Literally Forgot The World

, , , | | Learning | August 18, 2019

(I am doing a geography test when I realise that we didn’t get atlases, even though we need them for the test. We aren’t in the geography classroom where the atlases are kept, either, so a classmate and I go to that classroom where a different test is going on. The teacher surveilling that test is my biology teacher in a different year. To get to the closet with all the atlases he has to ask a kid doing his test to move his table, and though he assumes at first we only need two, we need to keep coming in and out for all the books for the entire class. He just looks at us with the most deadpan look.)

Teacher: “Who is your geography teacher?”

Me: “Ms. [Geography Teacher].”

Teacher: “Kill her.”

The Swag Bros Are Dead, Long Live The Swag Bros

, , , | | Learning | August 15, 2019

(I am a student teacher at an elementary school. It is the end of the school year, and as a reward for turning in their homework every week, my partner teacher has me take a group of students out for an extra recess. We get outside and I notice two of the students, a pair of boys who are best friends, standing by the fence, crossing their arms, and bopping to some unheard tune.)

Me: “What are you guys doing?”

Boy #1: “We’re the Swag Bros!”

Boy #2: “We just dropped an album on YouTube and it already has seventy million likes.”

Me: “And this is… your swag dance?”

Boy #2: “Exactly.”

(I continue patrolling the playground. A few minutes later, I see that the boys aren’t playing together.)

Me: “What happened to the Swag Bros?”

Boy #2: “We broke up. The Swag Bros are no more.”

Me: “Oh, no, that’s so sad!”

(Not long after, I see the boys back together, along with a third boy. All three are doing the weird crossed-arms dance in unison.)

Me: “What’s going on here?”

Boy #1: “The Swag Bros are back together, and now we have [Boy #3]!”

Boy #3: “We just dropped our new mixtape and it already has a million gajillion hits!”

(Long live the Swag Bros.)

Ayn Rand: The Child Years

, , , , | | Learning | August 12, 2019

(I am a summer camp counselor. I am waiting for the next activity with my campers on a bench when we spot a spider on the bench next to us. The campers are around ages seven to nine.)

Me: “Oh, hey, there’s a little spider here. Watch out for it!”

Camper #1: “That’s a jumping spider!”

Me: “Really? Do you like spiders?”

Camper #1: “Yeah! I study spiders a lot!”

Camper #2: “I like to study cars!”

Camper #3: “I study human weakness.”


They’re Probably Right

, , , , , | | Learning | August 10, 2019

(I am working at a summer camp. As you can expect, the campers regularly freak out over insects and spiders.)

Me: “Calm down! It probably won’t hurt you!”

Camper: “I love how you say, ‘Probably.’”

Seriously Flipped Out

, , , , , , | | Learning | August 7, 2019

As a child, I was fairly quiet, a bit of a dreamer, and fairly easy to upset. Thus, when my first-grade teacher asked to speak to my mum one day after school, Mum figured I’d probably just had a run-in with a more brash child, or skinned a knee, or something like that.

Not quite.

In class, we’d been discussing what we wanted to be when we “grew up.” The usual occupations were brought up and discussed — teacher, firefighter, policeman, ambulance driver — and then my teacher made the mistake of asking me.

I said I wanted to be a dolphin.

“Oh, you mean a dolphin trainer?” my teacher asked.

Nope. I wanted to be a dolphin. 

When I was informed that I couldn’t actually be a dolphin, I started crying. Attempts to persuade me that I could work with dolphins or by dolphins were to no avail; I was determined to be a dolphin and only a dolphin, and nothing else would suffice.

While mum admitted — years later — that neither she nor the teacher could keep a straight face when discussing “the dolphin incident,” she — and the rest of my family — still take great delight in bringing up my early career choices at every opportunity.

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