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This Is Why We Used Cheerios In My Class

, , , , , | Learning | April 8, 2022

I was in first grade in the mid-1990s. My class is currently learning addition and just about everyone is counting on their fingers. We are working on a math sheet in class and I finish mine pretty quickly.

I peer over at the girl sitting next to me and notice that some of her answers are wrong. Upon further observation, I see that she, much like the others, is using her fingers to count, which is fine until she goes to count the fingers on her next hand. When adding numbers such as three and three, she will start with three fingers up on one hand and then raise the other two fingers on her hand for the next three. Then, she moves to her other hand for the last one, but the thumb on her other hand goes up (or out, rather) at the same time as her pointer finger. Then, she counts how many fingers she actively has up. She then writes seven under the total line.

Being the outgoing and kind-hearted child that I am, I try to point out what she is doing wrong.

Me: “Hey, [Girl], that answer’s wrong.”

Girl: *Defensive immediately* “No, it’s not!”

Me: “I can show you. See, when you count—”

Girl: “Leave me alone, [My Name]. You’re doing it wrong!”

Me: “But, when you count on your fingers, you’re—”

She slams her pencil down and puts her hands up near my face with three fingers up on her right hand and her left hand in a closed fist.

Girl: “I’m not doing it wrong, see?! One.” *Her right pinky finger goes up* “Two.” *Her right thumb goes up* “THREE!” *Pointer AND thumb on her left hand go up* “See?! Seven fingers! Three plus three is seven! I’m not wrong! Leave me alone!”

It was at that moment, at the ripe old age of six, that I learned that it’s pointless to argue with a stupid person.

Language Is Complicated

, , , , , , | Learning | April 7, 2022

I’m working at a summer camp.

Second-Grader: “My dad watches adult movies in the living room after I go to bed.”

Some of the fourth- and fifth-graders start laughing.

Me: “What do you mean?”

Second-Grader: “He watches movies that I’m not allowed to watch because they say bad words and there’s too much fighting and guns.”

Me: “Let’s call them ‘grown-up movies,’ instead. ‘Adult movies’ means something really bad.”

I Think We’d All Like To Postpone Shots!

, , , , | Friendly | April 6, 2022

I’m visiting my friend. I mention that I had pushed back donating blood until tomorrow so I could fit in the visit today.

Friend’s Son: “No, I don’t want you to give blood!”

Me: “What? Why not?”

Friend’s Son: “I don’t want you to get hurt.”

Me: “It’s okay. It only hurts for a second; it doesn’t really bother me.”

Friend’s Son: “When I got my shot, it hurt really bad.”

I don’t have the heart to tell him they use a larger needle for drawing blood, so actually, it hurts more than a shot.

Me: “Yeah, I know, but you get used to it and it isn’t as hard after a while.”

Friend’s Son: “You mean things hurt less when you get older?”

Me: “Umm, something like that.”

The boy apparently later told his mom he wanted to wait to get any more shots until he was older, so it would hurt less.

How Big Is This Store?!

, , , , , , | Right | April 5, 2022

I was shopping in a grocery store when I heard this.

Woman’s Voice: “Hannah? Hannah? HANNAH!”

She sounded panic-stricken. I was about to approach her when I saw the store’s manager walking up to her, so I backed off and eavesdropped.

Manager: “What’s the matter, ma’am?”

Woman: “My little girl! She was right beside me, and now she’s missing! Please help me!”

Manager: “Don’t worry, ma’am. We’ll do everything we can to find her.”

Shortly afterward, the store’s doors were locked, and an announcement came over the PA to be on the lookout for a six-year-old girl matching [description]. The mother grew increasingly hysterical, sobbing that her daughter must have been kidnapped. Then, five minutes later…

Woman: “HANNAH! OH, THANK GOD!”

She hugged her daughter, and all was well… until five minutes after THAT:

Woman: “HANNAH! WHERE ARE YOU? SOMEONE HELP ME! MY DAUGHTER’S GONE!” *More hysterical sobbing*

I’m a mother myself, and I know how difficult it can be to keep an eye on small kids, but losing your little girl twice in one hour?

Reading Is Life

, , , , , , | Friendly | April 4, 2022

I was a REALLY bookish kid. When my mom had the time to take me to the public library, I’d load up on all the books I could physically carry, read them all in a week, and then reread the best ones until they had to be returned.

One day, as I was reaching up to put all my books in the return slot under my mother’s watchful eye, a friendly old lady stopped by us and chatted a little with my mom before I finished and she turned to me.

Old Lady: “You just really like reading, huh?”

Me: “Yeah!”

Old Lady: “What would you do if you couldn’t read?”

I thought about it. I liked drawing but got bored with it pretty quickly. I couldn’t bring toys to school, so I couldn’t play during recess instead of reading a book. There was only so long I was allowed to play video games for. I genuinely could not imagine what kind of fun I could have for very long without books. Thus, I came to a conclusion of what I would do if I couldn’t read.

Me: “Die?”

My mother very quickly got us out of that conversation and pushed me into the main library. I’m sure she was a little shocked and heartily embarrassed, but once I got older and developed a dark sense of humor, I thought it was hilarious.