Last Friday I spent my entire day at the school performing my last and final PTA duties for the year—NO TV Week. This part of the job I enjoy. I bought lots and lots of toys, checked my list, and handed them out the good boys and girls just like a female version of Santa Clause (minus the gray hair, and red nose. I wish I could minus the belly that jiggles like a bowl full of jelly, but I’m slowly working on that).
The children loved me. They adored me. But I don’t want to do it again next year. It is time to forward that good feeling onto another PTA volunteer. I must spread the blessings.
Anyway, while there I became hungry. I could smell the lunchroom and I had a good fifteen minutes before my next batch of kids came to collect their goodies.
My daughter, who is in first grade, saw me and waved me over to sit with her brood of fellow first graders. I tell you, first graders are something else. To eat lunch with them, one must have a pretty strong stomach. (Disclaimer: The school lunch wasn’t great, but it was palatable until I sat down at that table with all those 6-year-olds.)
First, one little girl ripped off her shoe and sock and slapped her foot up on the table. “See that mark,” she said so very proud of herself. “That was where I had my wart removed. I only had one. My sister had ten.”
It gets worse.
One little boy dipped his purple grapes into ranch dressing, and plopped them into his mouth whole. I get shivers just thinking about it.
“Why do you do that?” I asked.
“Because it’s good.” He then offered to give me one.
“No thanks,” I said. “That sure is kind of you though.”
Last, but not least of my experience with the first graders, ended in them playing “Pass the chip.” A child on the far end of the table would pass a chip down the line to the child at the end. That child would plop it in his mouth and then proceed to send another chip up the row.
Ten kids touching a chip? There’s a whole lot of cooties being shared right there. Now, I didn’t want to be a party pooper, so when the chip came my way, I refused to eat it, but went ahead and passed it along down the row.
Eating with first graders is quite the experience. I don’t think I will ever be the same.
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