroom only to discover a lone student rifling through desk after desk. Another time I witnessed a classroom of unattended children chasing each other with rulers. That's the stuff they don't want you to see.

Posted by: Patty at March 4, 2006 08:09 PM

It's bullshit, Shoe. I'm sorry that you got sucked into it. Karma...she'll get hers. ;)

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